Archive for the ‘Wilderness Survival’ Category

WAY TO GO GUYS!!!  The obvious thing I couldn’t help but notice was that he had two sets of water and two first aid kits.

Geocachers Save Two Women Stranded in Desert

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Geocachers Roy Joseph (Rojo464) and Paul Fox (Pauleefox) drove through the rugged desert of Eastern Utah searching for five geocaches on Tuesday the 17th of August.  But they never made it past their second find.  What they encountered instead led to grateful tears and news headlines.

Roy and Paul had finished finding their second geocache and were looping around for a third – called “Bugy Softwear” (GCGMJT). The area of the desert that they searched is referred to as the Dolores Triangle.  It’s one of the most barren regions of the United States. The average temperature in August bakes the cracked ground at nearly 100 degrees F (38 C).    Bumping along in Roy’s jeep the two men stopped.  Just head of them, a mini-van sat wedged into the sandy soil.

Desert rescue

Paul says, “We saw the van in the gully from the road above it. Out here a vehicle in that position is either abandoned or there is somebody in need of help. Either way we needed to check it out.”

Roy adds, “When we first saw the car we could tell it was stuck. But it looked odd with the towels over the sun visors.  We were concerned with who might be in the van.  With it being in such a remote area we knew we had to make sure the occupants could get back to town.”

They drove the jeep next to the stranded vehicle.  Two women looked out. Roy says, “When we stopped beside the van the daughter said ‘Thank God’ and then started crying.”  A mother and daughter had been stranded in the van for two days.

Roy says he’s prepared for geocaching in the desert and they were able to offer immediate help: “I have a backpack I carry with water, snacks, SWAG, a first aid kit, a short rope, and batteries.  In the Jeep I carry tools, spare parts, a tow strap, a first aid kit,  a fire extinguisher, extra water and some blankets.”

This wasn’t his first encounter with someone needing help, but never before has the situation been this dire. “We have helped strangers get unstuck, hauled a bicyclist to the hospital, given water to hikers, but this was different – both these two women could have died.” After the rescue, the mother and daughter will be okay.

Paul says the situation is a first for him: “In my 64 years I don’t believe I have ever been in a position to rescue damsels in distress before.”

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After watching a couple of episodes of Man Versus Wild, I couldn’t resist looking to see if Bear Grylls had any scouting experience.  To my shock, he did, and currently holds the position of Chief Scout in Britian. Not only was he was a Cub Scout, as an older youth, he participated as a Venturer.

Why was I shocked?  Because last night I watched the Texas episode and aside from a VERY conveniently found animal trap and extremely useful rope, one of his adventures was not well thought out.  Maybe it is because I’m a climbing instructor, but when he threw said rope across a large gap in the rocks overlooking a great distance to the ground below, then proceeded to cross the rope, without fully checking to see how well the anchor was secured, I cringed.  Of course, in true action tradition, the anchor shifted and he almost fell, only to somehow cross to safety.   Hmmm.  Perhaps if he had done more than throw the anchor, give it a quick tug, and then use the rope, he would have known it wasn’t secure ahead of time.  He should have pulled it from several directions, ensuring it wouldn’t slip when the rope was subjected to his weight.  Then there was the nut that he formed using rope.  It held well enough, but when he reached the bottom of an improvised rappel, he jerked the rope down, nut and all much too easily for my liking.

Let’s be fair though.  As I watched him, I did wonder about his scouting experience also because of how scout-like he did a lot of the tasks.  There is a lot of good information in his program that the scouts can take with them and use on their own adventures.

All in all, I think Bear cold benefit with working with the Venturers again, to refresh some of his skills.  He could certainly stand to take a climbing instructor course again.

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