The complexity and danger of crossing mountain rivers is associated with the strength of their flow, low water temperature, bottom irregularities and stones rolling along it. The least water is at 4-8 a.m., the more at 13-17 a.m. The water level can rise quickly during and after rain, in the case of a dam breaking, and in cold cloudy weather it can drop significantly.
Crossing mountain rivers ford, along a log, suspended ferry, ways to guide a ferry and organize insurance.
Having studied the features of the river, you can choose the place and time of the crossing so that the ford is relatively light. Streams and small mountain rivers at this time can be overcome without even soaking their feet, jumping from stone to stone. To do this, find a place where the stones protruding above the surface of the water are most numerous, close to each other, not covered with algae, moss and have a dry surface.
Shallow-water mountain rivers with a loosely connected bottom should be crossed on all fours, facing the oncoming stream, resting with the socks of boots on the roughness on the bottom. It is unacceptable to cross the river on the move. A thorough exploration of the banks of the river in both directions is necessary. It’s better to stay a few hours or a day than to put your life at risk.
The smallest places are located in the widest places of the river, and vice versa – the greatest depths and speeds of the flow are found in the narrowing of the channel. Signs of shallow water are:
Wide reaches with increased flow rate across the entire width of the river.
Places where the river is divided by islands into several branches.
Stones protruding above the water.
Islands across the entire width.
In the daytime, in calm weather, the surface of the water above small places – streamers, rifts can be more even and light than over deep ones, where it has a wavy appearance and dark color. Small ripples on the surface of the water indicate shallow water.
Crossing mountain rivers.
Crossing mountain rivers is possible if the depth is not higher than the middle of the thigh. In this case, you should cross below the turn of the river. To keep from demolition along the river, insurance is organized from the shore. The rope is attached to the back of a person crossing the river and is fixed at several more points..
Wade Crossing River Insurance.
You need to wade only in boots with bare feet. In this case, there is less chance of damage to the feet on the stones at the bottom of the river. Outerwear is best removed to reduce free flow resistance. If the water is warm and the transition is small, it is better to go deep fording without clothes. Place the removed clothing under the top flap of the backpack or, tied in a knot, keep it over your head.
It is necessary to go in small steps, in no hurry, feeling the bottom with your feet. Alone, you can cross the river towards the current, resting against the bottom with a strong wooden pole. If the stream is stormy, with muddy water, it is not possible to see the nature of the bottom, it is convenient to use a pole for support, having secured it with a rope or a cord. If it’s difficult for one to cross, you can enter the water together, three or three.
The insurance system for crossing mountain rivers ford.
If crossing mountain rivers is complicated, it is better to wade along the railing. The figure below shows the organization of such a crossing and insurance of its participants.
Crossing mountain rivers along a log.
In case of mass crossings, they organize a crossing across the river along a thrown or fused log. Throwing or fusing the log, the butt part must be fixed. In the middle of the main rope at the thin end of the log a knot is knitted. When transferring, the log is first raised vertically, and then with safety ropes (the ropes are pulled apart at an acute angle – initially 90 degrees), carefully lowered through the stream.
Crossing mountain rivers along a log with a railing made of poles.
Transport logs across the river.
When alloying the logs, it is necessary to determine in advance a point on the opposite bank (large stone, tree, etc.), into which the log rests against its top. After laying the logs, the first participant of the bezruzak crossing (with shore insurance and an auxiliary safety rope attached to the chest harness) passes along the log to the other bank and pulls up the railing upstream of the log. In this way the crossing is organized and the necessary insurance of the crossing.
Log Crossing Insurance.
Suspended ferry across mountain rivers.
If the above methods of crossing are impossible due to the excessively turbulent flow of the river, its width, a suspended crossing is used. For long hinged crossings, double rope is used to avoid excessive rope tension and breakage. At the time of skozheniya on an inclined rope crossing, you can not grab the rope, a burn is possible. It is forbidden to go head first to avoid hitting the shore.
The attachment of the chest harness of the carabiner crossing to the supporting rope is mandatory. Since in any case the rope sags in the middle of the river, an auxiliary rope is fastened to the crossing – it pulls it to the shore. At a suspended crossing, backpacks, ice axes, other equipment are transported separately.
Crossing mountain rivers on horseback, camel, donkey.
Crossings through mountain rivers with the help of animals are possible. The limiting depth of the ford for horseback riding is 1.25 meters at a flow speed of up to 2 m / s. Camels overcome deeper fords. Ishakov is transported without cargo, insuring with a rope from the shore, opposite to the beginning of the crossing. Horses and donkeys are tied with a safety rope behind the front legs. When riding, to avoid dizziness, you need to look at the opposite shore or the horse’s head.
Basic rules for crossing mountain rivers.
1. Before carrying out the crossing, it is necessary to carefully explore the coast. Assess the situation taking into account the strength and speed of the stream, the depth and topography of the channel, the possibility of using supports, select materials and equipment for organizing the crossing.
2. Determine the method of crossing.
3. Choose a place and time for the crossing.
4. Set a place for observation, from where the entire crossing is viewed and you can manage it.
5. In a particularly difficult situation, use only double insurance.
6. Before starting the crossing, you should check the reliability of the attachment points, the condition of the ropes.
7. The first most experienced ferry.
8. The ferry with the support of the pole should rest against it upstream.
9. When moving with the organization of insurance with handrails, you need to move on the side of the handrail, downstream.
10. Do not use when crossing the grab knot.
11. Prevent two or more people from crossing at the same time..
12. At a suspended crossing, backpacks, ice axes, other equipment are transported separately.
13. Compulsory reliable insurance and self-insurance.
14. In group crossing, strict discipline and order are needed..
Based on the book SURVIVAL (Survival).
Koleda S.I., Drachev P.N..