Monday, November 19, 2012

November 17, 2012 Cool Crisp Clear Day


 November 17, 2012 Cool Crisp Clear Day

Ice is beginning to form.  It is easy to walk around it now but it is a harbinger that sometime this winter ice traction assistance will be required.   Best to at least put them in the car and sometimes carry them up the mountain if your in doubt as to whether they will be needed.

Periodically there are numbers on the blue trail blazes.  The reason they are there is so that the Park's backcountry emergency responders will know what resources they need to bring in order to effectively help a hiker in trouble.    Cell phone service will sometimes work high on the Ridge Trail.   It will be tremendously helpful to the dispatcher if you can tell them where you are located compared to a blue blaze number.    Besides the mechanism of injury, the nature of the injury, the weight of the patient will be important.    There is an emergency phone on the outside of the Ranger Contact Station in the Old Rag Parking lot.
Some of my favorite times on Old Rag are just after sunset but you need to very comfortable hiking under a headlamp if you are going to be high on the mountain after sunset which comes very early in the day for the next few months.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Blowdown Pictures To Go With My PATC Trail Patrol Report

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Veterans Day Weekend

Last 2013 Weekend For ORMS

Looking Forward to ORMS in 2013 

 Thanks to all the VETS for their service.
I love helping my fellow outdoors-persons.     I enjoy doing outdoor outreach, education, and training.
That said,  I sometimes get a little exasperated with newbies and the mistakes they make.  The good news is that my exasperation is blown away like an early morning mist on a bright sunny day whenever I see a newbie develop a passion, curiosity, wonder, and love for the outdoors.  


It is inevitable that if you are  spending large amounts of time in the backcountry that sooner or later bad stuff is going to happen to someone.   So while ORMS's primary mission is to  provide outreach, backcountry skills training, and interpretation we also prepare to provide good Samaritan first response.


If you enjoy traveling in the backcountry or wilderness and engaging in activities that have potential risks such as: hiking, climbing, skiing, surfing, trail running, bird watching, hunting, fishing, car touring of remote areas you should find it easy to understand that bad stuff happens.  
If you live in a comfortable house or apartment and never do anything adventuresome, it is easier to live in denial that bad stuff happens..... 
Natural disasters often turn whole cities into primitive backcountry.    Ask any folks who have lived without electrical power for two weeks after an ice storm, earthquake, or hurricane.
Prepare  for the unthinkable as though it were inevitable.    Stuff happens.  If you deny that bad stuff may happen it can hurt you twice.   It will hurt you at a moment of truth when you are not prepared  to help respond to a critical need.    It will hurt you  again when you feel bad/guilty that your denial caused you not to invest in a reasonable amount of preparedness.
Those that expect that some day they may have to act as a good Samaritans have mostly gotten past denial that bad stuff perhaps even unthinkably bad stuff will happen.    Those that volunteer as first responders have also mostly(it is all a matter of degree) gotten past denial.      As such they;
  • Plan, Plan, Plan,
  • Train, Train, Train,
  • Prepare, Prepare, Prepare.  
ORMS members set up camp for a final weekend of training for 2012.

ORMS members engaged in training.

At night because "Stuff Happens" round the clock, in all types of conditions, and in every imaginable location/environment.

Training Training Training

So we are prepared to help ourselves and others should the need arise.
As it did this weekend when we needed to help a non-ambulatory hiker get safely out of the backcountry.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012


Snow, Duct Tape and Sunset

Saturday and Sunday November  3&4 2012


Blowdowns caused by Hurricane Sandy

These are posted to help those that maintain Fire Roads and trails.  
On Weakley Fire Road  just before PO Junction
On Old Rag Fire Road about two thirds of the way to Old Rag Shelter and just before the bend that takes you up the last steep section of road before Old Rag Shelter.