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Thread: Lightening storms - camping in the Pyrenees

  1. #1
    Mini Goon
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    United Kingdom
    Posts
    96

    Lightening storms - camping in the Pyrenees

    Hello safe people

    I'm off soon to walk the GR10 and I'm worrying about lightening storms while camping out. The advice that I've read on the internet is contradictory or impracticable so I'm looking for more advice.

    (1) obviously move off the exposed ridge, but some say go to a dry gulley or ravine, others say lightening will seek out the gulley itself. After all, if its raining no gulley is dry - so it seems daft advice??

    (2) It says get off exposed areas more than 100 metres wide, but that's unlikely to be possible - so then what?

    (3) It says spread out so that we are not together - but if we are trying to sleep through a storm or its raining hard we'll both be in the tent. Or should we really get out the tent and go and crouch in the position in the rain at opposite ends of a field?

    (4) You shouldn't camp under a tall tree, as charge will spread out through the ground. What about a group of trees? Presumably same problem via the tallest tree in the group. When does a group become ok? I imagine a forest is relatively safe?

    Basically most of it seems impractical (apart from getting off the ridge and not camping under a solo tree) - so what do you guys do? Do you stay lying in your tent on your mat or do you squat in your tent in the official position or just wait for fate to love you or leave you?

    Practical advice sought.

    Best

    Clare

  2. #2
    Goon
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    Location
    Spain
    Posts
    333
    I lived in the Pyrenees and the main storm season is usually around June. It sounds like you are fretting a little too much. The best advice I was given by a friend of mine who was a "Guide de Haute Montagne" was to be off the top by 4pm as most storms came in the evening.

  3. #3
    Mini Goon
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    United Kingdom
    Posts
    96
    I'm back now. Well, there was plenty of lightening in August/September. Being off the top by 4 wasn't always an option as we were camping quite high, near refuges or once in a gorge during an all night lightening storm - not my happiest night. But obviously I'm still alive.

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