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Winter Navigation and Escape Route Planning

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Whenever you plan hikes in backcountry areas, far from roads or towns, it’s useful to plan out escape routes in case an unexpected thunderstorm storm or blizzard blows in, you encounter white-out conditions, avalanche conditions, flash floods, forest fires, or you need to evacuate a companion. I do contingency planning like this when hiking across exposed terrain without much cover, above-treeline or in winter, when there’s a real risk of bodily harm or death if things go pear-shaped. Counting on rescue or extraction in such extreme conditions seldom pays off and the only way to save your butt is to save it yourself.
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