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Topic: What SAR Wishes We All Knew, food for thought< Next Oldest | Next Newest >
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 24 2012, 3:03 pm  Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Here is an article from the Seattle Backpackers Magazine about being safer in the woods and getting help.  I think there is some good information here.  Read, comment, and discuss.

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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 24 2012, 3:31 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Some good tips in the article. But most were (or should be) common sense to backpackers.

Getting pertinent information said to the 911 operator right away is a good idea because of the battery and signal strengths. But, I would first make sure where the 911 operator is. Some cellphone 911 calls get rerouted to other cities or even other states.

It irks me when the statement "don't hike alone" is mentioned. It's like their using the it as a disclaimer against getting in trouble. The article would have been more informative if they would give some guidelines about hiking alone. Ignoring the habits of many hikers is not helping out much.

Thanks for the link, though. It did help some.


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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 24 2012, 3:40 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(desert dweller @ Oct. 24 2012, 12:31 pm)
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It irks me when the statement "don't hike alone" is mentioned. It's like their using the it as a disclaimer against getting in trouble. The article would have been more informative if they would give some guidelines about hiking alone. Ignoring the habits of many hikers is not helping out much.

I agree with you.  I have hiked extensively solo and think the risk is exagerated.  There is obviously an added risk, especially if injured, but being properly prepared makes the risk much less.

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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 24 2012, 3:41 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Seems to me they're putting a high reliance on cell phones.
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 24 2012, 3:43 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Seemed to focus allot on cell phone use. Not a bad thing since you won't get any help if you have no service.

If you have some service then two of the major carriers, AT&T and TMO in the US, have the ability to triangulate you down to about 100 meters or so depending on cell tower coverage in the area you are in.

That technology is provided by this company


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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 24 2012, 4:03 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

They forgot to mention that the north star is not the brightest star in the sky.

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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 24 2012, 4:18 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

How to call 911 in the winderness.

I always carry my cell phone with me, mainly because I want to call/text the person with my hiking itinerary when I get out.  I don't leave my cell phone in my truck so it comes with me.  My cell phone is 4oz and I place it in a freezer bag.  Since I have it anyway, it would be foolish not to understand how to properly utilize it in case of an emergency.

In a way, this is mainly tailored for Seattle folk and especially those who hike Rainier, St. Helens, and the I-90 corridor, but can be applied to many situations.

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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 24 2012, 7:40 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

It seems to me (also) that it dwells a lot on cell phones and I don't like the don't go alone. When I was younger and did most of my backpacking, I did most of it alone and had no cell phone. I will be 65 tomorrow and I think maybe it is time to think about going with others, but I used to be able to hike 15-20 miles a day at a 2 mile an hour pace. I now struggle to go a mile an hour and don't think I can do 8 miles in a day. That makes it hard to find a partner. I have a cell phone but it mostly sits in my van. I think I need to learn more about what it can do and if I can text with it. I am still comfortable backpacking alone. I take my time and am safe and prepared.
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 24 2012, 7:48 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I think it's a nice list to be aware of, although as everyone else indicated the article could more accurately be titled "What SAR Wishes We All Knew IF You have a cell phone with reception", as the article is kinda completely centered around that.  With the target audience in mind (Seattle-metro dayhikers on common peaks in cell range), it's probably a good article.  Outside cell range though, it's somewhat less relevant, excepting a few points.

I never take a cell with me on extended trips in SE Alaska, for instance, because I have no need for 4-6 oz of electronic deadweight, with no cell tower in any direction for a hundred miles or more.  However, the same advice could be given to someone with a SAT-phone, so with that in mind, I still think it's a decent article.

My meandering $.02, anyway,

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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 24 2012, 8:23 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

It can irk you all you like - don't hike alone is very sound advice - for the backpacker who on a whim gets up, throws junk in the pack he bought at Big Five, and heads out for the first time ever into the wilderness. Those types have no clue how to maintain hydration and stay warm - they're the ones who make mistakes like, hey, it's July, I'm going over Piute Pass in a cotton hoodie wearing these peachy keen sneakers I got at Payless Shoe Source last week. Without noticing that it's a high snow year and it's supposed to rain a couple times. With a final destination of Roads End (about 60-70 miles, give or take, with a bunch of gain, loss, gain, loss, and GAIN GAIN GAIN) they're supposed to reach in five days.

* actual details may vary. Most taken from a real incident.

You duffers who go all the time, repeatedly, over the past couple of decades - you're not so likely to be hypothermic and off your nut, because you've had a bunch of experience in maintaining your general fitness on the trail. But you're aware of the risks and managing them, I'd guess, if you're here to post about it.


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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 24 2012, 8:31 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(AlmostThere @ Oct. 24 2012, 5:23 pm)
QUOTE
It can irk you all you like - don't hike alone is very sound advice - for the backpacker who on a whim gets up, throws junk in the pack he bought at Big Five, and heads out for the first time ever into the wilderness. Those types have no clue how to maintain hydration and stay warm - they're the ones who make mistakes like, hey, it's July, I'm going over Piute Pass in a cotton hoodie wearing these peachy keen sneakers I got at Payless Shoe Source last week. Without noticing that it's a high snow year and it's supposed to rain a couple times. With a final destination of Roads End (about 60-70 miles, give or take, with a bunch of gain, loss, gain, loss, and GAIN GAIN GAIN) they're supposed to reach in five days.

* actual details may vary. Most taken from a real incident.

You duffers who go all the time, repeatedly, over the past couple of decades - you're not so likely to be hypothermic and off your nut, because you've had a bunch of experience in maintaining your general fitness on the trail. But you're aware of the risks and managing them, I'd guess, if you're here to post about it.

Probably what prompted the generation of this eh?

"Supplemental Solo Camping and Climbing Form" Baxter State Park

http://www.baxterstateparkauthority.com/pdf....rm_.pdf

ETA and yes for the expected average area visitor how to correctly use their ubiquitous phone under those new circumstances makes a lot of sense. Day hike or weekend their phone will be on their person so giving them tips that experience has shown ups the odds? Of course.
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 25 2012, 10:38 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

http://highsierratopix.com/communi....73ebbc7

Be careful out there, no matter how much experience you have.

Let SEKI know if you've seen Larry, k?


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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 25 2012, 11:01 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Most of the places I hike don't even have cell service even at the trailhead, let alone on the trail.  
The phone does make a good alarm clock though.
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 25 2012, 11:44 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(AlmostThere @ Oct. 25 2012, 7:38 am)
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Be careful out there, no matter how much experience you have.

+1

I try and think about each trip like it's my first. I check, recheck, and recheck all my gear every time I go out. I try and remember to not think like a statistic.


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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 26 2012, 3:43 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

"Don’t hike alone."

BS.  

Hiking with someone who isn't as well prepared or takes excessive risks or has poor judgment or panics at the first incident of adversity or can run faster than you when a bear is charging is not going to make you safer.
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 26 2012, 3:57 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(nogods @ Oct. 26 2012, 3:43 pm)
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"Don’t hike alone."

BS.  

Hiking with someone who isn't as well prepared or takes excessive risks or has poor judgment or panics at the first incident of adversity or can run faster than you when a bear is charging is not going to make you safer.

it should really just read "don't hike if you're going to go out unprepared and be an idiot - regardles if you go alone or not."
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 26 2012, 11:12 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

People can barely operate a motor vehicle with any competency, and you have to pass a couple of tests to get your license.

I try to keep this in mind when I see certain things on the trail or read about what happens out there.


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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 27 2012, 8:04 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I'll never recommend or suggest that anyone else ever do this but I'm an extremist and go out without telling anyone where I'm going or when I'll be back. I don't believe in rescue for myself nor do I want SAR or anyone else out looking for me. Being 100% on my own and no one knowing where I am is a very large part of going out solo.

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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 27 2012, 10:27 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I hike alone too, but understand the risk as all of you do too. I also carry my cell phone, as our friendly Whistle Pig points out its lightweight in comparisson to the benefit it can provide. It's a lifeline our parents simply never had.

Thanks for the thread man. It always amazes me how many Mensa rejects out there take to the trails.


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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 27 2012, 1:35 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(Montanalonewolf @ Oct. 27 2012, 5:04 am)
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I'll never recommend or suggest that anyone else ever do this but I'm an extremist and go out without telling anyone where I'm going or when I'll be back. I don't believe in rescue for myself nor do I want SAR or anyone else out looking for me. Being 100% on my own and no one knowing where I am is a very large part of going out solo.

While I can respect that feeling there's a potential flaw if you use your vehicle to get to a trailhead and leave it there for your return. At some point a vehicle sitting alone at a TH will get investigated, and/or when you don't show up for work then a search will initiate and without information to focus the search all you've accomplished is vastly increasing the search area to the potential impediment and risk to the responders.

I expect there's ways around that, have you come up with some?

From  consideration of what wilderness search and rescue operations entail for the responders and thinking about the terrain I habitually route through my attempt at a solution to that was the acquisition of a PLB. Were the inevitability of a response present itself I've provided myself with the means to reduce the scope and risk for the participants under a large proportion of probable circumstances, not all but many, which I saw as a reasonable effort on my part given my deliberate decision to add the extra consequences of solo wilderness travel. So responders don't pay for my decision to solo.
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 27 2012, 2:03 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Gosh, I hike alone all the time, if I waited for my friends to want to go hiking I would only get out a few times a year, not an acceptable option to me.  As has been said, use your brain and all will be good.

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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 27 2012, 3:05 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(Montanalonewolf @ Oct. 27 2012, 8:04 am)
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I'll never recommend or suggest that anyone else ever do this but I'm an extremist and go out without telling anyone where I'm going or when I'll be back. I don't believe in rescue for myself nor do I want SAR or anyone else out looking for me. Being 100% on my own and no one knowing where I am is a very large part of going out solo.

How are you going to avoid violating LNT principles if something happens?
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 27 2012, 11:40 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

QUOTE
I expect there's ways around that, have you come up with some?

I know most of the SAR people and all of the comms folks around here and they know me. They won't mobilize just because my truck's been at a TH for an extended time.
As for work, no one would much care if I didn't show up. Even if they did they wouldn't call anyone about it.

QUOTE
How are you going to avoid violating LNT principles if something happens?

If I die out there I wouldn't give a large rodent's mule about LNT.


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(Montanalonewolf @ Oct. 27 2012, 11:40 pm)
QUOTE
QUOTE
I expect there's ways around that, have you come up with some?

I know most of the SAR people and all of the comms folks around here and they know me. They won't mobilize just because my truck's been at a TH for an extended time.
As for work, no one would much care if I didn't show up. Even if they did they wouldn't call anyone about it.

QUOTE
How are you going to avoid violating LNT principles if something happens?

If I die out there I wouldn't give a large rodent's mule about LNT.

:laugh:

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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 28 2012, 10:57 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(Montanalonewolf @ Oct. 27 2012, 5:04 am)
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I'll never recommend or suggest that anyone else ever do this but I'm an extremist and go out without telling anyone where I'm going or when I'll be back. I don't believe in rescue for myself nor do I want SAR or anyone else out looking for me. Being 100% on my own and no one knowing where I am is a very large part of going out solo.

I have always believed (and have stated it many times) that any competent adult has the fundamental right to be someplace where absolutely no one knows where they are.

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(desert dweller @ Oct. 28 2012, 8:57 am)
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I have always believed (and have stated it many times) that any competent adult has the fundamental right to be someplace where absolutely no one knows where they are.

Yep, until you have grown kids.  Then they may wig out if they cannot find you for a few days.  That happened to me one summer.  It never occurred to me to tell my son, who was living in TX at the time, that I was going into the backcountry for a few days.  He got stressed and called the police to do a wellness check on me.  They even offered to break down my front door and search my house.  Yikes!   He even called my other son (who lives in OK), my mother (also in OK) and anyone else he could think of to find out where I might be.

Now, I tell them when I will be gone.   And I gave him a few names of friends who would likely know my agenda.


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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 28 2012, 3:18 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I don't think of backpaking as some ritual or right of passage which I have to do alone and nobody can help me if I get into trouble.

Anyway, back to the article   ...    The real thrust of the aerticle is to make us aware.  As I mentioned, I don't leave things like a phone in my car and so I take it with me.  If I did have an emergency, then it might come in handy.  Knowing how I might use it to get help is valuable information and thus the article's initial emphasis on the cell phone issue.  The rest of the article should make us all think about steps we can take to be safer and help us get out of potential difficulties.  I was already aware of most of these things BUT I still need to remind myself of them on occassion.

Be safe out there ...

Rumi


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(Montanalonewolf @ Oct. 27 2012, 11:40 pm)
QUOTE
QUOTE
I expect there's ways around that, have you come up with some?

I know most of the SAR people and all of the comms folks around here and they know me. They won't mobilize just because my truck's been at a TH for an extended time.
As for work, no one would much care if I didn't show up. Even if they did they wouldn't call anyone about it.

QUOTE
How are you going to avoid violating LNT principles if something happens?

If I die out there I wouldn't give a large rodent's mule about LNT.

that's pretty self center - how about the rest of us who'll have to step over your rotting carcass?
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 28 2012, 8:08 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

More than half my backpacking is solo. I'm in my 60s, so there is increased risk for some sort of serious health event. I had such an event a few years ago at home, going from vague abdominal discomfort to incapacitating pain/ER in about an hour - followed by surgery, vent, and 11 days in the hospital. I would have been totally screwed and probably dead if it had happened on the trail EXCEPT that I always carry a SPOT (and on my last trip, a SAT phone), since I usually hike where there's no cell reception.

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(nogods @ Oct. 28 2012, 5:59 pm)
QUOTE
that's pretty self center - how about the rest of us who'll have to step over your rotting carcass?

How would it inherently be any different than stepping over/around the rotting carcass of an animal?

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