Survival Situation!

Woods Walker

Woods Walker

The Wood is cut, The Bacon is cooked, Now it’s tim
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I like to keep active to be fit enough to outrun any zombie outbreak herds. They're not generally fast but very very persistent. Hence good cardio helps. This means training every opportunity possible. I drove my sister to a parent/teacher conference at the school. These things take about an hour so remembered the adjacent school has trails out back. Sure it's 7 pm heading into dusk but what can possibly go wrong in an hour? The plan was to hike for 30 minutes then turn back. All the photos were taken with a cell phone as this was done on the fly for a FB every day activity thing. Didn't realize it would become a survival situation!


All stated off just fine, isn't that always how it is? Rarely hike this trail and would be going in a new direction for me.








Then it got darker but was prepared for that. Notice the reflective cordage





My little travel light kit.





1. Fenix HL50.


2. 4/7 1XAA NW twisty.


Both lights take the same battery so really the 1XAA flashlight is a battery holder as would probably just swap out it's battery if the headlamp ran dry. Over a 5 year technology gap between the two. NW XP-E Gen 1 vs NW XM-L2. Still the twisty has been a rock solid gear item packed for 1000's of miles on foot. Sometimes the most modern isn't always the best.





It's dark and despite an unnaturally green Autumn there are still leave on the trail. This would be a problem later.





Faded yellow isn't really all that visible.





Because it's not alone in the woods. Still the neutral white LEDs help a bit IMHO.





Dusk is turning into night. Approaching my return time 30 or so minutes in. I only got an hour total before the conference is over.





full on dark.





Lots of fallen trees etc across the trail. It's not really kept up.








Time to turn around and guess what? The trail was so marginal I lost it. Lots of it looked like this so not really surprising.





The leaves totally taken over the ground. Probably birch as they often get stressed first so turn yellow then fall even if Swamp maple sometimes turns first all things being equal. It has been dry.





Whenever turned around I try to back track to the last known marker/ thing and I found it. Hard to see like many of them.





But even then I couldn't find the next one. The survival situation was on. As if on clue a pack of coyotes started to go crazy off in the distance. So what are the life and death risks?


1. Lyme disease as pushing through tick infested brush off trail. Actually that's the only risk. LOL!


2. Coyotes! They will attack! Or maybe not? But who cares this is fun and sure beats sitting in the van waiting an hour.


3. Shame. Imagine the shame of missing the pickup time. I only got under 30 minutes before the teacher/parent conference is over. Imagine the shame of walking through someone's back yard like a goober looking for a road. Dang! I am in a bit over a mile here!


The moon was behind me when hiking in and it's only been a short time so walked towards that. Finally after 10 minutes just to be sure did the unthinkable.


"Hey Siri" then asked for walking directions to the school. After a little banter and repeated requests reluctantly I got directions. Well not really as it wanted me to find a road but knew I was going in the right general direction.


Almost there!





Benches in the woods are a good sign I am saved!





An ongoing girl's soccer game was a better sign.





The nightmare is almost over.





Yes. I made it back with 2 minutes to spare. Shame averted!








Looks like a little over 2 miles of pure terror! 7:58 PM was cutting darn close. Darn close! LOL!





Back to the original topic of cardio. How did I get a total of just over 10 miles today? Well I took every last opportunity to move. I try to do this everyday no matter how busy unless injured or resting.





1. Went shopping earlier today so parked far away as possible then overly walked around the market. Did a few laps around the parking lot as well. This got me a bit over 1.5 miles. Not much however it all adds up.


2. Did a 5.5 mile trail run for an hour or so after working.


3. Hiked 2 miles during this survival situation.


5. Gained a mile or so doing every day walking.


So with a fairly busy schedule I got in over 10 miles plus an adventure. All squeezed in any chance I got. Don't sit on your backsides doing nothing cuz yea think there is no time. Get lost in the woods for 15 minutes. Walk around the market extra laps. Take the stairs and don't fight like heck for the nearest parking spot. Look for the farthest one instead.


Start tomorrow!
 
scout24

scout24

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Good advice on the moving! I need to get my lazy butt moving more. Drop a few pounds. Being able to cover ground on foot is a not often discussed aspect of preparedness, nevermind general health. It's not as cool as bushcraft skills, or neat gear. Thanks for the reminder! :wave:
 
vadimax

vadimax

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Man, you need to buy this one:

Garmin-GPSMAP-64-Handheld-GPS-with-GLONASS-Receiver.jpg


and forget the trouble :)
 
Poppy

Poppy

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Great story!

I'm glad you had presence of mind to know where the moon was.
And that you had cell phone reception :)
 
Woods Walker

Woods Walker

The Wood is cut, The Bacon is cooked, Now it’s tim
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New England woods.
Man, you need to buy this one:

Garmin-GPSMAP-64-Handheld-GPS-with-GLONASS-Receiver.jpg


and forget the trouble :)

I have an old Garmin Etrex Vista HCX. Bread crumb track alone would have solved the issue but sorry to say I don't always have all my toys with me. I am working on a thread now comparing the phone and old handheld GPS. That and nocturnal critters and Malkoff!
 
Woods Walker

Woods Walker

The Wood is cut, The Bacon is cooked, Now it’s tim
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New England woods.
Great story!

I'm glad you had presence of mind to know where the moon was.
And that you had cell phone reception :)

That or walk a few miles in any direction till I hit some unfortunate person's back yard. But dang the shame of that would have been too much. LOL
 
martinaee

martinaee

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Stupid zambies....* I go for really late-night walks and although I've never seen a zombie.... *squints eyes* I know they're out there...

*Cue X-Files music*


:sick2::green: :xyxgun:



I gotta put some kind of colored ribbon in a pack for if I ever do go hiking on actual unknown trails at night. That's a good idea.Some trees are marked in park trails, but that could be a big help. Maybe even just some brightly colored chalk!
 
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Woods Walker

Woods Walker

The Wood is cut, The Bacon is cooked, Now it’s tim
Joined
Jun 8, 2008
Messages
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Location
New England woods.
Stupid zambies....* I go for really late-night walks and although I've never seen a zombie.... *squints eyes* I know they're out there...

*Cue X-Files music*


:sick2::green: :xyxgun:



I gotta put some kind of colored ribbon in a pack for if I ever do go hiking on actual unknown trails at night. That's a good idea.Some trees are marked in park trails, but that could be a big help. Maybe even just some brightly colored chalk!

Absolutely. :laughing: They're shambling around out there for sure!
 
Subterrestrial

Subterrestrial

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Cool story WW. Real smart to use the moon or sun as a way marker. After all, the sky is your compass. ;)

I live on the west coast, where the coyotes are relatively small and pretty shy when it comes to humans but if you're on the east coast you may not be so lucky. Out there they have the dreaded Coywolf; coyote-wolf hybrid. :huh:
 
CoolBreeze135

CoolBreeze135

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It's worth noting that many of the potentially bad situations we face in the woods(i.e. the "survival" situations) are overcome with calm nerves and patience instead of the more discussed survival skills. Once, a friend and I hiked an unmaintained trail and got pretty lost after the trail disappeared. We followed a trickle of a stream to a creek, followed the creek to a larger creek/small river, and eventually found the road that we knew had to be in the vicinity. Instead of building primitive shelters and hunting, we just used a little critical thinking and calm nerves. It certainly doesn't make for a Hollywood-approved story, but it's probably more representative of the majority of situations that go south in the woods.

Thanks for sharing your experience.
 
J

jedi_master

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I have an old Garmin Etrex Vista HCX. Bread crumb track alone would have solved the issue but sorry to say I don't always have all my toys with me. I am working on a thread now comparing the phone and old handheld GPS. That and nocturnal critters and Malkoff!

The latest iOS 10 will automatically drop a pin of your car's location on the map if your phone is connected to your car's Bluetooth and whenever it gets stopped. So you can get a walking directions to your car when you need it.
 
vadimax

vadimax

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The latest iOS 10 will automatically drop a pin of your car's location on the map if your phone is connected to your car's Bluetooth and whenever it gets stopped. So you can get a walking directions to your car when you need it.

There is one strong problem: those phones have kind of marginal GPS sensitivity. In the woods the signal is insufficient for them -- they see crap as a result. Dedicated Garmin units possess much better antenna plus they use GPS+GLONASS satellites. And that makes HUGE difference, believe me :) In a thick forest it looks like nothing vs 10 foot precision.
 
J

jedi_master

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There is one strong problem: those phones have kind of marginal GPS sensitivity. In the woods the signal is insufficient for them -- they see crap as a result. Dedicated Garmin units possess much better antenna plus they use GPS+GLONASS satellites. And that makes HUGE difference, believe me :) In a thick forest it looks like nothing vs 10 foot precision.

You're underestimating the iPhone :). iPhone has been supporting GLONASS since iPhone 4S I believe. iPhone utilizes assisted GPS, cell tower, WLAN and GLONASS for location accuracy.
 
vadimax

vadimax

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You're underestimating the iPhone :). iPhone has been supporting GLONASS since iPhone 4S I believe. iPhone utilizes assisted GPS, cell tower, WLAN and GLONASS for location accuracy.

And you overestimate iPhone abilities :) Just drive some 30 miles into a forest and you will be astonished how useless this device becomes. Trees somehow manage to dramatically dampen radio signals.
 
Str8stroke

Str8stroke

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Glad WW made it out alive. That sounded like a hair raising experience. Following the "One is None" creed potentially saved you. Safety First. :sick2:
 
Woods Walker

Woods Walker

The Wood is cut, The Bacon is cooked, Now it’s tim
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New England woods.
Glad WW made it out alive. That sounded like a hair raising experience. Following the "One is None" creed potentially saved you. Safety First. :sick2:

Somehow I overcame horrific obstacles to come out alive! LOL!
 
J

Joseph08

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This looks scary. Never forget to carry your self-defense tool along.
 
markr6

markr6

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And you overestimate iPhone abilities :) Just drive some 30 miles into a forest and you will be astonished how useless this device becomes. Trees somehow manage to dramatically dampen radio signals.

Not me. I know this is an old post but I've never been without GPS on my iPhone (5, then 6S, now 8). Of course you'll lose data, so the maps may not display unless cached on your phone. But the GPS itself is reliable. I've been deep into the wilderness and the worst I've seen was +/- 30 feet.
 
vadimax

vadimax

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Not me. I know this is an old post but I've never been without GPS on my iPhone (5, then 6S, now 8). Of course you'll lose data, so the maps may not display unless cached on your phone. But the GPS itself is reliable. I've been deep into the wilderness and the worst I've seen was +/- 30 feet.

My wife is fond of mushroom hunting. So we often go into the woods and I have noticed: if a forest is thick devices that are not dedicated navigators usually fail to collect a sufficient GPS quorum to build a reliable position info. So they stay in “looking for satellites” state and show your home position. Which is useless.
 
markr6

markr6

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My wife is fond of mushroom hunting. So we often go into the woods and I have noticed: if a forest is thick devices that are not dedicated navigators usually fail to collect a sufficient GPS quorum to build a reliable position info. So they stay in “looking for satellites” state and show your home position. Which is useless.

I hope I never experience that! Given my experience, I don't think I ever will...(knock on wood)
 
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