In Europe almost all hiking trails are close to civilization and well-marked. If you expect the same in America you're in for a surprise.
The locals were well known for drink driving and driving too fast (they treat it like the British treat the Spanish islands and Amsterdam).
I'm not ashamed to admit that it scared the crap out of me, and my wife (who I completely trust) was driving.
I lived somewhat close to there, but not close enough to know that exact area. I am now an avid road cyclist that loves to do big climbs. That road is not even that bad https://veloviewer.com/segments/4090708
I do similar climbs here in California.
I don't think I've seen anything in California quite that sketchy. Maybe this one because it's really narrow:
That would also make for a great ride.
I don’t find that _that_ surprising.
Air travel is dirt-cheap, there are more Europeans than Americans (taking the relatively richer north: Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Sweden, and the UK combined already have 295M. That doesn’t include the 60M Italians, 45M Spaniards, 38M Poles, 10M Portuguese, etc.), Europeans have more holidays, and many of them cannot run out of sick days, so that they don’t have to use their holidays when sick.
I also would _guess_ the lower wealth inequality makes more European than American pensioners wealthy enough to make such a trip.
That’s offset by Americans having a higher average income than Europeans (but income inequality being higher, it wouldn’t surprise me if more Europeans can afford to make the journey), and those parks being closer to where American live than to where Europeans live (but the USA being large and air travel being cheap, I doubt that matters much)
I’ve seen the same in Norway; tourists from all over the world getting lost in the mountains, caught out in bad weather or early nightfall with poor clothing and footwear, lost at sea in quickly-changing weather, fall off unexpected cliffs, hit by falling glacier ice, swept into the freezing ocean by waves, killed by avalanche, snowed in on the road etc.
A 1000m hill can't be dangerous, right?
1) People who are utterly ill-equipped and know nothing. Almost all of these are within a mile of the trailhead. They are very unlikely to experience worse than an unpleasant time.
2) People who are underequipped and know little of the local situation. These are almost all tourists. (To date I have encountered only one exception--two guys 4 miles and ~2,500' in, water bottles and big, heavy sticks that were worse than useless as trekking poles. Fortunately I got them turned around, had they continued they would have been out of water, risking hypothermia and have had no chance of getting back to civilization before dark--and they had no light.) The ultimate example was a guy from Florida. He was asking me for navigation advice, attempting to reach the highest local summit. It was his 4th attempt, the previous three were blocked by snow. By unreliable reporting there were several feet of snow on the summit at that time, it certainly wasn't considered passable. He was asking me about a third trail shown on his map. Really now, an arrow-straight trail in steep mountains?? That's the boundary line for the ski resort! No GPS, no poles, if he by some miracle summitted he would have had no chance of getting down before nightfall.
This is a really similar one. REALLY SAD.
It was one of my first experience outdoors in the wild and pristine nature (besides some guided visits to Brazilian forests I guess). The only other meaningful experience back then was going to major attractions in Yosemite a couple of days before.
I dropped off a friend at Palm Springs airport as she had to go back to her life in NYC earlier, and continued the trip by myself. Afterward driving for a little bit, I arrived in a spot in Joshua Tree where the parking lot closes during the summer, and you have to park along the road, but there were quite a few people out there.
There were two trails at that spot. One was close, but the other was far away. I made the first quite fast. There was an oasis there — a wonderful place. I figured [wrongly] that I could make the second trail as well. The trail signs didn't indicate that the second was quite far away. Something like 5mi, I guess. Also, there was a small sign saying the trail was closed due to hazard conditions (heat). I missed it and only saw it on my way back (the sign was not in place due to wind... I guess).
I had bought plenty of water but was stupid enough to leave it in the car and started walking the second trail.
I always knew where I was. I wasn't lost at all. However, it was really hot, and I was afraid I'd pass out anytime after a while, and decided it was time to head back. I believed I could return to safety really fast, as the trail seemed to be almost parallel to the road I parked my car, but there were large rock fragments, and I couldn't safely reach the road. I almost became desperate and started crying a little thinking I was minutes away from death. There weren't even any bushes to protect me from the elements. I tried to call 911 to share my location and ask them to send someone over if I pass out or don't return their call soon, but it was to no avail as there was no cellphone coverage.
Once I finally found a spot I could safely climb, I did so and started walking in the side of the road as I wanted to be seen by anyone, in case I collapsed. A car passed by me as I was 100m away from mine. I decided not to bother. I regret it.
I spent a whole day recovering in the hotel room afterwards.
Looking in retrospective, I should have never gone on a hike without knowing exactly what would be expected and with no water. If I ever go out to the middle of nowhere, I'm bringing a radio, satellite phone, or both. Plus, letting someone else know about my plans and location.
In the afternoon of the following day, I went to Joshua Tree, and got lost-ish just after sunset. But I was better preppared and found my way back in 10min. Still, it was something I regret a lot. Here is how I found myself: my Sony Experia GPS app failed on me (now, thankfully back to the iPhone), and I couldn't see anyone anymore... so I grabbed my MacBook Pro, fired Lightroom, imported a photo of the parking lot I took with the camera, saw the GPS coordinates, and used my Canon 6D camera as a GPS unit (I'd walk trying to find my latitude, then my longitude, until I got it right - this all while opening/closing the embedded GPS debugging tool that doesn't update the location automatically)...
I'm usually not reckless with anything, and these were exceptions in my whole life. I have revisited them, and some other dangerous places, and I always do my best to keep safe - after these experiences safer than most, perhaps.
I've read in other articles that the father was expecting a rope to be pre-anchored which makes me dubious of their level of preparedness.
> Typically, he said, there's a rope going through climbing carabiners that have been bolted into the rocks.
> "This time, the rope was gone," Whitson told CNN.
If you know there is a rappel: Bring. Your. Own. Gear. Trusting a rope that is left exposed and potentially not well cared for is dangerous in and of itself, but to be aware of a gear requirement and just walk out in the wilderness expecting gear to be there (and in usable condition) is flabbergasting.
I am glad this mistake wasn't fatal though.
“here’s who is going, this is our license plate, this is our gear, this is how much food we have, here’s a very rough itinerary; if i don’t update this email by such and such a time, contact the following SAR groups...”
It's convenient because it makes me shake my gear down, too.
If I were doing things where I didn't expect other hikers around I would upgrade that PLB to an inReach.
Beautiful place to hike and camp, and if that's not your thing then check out the Tassajara zen center.
I wrote a trip recap here: https://roymurdock.com/blogs/2019/0722ventana.php
i'm guessing satellite locator beacons (such as resqlink, spot or in-reach) don't work very well in canyons. you'd need a much more monster antenna and transmitter.
It does work, but only when a satellite happens to be in the right position. This basically means you have to queue up a message and it will get sent in 5-50 min.
Here is HN snapshot from 2008: http://web.archive.org/web/20080105031416/https://news.ycomb...
The top submissions is "Obama's Victory Speech". I don't think it's very technological, at least in common sense.
Probably the only very true HN existed in 2007, for several month. Well, these were good times..
I don't see this in real life though, it's only on hyper exposed platforms like the news, websites, social media. In person I find most people are actually still pretty civil (though It's largely based on who you associate with).
Don't debate me on my opinion or else it's obvious you're a shill of "insert something here" ;D
(c) https://news.ycombinator.com/newsguidelines.html, should be in FAQ too ;-)
How many IRC channels have you hung out in? Every channel I've ever been in with any sort of community has stuff like this pop up pretty regularly (things that may be "off-topic" by some definition, but are interesting, and spark some interesting conversation).
Channels where there are hard and fast rules about keeping the discussion strictly "on-topic" don't tend to be channels I hang out in. The same would be true for HN.
Any IRC channel I've been to that develops into a community spends 90+% time talking about everything else except the topic it's ostensibly about. It's weird from the POV of the newcomers, but for old-timers, most of the on-topic things were talked about to death many times over already.
If all you have is a cell phone with no battery or no reception, you can't get help, you can't hail rides etc.
I could see this being an easy trap to be caught out by if you had limited exposure to conditions in the area, or even if you had checked weather conditions and missed a rainfall upstream while out hiking. While they might be ashamed of needing a rescue, they thankfully made a smart choice and this is a cool story rather than a search for bodies.
Photos of the camping spot a few hours swim down from waterfall:
I'll add photos of the waterfall to that link later.
Do you know this of assumed? Sounds difficult for sure, but is it possible?
I mean, if you had no way forward and had two options:
1) turn around
2) throw a bottle into the waterfall and hope
I would turn around (unless as you said, is actually impossible, but I haven't been able to find anything definitive on this)
It’s only $300 and it can transmit SOS both to low orbit satellites and to rescue copters, and it has shelf life of five years (no need to charge).
What you are thinking of are the SPOT & inReach units--those have subscription fees but provide you text messaging while off the grid. PLBs are single-shot HELP messages, they can't be customized. (Are you simply stranded like these guys, non-threatening injury that keeps you from getting yourself out, or is it a major issue--say, the guy here last year that keeled over on top of Hell Hill. It probably wouldn't have made a difference but the hour it took to get help certainly wasn't good.)
> Whitson, his 13-year-old son and girlfriend, Krystal Ramirez, had decided to spend Father's Day weekend backpacking the Arroyo Seco River.
It took me longer to parse this sentence than I should perhaps admit to. The first couple of reads lead me to believe his son and girlfriend were the same person.
> Whitson, his 13-year-old son, and girlfriend Krystal Ramirez had decided to spend Father's Day weekend backpacking...