Types of mountaineering shelters
Climbing can be done in many different conditions and as such there are many different forms of mountain climbing lodges. Since different locations can have very different terrain and weather conditions, the options available to climbers vary depending on the location and the overall expected needs of the climbers. These shelters are particularly important on longer climbs, when people spend days in the mountains to climb the highest peaks.
Cabins are extremely common forms of shelter found in many European climbing sites. They can be found at different points throughout the mountains and offer basic necessities such as a dining room and a place to sleep, as well as providing shelter in case a climber needs to rest or unload something from his backpack along the way. The cabins vary in what they offer; some are staffed year-round, some are seasonally staffed, and some are unstaffed. Some of the more exclusively staffed cabins have various offers that climbers can take advantage of, with food and drink available. Others require that people staying in the cabins bring their own supplies. It is also important, when considering cabins, to find out what they offer and if they are reserved, as many cost money and accept reservations. This is particularly true in cabins with full time staff.
Tents are also a very common option for mountaineering shelters. A climber simply brings a tent and secures it properly. It is important to buy a tent that is strong enough to withstand all types of weather, as many mountaineers encounter snow, ice, and strong winds. As such, using a tent is not always the safest way to go, especially if the winds collapse the tent or destabilize it in some way.
Some mountain climbers like to use snow caves as a basic form of shelter. They are warmer than tents, despite being made of snow, but to build a snow cave, a climber needs to have access to basic tools, the most important of which is a snow shovel. It is not that difficult to build a snow cave; They can be built anywhere there is at least four feet of snow, which is a common condition many mountaineers find themselves in. A snow cave is not the same as an igloo, as it is much simpler and easier to build. Igloos are very rare shelters, as they are difficult to assemble.
Many climbers choose to slip away and go the route of a bivouac or a “bivouac”. A climber uses a bivouac bag and a sleeping bag and rests, usually using a crevasse or trench as a means of shelter. Although some purists enjoy doing it this way, many climbers will consider this option only in an emergency.
It is important to remember that mountaineering is a very dangerous activity. One of the best ways to ensure safety is to be sure that adequate shelter will be available, but also to have a backup plan. If you are hoping to stay in a cabin, for example, it is not a bad idea to have a tent or bivouac with you, in case something happens and you need to stop before reaching the destination of the cabin. With the possible changes in the weather and the knowledge that anything can happen once you are on the mountain, this is one of the best advice someone can give you.