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  1. #1
    Registered User briarpatch's Avatar
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    Default Mount Washington Dayhiker May Not Survive

    Here's a link to an article on some dayhikers who found out the hard way what Mount Washington is capable of:

    http://www.wmur.com/news/9904905/detail.html#
    A bad day on the trail beats a good day most anywhere else.

  2. #2

    Default Not too bright

    Eh?

    People who don't learn from other's mistakes are bound to follow in their footsteps.

    Mt. Washington may not be a huge mountain, but it is much higher than the surrounding area, and the footpaths are generally pretty rugged.

    And then there's that FAMOUS weather.

    No excuse for any of it.

    Still, I hope the guy survives.
    As I live, declares the Lord God, I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that the wicked turn back from his way and live. Ezekiel 33:11

  3. #3

    Default I don't understand where they were

    Quote Originally Posted by briarpatch
    Here's a link to an article on some dayhikers who found out the hard way what Mount Washington is capable of:

    http://www.wmur.com/news/9904905/detail.html#
    I don't understand the route they were taking. The report said that they left from Pinkham's Notch. Most people who climb from Pinkham's Notch take Tuckerman's Rivine; however, the report also said that someone drove a car back to where the hikers were. TheTuckerman's Rivine trail doesn't reach the road until the edge of the parking lot at the summit. They must have taken another trail from Pinkham's Notch.
    Shutterbug

  4. #4
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    Default

    Probably the AT to the auto road.

  5. #5
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    Default

    The Manchester Union leader article has a couple more details.

    Do you think they thought those signs about being prepared for weather didn't apply to them?

  6. #6
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    They're from Queebeck. Probably can't read English.

  7. #7

    Default

    There are a number of routes that cross over the Auto Road, some down low, others fairly high up. I'm thinking that they may either have managed to struggle up the Huntington Ravine trail (a serious undertaking in bad weather) and found the road just past the junction with the Alpine Garden. Or they may have been intending to hike Nelson Crag Trail which comes near the road at the 2 mile post and at the intersection with Huntington Ravine trail.

    My thinking is that they got most of the way up before getting into trouble, which is why they opted to seek shelter up instead of down. I'm wondering though why they didn't seek refuge in the observatory. It is manned year round after all, and heated.
    Andrew "Iceman" Priestley
    AT'95, GA>ME

    Non nobis Domine, non nobis sed Nomini Tuo da Gloriam
    Not for us O Lord, not for us but in Your Name is the Glory

  8. #8

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    Darwin Award candidates.

  9. #9
    Registered User MattC's Avatar
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by L. Wolf
    They're from Queebeck. Probably can't read English.
    they all speak english.

  10. #10

    Default

    OK, judging by the Manchester Union Leader article I was right. Perhaps this early in the season they don't man the Observatory overnight?
    Andrew "Iceman" Priestley
    AT'95, GA>ME

    Non nobis Domine, non nobis sed Nomini Tuo da Gloriam
    Not for us O Lord, not for us but in Your Name is the Glory

  11. #11
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    I don't understand the route they were taking. The report said that they left from Pinkham's Notch. Most people who climb from Pinkham's Notch take Tuckerman's Rivine; however, the report also said that someone drove a car back to where the hikers were. TheTuckerman's Rivine trail doesn't reach the road until the edge of the parking lot at the summit. They must have taken another trail from Pinkham's Notch.
    Like Lone Wolf said they could have left Pinkham taking the A.T. (the Old Jackson Road) and hit the Auto Road 2 miles from the base but more likely they took the Tuckerman Ravine trail. There are other trails off either of these routes that would hit the Auto Road at 5+ , 6 , 6.5, and 7 miles from the base. It is 7.6 miles to the summit by road.

    This unfortunate incident does show the need to be prepared, carry map and compass, and know escape routes. One of the first rules of climbing is if the weather is bad, or if you are unprepared for the conditions you meet, go down, don't continue higher where the conditions will only be worse. Also the Stage Office that they broke into for shelter is unmanned but the heated summit building is a flat couple of hundred yards away and is staffed 24/7 by the State Park and Observatory who have emergency gear and training. In whiteout conditions you can't see that far but if they had knowledge of the summit this might have helped what may be a tragic outcome.

  12. #12
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    Icemanat95-"OK, judging by the Manchester Union Leader article I was right. Perhaps this early in the season they don't man the Observatory overnight?"
    Other than when the fire burnd the generator building a few years ago, the Observatory has a continual presence on the summit since 1934, I believe.

    The Union Leader did say: "State park personnel on the summit were alerted..." If Mike was there he is the #1 S&R person in the entire area.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by MattC
    they all speak english.
    Wrong. I lived 3 miles from the Kweebeck border for 10 winters working at Jay Peak Ski Resort. Plenty of them frogs spoke no Engley.

  14. #14
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    Thru-hiking the Long Trail I saw plenty of completely unprepared french canadian hikers. I think Canada needs to sponsor a national hiker stupidity awareness campaign.

  15. #15
    Springer-->Stony Brook Road VT MedicineMan's Avatar
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    Default "them frogs spoke no Engley."

    I laughed so hard at that one my rib bone almost broke.
    Start out slow, then slow down.

  16. #16

    Default

    The inability to think clearly is the sympton of hypothermia that leads most often to death. This time of year up here in New England all hikers should watch each other for the "umbles". The Quebecer's poor planning got them into trouble, but the 'stupid' behavior afterwards sounds like impaired judgement to me.
    Teej

    "[ATers] represent three percent of our use and about twenty percent of our effort," retired Baxter Park Director Jensen Bissell.

  17. #17
    First Sergeant SGT Rock's Avatar
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    Default

    Anyhow, I still feel for them. Must suck freezing to death.
    SGT Rock
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    My 2008 Trail Journal of the BMT/AT

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    -----------------------------------------

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  18. #18
    Livin' life in the drive thru! hikerjohnd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TJ aka Teej View Post
    The Quebecer's poor planning got them into trouble, but the 'stupid' behavior afterwards sounds like impaired judgement to me.
    Once I read they went back up the mtn, I thought impaired judgement too. I think I have experieced a mild case of hypothermia once - Looking back on the decisions we made (lost, hiking at 2AM, deciding to take a shortcut and we had no idea where we were to begin with) if we had not made it back to the truck I am sure we would be dead.
    So be it.
    --John

  19. #19
    Easy Strider, section hiker hiker33's Avatar
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    Default

    There's no need to speculate on the route taken by these clowns as the video states that they used the Nelson Crag Trail. This trail briefly joins the auto road and leaves it again a mile or two below the summit. The car thief probably drove to this point to pick up the others.

    It's a wonder that more people don't die on the mountain. One Labor Day weekend years ago I set out to climb via the Tuckerman Ravine Trail, Camel Trail, and the Davis/Crawford Paths. After I had crested the headwall a storm came out of nowhere. Within 30 minutes the weather changed from sunny and upper fifties to snow and freezing rain with lightning and 35 degrees. I was on the Camel Trail so I rode it out at Lakes of the Clouds Hut. I was less than a quarter mile away when it hit but it was an ordeal getting there on the icy rocks. During the next hour people kept dragging in, many wearing nothing but wet shorts and t-shirts. I was fully prepared with warm clothing and raingear but I was one of the few. The unprepared folks were just plain lucky.

  20. #20

    Default Vaguely related...

    I met a French Canadian couple (M & F, about age 30) headed southbound between Full Goose and Carlo Col shelters a few nights ago that thought they could be certain of hiking the 4.4 miles in 2.5 hours near dusk, which (having just done it) I thought imprudent and uncertain. I pulled out my Nat'l Geographic map (which shows info the ATC/local club maps don't), and showed them a water source down the 1st Wright trail, and told them about camping possibilities I'd seen, to their effusive gratitude.

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