Talus slopes. For small stretches

June 11 [Tue], 2019, 10:55


Talus slopes. For small stretches, the herringbone step may be used, ascending straight up a slope with the toes pointed out.


When descending you should move straight down the slope without traversing. This requires the least amount of movement into the slope.


Grassy slopes.


Scree slopes.


If possible you should avoid ascending scree slopes since they are difficult and tiring.


When descending a grassy slope, a climber should traverse because of the uneven nature of the ground. This is done by kicking in with the toe of the upper foot so that a step is formed in the scree. Your back must be straight and knees bent so they take up the shock of each step. Scree varies in size from grains of sand to the size of a fist. The climber uses the herringbone step up to the axe.

Mountain walking is divided into four techniques dependent on the general formation of the terrain. This process is repeated. When several climbers descend a scree slope together, they should be as close together as possible, one behind the other, about an arms length apart. When ascending, your knees must be locked on every step to rest the muscles of the legs. Talus is a slope formed by an accumulation of rock debris much larger than a man's fist. The hop-skip step can be useful on this type of slope. The downhill foot points about 45 degrees off the direction of travel. The tendency to run down a scree slope is to be avoided so control is not lost. Turning at the end of each traverse should be done by stepping off in the new direction with the uphill foot. To prevent injury from dislodged rock.


When the herring bone step is used to ascend scree, the axe can be used by placing both hands on top of it. This maintains maximum sole contact and prevents possible downhill ankle roll-out. Walking with a slight forward lean and with feet in a normal position makes the descent easier.


The best method Drive system -swing-arm for descending scree slopes is to come straight down the slope using a short shuffling step with the knees bent, back straight, feet pointed downhill, and heels dug in. Steep slopes can be traversed rather than climbing straight up. Always keep the axe on the uphill side. Scree slopes can be traversed using the ice axe as a third point of contact. Always use caution when moving in talus. After determining that the step is stable, weight is transferred from the lower to the upper foot. To prevent injuries, no member of the group traverses below another member. Learnt and practised to the point where they become second nature will make you a confident, and much safer, climber.


When traversing, the climber's uphill foot points in the direction of travel. In ascending, the upper side of each hummock, or tussock, is stepped on where the ground is more level than on the loer side. In this technique the lower leg takes all of the weight, and the upper leg is used for balance. All principles of ascending hard ground apply, but each step is chosen carefully so that the foot does not slide down when weight is placed on it. When walking in talus, wether ascending or descending, always step on the top of and on the uphill side of rocks. Climbers must stay in close columns whilst traversing. This prevents crossing the feet and possible loss of balance.

. Walking on hard ground,grassy slopes, scree slopes, and tallus slopes. The bottom, or point, of the axe is sunk into the scree, and the axe is used for balance. In traversing, the full sole principle is used by rolling the ankle away from the hill on each step. They are usually composed of small tussocks of growth rather than one continuous field. Large rocks can be held in place by smaller keystones, disturbing them can cause rockslides. You can easily build up too much speed and fall if a direct descent is tried. When the bottom of the route cannot be seen, caution should be used since dropoffs may be encountered.


Hard ground. A normal progression as the slope steepens would be from walking straight up the slope, to a herringbone step, and then to a traverse on the steeper areas. Sometimes it occurs in mixtures of all sizes, but normally scree slopes consist of the same size particles. All other basics apply.


These techniques are valuable precautions to learn in order to reduce the risk of the most common mountaineering hazard - rockfall. These consist of small rocks and gravel that have collected below rock ridges and cliffs. This is firmly packed dirt that does not give way under the weight of a climber's step

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