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[pct-l] death of a hiker
I disagree, JoAnn, and I don't think anything offensive was intended with
the original messages. The fact that she was carrying a pack that weighed
between 1/2 and 1/3 of her weight may have directly contributed to her
demise. No one should wear a pack that weighs that large a fraction of their
body weight. Not only is it orthopedically damaging, but it is dangerous
because it is much more difficult to maintain your balance under those
circumstances. I believe that person who wrote the message to which you are
referring was pointing this out as a learning opportunity. That is exactly
why books are published each year going over all the climbing accidents that
have occured in the past year- so that others may learn from the mistakes of
those who came before, and save their own lives in the process.
Maybe there is someone else reading this list who was about to go on their
own trip with a pack that was 1/2 to 1/3 of their weight, and after reading
these e-mails, perhaps they've changed their mind and decided to try
something lighter. Or perhaps someone's life will be saved because they'll
remember to turn back at a flooding river, or they'll remember to undo their
waistbelt and their sternum strap.
The point is, this young lady made several regrettable errors in judgement,
and with some bad luck thrown in, she lost her life. We are all very sorry
for her and her family. That does not mean that we are being offensive if we
have this discussions. It does not mean we are being egotistical if we try
to learn from her mistakes. And, to answer your question, THAT is the reason
we are discussing the reasons for this young woman's death.
[mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org]On Behalf Of JoAnn M.
Sent: Tuesday, August 31, 2004 9:13 PM
Subject: [pct-l] death of a hiker
I am very tired, and with one message outrageously offended, with this
absurd obsession with pack weight. Whether your pack weights 17 pds and
3.7823 oz. or if it weighs 15 pds. and 8.7950 ozs. I am tired of hearing
about YOUR pack. Your pack weigh does NOT make you a better hiker or a
better person. It doesn't mean you can hiker fast or further. It simply
means your pack weighs less for you.
Who do any of us think we are to re-view the causes of a young woman's
death. It seems to me in the case of pack weigh or stating how you think
someone died reeks of egotism. I am sure her family would find it highly
reasuring that YOU know how she died. What would you tell them...her pack
was 1.5 pds. too heavy, or if it had been under such-and-such weight she'd
still be alive.
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