Mt Whitney Webcam
Mt Williamson Webcam
Feature Topics
Who's Online
0 registered (), 10 Guests and 82 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Forum Stats
3636 Members
10 Forums
5514 Topics
50541 Posts

Max Online: 382 @ 11/07/12 05:45 AM
Page 2 of 3 < 1 2 3 >
Topic Options
#8653 - 10/26/10 11:26 AM Re: How not to die on Mt. Whitney (and elsewhere... [Re: George]
RoguePhotonic Offline


Registered: 12/08/09
Posts: 558
Loc: Bakersfield CA
I'm not completely sure how I feel about it all because on the hikers side I completely support their right to get themselves killed. Then on the other hand of considering danger to SAR I feel mixed yet I think I lean more towards the notion that as a SAR personnel you are accepting risk associated with your job so is it unfair to them to be out looking for you when that is what they signed up for?

If we asked the same of a firefighter do we blame the person that left bacon on the stove unattended for causing a fire that puts response teams in danger or do we accept that they signed up for that job?

In the end it doesn't make deaths less tragic but it does give acceptable reason IMO.
_________________________
FlickR

Top
#8655 - 10/26/10 11:38 AM Re: How not to die on Mt. Whitney (and elsewhere... [Re: smithb]
tdtz Offline


Registered: 08/26/10
Posts: 511
Loc: CA
Outside of the lighthearted discussion for effect, I think that there is a little bit of an apples to oranges comparison between Everest and Whitney.

We send up SAR teams and helicopters because we can. Where it is absolutely true that life in China is often cheap as exemplified by the mining analogy (which is 100% true, btw), the real reason they don't remove the bodies on Everest is that it is truly life threatening to anyone who would take on the extra burden of the body. And sending ground teams up specifically for bodies or rescue is pretty tough when you take into account the amount of acclimation that must happen.

And the highest altitude that a helicopter has ever flown is 20,000'.

So, the reason we rescue people on Whitney and don't leave bodies up there is simply because we can.

Top
#8657 - 10/26/10 11:50 AM Re: How not to die on Mt. Whitney (and elsewhere... [Re: tdtz]
DUG Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 370
Loc: Wildomar
Originally Posted By: tdtz
And the highest altitude that a helicopter has ever flown is 20,000'.



Actually, it's more than DOUBLE that - 40,820 ft. smile

Since we're keeping this light hearted...................................................DUG


Edited by DUG (10/26/10 11:50 AM)

Top
#8658 - 10/26/10 11:54 AM Re: How not to die on Mt. Whitney (and elsewhere... [Re: DUG]
KevinR Offline


Registered: 11/03/09
Posts: 594
Loc: Manchester, NH
I believe George is looking for serious input, not comic relief related to dead bodies.

But, I could be wrong.

Top
#8659 - 10/26/10 12:00 PM Re: How not to die on Mt. Whitney (and elsewhere... [Re: tdtz]
Harvey Lankford Offline


Registered: 11/10/09
Posts: 1017
Loc: Richmond, Virginia
Originally Posted By: tdtz
And the highest altitude that a helicopter has ever flown is 20,000'.

Sorry, this gets off the main topic a bit, but:

Actually, the highest a helicopter has landed in mountaineering (if available, if practically useful)has been
getting higher and higher - over 20,000 ft in 2010. (If Cindy reads this, have they removed that old, heavy, crashed Russian helicopter from the side of the Lukla runway? No way it could ever had gotten that high.)
Helicopter rescue Annapurna

The highest a specially modified helicopter (not available in Namche Bazaar, Lukla, or Kathmandhu) has landed (temporarily) was in 2005 on the summit of Everest.
French helicopter lands on Everest

I could go on, sorry I will. World record is over 40, 000, obviously super modified and no payload.
Absolute helicopter altitude record

Top
#8661 - 10/26/10 12:02 PM Re: How not to die on Mt. Whitney (and elsewhere... [Re: DUG]
tdtz Offline


Registered: 08/26/10
Posts: 511
Loc: CA
Originally Posted By: DUG
Originally Posted By: tdtz
And the highest altitude that a helicopter has ever flown is 20,000'.



Actually, it's more than DOUBLE that - 40,820 ft. smile

Since we're keeping this light hearted...................................................DUG


looks like I should have looked deeper into my google search....I misread anyway...it was hovering that they were talking about.

and there has been a helicopter landing at the top of Everest
http://www.spadout.com/wiki/index.php/Didier_Delsalle_lands_Helicopter_on_Everest
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/17820-13-helicopter-altitude-record-broken-everest


Edited by tdtz (10/26/10 12:08 PM)

Top
#8663 - 10/26/10 12:18 PM Re: How not to die on Mt. Whitney (and elsewhere... [Re: tdtz]
quillansculpture Offline


Registered: 11/13/09
Posts: 562
Loc: Murrieta, CA
I'm going to guess that all these hikers didn't expect it to snow. There was already snow on the ground, but if you see clouds and it starts to snow, you should either stay put until you know it is going to stop, or better yet, go back. If you note, all 5 hikers this year and Wade from last year were from out of state. That doesn't make them less skilled, just more financially obligated to their goal to summit the mountain.

I like the sign idea. And, I'm not adverse to the person that needs to be extracted pays at least some of the cost. I believe the three hikers in the hut did something pretty stupid. I'm glad they are safe, but come on....it was snowing, then it snowed more, it got deeper and they still decided to keep going. There may be more to the story. With Wade, I believe he really thought he could summit, had the skills to summit, but somewhere along the line he became disoriented. If you remember, he was seen and I believe was talked to by a couple of hikers past Trail Crest. They were both concerned about him and his ability to go further. In other words, I don't think Wade did anything stupid. I think by the time it came for him to make crucial decisions, he couldn't.
_________________________
"Turtles, Frogs & other Environmental Sculpture"

www.quillansculpturegallery.com
twitter: @josephquillan

If less is more, imagine how much more, more is -Frasier

Top
#8665 - 10/26/10 12:20 PM Re: How not to die on Mt. Whitney (and elsewhere... [Re: tdtz]
AlanK Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 583
Loc: Glendale, CA
Originally Posted By: tdtz
We send up SAR teams and helicopters because we can. Where it is absolutely true that life in China is often cheap as exemplified by the mining analogy (which is 100% true, btw), the real reason they don't remove the bodies on Everest is that it is truly life threatening to anyone who would take on the extra burden of the body. And sending ground teams up specifically for bodies or rescue is pretty tough when you take into account the amount of acclimation that must happen.

And the highest altitude that a helicopter has ever flown is 20,000'.

So, the reason we rescue people on Whitney and don't leave bodies up there is simply because we can.

Fair point. I found it suddenly easier to think about coal mines than Everest. smile

Top
#8666 - 10/26/10 12:25 PM Re: How not to die on Mt. Whitney (and elsewhere... [Re: quillansculpture]
DUG Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 370
Loc: Wildomar
Originally Posted By: quillansculpture
I'm going to guess that all these hikers didn't expect it to snow.



I spoke to the younger Meysan Lake guy on the Saturday prior about the trail. DougSr had mentioned to him that I took scouts up there through the snow in June. I couldn't offer much info, but I did tell him snow was expected and we would be racing the weather on our hike up Thor the next day. DougSr also showed him the NOAA forecast on his netbook in the kitchen.

I'm pretty sure at least that guy knew it might snow.

Too bad they didn't know the area or have a decent map - a hungry man can get to Roads End from Forester pass pretty quickly if he makes the left turn down Bubbs................................DUG

Top
#8670 - 10/26/10 12:46 PM Re: How not to die on Mt. Whitney (and elsewhere... [Re: George]
RoguePhotonic Offline


Registered: 12/08/09
Posts: 558
Loc: Bakersfield CA
There is another remote possibility, that they knew a storm was coming and that is why they went!

More then once my dad and I have set out for a trip because a major storm was on it's way.
_________________________
FlickR

Top
#8676 - 10/26/10 04:23 PM Re: How not to die on Mt. Whitney (and elsewhere... [Re: RoguePhotonic]
Harvey Lankford Offline


Registered: 11/10/09
Posts: 1017
Loc: Richmond, Virginia
This seems like a good time to draw from my Words From On High collection.
Feel free to comment on your favorite quote about the weather, Harvey

We arranged everything to our satisfaction except the weather.
Geoffrey Winthrop Young,On High Hills page 168

Mountaineering, like farming, sailing, and all our most interesting activities, is a chancy business ruled largely by the weather.
HW Tilman, Everest 1938 page 502

Those who ignore weather signs lose half their climbing days; those who deliberately disregard, or despise, them, may lose their lives.
Geoffrey Winthrop Young, Mountain Craft, page 48

Battling with an unknown climb in the mist is like fighting a battle without any knowledge of how the enemy has disposed his forces.
RLG Irving, Ten Great Mountains, page 11

The mountaineer must climb with his finger on the pulse of the weather...like an experienced seaman he must be able to smell bad weather before it comes.
Frank Smythe, The Mountain Vision, page 233

Top
#8678 - 10/26/10 04:54 PM Re: How not to die on Mt. Whitney (and elsewhere... [Re: Harvey Lankford]
Rod Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 660
Loc: Santa Clarita, Ca. USA
Great quotes Harvey.
I certainly hope that I don't have to explain my comments were with my tonque firmy planted in my cheek.Of course we rescue those and recover bodies because we can.In fact I am amazed at the all out efforts that are given even when hope is fading to risk life to save life.

I certainly respect those Rangers and SARs who risk so much to save some that stupidly place their life in danger. It is another thing when an accident that is unforeseen happens in spite of preparation and planning.In either case I am glad there are resources available to save peoples lives.

Top
#8681 - 10/26/10 05:20 PM Re: How not to die on Mt. Whitney (and elsewhere... [Re: Rod]
AlanK Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 583
Loc: Glendale, CA
Originally Posted By: Rod
I certainly hope that I don't have to explain my comments were with my tonque firmy planted in my cheek.Of course we rescue those and recover bodies because we can.In fact I am amazed at the all out efforts that are given even when hope is fading to risk life to save life.

Since I was one of those who responded to your post, yes, I definitely took your post as tongue in cheek. But I also sympathized with the sentiment that must have caused you to post that.

There are people who seriously propose no-rescue zones for places where there are a lot of rescues involving really dumb circumstances. I don't think it's going to happen, but I certainly understand what drives the suggestions.

Top
#8685 - 10/26/10 07:20 PM Re: How not to die on Mt. Whitney (and elsewhere... [Re: KevinR]
catpappy Offline


Registered: 03/06/10
Posts: 120
Loc: acworth, ga
KevinR, Thanks for the link. In 1979 I thru hiked the AT and remember well seeing these signs throughout the Whites. More sobering were the simple wooden crosses that dotted the highlands. These marked the spot where a body was found/recovered. More impactful was the large display at the summit of Mt. Washington or maybe it was down in Tuckerman Ravine. On this display, dating back to the late 1800's were the names of people who had died on the mountain. In a column beside the names you would see one of three words fall, exposure, or missing-never found. Maybe a display like this at the trailhead would make people think. Also, if I had a loved one that had perished on the mountain, I would not be hurt by having their name on such a display.

Thanks John

Top
#8686 - 10/26/10 07:34 PM Re: How not to die on Mt. Whitney (and elsewhere... [Re: catpappy]
CaT Offline


Registered: 09/24/09
Posts: 694
Loc: Blacklick, OH (formerly SoCal)
Originally Posted By: catpappy
KevinR, Thanks for the link. In 1979 I thru hiked the AT and remember well seeing these signs throuhgout the Whites. More sobering, were the simple wooden crosses that dotted the highlands. These marked the spot where a body was found/recovered. More impactful was the large display at the summit of Mt. Washington or maybe it was down in Tuckerman Ravine. On this display, dating back to the late 1800's were the names of people who had died on the mountain. In a column beside the names you would see one of three words fall, exposure, or missing-never found. Maybe a display like this at the trailhead would make people think. Also, if I had a loved one that had perished on the mountain, I would not be hurt by having their name on such a display.

Thanks John

Best idea yet among all the good ideas I've seen here.

CaT
_________________________
If future generations are to remember us with gratitude rather than contempt, we must leave them more than the miracle of technology. We must leave them a glimpse of the world as it was in the beginning, not just after we got through with it.
- Lyndon Johnson, on signing the Wilderness Act into law (1964)

Top
#8691 - 10/26/10 07:47 PM Re: How not to die on Mt. Whitney (and elsewhere... [Re: CaT]
Harvey Lankford Offline


Registered: 11/10/09
Posts: 1017
Loc: Richmond, Virginia
How about some of these?


                Memorial cairn

Top
#8693 - 10/26/10 08:03 PM Re: How not to die on Mt. Whitney (and elsewhere... [Re: catpappy]
Bulldog34 Offline


Registered: 11/12/09
Posts: 1254
Loc: Atlanta
John, I'm with CaT - that may be the best and most effective idea I've heard on this problem.

Top
#8696 - 10/26/10 08:15 PM Re: How not to die on Mt. Whitney (and elsewhere... [Re: Bulldog34]
AlanK Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 583
Loc: Glendale, CA
I agree that a sign could work.

Top
#9030 - 11/07/10 05:42 PM Re: How not to die on Mt. Whitney (and elsewhere... [Re: Bee]
hikin_jim Offline


Registered: 11/07/10
Posts: 148
Loc: Los Angeles, CA, USA
Originally Posted By: Bee
When a known whopper of a storm is coming in, and folks still insist on a permit to enter the mayhem, they should ... leave an open visa draft that allows the NPS/FS/SAR to fill in the $$$ blank if/when an extraction is required.
This may well be the best idea of the bunch. "Something might happen" doesn't register with a lot of people, but when you put it in dollar terms, it's like another portion of the brain clicks on. "Whoa! Wait just a minute here. You mean this might cost me something?"

Laugh if you like, but, yes, people will respond more to dollars than to a general "something really bad might happen" warning.

HJ
_________________________
Backpacking stove reviews and information: Adventures In Stoving

Top
#9031 - 11/07/10 05:48 PM Re: How not to die on Mt. Whitney (and elsewhere... [Re: hikin_jim]
Bee Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 1261
Loc: Northern California
People can laugh again at the Helmet & Seat belt law* too, but when $$$$ were attached to contrary behavior, folks toed the line in droves (and the statistics improved along with safety measure "participation")




*Just to clarify: I am not in favor of over-legislation....only when it costs me $$$$ when others cannot exercise common sense
_________________________
The body betrays and the weather conspires, hopefully, not on the same day.

Top
Page 2 of 3 < 1 2 3 >