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ralph23
12-31-2016, 12:08
The combination of the plane crash thread in GSMNP and the Mass. hiker who perished revealed some really ugly Monday morning quarterbacking in this forum. The criticism came so quick I am fairly sure it started before the ill-fated plane even hit the ground. Everyone and their brother has chimed in on the carelessness shown in both tragedies. To be sure- Enough facts have not been released in either case to make any assumptions on what really happened. Period. In the end we should show some remorse and offer similar situations we have found ourselves in so that others may learn.

And along the same thought...Since when did we, as a group of adventurers, get so damn judgey? HYOH has always been about doing what we do in the way we want to do it. We have all made mistakes, some more epic than others. But we learn something from it and move forward. Many an adventurer have said that the real fun, sport, adventure, challenge only starts when stuff goes wrong. I am not advocating carelessness, but I am saying lets not flame away on people who made mistakes similar to ones we have made and just didn't get a good outcome.

tour-kid
12-31-2016, 12:16
Internet forums are the perfect venue for Monday morning quarterbacking.
This one is a fine example. Almost every thread results in heated debate.

i think of online forums/blogs/fb etc as a form of gold mining- you have to sift through a lot of useless rubble before you can find a gold nugget.

pilgrimskywheel
12-31-2016, 12:27
Set - hut! The 'H' is for Hike. And so on. So: PYOP! Known killers: small planes, the Whites in December, trekking w/o poles, Whitney w/o crampons, hot water bottles, mountaineering, etc., etc. The sign says: "Ecotourism is inherently dangerous..."

Tipi Walter
12-31-2016, 12:34
The HYOH mantra is not used as a justification to ignore the lessons gleaned from catastrophes. Mountaineers write long essays in their Accident Reports to study what went wrong and how it all could've been prevented.

For instance, the Kate Matrosova event caused several rescue first responders on the scene to offer their judgments. Erik Thatcher was in a 10 man rescue team that located Kate and he wrote---

"Kate's kit was rather stripped down to the bare essentials. No partner, no bivy gear, and even relatively light on essential layers in my opinion. This in itself is no sin. What it means is that she was operating with no room for error." ERIK THATCHER.


In the Comment section, Erik mentions what part of her kit she did not have---


"The first is mittens. She had regular gloves which in my experience just doesn't cut it. The second is a neoprene ski mask . . . .no snow shoes, no crampons were on when she was found." ERIK THATCHER.

So, should we therefore ignore his opinion and in fact censor it in favor of the HYOH policy??

Ralph23 says "when did we as adventurers get so damn judgey?" and then he says we should learn something from it and move forward. The learning from it endeavor is done on forum discussions like this---because all discussions of these events by fellow experienced outdoorsmen are by their nature
so-called "ugly Monday morning quarterbacking", at least according to Ralph23.

Real ugly quarterbacking would be to say Person X was a complete idiot who asked for it, or good riddance, or what a clueless fool, or whatever. When the Chris McCandless epic comes up, many many postings degenerate into such mindless idiotic comments. "He deserved it!!!" they howl and do so in a heartless manner.

I'm not talking about these kind of comments here. Re-read Thatcher's assessment as above. Thoughtful people need to study these events and offer their opinions. HYOH cannot be used to censor reasoned opinions.

Puddlefish
12-31-2016, 12:39
It's an internet forum dedicated to backpacking. It's not a forum dedicated to validating free will and hiking your own hike at any cost, it's not a funeral home website where people should necessarily be respectful. People will rush to judgement based on minimal information, this site also isn't a jury.

People have strong judge'y opinions based on their own world views and hiking techniques that have served them well enough. At times I find certain posters to be annoyingly judgey, and I'll post reasons why their advice might not be pertinent, or why it might be offensive... or I'll just ignore it. No doubt, those same people find my opinions annoying.

What I do like about this site, is that there's no one sided removal of posts that disagree with the moderator's opinion. I spent some time on a sailing forum where the site owner would delete any post that questioned the safety of solo sailing/cruising, while letting the opposing posts stand. That was seriously annoying.

rafe
12-31-2016, 12:58
For me, these tragic stories bring thoughts of "there but for the grace of god go I." I don't think the MA hiker thread has been particularly judgemental. I happen to know that area from firsthand experience, and have survived (so far) a few dozen winter day hikes in the White Mountains. My advice/suggestions inevitably fall on the side of caution and prudence.

Rule #1 for me is in the bolded text, quoted by Tipi above:

""Kate's kit was rather stripped down to the bare essentials. No partner, no bivy gear, and even relatively light on essential layers in my opinion. This in itself is no sin. What it means is that she was operating with no room for error."

Tipi Walter
12-31-2016, 13:03
Puddlefish---In other words, ALL forum posts are opinions---and opinions only. Without the expression of opinions there would be no internet forums.

MuddyWaters
12-31-2016, 13:26
Puddlefish---In other words, ALL forum posts are opinions---and opinions only. Without the expression of opinions there would be no internet forums.


And the friction between differences of opinion, is where education is found....

evyck da fleet
12-31-2016, 13:27
Well I'm not sure what the plane crash has to do with hiking other than the location, but I can gather useful information from the posts regarding the Whites. I don't hike in the winter, or what anyone in the northeast would consider winter, but that doesn't mean I can't get caught in inclement weather in shoulder seasons. I'd rather hear how hikers experienced in similar conditions prepare and react instead of having to figure it out on my own.

It's an internet forum, you'll find what you are looking for and some things you'd rather not have read.

Slo-go'en
12-31-2016, 13:36
HYOH is fine, but it doesn't mean hike stupid.

pilgrimskywheel
12-31-2016, 13:58
HYOH is fine, but it doesn't mean hike stupid.

+1 Amen to that! See: "Out of Nowhere: Disaster and Tourism in the White Mountains" By Dr. Eric Purchase. We're going to learn from the mistakes of others so as not to repeat them ourselves. And remember: "If you die first - we're splitting up your gear!" (Dibs on yer poles.)

Feral Bill
12-31-2016, 14:07
The HYOH mantra is not used as a justification to ignore the lessons gleaned from catastrophes. Mountaineers write long essays in their Accident Reports to study what went wrong and how it all could've been prevented.

For instance, the Kate Matrosova event caused several rescue first responders on the scene to offer their judgments. Erik Thatcher was in a 10 man rescue team that located Kate and he wrote---

"Kate's kit was rather stripped down to the bare essentials. No partner, no bivy gear, and even relatively light on essential layers in my opinion. This in itself is no sin. What it means is that she was operating with no room for error." ERIK THATCHER.


In the Comment section, Erik mentions what part of her kit she did not have---


"The first is mittens. She had regular gloves which in my experience just doesn't cut it. The second is a neoprene ski mask . . . .no snow shoes, no crampons were on when she was found." ERIK THATCHER.

So, should we therefore ignore his opinion and in fact censor it in favor of the HYOH policy??

Ralph23 says "when did we as adventurers get so damn judgey?" and then he says we should learn something from it and move forward. The learning from it endeavor is done on forum discussions like this---because all discussions of these events by fellow experienced outdoorsmen are by their nature
so-called "ugly Monday morning quarterbacking", at least according to Ralph23.

Real ugly quarterbacking would be to say Person X was a complete idiot who asked for it, or good riddance, or what a clueless fool, or whatever. When the Chris McCandless epic comes up, many many postings degenerate into such mindless idiotic comments. "He deserved it!!!" they howl and do so in a heartless manner.

I'm not talking about these kind of comments here. Re-read Thatcher's assessment as above. Thoughtful people need to study these events and offer their opinions. HYOH cannot be used to censor reasoned opinions.

Tipi's best post to date. And that's saying a lot

Engine
12-31-2016, 14:20
Taking a critical look at incidents is what allows for a root cause analysis, and maybe avoiding a repeat of the same accident chain.

Sent from my XT1585 using Tapatalk

saltysack
12-31-2016, 14:25
A$$holes are just like opinions we all have one......


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Secondmouse
12-31-2016, 14:35
I take hike your own hike to mean "do it your way". if you're not experienced enough to have your own way, it's probably a good idea to stick to the tried and true.

when it comes to safety and planning for accidents and extreme weather, there's a thin line between doing it your own way and foolishness. someone well versed and experienced in wilderness survival techniques doesn't need to carry as much stuff as others...

Bronk
12-31-2016, 15:23
"Kate's kit was rather stripped down to the bare essentials. No partner, no bivy gear, and even relatively light on essential layers in my opinion. This in itself is no sin. What it means is that she was operating with no room for error." ERIK THATCHER.


In the Comment section, Erik mentions what part of her kit she did not have---


"The first is mittens. She had regular gloves which in my experience just doesn't cut it. The second is a neoprene ski mask . . . .no snow shoes, no crampons were on when she was found." ERIK THATCHER.

So, should we therefore ignore his opinion and in fact censor it in favor of the HYOH policy??I would take exception to his making specific criticisms...its one thing to say she didn't have adequate clothing, but to say every hiker has to carry a pair of mittens is ridiculous...there are many different kinds of gloves and hats and not all work the same for each individual. I wouldn't dream of going on an overnight trip in the winter without bringing a pair of gloves, but the last two winter trips I've done I've never put them on. Different people have different tolerances for the cold and what may be necessary for one person is just extra weight to another. From what I was reading in the article about the guy that died in the whites over Christmas he was said to have adequate gear for the conditions, which indicated to me that he waited too long to put layers on or to seek shelter from the wind and became disoriented due to hypothermia. I'd bet he didn't have a pair of mittens with him either, but even if he had had them, it wouldn't have helped him put his coat on right side up.

pilgrimskywheel
12-31-2016, 15:42
I take hike your own hike to mean "do it your way". if you're not experienced enough to have your own way, it's probably a good idea to stick to the tried and true.

when it comes to safety and planning for accidents and extreme weather, there's a thin line between doing it your own way and foolishness. someone well versed and experienced in wilderness survival techniques doesn't need to carry as much stuff as others...

Sorry, but - okay, I'm not sorry: It's this attitude that causes mountains to eat hikers and misadventurers alike, and it's called hubris. I'm sooooo experienced I don't even need to carry any ________ . Or, as in this case sooooo experienced I do it alone! Hike, swim, etc., etc. You ever notice how everyone is always surprised, and nobody can figure out what happened because the victim was an "experienced" hiker, swimmer, hang-glider, flying-squirrel-parachutist, etc., etc.? I've read and watched everything I could find on Geraldine Largay's tragic case, because as a psychologist and AT hiker it fascinates me. I saw some YouTube video where a couple of hacks were conducting their own search and making a movie of it. (Terrible - and in wicked poor taste. Really so bad it's good.) It was chock full of pseudoscience and SAR quackery, and the would-be-hero kept repeating: "...it's weird because she was so experienced..." or, "...as an experienced hiker she'd do this..." never guessing at the correct, and almost unbelievable truth. Fact is experience helps, and is a completely relative and subjective term. Nobody knows just what they'll do when the poop hits the prop. But, here's a hint: if everybody else thinks it's a bad idea - it probably is. And, if everyone else has a life preserver on - just maybe you should think about one too.

pilgrimskywheel
12-31-2016, 16:04
And honestly, if you've ever been on a season 4 outing and lost your ability to use your hands in your wicked expensive gloves - then you know how important mittens are. That's when the real terror starts for me, at handless and alone near nowhere, followed by an almost irresistible panic that starts with a tightness in the chest as your belly fills with ice water, and the world looks like your seeing it through a paper towel tube. Then you make the next mistake - like not backing down in your own footprints for example, as you for some reason believe that the safety you need MUST be just a little further. And, it was just a day hike so I left my bag and tent behind. (Nope, not me.) Then you have a reprieve fantasy - the final fantasy - which begins: "I'll be okay when.."

Slo-go'en
12-31-2016, 16:11
I take hike your own hike to mean "do it your way". if you're not experienced enough to have your own way, it's probably a good idea to stick to the tried and true.

when it comes to safety and planning for accidents and extreme weather, there's a thin line between doing it your own way and foolishness. someone well versed and experienced in wilderness survival techniques doesn't need to carry as much stuff as others...

Of course, in order to gain experience you have to put yourself in situations which can go either way. Most of us come out of that situation okay and learn to never do that again, but some don't come out so fortunate.

Feral Bill
12-31-2016, 16:35
I... to say every hiker has to carry a pair of mittens is ridiculous.... In the Whites, in winter, above treeline, far from it. I carried spares when I did such things. So did most people.

4eyedbuzzard
12-31-2016, 17:15
...Enough facts have not been released in either case to make any assumptions on what really happened. Period. In the end we should show some remorse and offer similar situations we have found ourselves in so that others may learn.

And along the same thought...Since when did we, as a group of adventurers, get so damn judgey? HYOH has always been about doing what we do in the way we want to do it. We have all made mistakes, some more epic than others. But we learn something from it and move forward. Many an adventurer have said that the real fun, sport, adventure, challenge only starts when stuff goes wrong. I am not advocating carelessness, but I am saying lets not flame away on people who made mistakes similar to ones we have made and just didn't get a good outcome.


The HYOH mantra is not used as a justification to ignore the lessons gleaned from catastrophes. Mountaineers write long essays in their Accident Reports to study what went wrong and how it all could've been prevented.

For instance, the Kate Matrosova event caused several rescue first responders on the scene to offer their judgments. Erik Thatcher was in a 10 man rescue team that located Kate and he wrote---

"Kate's kit was rather stripped down to the bare essentials. No partner, no bivy gear, and even relatively light on essential layers in my opinion. This in itself is no sin. What it means is that she was operating with no room for error." ERIK THATCHER.


In the Comment section, Erik mentions what part of her kit she did not have---


"The first is mittens. She had regular gloves which in my experience just doesn't cut it. The second is a neoprene ski mask . . . .no snow shoes, no crampons were on when she was found." ERIK THATCHER....

Just my take regarding tragic incidents like these in general, and as others have, using Kate Matrosova's death as an example: Often there never is a full accounting of what transpired as the victims are the only ones who know. As a result both casual onlookers (most of us at WB) AND the rescuers AND even the medical examiners have to ultimately make some assumptions/educated guesses as to what happened. We rehashed Kate's tragedy quite extensively here on WB. And in the end, the consensus really didn't focus on what gear was or wasn't carried. And it usually doesn't. Yes, her gear was marginal, but okay under some more benign conditions, given her experience, physical condition, and skill level.

The overriding cause in almost all these environmentally related accidents is the victim's behavior. Behavior that we can learn from. In Kate's instance, it was hiking into already dangerous weather conditions that were deteriorating even further. She made numerous bad (typical opinions ranged from aggressive to outright arrogant) decisions both starting out and then when continuing on, that increasingly compounded her risk as she continued. It's unlikely any different gear decisions, e.g. mittens vs gloves, would have led to a different outcome. She ignored weather reports/forecasts, chose to hike above treeline into already bad and deteriorating conditions, was then literally blown off the mountain, likely rendered injured and/or unconscious, and then succumbed to hypothermia. There are times you either simply don't go, turn back, or bail out - while you still can safely. And the best decision is to not hike into a known marginal situation in the first place. Because once you reach that "marginal situation point" - that point of "if anything goes wrong or changes" you don't have the gear and/or skills and/or conditions to survive, you have lost the ability to change the outcome based on your behavior. You're really screwed at that point. You are down to dumb luck. Most of us choose not to rely on luck alone when it comes to survival.

Hopefully, through discussion of these types of tragedies, we (collectively) learn what mistakes were made, and then don't put ourselves in similar situations. It's not that we don't have remorse. But as we share similar interests and activities that the victim was engaging in, we also have a more in depth understanding than the general public of the reality and seriousness of the outcome. And that's ultimately why we discuss them.

Uriah
12-31-2016, 17:35
Sorry, but - okay, I'm not sorry: It's this attitude that causes mountains to eat hikers and misadventurers alike, and it's called hubris. I'm sooooo experienced I don't even need to carry any ________ . Or, as in this case sooooo experienced I do it alone!

Regarding the last part, it is not always easy to persuade others into joining you when the risk is known to be elevated. I hike extensively in the desert in summer, when temperatures frequently exceed 115*. I repeatedly ask others to come along, but for their own valid reasons, they always decline. I have experienced much during these outings, and I fear at this juncture it would be more difficult on me not to do them.

Those of us who engage in it know the merits of solo travel. It's healthy (as Wilde put it) and enables us to define ourselves in our own way. It tends to allow greater freedom, a deeper peace of mind, and more awareness of ourselves and the world around us (assuming we don't hide from it electronically). It provides more flexibility and the opportunity for decision reversal, and a better chance to overcome our fears and insecurities. We're more inclined to talk to any strangers we might meet when we go solo (though perhaps not when alone in the Whites in winter!).

It is riskier? Sure. But it shouldn't stop us from LIVING as we'd like to before we perish, a fate none of us will escape.

I know I would rather take risks than wish I had, regardless of outcome.

Tipi Walter
12-31-2016, 18:46
4eyedbuzzard---Great post. Even though I'm starting to get this thread mixed up with the other one on the dayhiker in the Whites.

You bring up one of the main causes of outdoor mishaps---Behaviors stemming from Egos. Some would call it Hubris. Last year a couple dozen wing suit "pilots" died from their flights. I would chalk up these to hubris and ambitious egos. We all have fairly healthy egos. Many so-called outdoorsmen(women) have healthy egos too and need to push the envelope to get a notch on their belts. Those who survive become "legends".

AfterParty
12-31-2016, 20:41
I'm already legendary

PennyPincher
12-31-2016, 21:21
The combination of the plane crash thread in GSMNP and the Mass. hiker who perished revealed some really ugly Monday morning quarterbacking in this forum. The criticism came so quick I am fairly sure it started before the ill-fated plane even hit the ground. Everyone and their brother has chimed in on the carelessness shown in both tragedies. To be sure- Enough facts have not been released in either case to make any assumptions on what really happened. Period. In the end we should show some remorse and offer similar situations we have found ourselves in so that others may learn.

And along the same thought...Since when did we, as a group of adventurers, get so damn judgey? HYOH has always been about doing what we do in the way we want to do it. We have all made mistakes, some more epic than others. But we learn something from it and move forward. Many an adventurer have said that the real fun, sport, adventure, challenge only starts when stuff goes wrong. I am not advocating carelessness, but I am saying lets not flame away on people who made mistakes similar to ones we have made and just didn't get a good outcome.

For me HYOH ends when rescuers have to go out and try to find and/or save your ass because you used poor judgement ie hiking in winter without a partner or without appropriate gear.

pilgrimskywheel
01-01-2017, 00:08
Somebody said something like: "...not enough facts have been released in either case to make any assumptions about what really happened..."

Seriously? I think it's pretty straight forward. In fact, there are GIANT scary doom and gloom signs all over the Whites - pretty much at every trail head - and the Presidents too, that provide you everything you need to know. They read: "THOUSANDS have died here unnecessarily..." "The weather here is dangerously unpredictable and it can become violent suddenly even in good weather, and drop to frigid temps EVEN IN SUMMER." And so on. I'm pretty sure you're actually expected to read the trail head postings too, but I'm sure someone will chip in on the facts here. (That way you know important things like when there's a fire ban, escaped inmate {FT 2011}, bear activity, no water, or it's the middle of winter, and other lethal stuff.)

I'm unclear why we are expected to show remorse - the places we go don't show any, nor quarter. The mountains do not suffer fools - they kill them. Why are we expected to? I've caught a lot of flak with regard to this position, and I'm not letting it go - go unprepared into the back country and you die. Folks scoff at mittens, and seemingly useless gear like poles or crampons - and it's well established you aren't required to take anything by now - but these are not fashionable pieces of a cool costume. They are tools that will HELP save your life. You can go out in a sarong barefoot with a growler strung over your neck if you wish in February - it's a free country - but, why would you? To take selfies and show your office mates that you're edgy, special, hard core? You have a right to place yourself in harm's way thank Thomas Jefferson, but not the right to imperil others. My old friend Curtis Owen used to say "I like go lighters because it's easier to carry them off the mountain!"

Folks are still head scratching on this one trying to ferret out "what went wrong" or, "what happened" and there's a good bit of talk about training and experience. I say there's an old gem for that one too: "Even a fool knows enough when to come in from the rain." Sound harsh? We happen to be discussing one of the harshest environs on the planet - not a section of Disney World's Epcot Center.

Why does it tick me off so hard? Because the imposition of rules meant to save dilettantes from themselves usually end up as an imposition for me, typically in the form a guy with a gun and a badge slap in the middle of where I came specifically to be alone with my Honeybun - and "small" fees. I give you the GSMNP which used to free - just like old man Vanderbilt wanted. Now it's a double sawbuck to hike thru so a ridge runner can follow you around and make sure you're not eating in the shelter and other wicked important points of order. Hi Karl! I'm wondering how many more terminally unique millennials the brilliant American voting public will tolerate freezing in Vacationland before they install a lifeguard at every shelter and charge $4 bucks a night - one night only! In case you're wondering the answer is more than 250 shelters - so that's only like a buck a mile - not including tax. No big deal, right?

My Grandmother used to say "Nobody plans an accident!" in studying these case histories I'm struck by how they all seem like disaster recipes eerily like planned accidents. "They took every precaution" and then completely throw caution into the wind by going someplace they clearly shouldn't go. Cool. If you make it. Being lucky isn't a skill set by the way. Successfully assessing risk.

rocketsocks
01-01-2017, 02:28
Somebody said something like: "...not enough facts have been released in either case to make any assumptions about what really happened..."

Seriously? I think it's pretty straight forward. In fact, there are GIANT scary doom and gloom signs all over the Whites - pretty much at every trail head - and the Presidents too, that provide you everything you need to know. They read: "THOUSANDS have died here unnecessarily..." "The weather here is dangerously unpredictable and it can become violent suddenly even in good weather, and drop to frigid temps EVEN IN SUMMER." And so on. I'm pretty sure you're actually expected to read the trail head postings too, but I'm sure someone will chip in on the facts here. (That way you know important things like when there's a fire ban, escaped inmate {FT 2011}, bear activity, no water, or it's the middle of winter, and other lethal stuff.)

I'm unclear why we are expected to show remorse - the places we go don't show any, nor quarter. The mountains do not suffer fools - they kill them. Why are we expected to? I've caught a lot of flak with regard to this position, and I'm not letting it go - go unprepared into the back country and you die. Folks scoff at mittens, and seemingly useless gear like poles or crampons - and it's well established you aren't required to take anything by now - but these are not fashionable pieces of a cool costume. They are tools that will HELP save your life. You can go out in a sarong barefoot with a growler strung over your neck if you wish in February - it's a free country - but, why would you? To take selfies and show your office mates that you're edgy, special, hard core? You have a right to place yourself in harm's way thank Thomas Jefferson, but not the right to imperil others. My old friend Curtis Owen used to say "I like go lighters because it's easier to carry them off the mountain!"

Folks are still head scratching on this one trying to ferret out "what went wrong" or, "what happened" and there's a good bit of talk about training and experience. I say there's an old gem for that one too: "Even a fool knows enough when to come in from the rain." Sound harsh? We happen to be discussing one of the harshest environs on the planet - not a section of Disney World's Epcot Center.

Why does it tick me off so hard? Because the imposition of rules meant to save dilettantes from themselves usually end up as an imposition for me, typically in the form a guy with a gun and a badge slap in the middle of where I came specifically to be alone with my Honeybun - and "small" fees. I give you the GSMNP which used to free - just like old man Vanderbilt wanted. Now it's a double sawbuck to hike thru so a ridge runner can follow you around and make sure you're not eating in the shelter and other wicked important points of order. Hi Karl! I'm wondering how many more terminally unique millennials the brilliant American voting public will tolerate freezing in Vacationland before they install a lifeguard at every shelter and charge $4 bucks a night - one night only! In case you're wondering the answer is more than 250 shelters - so that's only like a buck a mile - not including tax. No big deal, right?

My Grandmother used to say "Nobody plans an accident!" in studying these case histories I'm struck by how they all seem like disaster recipes eerily like planned accidents. "They took every precaution" and then completely throw caution into the wind by going someplace they clearly shouldn't go. Cool. If you make it. Being lucky isn't a skill set by the way. Successfully assessing risk.Nice rant, no wait...Screed. At first I thought perhaps an over simplification, reading further, ya pretty much sold me and each of us is responsible for our own actions. That pretty much covers it...

Sarcasm the elf
01-01-2017, 02:42
The combination of the plane crash thread in GSMNP and the Mass. hiker who perished revealed some really ugly Monday morning quarterbacking in this forum. The criticism came so quick I am fairly sure it started before the ill-fated plane even hit the ground. Everyone and their brother has chimed in on the carelessness shown in both tragedies. To be sure- Enough facts have not been released in either case to make any assumptions on what really happened. Period. In the end we should show some remorse and offer similar situations we have found ourselves in so that others may learn.

And along the same thought...Since when did we, as a group of adventurers, get so damn judgey? HYOH has always been about doing what we do in the way we want to do it. We have all made mistakes, some more epic than others. But we learn something from it and move forward. Many an adventurer have said that the real fun, sport, adventure, challenge only starts when stuff goes wrong. I am not advocating carelessness, but I am saying lets not flame away on people who made mistakes similar to ones we have made and just didn't get a good outcome.

It's understandable that people who are passionate about the outdoors have strong opinions about when fellow outdoorsmen have a mishap. The problem is that many folks don't fully appreciate that this is a public site which is searchable by Google and that for any situation discussed, in all likelihood some friends and family of the deceased will end up seeing comments on this site.
Unfortunately many people feel self important by spewing off their opinions based on a newspaper article, which is invariably not the full story.

I really wish people would hold their opinions until the whole story came out...

rocketsocks
01-01-2017, 03:03
It's understandable that people who are passionate about the outdoors have strong opinions about when fellow outdoorsmen have a mishap. The problem is that many folks don't fully appreciate that this is a public site which is searchable by Google and that for any situation discussed, in all likelihood some friends and family of the deceased will end up seeing comments on this site.
Unfortunately many people feel self important by spewing off their opinions based on a newspaper article, which is invariably not the full story.

I really wish people would hold their opinions until the whole story came out...i felt that way about the "inchworm" thread, expressed so and then watched it turn into a discussionhttps://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B01NBC6CWN/ref=pd_aw_vtph_468_tr_2?ie=UTF8&psc=1&refRID=1S8ZCEHQ1A3PVNNWES7C about alien beings, we can hope and wish all we want, but the fact is people around the world think differently, and express themselves differently about such matters.

rocketsocks
01-01-2017, 03:04
I have no idea where that came from...must been something I ate earlier.

pilgrimskywheel
01-01-2017, 03:31
Nice use of the word 'screed'. Made you look!

If we're going to make noise let it have meaning.

That last line was supposed to read: "Being lucky isn't a skill set. Successfully accessing risk IS".

Yep, where would we be without the good old 1st amendment? I'm guessing silenced.

Pastor Bryon
01-01-2017, 09:40
For me HYOH ends when rescuers have to go out and try to find and/or save your ass because you used poor judgement ie hiking in winter without a partner or without appropriate gear.

+1

I served for a few years as a first responder and chaplain to a couple of volunteer fire and rescue groups. It is frustrating when they have to expend enormous amounts of time, energy, and resources in a situation that could have been avoided by better planning and/or decision-making. HYOH is fine, but when these situations happen it no longer just YOUR hike, it has become a community issue.

Tipi Walter
01-01-2017, 10:39
I'm unclear why we are expected to show remorse - the places we go don't show any, nor quarter. The mountains do not suffer fools - they kill them. Why are we expected to? I've caught a lot of flak with regard to this position, and I'm not letting it go - go unprepared into the back country and you die.


Why does it tick me off so hard? Because the imposition of rules meant to save dilettantes from themselves usually end up as an imposition for me, typically in the form a guy with a gun and a badge slap in the middle of where I came specifically to be alone with my Honeybun - and "small" fees. I give you the GSMNP which used to free - just like old man Vanderbilt wanted. Now it's a double sawbuck to hike thru so a ridge runner can follow you around and make sure you're not eating in the shelter and other wicked important points of order. Hi Karl! I'm wondering how many more terminally unique millennials the brilliant American voting public will tolerate freezing in Vacationland before they install a lifeguard at every shelter and charge $4 bucks a night - one night only! In case you're wondering the answer is more than 250 shelters - so that's only like a buck a mile - not including tax. No big deal, right?

My Grandmother used to say "Nobody plans an accident!" in studying these case histories I'm struck by how they all seem like disaster recipes eerily like planned accidents. "They took every precaution" and then completely throw caution into the wind by going someplace they clearly shouldn't go. Cool. If you make it. Being lucky isn't a skill set by the way. Successfully assessing risk.

You have brought up several subjects also floating around in my brain. Your highlighted bold statement reminds me of a quote from Ed Abbey, to paraphrase---"I have the right as an American to be mauled by a grizzly bear or to get lost in a vast wilderness or to be struck by lightning on a mountaintop."

His point? With wilderness travel comes these things, and we as Americans deserve and have the right to have these Wilderness Areas. Your "imposition" quote means that if you take away all chances of death in the outdoors you've taken away the very Wilderness you're trying to protect. Sterilizing it. People have the right to die in the wilderness if we want in any way to keep these areas wild. Amen, pass the Kahtoolas and balaclavas.

But nowadays it's politically incorrect to die in the great outdoors and I see the hateful and disturbing trend to bring more and more rules into the backcountry. Just study the newish GSMNP rules---Early reservations, $4 per night, every campsite must be designated beforehand ETC. This completely ruins the outdoor experience. Not because of the cash money being required but because of telling the govt where you'll be camping every night at whichever designated campsites they offer on their Map. There's no way to know where I'll be camping on Day 10 of a 21 day trip. Such stupid rules take away all spontaneity from a backpacking trip.

I also see a trend to slowly discourage all overnight backpacking by only allowing Dayhikers and dayhiking. The head honchos are finding it more and more distasteful to have overnighting "bums" and "hobos" on the lands they oversee. This trend gets more reinforced as our population skyrockets to 450 million by 2050. It's the urbanization of the great outdoors. So thanks for letting me Rant . . . . in this wonderful . . . Screed.

rafe
01-01-2017, 11:11
Tilting at windmills, are we?

There are no rules or regulations applying to the hike that claimed the life of the young hiker in question. The only thing that might have stopped him is lack of parking at Lincoln Woods.

This has nothing to do with restrictions on overnight camping. First, because the hiker in question had no intention of doing so. And second, because restrictions on camping are mostly moot and unenforced in winter.

To be angry over this tragedy because it might in some way impinge on your hiking freedom... just blows my mind.

Tipi Walter
01-01-2017, 11:35
Tilting at windmills, are we?

There are no rules or regulations applying to the hike that claimed the life of the young hiker in question. The only thing that might have stopped him is lack of parking at Lincoln Woods.

This has nothing to do with restrictions on overnight camping. First, because the hiker in question had no intention of doing so. And second, because restrictions on camping are mostly moot and unenforced in winter.

To be angry over this tragedy because it might in some way impinge on your hiking freedom... just blows my mind.

All I am saying is that with wilderness travel comes the chance of death due to whatever reason, especially hypothermia.

And you missed the point of Pilgrimskywheel's post---more "imposition of rules meant to save dilettantes (hikers!) from themselves."---due to more and more hikers perishing in the great outdoors, or what's left of it.

You don't see any such expanding rules in the backcountry?? These Impositions are happening all the time---a bear encounter on the AT and the head honchos demand everyone carry a bear canister. Example #1. A clown sprays champagne on Katahdin and Baxter howls and takes their toys and goes home. Oops, just lost the northern terminus. Example #2. Someone dies in the wild and so individual registrations are then required to keep tabs on everyone. It's happening more and more. The White Mt National Forest may be next in line.

MuddyWaters
01-01-2017, 11:38
As backcountry use increases, rules HAVE to increase.


The reason is to save our limited wild resources from effects of overuse.
Somethings thats already lost in many areas

Ive got no problem using a bearcan...if it saves one bear..its worth it.

I would support having to take classes, pass LNT field test, and be licensed by USFS to access backcountry on public land
I would support requiring bear cannisters
I would support complete ban on all fires, stoves, smoking on public land. There is zero need for it


Many people out there are just fricking inconsiderate morons, that really need to be kept off.

Many states require hunter education courses to get a hunting license. These types restrictions on backcountry use arent that far-fetched.

rafe
01-01-2017, 11:56
Tipi, you know darn well those rules don't affect you in the least. Alligator tears, is what you're crying. You'd never be caught dead at Baxter State Park -- your loss, not theirs. Bear canisters on the AT? Why would you care, that's not your route, anyway.

If anything you should be applauding what this kid did, or tried to do. After the first few miles out of the trailhead, he was alone in deep backcountry, just experiencing mother nature, as you are constantly exhorting us to do. Stuff that, if I may be so bold as to assert, makes your TN/NC mountains look lame.

Your position is untenable: you strongly imply that the victim was not blameless, yet you are outraged!! incensed!! that anyone in authority might try to do something about it, and god forbid impinge on your own freedumbs in the process.

Shorter version: People less smart than you are the reason that rules exist, and by golly, that pi$$es you off. The tragedy is that we're just not doing it right -- ie., your way.

Tipi Walter
01-01-2017, 11:57
As backcountry use increases, rules HAVE to increase.

I would support complete ban on all fires, stoves, smoking on public land. There is zero need for it

These types restrictions on backcountry use arent that far-fetched.

See, it's this kind of imposition which is killing backpacking. No backpacking trip can occur unless you use a camp stove to prepare food. With your new rule you're making everyone either pull dayhikes only with no overnight backpacking, or you're requiring all backpackers to eat cold food on a no-cook diet menu. And I believe the head honchos would love to see these restrictions in place---as it'll weed out the "gypsies" and hobos and hiker trash.

Tipi Walter
01-01-2017, 12:16
Tipi, you know darn well those rules don't affect you in the least. Alligator tears, is what you're crying. You'd never be caught dead at Baxter State Park -- your loss, not theirs. Bear canisters on the AT? Why would you care, that's not your route, anyway.

If anything you should be applauding what this kid did, or tried to do. After the first few miles out of the trailhead, he was alone in deep backcountry, just experiencing mother nature, as you are constantly exhorting us to do. Stuff that, if I may be so bold as to assert, makes your TN/NC mountains look lame.

Your position is untenable: you strongly imply that the victim was not blameless, yet you are outraged!! incensed!! that anyone in authority might try to do something about it, and god forbid impinge on your own freedumbs in the process.

Shorter version: People less smart than you are the reason that rules exist, and by golly, that pi$$es you off. The tragedy is that we're just not doing it right -- ie., your way.

You need to redirect your ire at Pilgrimskywheel who started this whole outrage to begin with. I only agreed with him. The rules do affect me too. I can't go into the vast 500,000 acre GSMNP because of their stupid restrictions---whereby I'd need a lawyer to figure out how to spend 21 days in the place---or a hard-to-get backcountry permit to camp wherever I want. And what happens if the Cherokee or the Nantahala National Forests start requiring bear canisters for every backpacker? Ever try to get 3 weeks of food into a bear canister . . . or three canisters?

And I don't applaud the kid because he didn't live to hike again. And this sentence of yours comes from way off in left field---

"Your position is untenable: you strongly imply that the victim was not blameless, yet you are outraged!! incensed!! that anyone in authority might try to do something about it, and god forbid impinge on your own freedumbs in the process."

I agree with Pilgrimskywheel---with more deaths will come more impositions. And yes we should be outraged to find our public lands managed and restricted more and more, because such restrictions do in fact impinge on everyone's access and freedoms. This is a backpacking forum after all---so I assume its members would want more freedom to hike and not less.

rafe
01-01-2017, 12:24
Great non-defense: I should "direct my ire" at Pilgrimskywheel. And by the way, I agree with Pilgrimskywheel on all counts. LOL.

MuddyWaters
01-01-2017, 12:34
No backpacking trip can occur unless you use a camp stove to prepare food. With your new rule you're making everyone either pull dayhikes only with no overnight backpacking, or you're requiring all backpackers to eat cold food on a no-cook diet menu.


Nothing at all wrong with cold food. I eat 3300+ cal per day normally. only 600 is hot. I can easily go without that.

I LIKE some hot food. I dont NEED hot food.

The more people that share resources, the more restrictions there WILL be on land you want to preserve. This is 100% inevitable.

To mitigate it you need to restrict access, as well as control activities.

I dont want this. I recognize though that it will be so one day due to relentless population increase and pressure on public lands.

As sure as we began licensing hunters and fishermen, establishing seasons, banning market hunting, shortening seasons to ...a few days in places. There simply isnt enough resources to go around, in ever widening places .

The plus side is restrictions keep some people home that decide its simply not worth it.

Slo-go'en
01-01-2017, 12:58
Seriously? I think it's pretty straight forward. In fact, there are GIANT scary doom and gloom signs all over the Whites - pretty much at every trail head - and the Presidents too, that provide you everything you need to know. They read: "THOUSANDS have died here unnecessarily..." "The weather here is dangerously unpredictable and it can become violent suddenly even in good weather, and drop to frigid temps EVEN IN SUMMER."

You mean this sign?
37722

Slo-go'en
01-01-2017, 13:00
37723

Okay, that's better.

pilgrimskywheel
01-01-2017, 13:16
Great non-defense: I should "direct my ire" at Pilgrimskywheel. And by the way, I agree with Pilgrimskywheel on all counts. LOL.

Whoa. I just put a gold star on my refrigerator chart - the first of the new year! Muddy Waters: Your statement "As back country use increases rules Have to increase." makes me want to scream THERE IT IS! Total poppycock. That's the crux of my recent screed, and the source of my disdainful ire to begin with. Additionally, the idea that we have a God given right to go out and get killed in shared public lands, and that this is somehow romantic or uniquely American is complete balderdash, and the kind of empty platitudes proffered by the comfortable living who pass out participation trophies to the losing teams at sporting events. I find this the same sort of brilliant advocacy that rails against helmet laws in the name of freedom, while having never spent a single day with anyone that has suffered a completely avoidable traumatic brain injury.

pilgrimskywheel
01-01-2017, 13:22
[QUOTE=Slo-go'en;2115490]37723


And there it is! Thank you. Seriously.

Tipi Walter
01-01-2017, 14:05
Additionally, the idea that we have a God given right to go out and get killed in shared public lands, and that this is somehow romantic or uniquely American is complete balderdash, . . . . . I find this the same sort of brilliant advocacy that rails against helmet laws in the name of freedom, while having never spent a single day with anyone that has suffered a completely avoidable traumatic brain injury.

Try to understand Abbey's position---We do have the right to retain what's left of our wilderness areas and so we have the right to be bear-attacked or lost or frozen to death. Without wilderness, without bears, well, we've just lost one giant part of the North American continent.

"Why this cult of wilderness? . . . because we like the taste of freedom; because we like the smell of danger." ---Edward Abbey.

"A venturesome minority will always be eager to set off on their own, and no obstacles should be placed in their path; let them take risks, for godsake, let them get lost, sunburnt, stranded, drowned, eaten by bears, buried alive under avalanches---that is the right and privilege of any free American."---Edward Abbey.

“May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view. May your mountains rise into and above the clouds.”
― Edward Abbey.



(https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/37218.Edward_Abbey)

pilgrimskywheel
01-01-2017, 14:40
Try to understand Abbey's position---We do have the right to retain what's left of our wilderness areas and so we have the right to be bear-attacked or lost or frozen to death. Without wilderness, without bears, well, we've just lost one giant part of the North American continent.

"Why this cult of wilderness? . . . because we like the taste of freedom; because we like the smell of danger." ---Edward Abbey.

"A venturesome minority will always be eager to set off on their own, and no obstacles should be placed in their path; let them take risks, for godsake, let them get lost, sunburnt, stranded, drowned, eaten by bears, buried alive under avalanches---that is the right and privilege of any free American."---Edward Abbey.

“May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view. May your mountains rise into and above the clouds.”
― Edward Abbey.



(https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/37218.Edward_Abbey)

Okay. I get it. As anyone who knows me will attest I've been engaged in high risk behaviors my entire life (Paratrooper 101st AB) - but 43 years later I'm still here. Touch wood. I'm not really sure that the anarchist, racist, eco-terrorist, captain of the Monkey Wrench gang and a proponent of vandalism and sabotage directed at the system we all now currently enjoy is a solid reference for your argument. (I'm not convinced he was a racist.) We're talking about a guy who'd likely dynamite the Fontana Dam after all - or at least advocate it. He was a great talker. I'm not sure any extremism, right or left, is of any redeeming social value or benefit to us as long distance hikers and AT enthusiasts specifically. I'm a right to die guy, and I hope to go out on my own terms - I'm just going to have the social conscience enough to not jump off Lover's Leap in Hot Springs and splatter biscuit face first into the AT to make a statement about my God given rights to do what ever the Hell I want, and everyone else be damned, because I'm so wicked free and the trail is mine to do with as I see fit. It isn't. We are guests in a special place meant for everyone to enjoy, nothing diminishes enjoyment like death, and I haven't been packing out my trash for 30 years to leave 260 pounds of a dead Boston Irishman in the backcountry for someone else to have to pack out.

Secondmouse
01-01-2017, 18:21
Sorry, but - okay, I'm not sorry: It's this attitude that causes mountains to eat hikers and misadventurers alike, and it's called hubris. I'm sooooo experienced I don't even need to carry any ________ . Or, as in this case sooooo experienced I do it alone! Hike, swim, etc., etc. You ever notice how everyone is always surprised, and nobody can figure out what happened because the victim was an "experienced" hiker, swimmer, hang-glider, flying-squirrel-parachutist, etc., etc.? I've read and watched everything I could find on Geraldine Largay's tragic case, because as a psychologist and AT hiker it fascinates me. I saw some YouTube video where a couple of hacks were conducting their own search and making a movie of it. (Terrible - and in wicked poor taste. Really so bad it's good.) It was chock full of pseudoscience and SAR quackery, and the would-be-hero kept repeating: "...it's weird because she was so experienced..." or, "...as an experienced hiker she'd do this..." never guessing at the correct, and almost unbelievable truth. Fact is experience helps, and is a completely relative and subjective term. Nobody knows just what they'll do when the poop hits the prop. But, here's a hint: if everybody else thinks it's a bad idea - it probably is. And, if everyone else has a life preserver on - just maybe you should think about one too.



no, it's not hubris. it's experience...

there are people in the world who could have easily survived the exact same scenario with the same or less equipment. the difference? training and experience...

you mistake trail hiking for survival skills. walking a path marked with white paint teaches you nothing about how to survive the conditions this kid encountered. I would expect any BoyScout, First Class or above, to know more about this than the huge majority of all the thru hikers on the AT...

Secondmouse
01-01-2017, 18:28
Of course, in order to gain experience you have to put yourself in situations which can go either way. Most of us come out of that situation okay and learn to never do that again, but some don't come out so fortunate.

no you don't. there's that other thing called training. can you train survival skills? you betcha. can you train for worst-case scenarios? ask kayakers? does a single one of them take a boat in moving water before learning and practicing how to roll? only the smart ones...

now, how do you train (and practice) survival skills? a good course in wilderness survival would include dangers of exposure, how to recognize the external conditions and personal symptoms, and most importantly what to do before the onset renders you helpless...

pilgrimskywheel
01-01-2017, 18:44
no, it's not hubris. it's experience...

there are people in the world who could have easily survived the exact same scenario with the same or less equipment. the difference? training and experience...

you mistake trail hiking for survival skills. walking a path marked with white paint teaches you nothing about how to survive the conditions this kid encountered. I would expect any BoyScout, First Class or above, to know more about this than the huge majority of all the thru hikers on the AT...

Agree. There are people in the world who could have survived this, and we did. Most of us by staying home - that's experience. That's training. NOT going is a choice, and on the fateful day in question it would have been the right one. I think if you review the 2 threads on the subject that you are echoing some of my sentiments in many ways. Fact is being an Eagle Scout was apparently of no value whatsoever here. I'm going to qualify myself further in case you missed it: I was a Paratrooper in the 101st. Airborne, a sergeant responsible for many highly trained and well experienced young soldiers in some cold mountainous places. The DMZ in Korea ('93') springs to mind, where temps in the Chor Wan were routinely 30 below zero. Not freezing was a priority to be sure. That's why I'm saying while tragic, this need not have happened, and need not ever happen again. You read the sign that says turn around underlined NOW - and you do it, and you live for certain.

Secondmouse
01-01-2017, 19:43
Agree. There are people in the world who could have survived this, and we did. Most of us by staying home - that's experience. That's training. NOT going is a choice, and on the fateful day in question it would have been the right one. I think if you review the 2 threads on the subject that you are echoing some of my sentiments in many ways. Fact is being an Eagle Scout was apparently of no value whatsoever here. I'm going to qualify myself further in case you missed it: I was a Paratrooper in the 101st. Airborne, a sergeant responsible for many highly trained and well experienced young soldiers in some cold mountainous places. The DMZ in Korea ('93') springs to mind, where temps in the Chor Wan were routinely 30 below zero. Not freezing was a priority to be sure. That's why I'm saying while tragic, this need not have happened, and need not ever happen again. You read the sign that says turn around underlined NOW - and you do it, and you live for certain.

no. I'm saying there are people who could survive the exact same circumstances because they have trained in emergency survival.

creating shelter and establishing an external heat source could have saved his life. a SOL emergency bivy, a piece of yoga mat, and a lightweight quilt could have allowed him to survive. a Jon-E hand-warmer placed between his thighs against his femoral arteries and/or hot hands on his neck against the jugulars might have given him a few more minutes of rational thought to figure out a way out of there. he was hiking, did he have a canister stove?

there's numerous things he could have done but was he actually trained and experienced in this, or did he think just because he had hiked X number of miles that he was prepared when everything went against him? knowledge is not experience.

but to get back to HYOH. there's a saying - play stupid games, win stupid prizes. you decide what games you play...

pilgrimskywheel
01-01-2017, 19:48
no. I'm saying there are people who could survive the exact same circumstances because they have trained in emergency survival.

creating shelter and establishing an external heat source could have saved his life. a SOL emergency bivy, a piece of yoga mat, and a lightweight quilt could have allowed him to survive. a Jon-E hand-warmer placed between his thighs against his femoral arteries and/or hot hands on his neck against the jugulars might have given him a few more minutes of rational thought to figure out a way out of there. he was hiking, did he have a canister stove?

there's numerous things he could have done but was he actually trained and experienced in this, or did he think just because he had hiked X number of miles that he was prepared when everything went against him? knowledge is not experience.

but to get back to HYOH. there's a saying - play stupid games, win stupid prizes. you decide what games you play...

Why do I have the feeling you're about to win a stupid prize?

Traffic Jam
01-01-2017, 22:15
I don't know much, but as someone who professionally and personally has seen people die terrible deaths, I'd rather die a quick death in the wilderness from stupidity. Just sayin'.

pilgrimskywheel
01-01-2017, 23:00
I don't know much, but as someone who professionally and personally has seen people die terrible deaths, I'd rather die a quick death in the wilderness from stupidity. Just sayin'.

Careful what you wish for. There wasn't anything quick in this case. Study hypothermia. Before there is no pain, there is panic that becomes terror, and then terror that becomes madness. It is slower and more insidious than drowning, while you have time just enough before you become insensible to reflect upon your final fatal error and the the incompleteness of your brevity on this earth. There is a tantalizing false hope. The slow dawn of the deeply disappointing realization that you've really done it this time. And fearful helplessness. And infinite loneliness. And a longing to be transported from that place and go backwards in time so strong it almost seems possible. As humans we are born with the gift fire in us, to experience it going slowly out is just about the worst possible thing. You come into the world red hot and with at least one other person, nobody should leave it cold, alone, and before their time.

PennyPincher
01-01-2017, 23:06
As backcountry use increases, rules HAVE to increase.


The reason is to save our limited wild resources from effects of overuse.
Somethings thats already lost in many areas

Ive got no problem using a bearcan...if it saves one bear..its worth it.

I would support having to take classes, pass LNT field test, and be licensed by USFS to access backcountry on public land
I would support requiring bear cannisters
I would support complete ban on all fires, stoves, smoking on public land. There is zero need for it


Many people out there are just fricking inconsiderate morons, that really need to be kept off.

Many states require hunter education courses to get a hunting license. These types restrictions on backcountry use arent that far-fetched.

WOW! Really? talk about keeping things in the hands of the elites! It's hard enough for many to access the backcountry now due to cost of travel, etc. Let's just make it even harder. Maybe all those elites can privately fund the wild lands too since I won't be able to access them I shouldn't have my tax dollars go to support them any longer.

Greenlight
01-01-2017, 23:12
I think I'm finally getting some WB cred for firing up the old hot water bottle in the sleeping bag inferno again. That train really went sideways this time, didn't it?


Set - hut! The 'H' is for Hike. And so on. So: PYOP! Known killers: small planes, the Whites in December, trekking w/o poles, Whitney w/o crampons, hot water bottles, mountaineering, etc., etc. The sign says: "Ecotourism is inherently dangerous..."

Traffic Jam
01-01-2017, 23:19
Careful what you wish for. There wasn't anything quick in this case. Study hypothermia. Before there is no pain, there is panic that becomes terror, and then terror that becomes madness. It is slower and more insidious than drowning, while you have time just enough before you become insensible to reflect upon your final fatal error and the the incompleteness of your brevity on this earth. There is a tantalizing false hope. The slow dawn of the deeply disappointing realization that you've really done it this time. And fearful helplessness. And infinite loneliness. And a longing to be transported from that place and go backwards in time so strong it almost seems possible. As humans we are born with the gift fire in us, to experience it going slowly out is just about the worst possible thing. You come into the world red hot and with at least one other person, nobody should leave it cold, alone, and before their time.


Hell yes, I'd choose that to what I saw today at work.

Sarcasm the elf
01-01-2017, 23:21
Hell yes, I'd choose that to what I saw today at work.

I didn't realize that you started to work in retail. ;)

pilgrimskywheel
01-01-2017, 23:26
WOW! Really? talk about keeping things in the hands of the elites! It's hard enough for many to access the backcountry now due to cost of travel, etc. Let's just make it even harder. Maybe all those elites can privately fund the wild lands too since I won't be able to access them I shouldn't have my tax dollars go to support them any longer.

+1. Yeah really dude! Thanks for addressing this.

I thought I was nuts (I am - but at least I know it!) that line "Many people out there are fricking inconsiderate morons, that really need to be kept off." Seriously scary. After you pay to take these many courses to qualify for the chance to get the license to go into the back country, do you get an armband for your uniform? Or, just the right to grow a really fierce beard? Talk about HYOH! Has anyone ever goosestepped all the way to Maine before? A LNT field test? What the...? I can't do it with someone watching! Here goes though: ahhhh. Ok, bury this, and carry out everything I carried in. Put wrappers in zippie. Did I pass? Did I pass?

Let's not get carried away Mr. Waters!

pilgrimskywheel
01-01-2017, 23:29
I think I'm finally getting some WB cred for firing up the old hot water bottle in the sleeping bag inferno again. That train really went sideways this time, didn't it?

You rock. Did you happen to catch Mr. Wizard at the lab today complete with time lapse photos? Killer! Even Bill Nye dropped by.

Traffic Jam
01-01-2017, 23:34
I didn't realize that you started to work in retail. ;)


Lol! It was one of those weird days...4 hours on med-surg, 4 hours in the ER, and 4 hours on L&D...talk about every spectrum of life! Welcome (or goodbye) to 2017.

pilgrimskywheel
01-01-2017, 23:34
Hell yes, I'd choose that to what I saw today at work.

Nothing for nothing my friend, maybe It's time to consider a different path?

Sarcasm the elf
01-01-2017, 23:41
Lol! It was one of those weird days...4 hours on med-surg, 4 hours in the ER, and 4 hours on L&D...talk about every spectrum of life! Welcome (or goodbye) to 2017.

Wow, that's a crazy day. Is your job designed to be floated like that or were they just desperate for staff?

Traffic Jam
01-01-2017, 23:51
Wow, that's a crazy day. Is your job designed to be floated like that or were they just desperate for staff?

if I told you, I'd have to kill you. :)

Engine
01-02-2017, 05:59
You rock. Did you happen to catch Mr. Wizard at the lab today complete with time lapse photos? Killer! Even Bill Nye dropped by.

You asked for the pics...:p

Greenlight
01-02-2017, 07:53
You rock. Did you happen to catch Mr. Wizard at the lab today complete with time lapse photos? Killer! Even Bill Nye dropped by.

The science still confuses me, but I always enjoy visiting from Bill Nye the engineering guy.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro

Secondmouse
01-02-2017, 12:51
Why do I have the feeling you're about to win a stupid prize?

haha, yeah. arguing on the internet, that's pretty stupid. I'll leave you to it...

lemon b
01-03-2017, 09:11
Nothing. What others say is just that. HYOH

pilgrimskywheel
01-03-2017, 16:02
So, as it turns out in NH hikers (all hikers) have a legal responsibility to hike safe, be prepared, and be responsible. This info comes to us from the moderator - a Mr. Alligator. HYOH then, therefore, and so, doesn't mean do whatever strikes your fancy in the mountains and you won't be judged. Jump over the back fence with a loaf of bread and some tea in a squirrel sack and head for the White Mountains in a sarong tomorrow with a growler on some string and, you're wrong. Dead wrong. End of sentence, new paragraph.

I hate to say I told you so but, no I don't: I told you so. (That sound you hear is the crowing of an "internet rooster" LOL!)

Alligator
01-03-2017, 19:33
So, as it turns out in NH hikers (all hikers) have a legal responsibility to hike safe, be prepared, and be responsible. This info comes to us from the moderator - a Mr. Alligator. HYOH then, therefore, and so, doesn't mean do whatever strikes your fancy in the mountains and you won't be judged. Jump over the back fence with a loaf of bread and some tea in a squirrel sack and head for the White Mountains in a sarong tomorrow with a growler on some string and, you're wrong. Dead wrong. End of sentence, new paragraph.

I hate to say I told you so but, no I don't: I told you so. (That sound you hear is the crowing of an "internet rooster" LOL!)Don't croon too soon. I haven't blanket endorsed your arguments. I pointed out the NH law that indicates hiker responsibilities in NH. The WMNF and NHF&G developed the program. I do believe people should be responsible safety-wise and environmentally as well. But my opinion is my opinion as far as hiking goes and is just one opinion among many. As a moderator, my opinion carries extra weight in regard to how the website runs. It does not have any extra weight in regard to how people hike in the real world. I make recommendations but there's no requirements that anyone hike my way. HYOH gets used in reference to situations not involving safety. Don't like slackpacking? HYOH. Don't like people drinking? HYOH. Like to hike heavy? HYOH. Like alcohol stoves? HYOH. Trail running HYOH.

Your opinion about not day hiking in winter in the Whites? HYOH. It's certainly legal without a pad, bag, or shelter and no mention of needing poles. Some alternatives ought to be in place as one's risk of overnighting increases. It'll be between the hiker and the state of NH.

It's still early in the fact finding to know what happened. No complete gear list, not enough information about cold weather hiking experience, planned itinerary, times and locations. The upside down jacket is a strong indication of hypothermia. But no medical report.

I hike solo in the winter. I've gotten dropped off in a whiteout at the trailhead. I was prepared. It was beautiful, I had a great time. I prefer overnighting vs day hiking and pretty much exclusively overnight in the winter. I do think that having all my gear is an additional safety margin for me. I have a friend on SAR in the Whites. Way more locally experienced there than me. He day hikes, ice climbs, snowshoes, backcountry skis. He doesn't always have a shelter with him. He knows what he needs and when to bail.

pilgrimskywheel
01-03-2017, 23:49
Don't croon too soon. I haven't blanket endorsed your arguments. I pointed out the NH law that indicates hiker responsibilities in NH. The WMNF and NHF&G developed the program. I do believe people should be responsible safety-wise and environmentally as well. But my opinion is my opinion as far as hiking goes and is just one opinion among many. As a moderator, my opinion carries extra weight in regard to how the website runs. It does not have any extra weight in regard to how people hike in the real world. I make recommendations but there's no requirements that anyone hike my way. HYOH gets used in reference to situations not involving safety. Don't like slackpacking? HYOH. Don't like people drinking? HYOH. Like to hike heavy? HYOH. Like alcohol stoves? HYOH. Trail running HYOH.

Your opinion about not day hiking in winter in the Whites? HYOH. It's certainly legal without a pad, bag, or shelter and no mention of needing poles. Some alternatives ought to be in place as one's risk of overnighting increases. It'll be between the hiker and the state of NH.

It's still early in the fact finding to know what happened. No complete gear list, not enough information about cold weather hiking experience, planned itinerary, times and locations. The upside down jacket is a strong indication of hypothermia. But no medical report.

I hike solo in the winter. I've gotten dropped off in a whiteout at the trailhead. I was prepared. It was beautiful, I had a great time. I prefer overnighting vs day hiking and pretty much exclusively overnight in the winter. I do think that having all my gear is an additional safety margin for me. I have a friend on SAR in the Whites. Way more locally experienced there than me. He day hikes, ice climbs, snowshoes, backcountry skis. He doesn't always have a shelter with him. He knows what he needs and when to bail.

Thank you for that feedback. I appreciate it. Our discussion from my perspective was in fact limited to the NH case in question, so I took your comments to be, as my own, narrowed to that scope exclusively.

I value the weight of each individual's opinion equally. Your's as much as the next. I was merely pointing out that your input was valuable due to the inclusion of the document of NH law attached in a thumbnail. Hard to argue philosophical points when there is a requirement for "prepared and responsible" hiking in the Whites according to law - hence my crooning.

As a point of anecdotal fact: I began my 2012 thru-hike New Year's Day in Atlanta, walked up RT 19, (I didn't know how to hitch then) and left Amicalola Falls on January 6th 2012. I was the 8th thru hiker to sign the book that year. The ranger pointed out to me that numbers 5 and 6 had been mountain top rescued by helicopter. I had 3 cracked ribs, a cauliflowered ear, and a recent concussion courtesy of the Ocala PD who don't know what thru-hikers are. I spent 4 days in the Black Gap Shelter with my tent set up in there expecting realistically to die. I was tripping with hypothermia and it snowed the whole time. My food, and fuel were running out. I had no map, and no phone. I called on all my training and experience to not die, and remember thinking how I'd be terribly rude and embarrassed to be caught dead in that rat hole. I had six dollars, a large army Alice pack, and sixty pounds of useless junk to survive with. I had no idea the AT even had shelters on it at the time. I had no business attempting what I did, but with luck, prayer, real trail angels everywhere, and real experience to draw on I squeaked by. Had I not been kicked out of Florida I wouldn't have dreamed of it. But, Ocala is no place to be a homeless hiker. I waited in the shelter near the Hike Inn intentionally until the weather cleared, and I was ready to go. These choices among many ensured my survival.

I'd like to point out that I specifically checked in at the Amicaloa Ranger Station to make inquiries before my departure. That I stayed the night in the shelter there. That I ate at the lodge. Returned during my shelter stay to eat and watch the weather. Restock on chocolate and the like. When the weather cleared and I was ready - with the awareness of many - I set out on the journey of a lifetime.

pilgrimskywheel
01-04-2017, 00:41
I'm not trying to denigrate the poor lost soul who died - I empathize. I don't sympathize. I'm really trying to admonish the living. We all have a rendezvous with destiny, and whatever your skill level, experience, training, or whatever you bring or don't bring with you into where we go - if you fail to pack your respect for these beautiful yet dangerous places - you'll meet it out there. Ready, or not. Luck has nothing to do with it.

Some days later I made it to Mountain Crossings. I spent 10 glorious rain and ice soaked days painting the new AT logos onto the floor of the store for Winton Porter. Pirate, Gabe, Squirrel, and WW were there. Lumpy, bless his heart, exchanged all the GI Joe junk I had for the real deal and I made Hiawassee in time to see the Pats lose the Superbowl. The most important HYOH rule I was to rediscover - keep moving. Magic and manifestation only happen when you keep moving north.

rafe
01-04-2017, 01:29
I value the weight of each individual's opinion equally. Your's as much as the next. I was merely pointing out that your input was valuable due to the inclusion of the document of NH law attached in a thumbnail. Hard to argue philosophical points when there is a requirement for "prepared and responsible" hiking in the Whites according to law - hence my crooning.

It is not law. It is a Hiker Responsibility Code. No ranger will haul you off the mountain for failure to abide by the code. Nobody will be fined or imprisoned. Failure to abide by the code may determine your financial liability for rescue, in lieu of a HikeSafe card.

Is the Code worth reading and understanding? Absolutely. Is it law? Not quite.

Here's a link to a story of a hiker rescued after a cold night on Mt. Jackson back in March, 2011. I only know the story because nowadays, she's my winter hiking partner. She's still peeved about the $7000 it cost her.

http://boston.cbslocal.com/2011/03/27/nh-rescuers-searching-for-mass-hiker-lost-on-mt-jackson/

rocketsocks
01-04-2017, 02:08
My life's worth seven grand to me, if I died my wife would kill me.

pilgrimskywheel
01-04-2017, 03:00
It is not law. It is a Hiker Responsibility Code. No ranger will haul you off the mountain for failure to abide by the code. Nobody will be fined or imprisoned. Failure to abide by the code may determine your financial liability for rescue, in lieu of a HikeSafe card.

Is the Code worth reading and understanding? Absolutely. Is it law? Not quite.

Here's a link to a story of a hiker rescued after a cold night on Mt. Jackson back in March, 2011. I only know the story because nowadays, she's my winter hiking partner. She's still peeved about the $7000 it cost her.

http://boston.cbslocal.com/2011/03/27/nh-rescuers-searching-for-mass-hiker-lost-on-mt-jackson/

Got it. Being less than adroit in your metier is not unlawful. Just hilarious and spendy, if not lethal. Thanks for clearing that up. I'd leave that whole $7K rescue tab thing off the resume if I was you - it doesn't exactly imbue me with an overwhelming sense of confidence in your "winter hiking partner". I bet she'd be REALLY be "peeved" if she knew you just shared that with everyone else who didn't already know the story! Don't worry - your secret is safe with all forty thousand of us.

pilgrimskywheel
01-04-2017, 03:04
Correction: I meant all 64,000 of us!

Alligator
01-04-2017, 04:12
It is not law. It is a Hiker Responsibility Code. No ranger will haul you off the mountain for failure to abide by the code. Nobody will be fined or imprisoned. Failure to abide by the code may determine your financial liability for rescue, in lieu of a HikeSafe card.

Is the Code worth reading and understanding? Absolutely. Is it law? Not quite.

Here's a link to a story of a hiker rescued after a cold night on Mt. Jackson back in March, 2011. I only know the story because nowadays, she's my winter hiking partner. She's still peeved about the $7000 it cost her.

http://boston.cbslocal.com/2011/03/27/nh-rescuers-searching-for-mass-hiker-lost-on-mt-jackson/The hike safe law is a negligence law, a tort I think is the term. The state becomes an injured party, financial loss due to SAR costs. The ranger would be applying criminal law.

There are four important elements to a negligence lawsuit that must be proven:

The defendant owed a duty, either to the plaintiff or to the general public
The defendant violated that duty
The defendant's violation of the duty resulted in harm to the plaintiff
The plaintiff's injury was foreseeable by a reasonable person.

The hiker code is the "duty" (lol).

lemon b
01-04-2017, 07:16
Lets not forget. Many of us hiked (most of my hiking was pre internet) no cell phones, no gps, no internet. We learned on trail. For me it was a take what I need from hiker interaction. Leave the rest. First thing I learned was to respect nature as in fire pits to stay warm. Was a time we made em as needed. Thru conversation and observation we figured out we were making a mess so we just figured out some spots, made rings. kept the areas policed and tried to leave some dry wood for the next person. As far as hiking goes I see the internet as more of a problem than a solution. Get out and learn from like minded people. Find out what works thru actual observation and correction of mistakes.

pilgrimskywheel
01-04-2017, 17:27
I'm not sure this is a torts issue. Isn't there a prescribed discretionary schedule of fines and/or fees in these cases? Don't they just bill you for incredibly poor decision making. Then sue you in civil court if you don't pay for your $10,000 helicopter ride? Then get you with a bench warrant for non-payment?

Furlough
01-04-2017, 19:06
And the friction between differences of opinion, is where education is found....

Not for all. Having been more of a reader and less of poster over the past ~13 years here on WB, I am fairly certain there are those who shrink from the education process while staying insulated within their own shroud of stubbornness, arrogance and ignorance. And I suppose at times some could say this may apply to me.

pilgrimskywheel
01-04-2017, 22:04
Not for all. Having been more of a reader and less of poster over the past ~13 years here on WB, I am fairly certain there are those who shrink from the education process while staying insulated within their own shroud of stubbornness, arrogance and ignorance. And I suppose at times some could say this may apply to me.

+1 Agree one hundred percent.

Venchka
01-05-2017, 01:13
Got it. Being less than adroit in your metier is not unlawful. Just hilarious and spendy, if not lethal. Thanks for clearing that up. I'd leave that whole $7K rescue tab thing off the resume if I was you - it doesn't exactly imbue me with an overwhelming sense of confidence in your "winter hiking partner". I bet she'd be REALLY be "peeved" if she knew you just shared that with everyone else who didn't already know the story! Don't worry - your secret is safe with all forty thousand of us.

Do you lay awake nights rehearsing this stuff?
Wayne


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pilgrimskywheel
01-05-2017, 02:46
Do you lay awake nights rehearsing this stuff?
Wayne


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Uh, oh sorry - was I sleeping? I generally don't. Um, yes. I don't rehearse though - I find it takes away from the spontaneous authenticity of my pithy repartee.

I'm on a five year mission to uh, what? Oh, right the mission - I'm an Appalachian Trail Reformationist. I'm trying to, you know step up the diction, beautify the place in general - primarily by painting murals, publishing essays, etc., etc.

I'm also an accidental purist. I recognize that if left unchecked the current trend on the AT won't be anything like what old Benton MacKaye had in mind - it'll be more like an occupied third world tenderloin, a self-sustaining donation driven bazaar of indigent sycophants unable to stand for even the most basic, or reasonable modicums of hiker comportment. It'll be a place where well, anything goes. Even death.

Venchka
01-05-2017, 20:32
Stay focused on the AT.
Cheers!
Wayne


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