# Counting valleys solution

## Problem

An avid hiker keeps meticulous records of their hikes. During the last hike that took exactly steps, for every step it was noted if it was an uphill, , or a downhill, step. Hikes always start and end at sea level, and each step up or down represents a unit change in altitude. We define the following terms:

A mountain is a sequence of consecutive steps above sea level, starting with a step up from sea level and ending with a step down to sea level. A valley is a sequence of consecutive steps below sea level, starting with a step down from sea level and ending with a step up to sea level. Given the sequence of up and down steps during a hike, find and print the number of valleys walked through.

Example

The hiker first enters a valley units deep. Then they climb out and up onto a mountain units high. Finally, the hiker returns to sea level and ends the hike.

Function Description

Complete the countingValleys function in the editor below.

countingValleys has the following parameter(s):

int steps: the number of steps on the hike string path: a string describing the path Returns

int: the number of valleys traversed Input Format

The first line contains an integer , the number of steps in the hike. The second line contains a single string , of characters that describe the path.

Constraints

Sample Input

8 UDDDUDUU Sample Output

1 Explanation

If we represent _ as sea level, a step up as /, and a step down as , the hike can be drawn as:

_/\ _ \ / // The hiker enters and leaves one valley.

## Solution

```
steps = 8
path = "UDDDUDUU"
def countingValleys(steps, path):
count = 0
level = 0
for step in path:
if level == -1 and step == "U":
count += 1
if step == "U":
level += 1
else:
level -= 1
return count
result = countingValleys(steps, path)
print(result)
```

```
1
```

## Lessons

- Keep track of variables with a counter
- Do it on paper and do it by hand, look for “smart” algorithms, don’t worry about efficiency just yet

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