Posts Tagged ‘Outdoor Safety


Outdoor Safety: Rattle Snake in Tree

Saw this on FB from the superb Texas Hill Country (great photography and more) and was reminded of one time on the Deschutes River when a friend pointed out a rattler in a tree near the water’s edge. I was oblivious that time, but some thirty years later I never fail to look upward too.

Brian A. Burgoyne sent this in a while back, “this rattlesnake was hanging out in the tree right by the squirrel feeder…South Austin right on the Manchaca border…suburbs!” (Texas Hill Country/FB)

Bears and rattle snakes seem to like bird and squirrel feeders. Different food sources no doubt. So, some consider it more rare for a rattle snake to be in a tree, they (the various species) have a history of doing so.


Carpet Shark Swallows Bamboo Shark Whole

Wobbegongs (Carpet) Shark Sucks Down a Bamboo Shark (Daniela Ceccarelli & Tom Mannering, Nat Geo)

 I know there are all manner of advocates for Sharks and protecting this species and that one and I get that, but really this guy does not need any protections. Here I would be kicking along, oblivious or so hyper vigilant if I knew this creature was within an ocean’s distance, and there I would go. Now, how does a Bamboo Shark not know to watch out for the Wobbegongs Shark? They, the Bamboo Shark, definitely need some protection in the gene pool. (more here and other stuff from Eric Pfeiffer)

“Wobbegongs, aka carpet sharks, are silent predators, waiting at the bottom of the ocean floor for their pray to pass by. And as stunning as this photo may be, it’s not uncommon for Wobbegongs to devour such large meals. Like several kinds of snakes, the Wobbegong has a dislocating jaw and rearward-pointing teeth that help it consume disproportionately large prey.

Although Wobbegongs bite humans with some regularity, these usually aren’t actual attacks where the shark is hunting for prey. Rather, these bites tend to be more of a defensive reflex after the shark itself has been assaulted, usually by someone unintentionally stepping on it.” (That’s Me)


Outdoor Survival: Last Year’s News, But Timely……

I bumped into this almost year old story and found it, on the anniversary of this man’s outdoor journey, worth a read. A year ago, he became stranded in the snows near Marion Forks, Oregon. Seemingly equipped for the elements, less food, he apparently survived 68 days near his rig before succumbing to the elements. The comments section is worth a read as well. Just a survival, plan ahead, consider your options before venturing forth piece….The story is fascinating to me, not only from an outdoor survival point, but from the human interest angle. What was his intent? Why didn’t he hike out the three miles to the main road? Did he try and couldn’t back track? What if you are a loner and cut off from anyone? It always makes me think of the solitary souls crossing the mountains in the 1800’s, alone and perishing with, perhaps, some distant family in the East or Europe, who were none the wiser to what ever happened to the man who ventured off alone.  Jerry McDonald’s Final Outdoor Journey   

Jerry McDonald's Calendar after 68 days in the mountains of Oregon


Eye on the Weather Now….

Current Conditions at a Glance U.S./Canada 


Heat Loss Through Head

I have joked with my family and friends for years through outdoor activities about wearing a warm hat in inclement weather…”Do you know you can lose 75% of your heat through your head?”

Well, of course, some wise ass, smarty pants (WASP) had to do the research to debunk my admonition and my credibility. Here is a small piece re heat loss via the head in different situations. In a worse case scenario of hypothermia, you may want to heed my advice….or theirs.

Here is my daughter, today in Seattle (UW), blatantly taunting me!


Disaster Mapping: Earth Quakes, etc.


Oklahoma Earthquakes


Avoid The Incoming Tsunami Wave



Wilderness Communications Devices

 “If there’s no risk, there’s no adventure.” Those who are drawn to wilderness medicine—and to the places and circumstances where it is practiced—are, by definition, drawn to adventure and its accompanying risks. Whether it is a backpacking trip, an international mountaineering expedition, or a disaster response, risk cannot be avoided (nor would we wish it to be). What needs to be done in these circumstances is to understand, accept, and manage the risks involved. The tools available for managing risk include thorough pre-departure planning, critically evaluating the situation when problems arise, making sound decisions, and having a plan in place for communicating with sources of outside aid, should their assistance be required.”   

 “A belief that one can readily call for help and be rescued should not lead to taking imprudent risks that would be considered unacceptable if the ability to call for help were not present. Anything that is dependent on technology or batteries can fail. Terrain, weather conditions, and distance can all delay or prevent rescuers from reaching an individual or party in distress. When traveling to the wilderness or to other remote locations, each individual must accept responsibility for themselves and for all the possible outcomes of their adventures.”    Wilderness Communications



Sandy River Flooding: Land Use vs. The Reg’s Sloth

The substantial flooding on the Sandy River last January rattled many of home owner’s nerves if that watched their yard crumble away. Now after three quarters of a year, the bureaucracy has squandered the Spring/Summer months for construction efforts. No permits. Your Watch Dog at work. Pathetic. Yes, questions abound about the where/whether homes should be built near rivers. That said, they were built and the ass dragging system of reg’s (the one that many seem hell bent on tripling in size in all directions) has failed this time around, in my humble estimation, to make some decision, any decision, in a timely manner.



Hiking Trails & Not Prepared? Oregon Woman Overdue

As I listen to it pouring outside this morning, I can imagine the front bunched up against the Cascade Mountain Range and in particular the Mt. Hood area. Lost is a woman, Lidiya Dmitriyevna Russu, who parked near a trail head to do what, I don’t know (mushroom hunt, take a hike, contemplate a view, etc). The opinion is she was not prepared to spend the night. Another person’s outdoor plight is your reminder to be prepared for outdoor emergencies. You know the drill. I have posted often enough here re outdoor safety considerations. The reminder is don’t make that careless mental decision to forego the pack, the gear, the notifications that will keep you healthy and found. Best wishes Lidiya……. end of 10/10, still not found

Lidiya Dmitriyevna Russu overdue in the Mt. Hood area. Search and Rescuers are no doubt moving in right now at first light.

Update 10-12-2011

“In making the decision to suspend the search, the sheriff’s office consulted with Dr. Terri Schmidt, a medical doctor from Oregon Health & Science University who is an expert in emergency medicine and wilderness survival. They also reached out to other experts in the search-and-rescue community for advice.

“Mrs. Russu had very limited wilderness survival experience and was not properly dressed or equipped to stay in the wilderness,” Rhodes said. “Given the heavy rain, low temperatures and high winds, the likelihood that Mrs. Russu will be recovered alive is outweighed by the extreme risk posed to searchers in this rugged terrain and wintery weather.” HuffPo

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