current events Archives

  1. Missing Hikers Rescued in Adirondacks High Peaks →

    This is an intense story of two hikers who were rescued yesterday in the Adirondacks after being forced to spend two nights in harsh Winter weather.

    After making their summit of Algonquin Peak, a heavy fog settled in just after they reached the top causing them to lose the trail leading down the mountain. A recount of their story noted the fog was so thick that they accidentally fell off a rock edge into a massive pile of snow:

    Their friends later determined the fall, which brought them down the opposite side of the summit from the side they climbed up, to be about 100 feet.

    The man was resourceful, and did what he could to keep him and his friend warm, a reminder that every piece of gear is worth its weight in gold in a survival situation:

    On the first night, when she lost feeling in her toes, he dumped everything out of his backpack and wrapped it around her legs, zipping it up around her. After about 20 minutes, she could feel her toes again.

    I love hiking in this area, but there are sections of trail that can be treacherous in the normal hiking season if you aren’t being careful or properly equipped. And so, Winter peakbaggers have always seemed like strange breed of people to me.

    I am glad to hear they survived, and am in disbelief they came away with all of their fingers and toes. These folks were very lucky.

  2. I am not sure which is more bizzare: that C-SPAN wants my Xfinity info as a login, or that I am actually watching C-SPAN ‪#‎dnc2016‬

  3. This Election Is 1968 All Over Again, And That’s Not A Good Thing →

    After the return flight from our trip to Greece landed, we grabbed our luggage and hopped in a taxi to head home. I asked the driver (who happened to be an older friend of mine) what newsworthy events had happened regarding the democratic primary while we were gone. After filling us in on the 5/14 Nevada Democratic convention, he said this year would be as bad or worse than 1968.

    For those of us who weren’t around back then (or were sleeping in history class), this article is good summary of why this year is shaping up to resemble 1968.

    You may also want to read up on Wikipedia’s page for the 1968 Democratic Convention.

  4. Surface Tension →

    Apple’s strategy, according to Joel Watson:

    They are almost always the last to the party, but they are always the best dressed, the most interesting, the sexiest and the only one everyone remembers the next day.

    I don’t fault Apple for this type of behavior because all they are really doing is letting the other guys take the risks and make the mistakes and gauging public response based on other products before taking all of that knowledge and refining the hell out of their own product before launching it (2 or 3 years after the first one came out).

    It seems to be working.

    (via Daring Fireball)

  5. The ATC on Negative Media Coverage

    Today, a few articles were published about rowdy Appalachian Trail hikers. An excerpt from this PennLive article read:

    At Maine’s Baxter State Park, home to the trail’s final summit on Mount Katahdin, officials say thru-hikers are flouting park rules by openly using drugs and drinking alcohol, camping where they aren’t supposed to, and trying to pass their pets off as service dogs. Hundreds of miles away, misbehaving hikers contributed to a small Pennsylvania community’s recent decision to shutter the sleeping quarters it had offered for decades in the basement of its municipal building.

    Naturally, a story of strangers helping each other on the trail, trail magic, and spiritual journeys would not have made as good of a news story. (Though, I have seen a good share of those too!)

    The Appalachian Trail Conservancy issued a response on their Facebook page:

    The Appalachian Trail Conservancy has led the effort to protect the ‪‎Appalachian Trail‬ since 1925, and today is no different. Recent media coverage of the A.T. has highlighted the misguided behavior of what we believe is a small percentage of hikers, mischaracterizing the millions of visitors who understand the importance of responsible use of the Trail. It is our hope that the attention given to the small fraction of hikers who do not exemplify values of respect does not eclipse the cooperative management system that enables a 2,190-mile path to stretch from Maine to Georgia.

    With the expected increase in Trail usage, especially with the release of the upcoming film A Walk in the Woods, we will be expanding our efforts to educate the public and instill the best practices for hiking the A.T. We will continue to work with representatives from Baxter State Park to address the complex issue of increasing hiker traffic and bad behavior. As guardians of the A.T., we are encouraged by the large majority of A.T. hikers who have a legacy of exhibiting respect to both the Trail and the surrounding communities.

    I’ve heard of the trail attracting more hikers every year, and the need to raise awareness of leave-no-trace or low-impact camping etiquette is growing, but it seems absurd that a hiker would consciously take an extended journey for the purpose of partying and abusing their privileges.

    I refuse to believe anything more than — like anywhere else in the world — a few bad apples will ruin the bunch. And similar to the communities we all live in, it is up to the hiking community to educate those who are less aware of what etiquette is expected of them in their environments.

  6. Obama to Restore Mt. McKinley’s Name to Denali →

    It turns out that McKinley had nothing to do with Denali at all:

    The mountain was named for McKinley before he became president, by gold prospector William A. Dickey, who had just received word of McKinley’s nomination as a candidate in 1896. McKinley died without ever setting foot in Alaska, assassinated at the start of his second term in office.

    Can’t we all agree that the preservation of the National Park should have been indicative that Alaska was in favor of the mountain’s original name?

    The tallest mountain in North America has long been known to Alaskans as Denali, its Koyukon Athabascan name, but its official name was not changed with the creation of Denali National Park and Preserve in 1980, 6 million acres carved out for federal protection under the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act. The state changed the name of the park’s tallest mountain to Denali at that time, but the federal government did not.

    Apparently not:

    Speaker of the House John Boehner R-Ohio said he is “deeply disappointed in this decision” to remove Ohio-native McKinley’s name from the mountain.

    According to this Huffington Post article, this battle has been going on for some time:

    Alaskans had been blocked in Congress by Ohio politicians, who wanted to stick with McKinley as a lasting tribute to the 25th U.S. president, who served from 1897 until his assassination in 1901.

    Great move, Obama!