SAS Mountain Skills SAS Active Library: Mountain Skills
by Barry Davies BEM
pub. HarperCollins, 2001
Paperback, 240 pages, 9.99
ISBN 0 00 710228 3

This pocket-sized tome by Barry Davies does not presume to be an instruction book on mountain skills and mountain craft, but rather a guide to the safe enjoyment of mountainous areas.

The contents have a neat logic in their order: Walking the Mountains (which deals with planning, leadership and groups); Rights of Way; Clothing & Equipment; Navigation; Camping Out; Food & Water; Winter Mountain Walking; Rock Climbing; Wilderness First Aid, Weather; and Search & Rescue.

While Davies' writing style is very matter-of-fact it is also conversational and not the least bit 'stuffy'; engaging the reader easily on matters which are important when dealing with this potentially dangerous part of our natural landscape.

As readers will have gleaned from the contents mentioned above, the 'essentials' are covered, and provide basic advice rather than laborious in-depth discussion. Which makes this a guide handy for the outdoors' pocket.

On more serious topics - such as rock climbing - the author provides only an equipment and climbing technique overiew, rightly pointing out that it is a sport that requires proper and adequate training.

Bottom line...
Plastic-jacketed, this volume of Collins' SAS Active Library series provides good informational value at around 10 and should provide newcomers to outward bound and outdoors activities with some of the essential knowledge required for safe enjoyment of mountainous areas. Seasoned veterans of like areas will undoubtedly be familiar with everything contained within the pages.

Copyright © 2002