Quote Originally Posted by illabelle View Post
Yesterday we hiked the Hemphill Bald loop in the Smokies, on the edge of the park near Balsam Mountain/Cataloochee area. The bald is a popular destination, with a few benches and a nice rock under a tree in a fenced area overlooking the adjoining community of Maggie Valley. Several people had hiked there from a nearby resort, while others arrived by hiking the 13-mile loop.
While eating our lunch and enjoying the view, along comes this guy jogging and wearing nothing but some skimpy shorts, shoes, a fanny pack, and a bushy beard. He shared that he was doing the loop. I asked what he was doing for water. "Oh, I just camel up before hand. I do 3-hr runs all the time, so I'm used to it." Granted, the Smokies are tame compared to the Whites, but still. I don't know what was in his fanny pack - maybe phone and keys - but it wasn't big enough for a shirt or rain jacket, much less warm clothing.
He told us he'd made an attempt at the SCAR (Smokies Challenge Adventure Run - Fontana to Davenport in 24 hours), so he's no novice. And who am I to judge? Plenty of times I've gone on a familiar​ trail with nothing more than keys and phone.
Its tough telling someone what they should or shouldn't have. And the "ten essentials" list is kinda lame.

However... every trailhead in the whites. Well pretty much every one has a pictured diagram on the info boards of what you "should" have for a day hike.

And people just blatantly ignore it.

The thing is.. if you get hurt. Im going to help you. Ive been part of 3 SAR missions..as a bystander hiker. Ive had 3 incidents where I volunteered to help someone injured that I came across while out on a hike myself. Two of these incidents i was the one who found the victim. Guess I bring the bad luck. But..If Im going to be out till 3 am in the white mtns..even in summer..chances are im going to need somethings myself. And im not giving you my rain jacket if I need it. Im not going to get hypothermic myself trying to save you because you didn't bring one. Sorry.

In one of these incidents, it was a cold afternoon. I got the puppy dog eyes from a hiker stuck on the side of the mtn with a busted ankle. I had the pleasure of coming across them first. Knowing how cold it was and them being static. They needed a layer. I offered my rain jacket up. They didnt even hesitate to take it cause they were getting cold. I froze my ass off all night getting that person off the mtn. What would have been a night where I was in bed by 9 turned out to be a 4am party on the mtn.

Hikers help hikers. But because Im not gonna let someone die on the side of a mtn.. i have to put myself at risk. Thats not fair.

If it was raining. I wouldnt have given up my rain jacket. I would figured something else out but...

What do people expect? If something happens everyone is just suppose to come to their rescue?

Odd time we live in.

Now that I reflect on it. I prob bring more stuff on a day hike with me now because of my experiences helping other people who were not prepared themselves.

The whole no jacket thing just blows my mind. Especially in the whites. Where there is typically a pretty strong wind chill...

Common sense?

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