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Sunday, July 31, 2011

Up to 10% of Post Offices Possibly Closing! Backpackers Affected.

SUNDAY, JULY 31, 2011

The Times They Are a-Changin' for Backpackers

Earlier in the week the U.S. Postal Serviceannounced that they will be conducting a study over the next several months to determine the need for some 3700 retail post offices. Potentially, the USPS could eliminate more than 10% of all their post offices around the country. Most of these closings will likely occur in rural areas, such as those along the Appalachian Trail.

A.T. thru-hikers, and section hikers, use the services of post offices to forward, or pre-deliver, food, gear and other supplies as they proceed along the trail.

There has been much made in the press this week as to the consequences that will be felt by backpackers as a result of these potential closings. Many backpackers fear that it will become much more difficult to thru-hike trails like the A.T., or the Pacific Crest Trail, due to possibility of having to carry significantly more weight in their packs. But I would argue that this fear may be somewhat unfounded. I believe the private sector will likely step-in to fill the void left by many post office closures. It's not too hard to envision places like the Hike Inn at Fontana Dam, as an example, to take up the business of handling drop boxes for hikers. If there's a demand for a product or service, some hungry entrepreneur will jump at the opportunity to fill the need. The downside, of course, is that hikers may have to pay a little more since the federal government will no longer be subsidizing parts of the cost.

Speaking of higher costs for backpackers; does anyone have any thoughts, comments or concerns regarding Friday'sannouncement that the Great Smoky Mountains is considering a move to make all backcountry camping permits (for all sites) go through an online/call-in reservation service?

Do you have any problems paying the $2.25 to $10.00 fees that are being proposed to make a reservation for a backcountry campsite? In comparison, most other parks with similar backcountry operations charge between $10 and $30 per reservation, and many have additional per person or per night fees.

Given the avalanche of debt we currently find ourselves in, I have to believe that this is only the tip of the iceberg. Down the road, we're very likely to see parks find new and different ways of charging fees for services that have been free in the past.


Jeff
HikingintheSmokys.com

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Authorities: 3 swept over waterfall presumed dead - Nation Wires - MiamiHerald.com



"BY GOSIA WOZNIACKA AND TRACIE CONE
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Posted on Wednesday, 07.20.11


YOSEMITE
NATIONAL PARK, Calif. -- Young tourists above one of Yosemite National Park's beautiful and perilous waterfalls were trying to pose for a picture. Instead they burned a horrifying image into the memories of everyone who saw.

A man and a woman crossed a metal barricade above the 317-foot Vernal Fall on Tuesday, making their way over slick granite to a rock in the middle of the swift Merced River.

The woman slipped. The man reached for her and fell in. Another man in their group of about 10 tried to help but fell into the water as well. Other hikers, including several children in their group, could only watch as the rushing water swept all three students over the edge."

Be safe out there.  Remember, there are a 1001 ways to die.  Don't show us 1002. Desert Cactus

The Rest Of The Story....

Saturday, July 9, 2011

National Park Warns: Don’t Pee Near Trails…Because of the Killer Goats | Breaking news and opinion on The Blaze

July 9, 2011


"Hikers in Olympic National Park in Washington state are being urged not to urinate along backcountry trails in order to avoid attracting mountain goats who lick the urine deposits for salt.


The warnings are part of a plan that comes in the wake of a man’s death last October after a mountain goat gored him in the thigh."



Appalachian Trail: 11 facts about the Appalachian Trail - chicagotribune.com

Appalachian Trail: 11 facts about the Appalachian Trail - chicagotribune.com: "1. The length of the Appalachian National Scenic Trail is constantly changing. In 2010 the trail was officially 2,179.1 miles, crossing 14 states from Maine to Georgia. This year it's 2,181. Why? The added distance is due to upgrades and repairs."

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Grizzly Bear Kills Hiker in Yellowstone National Park - ABC News

Grizzly Bear Kills Hiker in Yellowstone National Park - ABC News:

"A husband and wife's backcountry hike along a popular trail turned tragic when they stumbled upon a grizzly bear and her cubs and the 57-year-old man was mauled to death, Yellowstone National Park officials said.

The couple was hiking along the Wapiti Lake Trail in the Grand Canyon area of the park, park officials told ABC News. They had walked about a mile and a half from the trail head when they saw the grizzly sow and her cubs."


Read the full story here...

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Lorain County Moms » Blog Archive » Book review: ‘Survivor Kid: A Practical Guide to Wilderness Survival’

Survivor Kid: A Practical Guide to Wilderness Survival

"Survivor Kid: A Practical Guide to Wilderness Survival"
by Denise Long

c.2011, Chicago Review Press
$12.95 / $13.95 Canada
223 pages, includes index

By Terri Schlichenmeyer, Philadelphia Tribune contributor

There is absolutely no way you’re staying inside another minute.

All year long, when school’s in session, you spend enough time indoors. But with summer here and the free time that comes with it, you plan on being outside as much as possible, hiking, exploring, and camping.

But what if you get lost? How will you deal with not knowing where you are? Will you know what to do, how to stay protected, where to find food, and how to survive? You will if you’ve read “Survivor Kid: A Practical Guide to Wilderness Survival” by Denise Long."

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Hiker Found Dead on Trail in Afternoon Heat

Hiker Found Dead on Trail in Afternoon Heat:

Updated: Sunday, 03 Jul 2011, 9:51 PM MST
Published : Sunday, 03 Jul 2011, 9:51 PM MST

PHOENIX - It started as a rescue call, but quickly turned into a recovery mission. The body of a 50-year-old hiker was found at Dreamy Draw Park late Sunday afternoon.

The cause of death is under investigation. Police said the man who died was from Phoenix, and it appeared he was an experienced hiker. But when the heat is this intense, even those with experience could run into problems."




Local News | Wash. hiker missing after sliding down snow face | Seattle Times Newspaper

Local News | Wash. hiker missing after sliding down snow face | Seattle Times Newspaper:

"LEAVENWORTH, Wash. —
A search is underway for a 21-year-old Tacoma woman who was hiking in the Aasgard Pass area of Washington's Alpine Lakes Wilderness when she reportedly slid down a snow face and disappeared over an edge into a hole about five-feet wide."

Bodies of missing doctor and daughter found in the wilderness | Mail Online

Bodies of missing doctor and daughter found in the wilderness | Mail Online:

"The bodies of the missing doctor and his 20-year-old daughter who disappeared while hiking in the mountains are believed to have been found.

The two bodies were found about one mile from the summit of the Missouri mountain and authorities believe 'with high confidence' that they belong to Dr Michael von Gortler, 53, and Makana von Gortler.

Chaffee County Sheriff Pete Palmer told the Boulder Daily Camera that the bodies were about 500 feet above the main trail."

Friday, July 1, 2011

Female hiker dies after fall on Mount Princeton | AHN

Female hiker dies after fall on Mount Princeton | AHN:

"A female hiker who fell on Mount Princeton died from her injuries on Thursday. Chaffee County rescuers found her dead after receiving a distressed call from her male hiking companion.

According to Chaffee County Search and Rescue, a man called 911 at 1:15 p.m. with the caller saying his female companion had fallen, had suffered injuries to her head, had lost consciousness and had stopped"

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"Never be afraid to try, remember...Amateurs built the ark, Professionals built the Titanic." Unknown

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