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katastrofa
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February 19th, 2015, 9:20 am

QuoteOriginally posted by: Traden4AlphaQuoteOriginally posted by: CuchulainnQuoteOriginally posted by: daveangelQuoteOriginally posted by: ppauperNYC financial analyst, married to JP Morgan exec, dies of exposure during solo hike in New Hampshire mountainsKate Matrosova, 32anyone here know her ?Seemed like quite an irresponsible thing to do. But RIP nonetheless.I don't understand why people do that crazy stuff.I know a number of people who do things like this and have seen four categories of reasons. First, they see it as a supreme mental and physical challenge that gets them out of their usual workaday lives in which they have no way to combat stress. Second, some of them are also adrenaline junkies -- they only feel alive when they are one false step away from death. Third, some of them are still young enough and fit enough to feel they are immortal and can overcome anything. Finally, in their defense, I must admit that these wild natural landscapes are amazingly beautiful.This is three.I think in some cases it's escapism and one sometimes needs the "extreme" circumstances to feel/find themselves truly alone. Anyway, some of us are not as attached to life as others and don't have obligations...BTW, rule no 1 for hiking high mountains is that you don't go without company, so unfortunately there is the ubiquitous element of stupidity in this story.
Last edited by katastrofa on February 18th, 2015, 11:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
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trackstar
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February 19th, 2015, 10:24 am

Thoughtful blog entry from a very experienced regional climber and guide:A Young Climber Perishes on Mount Adams - David LottmannAmong other things, he points out the weather prediction was already quite severe, but someone intrepid might still attempt a summit and then a change occurred to the front that was coming in, sending winds higher (and in a different direction) and temperatures lower than the original projections. Note that the *high* temp was then expected to be -20F.He also notes the situation of climbers getting pinned down by the wind in certain parts of the terrain. Can't make much progress forward and it becomes physically impossible turn back. (Walking into the wind.)Some people have faith in the "buddy system" but here, unfortunately, the outcome would probably have been the same, plus one.Two excerpts:(This was the updated forecast, but she was already hiking by then.)"From Mount Washington Observatory:In the clouds with snow and blowing snow. White out conditions. High temps dropping to -20F. Winds NE shifting NW 45-60mph rapidly increasing mid-morning to 80-100mph with gusts up to 125mph. Wind chills 65-75 below zero.Wind speed is not as much of an issue as wind direction when attempting to go above treeline in harsh weather. I have summited Washington with clients in conditions similar to these. The difference here is careful use of terrain to "block" yourself from these debilitating winds. In this case she most likely ascended "Valley Way" and once she broke tree-line had a 80+ mph wind at her back."..."Did she overlook the forecast? It's quite likely she didn't see that day's forecast given her departure time. Of particular note is the low Nor' Easter that was the major weather maker during this period travelled 100 miles further southeast than anticipated.This caused a shift in the predicted wind direction for Sunday from South shifting East on Saturday Night to East shifting North Sunday morning. If Kate was aware of the forecast from Saturday it may have been reasonable to move forward based on the expected winds coming from the East, as most of her route would have been more sheltered, but more importantly retreat back down the north side of the range would have been manageable. It is quite likely she did not have access to the updated forecast Sunday morning."Anyway, for those of you that like climbing and hiking, it provides a bit more context and understanding of what it is like in the White Mountains.** Feb 22 -As a follow-up on the Kate Matrosova story, final details here. During her ascent, she had initiated a GPS device which tracked her path, so a much clearer picture has emerged of that day and her final hours. Incredibly, she was able to summit two of the four mountains that she had planned for and then she did turn back in the early afternoon on Sunday, but the wind was gusting over 100 mph by that time and she was walking straight into it. Around 3:30 pm, she was blown off the trail with great force, landing several hundred feet away. She managed to set off the beacon, but was apparently not able to move from the spot where she landed. The first signal received was right, but subsequent scattered signals were the result of technical malfunctions and sadly, sent the rescue team in the wrong direction. They thought she was moving to the tree line and in fact, she was not.The young woman and the mountain - Boston Globe February 22The blog that I posted a few days ago was quite accurate in interpreting what had happened.This story has stayed on my mind and all critiques of judgment aside, I understand the impulse to climb the Whites in extremely tough winter conditions. People train here for a reason."According to Weather Now, a website that tracks weather stations around the globe, there was a moment Monday morning when the peak of Mount Washington was the second-coldest measured place on earth.... The first was a weather station at the South Pole."So that gives a sense of what is special here; some people go on to climb much higher mountains around the world from the personal foundation that they build, in part, on and around Mount Washington.
Last edited by trackstar on February 22nd, 2015, 11:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
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Traden4Alpha
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February 19th, 2015, 12:17 pm

Whether she saw the forecast or not is irrelevant. Forecasts create false confidence and should never be trusted. Anyone who goes into the mountains should be prepared for the worst that can happen in that area at that time of year. Mountains, especially, make their own unique and volatile weather patterns so the variance of realized temperatures, winds, and precipitation is extremely high. That's one of the major killers in the Colorado mountains. No matter what the forecast, even in the middle of summer, there's always a chance of lightening, rain, freezing rain, sleet, snow, and high winds above 10,000 - 12,000 feet.The buddy system does help. Two people can stay warmer than one and a second person (assuming they are also experienced) might have had the sense to turn back sooner. That said, there's a fair number of instances where everyone in hiking/climbing party perishes.Attitude plays a role, too. There's a lot of very smart, successful people who have never failed at anything they've ever done. They go to the best schools and get all A's. They get good jobs at the best organizations and successfully rise to every challenge. They are the type of people who refuse to turn back in the face of adversity. It's a great trait to have in more civilized and less lethal domains. But mountains don't offer the same kinds of challenges where the worst that can happen is a red mark on an exam or personnel file. The people I hike with (and myself) have absolutely no qualms about turning back if the weather starts to look or be threatening. Some mountains require multiple attempts. The view from the top of a mountain is awesome but it's not a view to die for.
 
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ExSan
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February 19th, 2015, 6:26 pm

RIPJohn Lennon: sometime ago
 
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ppauper
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February 19th, 2015, 8:00 pm

QuoteOriginally posted by: ExSanRIPJohn Lennon: sometime agoI hadn't heard he was dead, RIP
 
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Cuchulainn
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February 19th, 2015, 10:10 pm

QuoteOriginally posted by: ExSanRIPJohn Lennon: sometime ago8 December 1980.I was conferred on that day for PhD.
Step over the gap, not into it. Watch the space between platform and train.
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February 19th, 2015, 10:19 pm

QuoteOriginally posted by: ppauperQuoteOriginally posted by: ExSanRIPJohn Lennon: sometime agoI hadn't heard he was dead, RIPJohn Sinclair
Step over the gap, not into it. Watch the space between platform and train.
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February 19th, 2015, 10:20 pm

It ain't fair, John SinclairIn the stir for breathing airWon't you care for John Sinclair?In the stir for breathing airLet him be, set him freeLet him be like you and meThey gave him ten for twoWhat else can the judges do?Gotta, gotta, gotta, gotta,gotta, gotta, gotta, gotta,gotta, gotta, gotta, gotta,gotta, gotta, gotta set him freeIf he'd been a soldier manShooting gooks in VietnamIf he was the CIASelling dope and making hayHe'd be free, they'd let him beBreathing air, like you and meThey gave him ten for twoWhat else can the judges do?Gotta, gotta, gotta, gotta,gotta, gotta, gotta, gotta,gotta, gotta, gotta, gotta,gotta, gotta, gotta set him freeThey gave him ten for twoThey got Ali Otis too.Gotta, gotta, gotta, gotta,gotta, gotta, gotta, gotta,gotta, gotta, gotta, gotta,gotta, gotta, gotta set him freeWas he jailed for what he done?Or representing everyoneFree John now, if we canFrom the clutches of the manLet him be, lift the lidBring him to his wife and kidsThey gave him ten for twoWhat else can the bastards do?Gotta, gotta, gotta, gotta,gotta, gotta, gotta, gotta,gotta, gotta, gotta, gotta,gotta, gotta, gotta set him free
Step over the gap, not into it. Watch the space between platform and train.
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katastrofa
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February 20th, 2015, 1:43 am

QuoteOriginally posted by: ppauperQuoteOriginally posted by: ExSanRIPJohn Lennon: sometime agoI hadn't heard he was dead, RIPThe song goes "forever young", not "forever young and bulletproof".
 
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February 20th, 2015, 11:41 am

QuoteToronto's police chief says the whole city is grieving after the death of a three-year-old boy who wandered outside wearing only a shirt and a diaper. Bill Blair called Elijah Marsh's death "a tragic set of circumstances.'' Police say the boy had disappeared from a north-end apartment of a family member. He was found hours later, frozen in the bitter cold.RIP, another victim of global cooling
 
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Cuchulainn
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February 21st, 2015, 10:14 am

QuoteOriginally posted by: Traden4AlphaQuoteOriginally posted by: CuchulainnQuoteOriginally posted by: exneratunriskQuoteOriginally posted by: CuchulainnQuoteOriginally posted by: Traden4AlphaQuoteOriginally posted by: CuchulainnQuoteOriginally posted by: daveangelQuoteOriginally posted by: ppauperNYC financial analyst, married to JP Morgan exec, dies of exposure during solo hike in New Hampshire mountainsKate Matrosova, 32anyone here know her ?Seemed like quite an irresponsible thing to do. But RIP nonetheless.I don't understand why people do that crazy stuff.I know a number of people who do things like this and have seen four categories of reasons. First, they see it as a supreme mental and physical challenge that gets them out of their usual workaday lives in which they have no way to combat stress. Second, some of them are also adrenaline junkies -- they only feel alive when they are one false step away from death. Third, some of them are still young enough and fit enough to feel they are immortal and can overcome anything. Finally, in their defense, I must admit that these wild natural landscapes are amazingly beautiful.1) not a good reason IMO.2) like an accountant who wants to be a lion-tamer.3) I used to love judo competitions, the adreline is sky high. Now I do karate and katas:-)4) But not alone in the middle of nowhere at minus 30. It's not just yourself. Reminds of the Irish CEO of intrade.com John Delaney who lost his life on Everest. A wife + two kids I believe.Risk optimization: go high, fast, long---enough to have fun, but not that high, fast, long---to ger severely hurt---risk optimization needs routine, but routine is boring?Steepest ascent/descent, local or global maximum? orRisk optimization isn't easy because:1) the risk of injury or death is non-zero and generally small for almost all activities (death is a rare but omnipresent threat)2) the risk of injury or death for a given activity varies between people as a function of health, preparation, and equipment (your milage may vary)3) the risk of injury or death is not known, especially at the level of individuals (people can easily conclude that something is not risky)Ergo, healthy people with experience at "dangerous activity X" are likely to estimate the chance of death as low, repeat said activity under increasingly extreme conditions, and die from said activity.5) Second Childhood
Step over the gap, not into it. Watch the space between platform and train.
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Collector
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February 21st, 2015, 8:11 pm

RIP Alina Yakimkina
 
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ppauper
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February 21st, 2015, 8:17 pm

QuoteOriginally posted by: CollectorRIP Alina YakimkinaRIP
 
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trackstar
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February 22nd, 2015, 9:47 pm

RIP - Alina Yakimkina - a second strong and intrepid young woman from Russia.
Last edited by trackstar on February 21st, 2015, 11:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
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February 22nd, 2015, 9:59 pm

Last edited by trackstar on February 21st, 2015, 11:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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