Friday, January 04, 2013

The Search For the Death Valley Germans

Link (via Metafilter)

Interesting (long) tale of the search for the remains of four German tourists who got lost in Death Valley in the '90's.

The authors' hypothesis about the series of seemingly fairly reasonable decisions that doomed them is particularly interesting. Sounds like some shit I'd get myself into.


Blogger Dark Avenger said...

I happened upon this incident from reading an article in the SF paper, Winston, and it's a much simpler case, but it was the same underlying cause, underestimating nature.

The Donner Party was the same thing, a set of circumstances that, had a few choices been made differently, a tragedy could've been avoided.

I was a schoolchild when I went to SCICON, a kind of week-long camp in the foothills east of where I lived and now live. I remember thIe lecture about how dehydration can kill a person in less than a day.

When you grow up where it's hot and dry in the summer, 90-100s, you learn to deal with it. There is a law in the city of Calexico, CA, that every house must have a working faucet and hose so that water is available to prevent sunstroke. It's just across the border from Mexicali, if you remember the Grateful Dead song. Much of inland California is hot during the summer time, and even the coastal areas aren't immune to being singed, if there isn't a wind from the Pacific.

I've read that some tribes in Africa could get by on 1/4 cup of water a day, they thought the tribes from the relatively wet parts of Africa were sissies because they required a whole cup of water.

Sometimes I'll go for a walk in the summer heat with some water in what I call a walkabout for two or so hours.

This is a good book on the Logic of Failure.

12:50 PM  
Blogger Winston Smith said...

Jesus. Yeah, that's the kind of shit I'm likely to pull, alright...minus anything like the athletic ability to have a snowball's chance of surviving...

I just ordered The Logic of Failure--thx for the tip, man.

2:46 PM  

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