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Add Another Body to the List 2/8/2017

The body of a missing hiker was recovered below Devil's Backbone.

http://abc7.com/news/mans-body-fo...where-hiker-went-missing/1745299/

Here is the NBC channel 4 report:
http://www.nbclosangeles.com/news...parent-Hiking-Fall-413249503.html

Sean

It looks like this hiker was a friend of a friend, though a positive ID is still forthcoming. Taking on Baldy during winter conditions is daredevil behavior, even with the proper gear and training. It is your right to risk your life doing what you love to do, but please be extra careful out there and do these sorts of things with a partner.
DukeJH

It sounds like after 4 dry years and winter "hiking" opportunities on Baldy, this year Baldy is a true mountaineering endeavor.
AW

DukeJH wrote:
It sounds like after 4 dry years and winter "hiking" opportunities on Baldy, this year Baldy is a true mountaineering endeavor.


Or the adventure tourism REI collective keeps on sending suckers to their death and then blames it on a 'fluke' of nature. Modern Hiker is going to hide behind freedom of speech rather than face up that they dont know jack about the outdoors.

They supply the drugs. People get addicted and die.
HikeUp

Modern Hiker is a menace.
AW

HikeUp wrote:
Modern Hiker is a menace.


The idea really is...the bigger the picture, the more apparent it is.
http://planetjh.com/2016/07/05/get-out-mountain-medicine/
Here we have an anecdotal statement of the outdoors industry pressuring KIDS into difficult routes....but it just goes to show you how arrogant its getting. I dont know the status of CityKids, since a guide died guiding 4 other citykids alone on the same Grand Teton route.

The adults in the room can determine if that linked trip was "inspiring", or more along the lines of child abuse. The outdoors industry lobby made it a 'feature' news item.

"Let us not underestimate the impact we can each have on a young personís life as a mentor, confidant or advocate. It is one way to effect change in an increasingly volatile world."...well there you have it. Not to effect change to preserve human life and energy, but some political agenda...or maybe its not a political agenda...https://twitter.com/thenomadicheart?lang=en
DukeJH

There are definitely some guides and companies out there that have no business being in the business.  I've seen guides make bad decisions but the one's I've seen learned from their mistakes and luckily no one got hurt.  However, I saw some "very forceful" guides working rope teams up Rainier last summer.  I'm happy I was climbing independently with friends.
JeffH

I think one of the problems with the guide services is that the people are paying and expect to get what they paid for....and the guides leading are not strong enough to say no.
Sean

AW wrote:
HikeUp wrote:
Modern Hiker is a menace.


The idea really is...the bigger the picture, the more apparent it is.
http://planetjh.com/2016/07/05/get-out-mountain-medicine/
Here we have an anecdotal statement of the outdoors industry pressuring KIDS into difficult routes....but it just goes to show you how arrogant its getting.


I have a different take. I'm not against creating a "bigger picture", as long as it's an accurate, responsible picture. I say, present the relevant facts and opinions honestly, and then people can make up their own minds how they want to live their lives.

The problem I see is when novices are given a smaller, misleading picture, not a bigger, revealing one. For example, Modern Hiker on Facebook just posted a link to Casey Schreiner's old trip report for Cucamonga Peak. It's a rather simple report of a specific trip, like the kind we post here. Yet he tries to pass it off as a comprehensive guide from an expert, like it's an entry in Trails of the Angeles. In the header info he claims that Icehouse to Cucamonga is a four-season hike, yet he makes no mention at all about how treacherous winter conditions can be up there. As a comparison, Robinson only recommends the hike June through October. The other big problem, of course, is that Schreiner plugged this particular report now--in the middle of an epic winter. And when a FB reader commented about the poor timing of promoting this hike, Schreiner replied that his post shouldn't be taken to mean "go here right now," but rather as a general message of "did you know this existed?" Again, he's presenting ill-considered, narrow-minded info masquerading as a public service announcement.

Regarding the City Kids article, I think that story suffers from the fact that it was written by a young girl who clearly has masochistic tendencies and was partly guilt-tripped into climbing the Grand Teton. Not sure we can blame the guide, REI, or the outdoors lobby for that. It's up to the parents and guardians of these kids to decide which risky activities are permissible.
Ed

Thoughtful discussion, Sean.

When John Robinson's books first came out, there were few people in the mountains in the winter. †And for good reason. †No trekking poles; no microspikes; no anti-balling plates on crampons; no modern snowshoes with good traction. The most comfortable people in the mountains in the winter were the ski mountaineers, but the equipment was still not as good as today's.

Now the question is what to take. †On Saturday, I set out for the summit of SJ from the tram station with snowshoes and microspikes. †But it turned out to be a day for crampons with anti-balling plates. †I carried my snowshoes the entire way. †Turned back on the trek up to Miller Saddle because my microspikes balled up, and the snow underneath was too hard for good step kicking. †With an ice axe, I think I would have lightened my load by caching my snowshoes, and continuing up on rubber soles, with a good deal of edging. †But no ice axe. †I went up the Sid Davis route and down the Round Valley trail. †On both routes, there were places where I would have dearly loved to have crampons rather than microspikes. †The rangers seem to encourage people to take the Round Valley trail because it is safer. †I did not see that on Saturday. †There were places where the trail, clearly defined, traversed a steep slope, was no more than a single snowshoe wide, and the snow was as hard as it can be without calling it ice.

And there were people who intended to take the Round Valley trail, but missed the turnoff at the sign, went up Sid Davis, and ended up in Tamarack Valley.

No wonder we have problems. †We live in a region with a huge number of people, with many who are active and adventurous, and who love the snow. †But this is not Wisconsin or Minnesota, our snow is in the mountains.

Regarding guides, I went on one guided climb, on Denali, and decided I would never go on another. †The problem was not the young guides who were with us, it was the majority of the clients, and the chief guide, who threw his young guides under the bus for turning us back because of avalanche danger. †He died a few years later on Everest. †I think the young guides made the right decision. †If we had continued up and the slope had avalanched, it could have been one of the worst disasters ever on Denali.  And their decision required courage.  They were both about twenty years old, and many of the clients were highly motivated successful middle-aged professionals - lawyers, doctors, corporate executives, etc. - who were minimally qualified to be on Denali.  Continuing up would have pleased their employer and the clients, but I've never doubted it was the right decision.
AW

Sean wrote:
Not sure we can blame the guide, REI, or the outdoors lobby for that. It's up to the parents and guardians of these kids to decide which risky activities are permissible.


Thats what the businesses want people to think....which to me means they already admit to selling snake oil mixed with poison, because their top item to carry is their legal defense papers.

They arent selling outdoor activities any more than a "modern" drug pusher is selling Hawaii. Its not rocket science that the main difference between them and the 'good' educators is stewardship. Thats what they are selling...a lack of stewardship. And the second you remove that from any outdoor activity it is no longer sustainable.

The parents....or anyone...its difficult now to explain to them why stewardship is necessary.  http://www.telesurtv.net/english/news/California-Beaches-Are-Classist-Racist-and-Inaccessibile-20170201-0064.html Its just going to be portrayed as a dog-whistle of a secret criminal white gang to keep people out. Its going to be a political issue.
HikeUp

lol
Sean

Ed wrote:
When John Robinson's books first came out, there were few people in the mountains in the winter. †And for good reason. †No trekking poles; no microspikes; no anti-balling plates on crampons; no modern snowshoes with good traction. The most comfortable people in the mountains in the winter were the ski mountaineers, but the equipment was still not as good as today's.

Now the question is what to take...


Certainly the equipment has improved, allowing people with lesser skills to climb in winter. But decent gear, including crampons, has been around for over a hundred years. Perhaps the ability to manufacture and sell the gear at a lower cost has been the primary factor in the rise of winter climbing. This, in my view, is not an inherently bad thing. But when more people can afford crampons and ice axes, many of them are sure to be less serious climbers than the old-school dudes who lived and breathed climbing, and spent every dime they had on gear, and every free moment studying and practicing the art of mountaineering. It's a problem of character and education. Many people don't take things seriously anymore. They don't think and plan and practice. And even when they do study, they often receive wrong or misleading information from sites like Modern Hiker and Summit Post, which have the appearance of online guides, yet are really hit or miss when it comes to providing some important, even basic information.

To offer another example of what I mean, Augie Medina's Summit Post entry on Cucamonga Peak is pretty good. He states that the hiking season is June - October and mentions the hazards of climbing in winter while recommending crampons. Yet on the same site we read an inferior guide for Telegraph Peak written by someone calling himself "bechtt." This entry's header info recommends the hike for all four seasons and then makes no mention of winter problems or proper gear. It does mention winter snow, but only in reference to vehicle traffic to the ski lifts and to suggest an early start time. Now "bechtt" might be a perfectly fine person, but his "guide" is lacking in basic info demanded by his inclusion of wintertime as a season for this hike.

The Admin at Summit Post should take responsibility for such misleading oversights. It's one thing to post trip reports and tell a little story of your adventure. But when you present a trip report in the form of a general guide and fail to give basic information that a newbie needs, that is something else entirely. That is a public disservice. It's placing content above accuracy. It's putting form above integrity. Popularity above responsibility.
Sean

AW wrote:
They arent selling outdoor activities any more than a "modern" drug pusher is selling Hawaii. Its not rocket science that the main difference between them and the 'good' educators is stewardship. Thats what they are selling...a lack of stewardship. And the second you remove that from any outdoor activity it is no longer sustainable.


I'm not sure I'm following your argument. But I can agree that guides, REI, and outdoor lobbies have an interest greater than selling outdoor activities. They are selling services related to outdoor activities. Guiding services, equipping services, planning services, etc.

Regarding stewardship, I think it's the responsibility of the land owner. So in the case of public land, stewardship is the responsibility of the members of the public that use the land. Personally, I work on trails around Rubio Canyon and pack out other people's trash from all over the Gabes. It would be nice if guides and REI taught stewardship, guides especially, since they are actually using the land, whereas REI is primarily selling gear. I know that plenty of guides do this already, as well as certain entities within the general outdoors lobby. It's not all bad. But it's not ideal, I think because of the conflict between public and private ownership of recreational land. But that's a whole other debate.
AW

Sean wrote:

I'm not sure I'm following your argument. But I can agree that guides, REI, and outdoor lobbies have an interest greater than selling outdoor activities. They are selling services related to outdoor activities. Guiding services, equipping services, planning services, etc.


Think of any activity- not just hiking. Each of them has a *you pick the word*  integral factor to it. Whether the word is stewardship, perspective, culture, law of the mountains, etc. The outdoors companies dont sell that....they fill in fake news(imposter activities) with fluff. The 'I know Los Angeles. I went to the Hollywood Walk of Fame for 1 hour', etc....its all just a tourism sales pitch.

It is true that the outdoors  is in a state of staleness and slacking off of the various perspectives....so while it may seem like I single out the outdoors industry, thats not the entire picture. There hasnt been much self-reflection in many of the activities so they arent cloned as easily.

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