Lost Hikers on Blackhead Mtn Range

Acra Point, Black Dome, Blackhead Mtn, Burnt Knob, Dutchers Notch, Elm Ridge, Thomas Cole, Windham High Peak

Re: Lost Hikers on Blackhead Mtn Range

New postby dave » Mon Mar 15, 2010 7:27 pm

Our source about both found alive came from YNN out of Albany. This was supported by other news agencies. Sad that this information was incorrect.

I wish the family or one of their friends had come to us. We have hundreds of people who could have helped find them Saturday or Sunday. Today we had many experienced hikers who wanted hike thru the night to find Seith.

I am not sure why they didn't have snowshoes and gaiters. This would have saved their lives.
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Re: Lost Hikers on Blackhead Mtn Range

New postby mike » Mon Mar 15, 2010 8:43 pm

Magoo, very sorry to hear about Seth. I had seriously considered hiking Blackhead Sunday. But due to the weather I decided to go to the movies instead. I wish I had done the hike. But, BH is the kind of mtn you want to do on a nice day.

Like Dave said, it is really too bad we didn't know about this on Friday night or Saturday. We could have assembled a good group of hikers to go get them. We know some good night hikers too. Easy to look back.
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Re: Lost Hikers on Blackhead Mtn Range

New postby mtnclimber » Tue Mar 16, 2010 10:34 am

My condolences go to Seth's family and friends. A very sad outcome. I hope that Seth's family didn't learn about the bad outcome from this website. I think it really sucks that YNN got it wrong. It was heartbreaking to learn that YNN had reported it wrong.

The massive amount of snow on the mountains has made the trails very hard to follow. The markers and signs are often under the snow. Unless you have GPS tracks, or are very knowledgeable of the area, it is very easy to get lost. It is very easy to become disoriented and lost. With the snow and wind up there over the weekend, it is very understandable how this happen.

I hope that at some future date that Alberto will sit down with someone here to tell us the full story. He was wise and experienced in hiking. If he made mistakes, then all of us Winter hikers would make the same mistake. We all need to learn from this situation so that it doesn't happen again.
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Re: Lost Hikers on Blackhead Mtn Range

New postby dave » Tue Mar 16, 2010 4:43 pm

It was heartbreaking to learn that YNN had reported it wrong.


Yes, it was very unfortunate. We certainly hope that the family did not rely on YNN or us for official notification. This should have come from the command center.

After we got 7 feet of snow, this kind of situation was a real possibility. Just didn't think it would happen this way. We expected someone young and inexperienced to fall victim. Both hikers were older, wise, and experienced. Both Blackhead and KHP can be very unforgiving when the wind picks up.

A couple of us were just a couple miles away on Saturday. Conditions were very poor on Blackhead. Several of us had commented that BH or KHP were two places hikers didn't want to be. To hike there on Saturday, you needed a good topo GPS. Being able to follow the trail or suffer from peak disorientation was a real issue. The wet snow would sap the heat out of your body fairly quickly.

There are a couple people who want to make changes to reduce the risk these two guys encountered. We will be actively involved in this process.
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Re: Lost Hikers on Blackhead Mtn Range

New postby mtnclimber » Wed Mar 17, 2010 7:25 pm

The update of information is very helpful in explaining this sad accident. I think most experienced hikers have broken those rules. But, the weather was the real issue. If they got wet, which I am pretty sure they did, it would be very difficult to get back. They said that their hands and feet were very cold.

A topo GPS would have been key to adverting this accident. Most people don't have one because of the cost.

I feel very bad for the family. The storm may have cleared, but it will follow them for quite some time.

I am impressed that he did know how to build a snow shelter. Most people don't know how to make one.
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Re: Lost Hikers on Blackhead Mtn Range

New postby admin » Thu Mar 18, 2010 10:04 am

We are in the process of addressing Winter Hiking issues, and some type of Emergency system for hikers and their family. Not sure how the Emergency System will work.

The Winter Section will include what items to bring in a Pack, and explain why you need them. We will also be discussing rules of Winter Hiking and how they can save your life. The section will be dedicated to Seth Lyon.

How the Emergency System will be designed is still in the design stages. It will depend upon the technology, 911 services in the four counties, law enforcement, etc. It may also be created in stages due to the amount of effort required to make it work.

It will not be ready for this winter, but will be fully functional for next winter.

There is also a discussion on creating a Winter Hiking and Survival Course. If a course is created it will not be started until this Fall.

We must get in contact with SAR, 911, Fire departments, law enforcement, experienced hikers. If you can contribute to this effort, please post a message here.
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