Ways to lessen effects of altitude if unable to acclimatize

Discussion of medical or rescue topics related to climbing and mountaineering.
no avatar

Posts: 49
Joined: Mon May 24, 2010 10:30 pm
Thanked: 1 time in 1 post

Ways to lessen effects of altitude if unable to acclimatize

by mambwe » Tue May 25, 2010 4:41 pm

I'm going to Colorado for a business trip and plan on a couple hikes in the Rockies. Most likely we will do a 14k hike. I'm from New York and the highest elevation I have been is 6,288 ft at Mt Washington. I'm going with a friend who has also never been above 10,000 ft. We will be in Colorado 3 days before we plan on hiking, but given this is a business trip I don't have any time to acclimatize for the 3 days before the hike aside from be in colorado springs for 3 days. I also have Thrombocytosis which is an increase in Platelet count. I'll have to ask my doctor about that one. We are both fit. I'm a runner/triathlete and he is fit as well.

Is there anything we can do before/during the hike to avoid altitude sickness? I've read that drinking a lot of water helps. I know we can't avoid it completely and won't know how it will affect us, but is there anyway to lessen the effect is will have on us?

We both understand if we get any symptoms we will start heading back down the mountain. Safety 1st!


no avatar

Posts: 119
Joined: Wed Sep 14, 2005 11:34 pm
Thanked: 6 times in 6 posts

Re: Ways to lessen effects of altitude if unable to acclimat

by edl » Fri May 28, 2010 10:54 pm

There really isn't anything magical to do to acclimatize. Three days in Colorado Springs will help a lot. If you have time while on business, hiking up into the mountains for a few hours in the evenings would be a good thing.

Drink lots of water, eat well and get lots of sleep. Be prepared to move slower at high elevation. It's wise to be aware of symptoms of altitude sickness and be aware that you'll most likely recognize them in your partner before you'll recognize it in yourself. Sleeping altitude is the biggest factor in altitude sickness. So if you're not planning on sleeping over 10,000 for the first few nights, you'll most likely be fine.

Return to Mountain Medicine & Rescue


  • Related topics
    Last post

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests