via–>>> Snowbound | Outside Online
Outside Online posted this excellent report, which includes three short Youtube videos taken shortly before the hiker, Stephen Olshansky, perished in 2015 at the end of his southbound thru- hike attempt in the Southern San Juans in New Mexico. “Otter” was an experienced long-distance hiker who died on the trail waiting rescue, despite having adequate food, and using a heated tent. I can relate to the dangers of that section of the CDT. In 2013, I was forced to bail out on the “official” CDT and take alternate forest roads in the San Juans in early June due to weather and excessive snow depths.
Otter’s death was similar in one aspect of the death of a hiker named Geraldine Largay, AKA Inchworm, who died on the Appalachian Trail in the summer of 2013, 26 days after she set up camp. Both hikers died less than 8 miles away from a highway, both patiently awaiting rescues that never came. Both hikers were without their own personal locator beacons.
For more stories of backpackers and day hikers who have fallen into the abyss where they experience multiple unfortunate mistakes in the wrong places and at the wrong times check out these two excellent books: Not Without Peril: 150 Years Of Misadventure On The Presidential Range Of New Hampshire Paperback – by and Desperate Steps: Life, Death, and Choices Made in the Mountains of the Northeast, by Peter Kick.
Since Largay’s death, I’ve been using a satellite based communication device, and subscribe to the $12 a month charge.
It allows me to text messages via sattelite, so now the numerous areas I explore without cell coverage are not a problem. I’ve started packing it in my day pack. Who knows what might happen out there, where age is not our friend ?
As famous teacher once advised me, “Avert the suffering before it comes” .
Please considering commenting if yu do take the time to read and view the Outside Online material.