Over the past weeks, every day I saw reports about mountain rescue teams saving hikers from dangerous spots. In some cases, there was just some seriously bad luck to be blamed – but in the majority of them, the situation could have been well avoided if only the victims were better prepared.
The common thing that repeated throughout the rescue team’s comments was a lack of proper preparation on the side of the walkers. They were not prepared for the weather conditions, didn’t have a map, no necessary gear (like a compass, crampons, warmer layers, headlamp etc.) or underestimated the trail's difficulty.
The problem with such tourists is not just that they could have died (and some did actually), injured themselves and so on, but also endangered the brave members of rescue teams who rushed after them.
We all should do whatever we can to minimize the risks of hiking accidents. This is particularly important when hiking solo – we need to rely on ourselves only.