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Don't get lost in the woods

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
One of the easiest sources of trouble on mountains is taking one wrong turn and ending up in a remote valley with no easy means of escape.

Dan Witkowski's ordeal began last Christmas Eve, when he was lost for five days in the Cascade Mountains in NW USA. Incredibly he escaped death in continuous freezing temperatures, but suffered severe frostbite, culminating in the amputation of his feet a few days ago.

Here's the story, from Seattle Post-Intelligencer.

Ever made a false move on a mountain? I remember a nasty one about 20 years ago at Chamrousse, near Grenoble, where a tour operator 'guide' made a mistake and got me into a forest that took us 3 hours to hike out of, in deep snow. Not nice, and potentially fatal if the visibility had closed down.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Got lost in FLaine earlier this year - luckily not bad at all, we skiied down the track usd for the husky sked rides and had to walk for maybe fifteen minuted when the now ran out, but found our way back to the piste.

It could easlily happen though
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
We had a particularly snowy windy day in Madesimo at Christmas & were debating whether to ski over to a particular lift or just go back down to the village. We saw the lift was still open so set off - only to arrive just as the liftie was putting the "closed" barrier across the gates. Our only way back was to push across a flat road (with some uphills) & visibility was incredibly poor. It was horrendous, it probably only took 15 minutes, but felt like a lifetime. Never again!
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 You need to Login to know who's really who.
You need to Login to know who's really who.
Actually, I rememeber our worst experience was in Baqueira Beret in 2000 - Dec 30th, we'd skiied to the top end of the resort and were having lunch in the only restaurant on the mountain not owned by the lift company. As we were preparing to leave, a liftie came in and said that the resort was closed and we'd have to go to the lift-owned restaurant over the road. That meant going 200 yards down a track tro rejoin the piste for 100 yards to the restaurant.

When we got outside it was a reall blizzard - howling gales and snow so thick visibilty was down to 10 meters or less. we picked up skis and set off - then all stopped as were losing sight of each other. We went back to the front of the restaurant and walked down the road, each person holding onto the ski poles of the person in front of them.

We spent four hours waiting for the road to be cleared so they could bus us back to the resort - but Mrs NBT is still scared by how easily she lost sight of us as we first set out, had we not stopped it would have been terribly easy to lose someone from the group
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Had an episode like Lucy did in Austria many years ago. A group of us were heading down a run at close of play, at the bottom was a chair right up to the top and a long run home. Beyond that chair and to each side were trees, and not the sort you could ski between.

As we arrived the chair stopped, and we noticed a metal roller shutter was down over the entrance. Looking downwards and sideways convinced me it could be a long walk back up the piste, which wasn't a great idea at 4.30pm with the sun setting. With no-one in sight the jitters were setting in.

Just then the "lifty" came out to jump on his snowcat, took pity and started the lift up for the five of us.

If we had been stuck, what would the piste patrol have done when/if they found us trudging back up the piste Question
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 You'll need to Register first of course.
You'll need to Register first of course.
At Xmas trying to make our way back to the car park where we'd left our car had to get down the mountain in a howling gale/whiteout.

The piste was closed to anyone who didn't have to get to the bottom so was deserted! Panicky lifty at the top insisted that we MUST take the blue down but the snow was thigh deep and when we tried we just didn't move at all, would have had to pole/walk all the way! So we diverted off onto deserted red, couldn't see your hand in front of your face and we just pointed downhill and hoped we were on the piste...the relief when we finally got to the bottom was immense. I still wonder if anyone would have found us if we'd strayed from the piste.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
How much a mobile phone in these circumstances??????????
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Slowplough, unfortunately I seem to end up stuck down valleys miles from anywhere, and that includes miles from a mobile signal. Sad
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 You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
No teddy bears in disguise, yet
Cool
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