Page 5 of 7 FirstFirst 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 LastLast
Results 81 to 100 of 131
  1. #81
    GSMNP 900 Miler HooKooDooKu's Avatar
    Join Date
    02-25-2007
    Location
    Birmingham, AL
    Age
    51
    Posts
    3,909
    Journal Entries
    1
    Images
    5

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by stephanD View Post
    It is always amazes me how easily it is to get disoriented in the wood. One can be 50 yards from a road, and they will never know it....
    How about 50 feet?
    In GSMNP, the terrain is so steep and the forest so thick...
    I was once hiking the AT from Mt Collins shelter SOBO, planning to transition to Clingman's Dome Road at Collins Gap to walk the road to the Noland Divide Trailhead.

    Thru Collins Gap, the AT parallels the road for about 1/4 mile... most of the time only 50' off the road. But there's only a short section before the AT climbs beyond Collins Gap that the trail is about level with the road.

    So, in any case... I'm walking the AT waiting to get to Collins Gap to pop out on the road. I missed Collins Gap and didn't know it until after the AT had started climbing away from the road.

  2. #82
    illabelle's Avatar
    Join Date
    06-25-2012
    Location
    Lurkerville, East Tn
    Age
    59
    Posts
    3,119
    Journal Entries
    1

    Default

    This discussion has been valuable. Even though we are often speculating about what occurred, it helps us to understand.

    I occasionally lead small group hikes with several kids, and anticipate one in early November near Elkmont. Before we leave, we'll talk about this case, about what likely went wrong, about the accumulation of "harmless" mistakes that proved deadly.

    Lessons for our group:
    Be responsible for yourself. Check the weather forecast, and bring appropriate clothing.
    Know the route, the names of the trails, the distance, the expected time to complete.
    Read and understand trail signs, comparing with the map to ensure comprehension.
    Pay attention to notable trail features: bridge, unusual tree, large rock, waterfall, muddy spot, tree fallen across trail, sharp bend or change in ascent/descent.
    Monitor weather and progress, being willing to turn around early if needed.
    Stay on trail, stick together, and watch out for one another, never leaving someone behind.

  3. #83
    Registered User
    Join Date
    12-19-2005
    Location
    Knoxville, TN
    Posts
    2,716

    Default

    I occasionally lead small group hikes with several kids, and anticipate one in early November near Elkmont. Before we leave, we'll talk about this case, about what likely went wrong, about the accumulation of "harmless" mistakes that proved deadly.


    and shoot......hiking with small children can be a whole 'nother story...

    i always think back to dennis martin....

  4. #84
    Registered User
    Join Date
    09-08-2014
    Location
    Georgia
    Age
    66
    Posts
    411

    Default

    [QUOTE=scope;2225301]p.s. signage that falls somewhere between a wooden sign with carved lettering and flashing neon; and perhaps more attention to clear cutting around current signage and using bright paint and reflectors to be able to see them from a distance - after all, it wasn't just the signs for the parking that she missed, apparently she was very close to signs that would've directed her to a shelter where she likely would've survived the night and probably receive assistance. I don't think we know how close she was to that after starting downhill. My guess is by that point, she would not have missed the signage had she come upon it, but who knows.[/QU

    I almost walked past a sign once because they are weathered and if they are shaded a bit and offset from the trail a bit then they are not exactly noticeable.I can imagine a hiker "in the zone" walking along and right past one.It can happen.The pics of the signs listed earlier are such that I could detect directional arrows on the bottom sign only.From looking at the map I realize the shelter and goshen prong trail are to the west etc but to put it mildly,the signs are so weathered they look "worn out".Maybe she did not see the signs or was in a mental state that "Clingman's" did not really register with her as a destination.

  5. #85
    MuddyWaters's Avatar
    Join Date
    05-05-2011
    Location
    state of confusion
    Posts
    9,315
    Journal Entries
    1

    Default

    Signage (and blazes) are intentionally very limited and intentionally non-obtrusive in wilderness areas .

    Perhaps with none.....people would have a map and pay attention.

    What seems a good thing, might really not be. Leads to complacency, and not carrying map.
    "Inevitably, a long distance hiker must choose between travelling light, and not travelling at all." - Earl V. Shaffer

  6. #86
    Registered User evyck da fleet's Avatar
    Join Date
    09-24-2011
    Location
    Atlanta, GA
    Age
    47
    Posts
    478

    Default

    You could put up blinking neon signs and there would still be day hikers that are too busy talking to notice them on the way out that they would be surprised to see it on the way back.

    There are probably a dozen factors you could look at in this case and by changing one or two factors there would be a different outcome.

  7. #87

    Default

    Its not just day hikers as history teaches us.

  8. #88
    Registered User
    Join Date
    09-08-2014
    Location
    Georgia
    Age
    66
    Posts
    411

    Default

    GSMNP is an area that is visited by people with greatly varied hiking experience.Having at least a reflector or two and some reflective paint on a sign might have saved this person's life.When the signs become so un-obtrusive that they virtually camouflage themselves into the landscape then it defeats the original intent.Everglades Natl. Park has reflectors and they did not lesson my wilderness experience at all.

  9. #89
    Registered User
    Join Date
    06-18-2010
    Location
    NJ
    Age
    42
    Posts
    2,780
    Images
    1

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Five Tango View Post
    GSMNP is an area that is visited by people with greatly varied hiking experience.
    the overwhelmingly majority of whom have never gotten lost and died in the woods.

    this thing people have where they feel we need to cater to the least common denominator is something i'll never understand and i dont see how good can ever come of it.

  10. #90
    Registered User
    Join Date
    12-19-2005
    Location
    Knoxville, TN
    Posts
    2,716

    Default

    GSMNP is an area that is visited by people with greatly varied hiking experience.Having at least a reflector or two and some reflective paint on a sign might have saved this person's life



    i thought the lettering in the signs was reflective........

    but, if she didnt have a flashlight or another source of light-----its basically useless to have anything reflective....

  11. #91
    Registered User
    Join Date
    09-08-2014
    Location
    Georgia
    Age
    66
    Posts
    411

    Default

    The impression I have gotten from following this thread is that it was not yet dark when she walked past the signs;assuming that was the path she took.All I'm saying is that making the signs slightly more noticeable would make them more usable and I seriously doubt anyone's outdoor experience would be irreparably impaired.

  12. #92
    Registered User
    Join Date
    12-19-2005
    Location
    Knoxville, TN
    Posts
    2,716

    Default

    and we are back to neon lights......

  13. #93
    GSMNP 900 Miler HooKooDooKu's Avatar
    Join Date
    02-25-2007
    Location
    Birmingham, AL
    Age
    51
    Posts
    3,909
    Journal Entries
    1
    Images
    5

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Five Tango View Post
    GSMNP is an area that is visited by people with greatly varied hiking experience.Having at least a reflector or two and some reflective paint on a sign might have saved this person's life.When the signs become so un-obtrusive that they virtually camouflage themselves into the landscape then it defeats the original intent.Everglades Natl. Park has reflectors and they did not lesson my wilderness experience at all.
    This woman passed literally within inches of not one but TWO signs located at the intersection with the parking lot. The only way to do that is to have your eyes diverted in a different direction as you pass the signs. So even if they had had reflectors on them, she still would not have seen the signs.

    And as you can see from the images shown earlier in this thread, the signs are NOT camouflaged. Sure, because they are wood, they weather to take on the same color as other dead wood in the forest. But these signs are NOT hidden. They stand out from the surrounding because they are not tucked up against trees.

    I personally don't have an objection if the NPS wanted to add reflectors to their signs... they would help people who might be night hiking and trying to use a headlamp looking for them.

    But I just don't think they would have made a difference in this case.

  14. #94
    Registered User scope's Avatar
    Join Date
    03-08-2006
    Location
    Chamblee, GA
    Age
    55
    Posts
    1,385
    Images
    34

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by tdoczi View Post
    the overwhelmingly majority of whom have never gotten lost and died in the woods.

    this thing people have where they feel we need to cater to the least common denominator is something i'll never understand and i dont see how good can ever come of it.
    Here's how (and I'm being hypothetical, of course)...

    Your sister has enjoyed listening to your stories of hiking and how much you enjoy it and hears of this popular area and thinks she'd like to check it out. She didn't mention this interest to you because if she did, you would've given her one of your maps, and perhaps a few other items to have just in case. But she's driving to a parking lot and doing a hike of just a few miles - I mean, its just walking, right? And she walks several miles a day already. And because none of her friends can make it that day, she's alone, which she enjoys the peace of being alone anyway. She's a little later getting up there than planned but still thinks she has time to get to do both Andrews Bald and to Clingman's tower. She's enjoying the hike and upon coming back to the Forney intersection, she decides she has enough time to take the longer and more hiker-oriented trail to the AT and then to the tower from there. But as she gets to the AT intersection, light is diminishing more than expected, so she's starting to get a little worried, not exactly in panic mode, but knowing she has to speed things up some. She sees the sign of 0.3m to the tower and is relieved because she knows she can make that and should be easy down to the parking lot. Plus its not that much more than the 0.6m she just hiked, incl distance to parking. In a bit of a hurry, she starts going west on the AT, when she notices another sign that she didn't pay as much attention to - perhaps because it wasn't as attractive as the weather-weary wooden sign. Its some sort of map looking sign that is designed to explain where she is now in the Clingman's Dome area of trails. She notices that based on where this sign says she is that she should instead head east on the AT, away from Goshen Prong and the shelter. She then notices the arrow on the wooden sign points east to the tower, or the opposite direction from GP/shelter. She hikes to the tower, sees the last glimmer of sunset, and makes her way back down to the parking lot on a paved trail in the waning light. And she tells you all about it the next day.

    I'd like for you to understand that I detest the terms "cater" and "least common denominator", at least when it comes to other humans. Do I think its somewhat going out of our way to put additional or different signage in a place that already has it... sure. Is that so unreasonable? A life was lost, and right now, I'm just raising a point about signage to suggest what "might" work to help prevent another loss of life and completely open to other thoughts of action - I think thoughts of inaction should be tabled for now. Is there going to be another lost hiker death in GSMNP? Sure, and it likely might involve this area just due to numbers. The additional signage won't prevent that fact, but it might indeed save a life or two before that fact materializes. We don't know all of what happened this time, and its worth some patience here to let all the info get discovered and sorted out, but eventually, I think its all too appropriate to at least think about what can reasonably be done to "help" prevent this from happening again. I'm pretty sure if it was your sister, you'd have a different view of her station in this world, and in that I hope you can understand how ugly I feel your comments are.
    "I wonder if anyone else has an ear so tuned and sharpened as I have, to detect the music, not of the spheres, but of earth, subtleties of major and minor chord that the wind strikes upon the tree branches. Have you ever heard the earth breathe... ?"
    - Kate Chopin

  15. #95
    Registered User scope's Avatar
    Join Date
    03-08-2006
    Location
    Chamblee, GA
    Age
    55
    Posts
    1,385
    Images
    34

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by TNhiker View Post
    and we are back to neon lights......
    How's that exactly?
    "I wonder if anyone else has an ear so tuned and sharpened as I have, to detect the music, not of the spheres, but of earth, subtleties of major and minor chord that the wind strikes upon the tree branches. Have you ever heard the earth breathe... ?"
    - Kate Chopin

  16. #96
    Registered User
    Join Date
    12-19-2005
    Location
    Knoxville, TN
    Posts
    2,716

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by scope View Post
    How's that exactly?



    post 91.....


    then explanation in post 93....

  17. #97
    Registered User scope's Avatar
    Join Date
    03-08-2006
    Location
    Chamblee, GA
    Age
    55
    Posts
    1,385
    Images
    34

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by HooKooDooKu View Post
    This woman passed literally within inches of not one but TWO signs located at the intersection with the parking lot. The only way to do that is to have your eyes diverted in a different direction as you pass the signs. So even if they had had reflectors on them, she still would not have seen the signs.

    And as you can see from the images shown earlier in this thread, the signs are NOT camouflaged. Sure, because they are wood, they weather to take on the same color as other dead wood in the forest. But these signs are NOT hidden. They stand out from the surrounding because they are not tucked up against trees.

    I personally don't have an objection if the NPS wanted to add reflectors to their signs... they would help people who might be night hiking and trying to use a headlamp looking for them.

    But I just don't think they would have made a difference in this case.
    Its for reasons you mention that I think she didn't miss the signs. I think she misread them, or at least one of them. When I originally suggested "obnoxious" signage, it was because I feared she missed the signs due to how they blended in. Points to the contrary are well taken, and so my thoughts turn to what sort of decision-making might have been going on. Clearly inexperienced decision-making, probably impaired.

    That said, and especially in a park where you're supposed to camp only in a shelter where you may find yourself a longer distance from than you should, reflectors of some sort don't seem all that unreasonable. Or at least some way of making them more noticeable in difficult conditions, whatever that is.

    I do think what would have made a difference in this case is signage that was designed to account for hiker inexperience in this area, and whatever that entails can be debated for its worth.
    "I wonder if anyone else has an ear so tuned and sharpened as I have, to detect the music, not of the spheres, but of earth, subtleties of major and minor chord that the wind strikes upon the tree branches. Have you ever heard the earth breathe... ?"
    - Kate Chopin

  18. #98
    Registered User scope's Avatar
    Join Date
    03-08-2006
    Location
    Chamblee, GA
    Age
    55
    Posts
    1,385
    Images
    34

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by TNhiker View Post
    post 91.....


    then explanation in post 93....
    Not seeing it. (pun intended)
    "I wonder if anyone else has an ear so tuned and sharpened as I have, to detect the music, not of the spheres, but of earth, subtleties of major and minor chord that the wind strikes upon the tree branches. Have you ever heard the earth breathe... ?"
    - Kate Chopin

  19. #99
    Registered User
    Join Date
    12-19-2005
    Location
    Knoxville, TN
    Posts
    2,716

    Default

    That said, and especially in a park where you're supposed to camp only in a shelter


    that's not correct though...




    reflectors of some sort don't seem all that unreasonable



    and how do we not know the paint in the signs is not reflective?

    (its been years since ive done a night hike, but i seemingly remember the letters reflecting back to me.........i could be wrong though)
    shelters are only on the AT and three other spots.........

    everything else is a campsite........

  20. #100
    Registered User
    Join Date
    06-18-2010
    Location
    NJ
    Age
    42
    Posts
    2,780
    Images
    1

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Five Tango View Post
    The impression I have gotten from following this thread is that it was not yet dark when she walked past the signs;assuming that was the path she took.All I'm saying is that making the signs slightly more noticeable would make them more usable and I seriously doubt anyone's outdoor experience would be irreparably impaired.
    aside from one deceased hiker who **possibly** walked past the sign and didnt see it, what indications do you have the signs are faulty or insufficient?

Page 5 of 7 FirstFirst 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 LastLast
++ New Posts ++

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •