1. DerekK
    DerekK April 26, 2016 at 3:57 am

    Properly, if one gets lost, it is best now to stay put and let search teams look for you. Wandering around will probably have search management miss you. For example, an area is searched and then you wander into that area – they will miss you. However, there are other things I teach, since I have been a trailing dog handler for years. Leave a scent article or two. Also, leave a footprint for the man-trackers. These help the search immensely.

    As for essentials, kids are taught to carry two basic items: whistle and trash bag. Whistle for blowing. Trash bag for shelter and warmth. Water can be from the creeks (giardia is not a concern for a few days), and one can go without food for several days more. If one has to relieve themselves, do not worry about burying, a simple cover-up is sufficient. After all, this is an emergency situation and not many parents will outfit the kids with a ton of stuff. The whistle and trash bag are both small and can be put in one pocket.

    Many search stories are out there where the lost person wanders and the person was not found by the search teams. Then end up being found within 1/2 mile of the PLS/PLK (place last seen/place last known).

  2. Phillip
    Phillip April 26, 2016 at 5:06 am

    Couldn’t agree more Ray!! Great story, and your ‘philosophy’, if you will, is spot on . . . post-euphoric delight disorder. I too fear the day I must leave the mountains and return to the ‘concrete jungle’, but I almost immediately begin planning the next trip. Those around me don’t understand it . . . “sleeping in the dirt” . . . as they call it. “How can that be fun”, they ask. It 100% brings me back to my childhood and those exploratory years in the forest while camping and fishing with nighttime campfire stories and sleeping in the tent listening to the forest noises always wondering what the next day would bring. I cant help but get those same emotions every time I first step onto a dirt trail that leads to the unknown. I’ll be doing a section of the JMT this year in late July out of Onion Valley and north to Vermillion. Was forced off the trail last year due to weather that I was a little unprepared for.

  3. Kathy
    Kathy April 26, 2016 at 8:35 am

    I have a feeling we are approximately the same age, as I too, remember the days when your parents booted you out the back door to go “play.” We spent the summers exploring different parks, neighborhoods, etc. Not like today, where parents keep children within an arms length. I actually miss those days, the innocence, the ability for a child to explore his world and develop a little self-sufficiency. Great reading your story and I love your term – post-euphoric delight disorder. Perfect!

    1. Bob
      Bob April 26, 2016 at 9:37 pm

      I sometimes feel a bit “the youngster” when reading this blog, but this time I can legitimately call myself an “old timer” too! I am probably among the last of the generations that enjoyed unsupervised, unencumbered time outside after being booted out the door by my well-meaning parents. I actually remember being told not to come home until it got dark! Ah, the good old days. Anyway, those few times I was able to spend in the “great outdoors” on campouts or, more commonly, wandering the Sierra Nevadas surrounding my grandparents’ house in Jackson, California, remain some of my fondest memories–and not coincidentally, why I continue to read this blog about the JMT. Due to prevailing life circumstances, I have yet to achieve this particular item on my bucket list, but Ray, you have certainly given me the inspiration to get there one of these days. And meanwhile, let’s all remember those golden times when we could get lost in the wilderness during a family campout and enjoy the experience the whole time!

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