Escape & Alternative Routes

Escape & Alternative Routes


Escape routes are pre-planned descents from higher levels, should you need to retreat


Escape & Alternative Routes 

Escape & Alternative Routes



Escape Routes

Escape routes are pre-planned descents from higher level routes, for use in times of emergency when there is the need to get off the mountain as quickly and safely as possible. For example, if the weather takes a turn for the worse, it may be more prudent to descent to the valley than continue along the intended but longer route. Likewise, if a member of the party was not feeling well or had an accumulation of hypothermia symptoms, a descent would be the most sensible option.

When planning your route, evaluate the points at which you could safely descend. Grassy, easy angled slopes are an easy choice if available, but you may have to look in more detail if traversing a ridge, where choices will be limited. Guide books can help in the planning stage. Being able to read and visualise contours is a great skill to learn, as you'll be able to identify a descent from the shape of the land alone, without there needing to be a path or right of way marked on the map.

Note escape routes on your route card


Alternative Routes

Planning a route and committing it to paper does not mean that you cannot change plans during the day if the weather's great and you fancy walking further than the main route plan. Good planning will allow for extended routes, and the route card will have a note of possibilities, even if the note says "PS may continue to Grey Friar if the weather's good. Estimated 2 hr extended walking." Such a note is valuable information should you not return by your pre-arranged time, causing your EPOC to alert emergency services if you do not return before your emergency procedure activation time.