Health Hints | RTX Traveler Issue 13

Our Canada issue has some amazing destinations with world class mountain vistas, powder skiing, and hiking. But if you’re not acclimated to it, the altitude at some of these places can really surprise you and take the wind out of your sails during your vacation.

Jumping skier at jump with alpine high mountains

Altitude sickness comes on in some people when they’re exposed to cold, dry air, increased sun, and low air pressure. Physical activities such as skiing only increase the symptoms of headache, fatigue, appetite loss, nausea and vomiting.

Your body will feel it most if you’re at a spot above 8,000 feet and will most likely normalize within a few days, but here are things you can do to minimize the effects of altitude sickness.

  • If you’re planning a road trip to higher elevations, ascend slowly. Spend time getting acclimated by gradually making it up the mountains.
  • It’s always a good idea to sleep at a lower altitude. Our resort destinations do vary in altitude, so it’s best to check first before going. A few thousand feet can mean the difference between feeling perfectly normal and feeling sick.
  • Avoid alcohol. When you’re up at the chalet for apres ski, just remember, alcohol is going to affect you way more than it will at a beach vacation.
  • Ease into the exercise. The first few days shouldn’t be filled with strenuous activity.
  • Medication may help. Ask your doctor for medication if you know you’ll need it. It may help you adjust.



About the Author

About the Author: Pat Barcas serves as Creative Resources Manager for RTX, based in Asheville, NC. You can find him hiking the mountains of Asheville, gardening, traveling, and hanging with his growing family. His favorite RTX exchange destinations are Rangeley, Maine, Lake Tahoe, Banff, Canada, New Smyrna Beach, Florida, Cape Cod, and Orange Beach, Alabama. .


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