22 May, 2012

Comments from 21 May

Kellie said…
I don't know... Einar was less than 30 minutes from the cabin if I'm remembering right, even with the snow. Einar knows that even if they got a signal five minutes later, it still would have taken at least an hour for any rescue to mount up and get there. I may be wrong, but never heard of any rescue in the mountains being any quicker. And it would have paid off in the long if they DID have to leave because Liz could be preparing for it now. I simply view this as more brain damage done by Einar starving himself. This is some of what happens to anorexia's, they make poor decisions. Just my humble opinion of course. It attests to your great writing skill because Einar is really beginning to depress me with his self abuse. I find myself yelling at him and at Liz for not being flat out blunt more often. And cheering her when she is. lol.

I guess it is possible that Einar may not be thinking as clearly as he is capable of doing, because of the circumstances.  Yes, it would have been reasonable for him to expect that he probably had plenty of time to make it to the cabin and back before there was any chance of people responding to help the injured skier.

As for the part about your yelling at Einar…guess I’d just better be glad I’m way over here on the other side of the mountains, well out of rabbit stick range!  :D

Anonymous said…
 Great chapter:
There are in fact things in the wilderness that sound like the cry of a baby. There are also things that sound like the scream of a woman. I learned about that last one the hard way at about 13yo. Went charging to the rescue as most any boy of my generation would have done, into the brush with the only weapons at hand; a single shot .22RF and a hand ax. Not a tomahawk or one of those little sheet metal boy scout jobs, but a very robust full fledged single bit short handled ax, that you could split wood with. The rifle was in my hands and the ax was in my belt. After fifty years of reflection, training, and experience, and the knowledge that if I had actually had to engage in combat that day it would not have been with a human (I actually did see the cougar) I should have rather had the ax in my left hand. But then, had I known it was a puma I heard, I would not have perused.  
A porcupine can make a sound like a baby crying. This I know from experience. I am told that other animals can make sounds that can be mistaken for a baby’s cry or a toddlers whimpering.
My point is that even if the woman skier had reported hearing a baby cry, the probable reaction of rescue workers would have been; now, now, dear; you were under a great deal of stress, you were suffering from the early stages of hypothermia, you were alone in a vast, dark, cold wilderness, it was probably just a porcupine, or maybe the wind.
Of course, this is all from a Sierra Nevada, Cascade, and California coastal range, point of view. YMMV.
As I recall, Liz was once a member of the local mountain rescue organization, and probably has a lot of friends still in it. Even if they smelled something, they would probably just keep their mouths shut. In fact none of the locals probably want to encourage the feds to stay a second longer.
But then Einar is a master of the doctrine of an abundance of caution. It has served him well in the past. I just hope it does not serve him poorly now.
Thanks FOTH.

Mike, glad your heroism when you went charging in to save that damsel in distress did not end badly!  Got to say I would prefer the ax, as well, over the .22 in that circumstance.  Yep, cougars can certainly sound eerily human sometimes, and I would have to agree about the porcupines, too.  Once I had a mother and three young ones come through my place at night, and one of the babies had got separated from the group.  It made such a racket calling for her that it sounded like someone was being murdered right there outside the house, and even though I was pretty sure what I was hearing, I went out the back door and came around to the front where I’d heard them, prepared to deal with the situation…

You’re probably right that even if Will were to let out a cry or two and be heard by the skiers, no harm would come of it.  But Einar simply can’t take that chance.

Yes, Liz volunteered for a while with Mountain Rescue and most folks who would end up responding to help the skiers would almost certainly look the other way if they saw any sign of human habitation up there in the basin, but again, they’ve been away for a good while, don’t know the current situation with the rescue organization and its members, and can’t risk the possibility of detection, and having to run again in the middle of winter.


  1. OH YEAH, have you SEEN my new "rabbit sticks"? I posted pictures on my blog!


  2. Anonymous22 May, 2012

    I hope that Liz will venture forth again with more food and one of the bear hides. It would mean more tracks, but if a front is coming in they might get covered, and regardless, if she has to make tracks to save Einar so be it. I’m really more worried that when rescue comes it will come painting FLIR all over the place! I wonder how much of a risk enough candlepower to provide a little light and warmth to Liz and Will would be.