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Schroder
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PostFri Dec 06, 2019 3:12 pm 
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Worthwhile article in Outside:
What Search and Rescue Workers Want You to Carry ; Don't become a rescue statistic

and another:
The ABCs of SOS; When—and how—should you call in search and rescue?
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williswall
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PostFri Dec 06, 2019 3:35 pm 
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"Sturdy Boots with Ankle Support"
Really?

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rossb
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PostFri Dec 06, 2019 3:36 pm 
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The first article is quite reasonable, but ends in typical corporate B. S.:

Quote:
Hiking in the Cascades often means wading through brush, including sharp blackberry bushes and devil’s club. It can also involve scrambling across boulder fields, climbing scree, and forging through snow, even in the middle of summer—hazards familiar in mountains everywhere. To protect your hands, a good pair of leather gloves is essential. That might be a pair of standard leather work gloves, but climbing gloves like the Cordex from Petzl ($40) are more flexible.

Oh really? So search and rescue is really concerned about my ability to wade through devil's club with or without scratches? Give me a break. This is nothing more than an attempt to sell a pair of gloves from an advertiser. Nice job, Outside, you couldn't finish a perfectly good, perhaps life saving article without trying to get a little cash for yourself.

The second article is bit better, in my opinion. It manages to address a worst case scenario with some good tips (e. g. don't panic if the helicopter flies past you, they are probably scouting out a landing).
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Kim Brown
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PostFri Dec 06, 2019 4:00 pm 
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Hey, cool they interviewed King County SAR!

rossb wrote:
Nice job, Outside, you couldn't finish a perfectly good, perhaps life saving article without trying to get a little cash for yourself.

Well to be fair, Outside is a business that relies on cash to operate. I opened this article and read it for free - thanks to paying subscribers. Advertisers supplement that. By the way, both articles are chock-full of links for products.

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" I'm really happy about this! … I have very strong good and horrible memories up there."  – oldgranola, NWH’s outdoors advocate.
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Riverside Laker
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PostFri Dec 06, 2019 7:59 pm 
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williswall wrote:
"Sturdy Boots with Ankle Support"
Really?

S&R have probably dealt with many sprained ankles.
Have to admit I prefer light weight low top shoes though.
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Cyclopath
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Faster than light
PostFri Dec 06, 2019 9:21 pm 
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They make a good point about two way communication devices.

I prefer light shoes, often trail runners, except on snow.  If you routinely go without ankle support, your ankles get stronger.  Humans are great long distance runners, and have been visiting the mountains long before there were modern boots.  Cascade Pass is a 10,000 year old trade route.  But modern life is pretty sedentary, and the articles are written for people who aren't such avid and regular hikers.
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Malachai Constant
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PostFri Dec 06, 2019 9:29 pm 
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Long time hikers can use low tops as I have on the JMT, PCT, and AT. What S&R is frequently dealing with are not long time hikers they are newbies or inexperienced hikers who get over their heads, especially in the NW. Sprained ankles are one of the most common injuries requiring rescue and can immobilize anyone. They are not being unreasonable. I have had at least three sprained ankles and could not walk without aid.  I could however downhill ski without problems.

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kvpair
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PostSun Dec 08, 2019 7:00 am 
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Headlamps are a must, especially now when the days are shorter and the darkness under the trees is intense.

A couple of weeks ago, my Thursday night hiking group and I were going up the trail to Mason Lake - left around 430 PM and by the time we reached the long-ish traverse to Mason Lake, we found a hiker coming in the opposite direction armed with <dramatic pause>:

1) A gardening trowel, held firmly in his right hand,
2) A cell phone with flashlight turned on to light his way down,
3) No pack

Don't ask me about 1). We lent him a spare headlamp for his way down.  If his phone died - flashlights do consume quite a bit of power, he'd be stuck on a lonely trail with no phone and no warm clothing till the next morning.

I asked him why he was out and about at that time and he said that he was up there to photograph the sunset from the ridge - apparently it didn't compute that sunset is followed by darkness. Didn't ask him about the trowel, though.
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Sculpin
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PostSun Dec 08, 2019 7:43 am 
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Interesting that carrying a paper map is not even mentioned in the second article.  Now I feel old.

One of the things I notice, even among my companions, is a nonchalance about day hiking.  Folks will put all the safety stuff in the backpack and then leave it in camp while day hiking.  I'm always the guy with the big daypack and the spare clothes, first aid kit, and water.

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Riverside Laker
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PostSun Dec 08, 2019 9:36 am 
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It’s more than carrying a map. You need to be able to use it.
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Cyclopath
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PostSun Dec 08, 2019 9:41 am 
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Sculpin wrote:
Interesting that carrying a paper map is not even mentioned in the second article.  Now I feel old.

Better than Garmin or map and compass

"The solution, I believe, is my second suggestion: print them off using edible ink onto sheets of fruit roll-up. Then, as you reach each checkpoint you simply consume the respective fruit roll up. This will not only solve the problem of waste while providing the energy boost you likely desperately need, it might also serve to trigger a sort of Pavlovian response, subconsciously increasing your willingness to press on to each ensuing checkpoint."
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texasbb
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PostSun Dec 08, 2019 12:57 pm 
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Both of those articles seem directed at day hikers.  I'd find them somewhere between less useful and wrong for multi-day hikers.
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Anne Elk
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PostSun Dec 08, 2019 3:20 pm 
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The first Outside article might have been more useful to newbies if it had been written using the "10 Essentials" as the primary guide. This article by the Mountaineers is much better, and provides cautionary advice re "old fashioned" backups.  It's inexcusable that the Outside writer failed to mention the simplest things: matches/firestarter, knife, extra food, etc. and instead emphasized expensive sponsor items.

In re the foot gear issue: when I was starting out, it was never considered that people would backpack in anything other than sturdy, over-the-ankle boots. One thing I found about hiking in the old standard type boots (had Raichle Montagnas for years), was that the few times I did have a bad ankle turn, the boot functioned as a good brace, which allowed me to self-evacuate, except the time I severed my achilles tendon, too.

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SwitchbackFisher
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PostSun Dec 08, 2019 4:21 pm 
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I also had a bad ankle injury once and had to self rescue, if I was not wearing boots above the ankle I'm sure I would have broken it. Even with the boot the doctor looked at the swelling said, yup that's broken let's get the X-ray and was amazed it was not. 3 miles off trail in the Badlands to get out of that situation, my phone worked but I new even calling for aid I would most likely have to get out under my own power.

With that experience my rule is if I'm going to be on a maintained trail I wear shoes, if I'm going to be off trail or just simple bootpaths at all really I wear boots, has worked well for me.

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Ski
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PostSun Dec 08, 2019 4:34 pm 
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Anne Elk wrote:
It's inexcusable that the Outside writer failed to mention the simplest things: matches/firestarter, knife, extra food, etc. and instead emphasized expensive sponsor items.

Did either article mention "10 essentials"?

I've managed to get by just fine without GPS, hiking poles, or headlamp.
It's not too difficult to find sunset and sunrise times online now.

Anne Elk wrote:
"...when I was starting out, it was never considered that people would backpack in anything other than sturdy, over-the-ankle boots..."

When you and I were starting out, we were all carrying Jansport or Kelty external frame packs with 40-60 pound loads in them.
Day hikers carry very little. Current-day backpackers have trimmed pack weights way down.
I've carried a pack wearing Tevas, but I prefer something above the ankle - even if it's Chuck Taylors. Lots of people are doing fine with low-top lightweight footwear, but I'd question the wisdom of doing so when carrying a big load.

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I have heard the mermaids singing, each to each."
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