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  1. #1
    Registered User John B's Avatar
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    Default Fellow Kentuckian dies while hiking in Wyoming, hypothermia


  2. #2
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    Default Hiker death

    Quote Originally Posted by John B View Post
    Very sad. My prayers are with her and her family.

  3. #3
    Registered User Venchka's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kibs View Post
    Very sad. My prayers are with her and her family.
    PLB. Cheap effective insurance.
    My thanks to the SAR team.
    https://www.acrartex.com/products/outdoor/#1122
    Wayne


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  4. #4
    illabelle's Avatar
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    Yes, very sad.
    Another reminder that even experienced prepared equipped people can succumb to hypothermia. Warning to myself not to be over-confident.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by Venchka View Post
    PLB. Cheap effective insurance.
    Very sad what happened to this lady.
    Agree 100% regarding the PLB (or equivalent). I would estimate that the majority* of people who solo hike in the wilderness simply choose to rely on contingency support from a cell phone or the next hiker that comes along - these are obviously not the most reliable options available.

    *This is just my opinion based on asking fellow hikers what they carry in way of emergency response.

  6. #6

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    Condolences of course. What a story.

    ** A man and woman backpacked in and set up camp.
    ** They dayhiked out of camp and got separated late in the afternoon.
    ** The man did not find camp and spent two nights away from camp in snow.
    ** The woman actually made it back to camp somehow (while the man was pulling his two nights alone) and then left a note and took off to find help on a solo hike. She apparently got lost and died from hypothermia.
    ** The man apparently never did make it back to camp but got out of the wilderness to alert authorities.

    The article says "A sudden snowfall made finding shelter difficult". Too bad the woman when reaching camp did not sit put and wait.

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by firesign View Post
    Very sad what happened to this lady.
    Agree 100% regarding the PLB (or equivalent). I would estimate that the majority* of people who solo hike in the wilderness simply choose to rely on contingency support from a cell phone or the next hiker that comes along - these are obviously not the most reliable options available.

    *This is just my opinion based on asking fellow hikers what they carry in way of emergency response.
    I do alot of solo winter trips and only have an old 2005 walmart tracfone for communication and/or survival. Thing is, I just don't leave my tent in the winter to go on long dayhikes away from camp, especially into darkness. I regard my tent as my survival blanket and extreme weather bivy and emergency shelter all rolled up into one. When I do leave camp it's with all my gear as a trek to my next camp. Not to say I won't fall and snap a tibia or a dead tree won't fall on me.

  8. #8

    Exclamation

    Quote Originally Posted by firesign View Post
    . . . I would estimate that the majority* of people who solo hike in the wilderness simply choose to rely on contingency support from a cell phone or the next hiker that comes along - these are obviously not the most reliable options available.
    Nope! At least not for me and apparently only somewhat, if at all, for Tipi.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tipi Walter View Post
    I do alot of solo winter trips and only have an old 2005 walmart tracfone for communication and/or survival. . . Not to say I won't fall and snap a tibia or a dead tree won't fall on me.

    I am solo backcountry traveling all different times of year. I generally choose places where I am unlikely to run into anyone, often off trail, and most often out of cell range. So my expectation of being randomly found or having a cell signal is quite low and not on my RADAR for help.

    What I depend on is statistical odds given the choices I make about risk at every step of my trip and that includes following an outline of a plan for my trip that my wife has a copy of. So if I do get into trouble, she has a pretty good idea of where I might be. I also leave a map and note of expected times and locations on my car dashboard so people watching parking lots will know when I'm overdue. I have found that rangers and local police, without being asked or notified, keep at least as good a track of my expected return to my car as my wife does.

    AND, I figure that if I die, at least I've arranged for my family to be taken care of financially, and I'll die doing what I love instead of lying in a hospital or behind the wheel of a car.

    Finally, I have considered carrying an emergency satellite communication device, to reduce my risk even further, but I bought a new mountain bike this year instead. ;-)

    And, for what it's worth, I would certainly make more risky choices if I knew I had a satellite communicator for emergency backup, and although that would be a good fun thing in some ways, it might not be as good in others.
    I'm not lost. I'm exploring.

  9. #9
    Registered User Venchka's Avatar
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    PLB or a new mountain bike? Why didnít I think of the mountain bike?

    Wayne


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    Deep in the East Texas Rainforest.
    "Lately it occurs to me What a long, strange trip it's been." Grateful Dead

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by nsherry61 View Post
    I am solo backcountry traveling all different times of year. I generally choose places where I am unlikely to run into anyone, often off trail, and most often out of cell range. So my expectation of being randomly found or having a cell signal is quite low and not on my RADAR for help.

    What I depend on is statistical odds given the choices I make about risk at every step of my trip and that includes following an outline of a plan for my trip that my wife has a copy of. So if I do get into trouble, she has a pretty good idea of where I might be. I also leave a map and note of expected times and locations on my car dashboard so people watching parking lots will know when I'm overdue. I have found that rangers and local police, without being asked or notified, keep at least as good a track of my expected return to my car as my wife does.

    AND, I figure that if I die, at least I've arranged for my family to be taken care of financially, and I'll die doing what I love instead of lying in a hospital or behind the wheel of a car.

    Finally, I have considered carrying an emergency satellite communication device, to reduce my risk even further, but I bought a new mountain bike this year instead. ;-)

    And, for what it's worth, I would certainly make more risky choices if I knew I had a satellite communicator for emergency backup, and although that would be a good fun thing in some ways, it might not be as good in others.
    GREAT POST. I mean, payable on death accounts are made for solo backpackers. And whoever is left at home.

    I too leave a detailed trail route at home and confabulate a trip outline on a couple blank copied calendar pages. Once figured I type up and copy a Trip schedule and try to stick to it with some deviation. Like I list all the trails I'll be hiking in the order hiked and where I'll sleep each night, if I know the area well enough to describe such stuff. It REALLY helps to set up goals for a trip or an overall Quest. By the way.

    On this schedule are several important phone numbers---local forest supervisor, ranger district, close backpacking friends who know the area etc. My shuttle pickup Date is boldly highlighted as it's the most important day on the schedule---even though we arrange a Blizzard plan whereby I hitch out to the closest town if things go south road-wise.

    And I'd rather send Dan McHale cash money for a new pack than buy anything resembling a SPOT or Outreach or Inreach or Dig Deep or Get Me Out Of Here device. That's just me.

  11. #11

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    This happened in my backyard. Those mountains, and especially the area they were in, are unpredictable in winter...and that is some tough terrain. I have backpacked all over those mountains and won't go anywhere without my InReach. October not always a good time to go up there unless you are well prepared and know the terrain intimately, especially when the weather often has snow predictions.

    Sad.

  12. #12
    MuddyWaters's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nsherry61 View Post
    AND, I figure that if I die, at least I've arranged for my family to be taken care of financially, and I'll die doing what I love instead of lying in a hospital or behind the wheel of a car.

    .
    my family be better off with me dead ....financially.

    Probably why my wife dont object to my solo trips....
    "Inevitably, a long distance hiker must choose between travelling light, and not travelling at all." - Earl V. Shaffer

  13. #13
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    A PLB will assist the rescue teams, sent out to save your life, and they will be looking. Why make their efforts a search and rescue. They are putting their lives at risk, to save yours.

  14. #14
    Registered User Venchka's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ercoupe View Post
    A PLB will assist the rescue teams, sent out to save your life, and they will be looking. Why make their efforts a search and rescue. They are putting their lives at risk, to save yours.
    The SAR teams were sent out blind without a signal from a PLB.
    My PLB doesnít do anything until I tell it to send out an SOS. Iím still responsible for not putting myself at risk.
    If I activate the PLB then the SAR community will have a better idea of where to find me.
    That was not the case in this situation.
    Be safe Yíall!
    Wayne


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    Deep in the East Texas Rainforest.
    "Lately it occurs to me What a long, strange trip it's been." Grateful Dead

  15. #15

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    Common for couples or solo hikers to have "near misses", and unfortunate that this led to a death

    My wife & I were talking about getting me a PLB a couple months ago. Has anyone used this Mcmurdo fastfind or have a better recommendation?
    https://www.mec.ca/en/product/5035-8...Locator-Beacon
    Price is in CDN $ and seems to be a somewhat affordable and reliable version. The only bad reviews there were people who couldn't test it properly, and reviews seem better elsewhere

  16. #16
    Registered User Venchka's Avatar
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    I bought the ACR ResQLink+ from REI last year. I see the current price has come down $20 since then.
    With my dividend from REI and a $50 rebate from ACR the net price was a little over $200.
    I have no trouble testing the ACR. Battery shelf life is 5 years and the new battery is ~$150. If Iím still backpacking then I may just buy a new unit.
    The ACR lives on a shoulder strap on my backpack where I can get to it no matter what.
    Wayne


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    Deep in the East Texas Rainforest.
    "Lately it occurs to me What a long, strange trip it's been." Grateful Dead

  17. #17

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    very sad. I hike alone a good bit, usually on trails that see some traffic but there are times when I haven't seen anybody for a long time, maybe a PLB would be a good idea. I always think about this going along those brief sections with steep drop offs where a simple trip or stumble could take you way down off the trail.

  18. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hikingjim View Post
    Common for couples or solo hikers to have "near misses", and unfortunate that this led to a death

    My wife & I were talking about getting me a PLB a couple months ago. Has anyone used this Mcmurdo fastfind or have a better recommendation?
    https://www.mec.ca/en/product/5035-8...Locator-Beacon
    Price is in CDN $ and seems to be a somewhat affordable and reliable version. The only bad reviews there were people who couldn't test it properly, and reviews seem better elsewhere
    Lots of conversations about this around on this forum, but I went with the DeLorme InReach (old version, not the Garmin) because I wanted to be able to send information to rescuers if necessary...the more information they have the better. I also like being able to send a check in message when I set camp so that if I miss two, someone knows where I was and has a pretty good idea of where to send help...in case I fall off a cliff and am unconscious (can't push a button)
    Quote Originally Posted by Maineiac64 View Post
    very sad. I hike alone a good bit, usually on trails that see some traffic but there are times when I haven't seen anybody for a long time, maybe a PLB would be a good idea. I always think about this going along those brief sections with steep drop offs where a simple trip or stumble could take you way down off the trail.
    Not sure a PLB would help if you're dead or unconscious...it's why I like to send a daily or twice daily check-in, with co-ordinates, so that if something happens when hiking alone they know where I am (or roughly where because they knew where I was and what route I was hiking) and don't have to search the entire trail

  19. #19
    Some days, it's not worth chewing through the restraints.
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    Quote Originally Posted by nsherry61 View Post
    ... for what it's worth, I would certainly make more risky choices if I knew I had a satellite communicator for emergency backup, and although that would be a good fun thing in some ways, it might not be as good in others.
    Would you? I wonder - I don't think my risk appetite would change at all. A broken leg is a broken leg, and while I might be in pain for less time, it's still gonna hurt like the bejeezuz. What I have found is that a phone makes it a lot easier to quit. I hiked for 50 years without one, and most of the time I still prefer to leave it behind. I rely on the "I've told you exactly where I'm parking, and where I'll be hiking, and if I'm not home by X o'clock, here's the number of the local state police barracks"

  20. #20

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    My old (and unanswered) question used to be why didn't the woman stay in camp when she wrote the note? My new question is: How and Why did they get separated on their dayhike from camp????? This is the crux of the problem I think.

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