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[pct-l] Washington conditions

Kahley writes:

> If you never push your limitations, how can you truly know them?
> Maybe your version of Darwin's theory has breed out something
> special in the human species....something that lead people over
> those mountains in eons passed.  Few people seem to have that
> spark of daring anymore.  Han does.
> Han had a limited time to hike because of real world commitments
> and duties.  He elected to go for it in the 80 days he had available.
> He is also capable of remarkable endurance.  To make up time from
> an earlier snafu, he hiked for 100 hrs straight.  His choices were his
> own as are the lessons he has learned.  I'm surprised that someone
> would be so critical of a hiker's style.  

I must apologize to Hans Solo if I sounded too judgemental.  My intention was 
not to criticize his hiking style or strategy, which I don't believe I did.  
My intention was to point out a lesson to those who may have less experience 
in snow and ice conditions that not taking an ice ax for ultralight purposes 
can cost you your life!  It nearly cost Hans his life and he should feel 
fortunate that he is alive after such a fall.  

Knowing your limitations does come from pushing them.  That is not to say 
that you do so without regard for the protection of your safety.  

Sitting around a campfire in the big wall climber's camp in Yosemite I asked 
one of the climber's whether it was courage, foolishness or macho-ness that 
drove them to take such risks.  "Risks?" he said.  "I take no more risks than 
you driving on a two lane highway and looking to pass a slow truck.  You 
don't pull out in front of on-coming traffic or pass on a curve as you know 
from experience that that is not safe to do.  Similarly in climbing, I don't 
try to make a move without the protection of my equipment that I know is 
beyond my capability.  However, you may push a tight situation to pass that 
truck, guaging that the timing and risk is acceptable and thereby pushing 
your limitations and experience.  I do the same thing in climbing, constantly 
trying to learn new moves from others and my creativity, however, always 
within my definition of acceptable risk."

Hans' fall is not an example of daring, it is an example of the consequences 
of leaving necessary equipment behind in the face of dangerous conditions.  
And it is not just his lesson to learn, all of us can learn from this.



"Salvitur Ambulando"
(walking solves all things)
            St. Augustine

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