WhiteBlaze Pages
A Complete Appalachian Trail Guidebook.
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  1. #21
    Registered User Wiki's Avatar
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    I'd go with group. All it takes is one person that accidently steps of trail and then the lemming effect kicks in
    2018 NOBO Hopeful
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  2. #22

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    No doubt, when with a group, or even with a single companion. Distracted by conversation. Did it several times the last two days on trails I know really well.

  3. #23
    Registered User dzierzak's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hangfire View Post
    Oh yeah almost forgot, Pennsylvania also held the most confusing section just south of Palmerton where they developed some sort of alternative to the white blaze, I believe it was a white blaze with fuzzy edges. I guess this other trail ran with the AT for a while then diverted. I was certain that I was on the wrong trail for probably 6-8 miles until I finally limped into Palmerton...anyone remember this section? Probably been talked about before, but definitely had me as confused as confused could be.
    Pennsylvania State Game Lands are marked with, of all things, a white blob. If you follow those, you'll find yourself off the AT. Similar to this:
    086.jpg
    The AT goes through a number of SGLs in PA.

  4. #24
    Registered User dzierzak's Avatar
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    Actual SGL boundary marker:
    090623 53942.jpg

  5. #25
    Registered User evyck da fleet's Avatar
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    Definitely group. I've stepped over logs, placed there so that someone paying attention would not continue down that path, like they were rocks in the middle of the trail because I was focused on a conversation. Also get farther off trail in a group. I may miss a turn while zoned out by myself but catch that I'm off trail within five minutes.

  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by dzierzak View Post
    Actual SGL boundary marker:
    090623 53942.jpg
    That's definitely the one...so dang confusing. As I recall there was a blaze about every 20 feet in that stretch and on either side of the trail. After a while they just all looked the same...someone left a funny note at the trail head berating the creators of this confusing system, I wish I had taken a picture, it was pretty spot on funny.

  7. #27

    Default Alone or in a group, When are you more prone to lose the trail?

    The statistical reality is this:

    If hikers chose the correct path 98% per choice (arbitrary number), then a second present hiker also chooses the correct path 98% per choice. Together, the two of them will choose the correct path .98 x .98 = 96% per choice.

    A third present hiker, also choosing the correct path 98% per choice, causes the entire group to choose the correct path
    .9604 x .98 = 94.12% per choice.

    Each additional hiker present in the group further reduces the chance of the group selecting the correct path.

  8. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kookork View Post
    I have hiked the same trail twice, once alone and once with a company.
    My experience seems to be like this: When alone I am solely responsible for finding my way thus I pay more attention. I still lose the trail when I am exhausted or I am day dreaming deeply . When I am hiking with company and we are conversing then sometimes we forget about paying attention to the signs and although we should be less prone but in reality we assume that the other person is paying attention to the signs when actually we are both deep into our conversation and the chance of missing a blaze is higher while the chance of noticing the mistake is not as double as it should be.

    I lost the same trail more frequently the second time when we were two hikers. In group hiking when I was in a club, We used to designate someone to lead and never engage in conversation and every couple of hours we switched the designated leader.
    Geez I was the guilty party on the second thruhike with Kookork We chatted a lot!


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Deacon View Post
    The statistical reality is this:

    If hikers chose the correct path 98% per choice (arbitrary number), then a second present hiker also chooses the correct path 98% per choice. Together, the two of them will choose the correct path .98 x .98 = 96% per choice.

    A third present hiker, also choosing the correct path 98% per choice, causes the entire group to choose the correct path
    .9604 x .98 = 94.12% per choice.

    Each additional hiker present in the group further reduces the chance of the group selecting the correct path.
    Sorry - no!
    If you like to do some mathematical calculations, the result should be that the likeness of error would decrease with each hiker added to the group - assuming that each hiker has the same error factor but would make the error on different places. When having more and more hikers in the group the statistical number of errors would tend to zero.
    Something that doesn't happen, as most hikers here know by own experience.
    In reality, there are so many issues that irritate the members of a group that in fact most if not all groups have a higher error rate than individuals.
    Group members get distracted, followers strictly rely on the foregoers, group members way back in the cue have less chance to read signes provided by nature or the trail itself (it even may happen that a huge gruppe going off-track is forming a new trail).

    I think, the error factor is lowest for a couple (same or lower than for a single hiker), but groups sure have a higher error factor than singles, unless its a military-like organized group, which usually put one or very few individual in front leading the rest.

  10. #30

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    Copy that!

  11. #31
    Registered User Kookork's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Traillium View Post
    Geez — I was the guilty party on the second thruhike with Kookork … We chatted a lot!


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    I don't exchange our conversation for anything my dear company. It turned a soul searching solo hiking to a universe searching and educational odyssey.Comparing these two experiences is just comparing apples and oranges.

  12. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kookork View Post
    I don't exchange our conversation for anything my dear company. It turned a soul searching solo hiking to a universe searching and educational odyssey.Comparing these two experiences is just comparing apples and oranges.
    Totally agreed, friend!


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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