Missing Hiker -- Sierra National Forest

Use this forum to stay informed on missing persons alerts, active SAR's and unfortunate hiker accidents we can all hopefully learn from. Any information you may have on a missing person, including first hand weather related information or any other insight (however little) may prove to be critical information to Law Enforcement / SAR in locating the person in question.
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maverick
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Re: Missing Hiker -- Sierra National Forest

Post by maverick » Tue Sep 01, 2015 1:53 pm

GB wrote:
Of course if the elevation is incorrect there are more possibilities.
Big IF!


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I don't give out specific route information, my belief is that it takes away from the whole adventure spirit of a trip, if you need every inch planned out, you'll have to get that from someone else.

Have a safer backcountry experience by using the HST ReConn Form 2.0, named after Larry Conn, a HST member: http://reconn.org






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Re: Missing Hiker -- Sierra National Forest

Post by Shawn » Tue Sep 01, 2015 2:05 pm

I noticed this post over on RadioReference.com whereby a scanner enthusiast claims to have heard some SAR traffic related to this incident. He wrote:

"The team finally reach her and she's not doing well. She has a bilateral lower leg fracture, but was calm and alert. They found her 11 S 0339133mE 41 06257mN. That's about 9000 feet ASL and a bit east of Courtright Reservoir. It's a nice area and I enjoy camping there myself.

Here's a link to those coordinates. The hike she went on was to Horsehead Lake, which is to the right of the location. Yes, it is the one that looks like a horse head.
https://www.google.com/maps/place/37...!3m1!1s0x0:0x0 "


Source: http://forums.radioreference.com/califo ... ounty.html

Probably have to wait for the official SAR report to know what actually occurred.

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Re: Missing Hiker -- Sierra National Forest

Post by maverick » Tue Sep 01, 2015 2:41 pm

"The team finally reach her and she's not doing well. She has a bilateral lower leg fracture, but was calm and alert. They found her 11 S 0339133mE 41 06257mN. That's about 9000 feet ASL and a bit east of Courtright Reservoir. It's a nice area and I enjoy camping there myself.
Thanks for that info Shawn.

GB wrote:
This is good news indeed. When someone is missing this long, the outcome is rarely positive. There was a rather schematic map shown in a Fresno Bee article this morning and this woman was found quite a long way from the group basecamp at Horsehead L. From the graphic it looks like within KCNP which suggests she was on a long solo dayhike to explore the Goddard-Ionian Basin area or something when she got hurt (broken bones apparently).
Well, the Bee gave us some great information.
Wish these folks would wait till the official report, before posting, or publishing, all this erroneous information.
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I don't give out specific route information, my belief is that it takes away from the whole adventure spirit of a trip, if you need every inch planned out, you'll have to get that from someone else.

Have a safer backcountry experience by using the HST ReConn Form 2.0, named after Larry Conn, a HST member: http://reconn.org

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Re: Missing Hiker -- Sierra National Forest

Post by SSSdave » Tue Sep 01, 2015 3:48 pm

Thanks Shawn,

37°05'19.7"N 118°48'36.0"W is about at 9580 feet west of Falls Creek at the head of gentle bedrock slopes that then slope up modestly. That is about 4/10 mile north of the trail and quite a bit higher and further up the canyon than where the helicopter supposedly landed at 9200. So am guessing SAR carried her down a ways to the helicopter and if so the report I read was misleading though that is not surprising. Suspect her group still went down the trail below McGuire and that she missed the trail back up. Instead went up the canyon and then tried to climb that canyon wall north of where the Horsehead Lake stream runs down. However would suspect that was long dry. Satellite shows talus due east of where she was below the cliff. Sort of indicates she either did not have a map or less likely was unable to make sense of one. What she apparently was aware of was she needed to climb upward and once going a bit up the canyon beyond the trail may not have noticed the general route of the trail up to McGuire was much easier than anything she could see higher up because the trail area is visually hidden within forest. And when she got to all those cliff bands may have gotten confused, desperate, and acted on emotion instead of logic.

The Sierra Club should make sure anyone day hiking on layover days ought to have certain essentials that especially includes a topo map and know how to use it. Why didn't she even have some food, fire starter, or a flashlight? News said she was experienced but really? She gets a lot of credit regardless for going 9 days without food, That was certainly a very unpleasant experience. The cost people pay for going on those trips is of course considerable so they ought to be thorough. The notion that simply exploring around with others is not enough though they may be quite thorough in this era and the group didn't bother. I did go on some of their websites to see if they had any information. Since I was a member a couple plus decades ago little has changed. Their regional groups don't even have discussion boards which reflects their decades old attitude of limiting communication within the club organization so the entrenched leaders control it all.

David
Last edited by SSSdave on Tue Sep 01, 2015 4:05 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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Re: Missing Hiker -- Sierra National Forest

Post by Mike M. » Tue Sep 01, 2015 3:50 pm

Best if we all take a deep breath and let the dust settle and the facts come to light over the course of the next week or so -- too much wild speculation here as far as I'm concerned. What we do know is that a hiker on a Sierra Club outing was injured and survived 9 days without food or shelter. That alone is no small miracle. News coverage is notoriously unreliable -- we all know that. The location noted in the Bee graphic is almost certainly an error -- no first-hand reports mention recovery efforts on the east side of the White Divide; all say the activity was east of Courtright Reservoir. For what it is worth, I was hiking in the area from the 11th through the 24th and was quizzed at Post Corral Meadows on the 23rd by two Forest Service employees. They told me the hiker was base camped at Guest Lake.

My reading of the various news stories leads me to believe she fell and broke a leg (multiple fractures). She was found in the Fall Creek drainage, according to what seems to be a very credible news story from a Santa Barbara newspaper, whose reporter interviewed S&R personnel from Santa Barbara. Those personnel were directly involved in the extraction. Another news report identified S&R personnel from Marin County as being the ones who "found" Miyuki.

Mike

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Re: Missing Hiker -- Sierra National Forest

Post by maverick » Tue Sep 01, 2015 4:20 pm

Best if we all take a deep breath and let the dust settle and the facts come to light over the course of the next week or so -- too much wild speculation here as far as I'm concerned.
But what are forums for if not discussion, we aren't hurting anyone, and having such discussions may remind folks about the dangerous of the wild. ;)

Meaning of "forums": a place, meeting, or medium where ideas and views on a particular issue can be exchanged.

Let me also add, that enough of us here, are very familiar with that area, much more so then any news outlet, couple that with the outdoor experience here on HST, our speculation will be much more viable, and closer to reality, any day.
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I don't give out specific route information, my belief is that it takes away from the whole adventure spirit of a trip, if you need every inch planned out, you'll have to get that from someone else.

Have a safer backcountry experience by using the HST ReConn Form 2.0, named after Larry Conn, a HST member: http://reconn.org

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Re: Missing Hiker -- Sierra National Forest

Post by Mike M. » Tue Sep 01, 2015 7:16 pm

Well, a forum can be many things. But the rich body of experience members of this site bring to the conversation isn't really being used in a constructive way when the conversation devolves to speculating, based on a few early news reports or an erroneous graphic in a newspaper article, where exactly she was found, how many bones were broken, how many yards she had to crawl to get to water, how many days it took her to crawl there, etc.

I too wonder how and where (exactly) this accident happened; we'll learn soon enough as more detailed reports reach us, especially after the hiker is interviewed.

I'm surprised we haven't heard from other members in the Sierra Club outing group she was with.

Some of this is an exercise in critical reading -- can we trust this source? Or was the news story rewritten by a copy editor from an AP wire and were the facts garbled in the process? Did Miyuki wait two days and then decide to crawl to water or did it take her two days to crawl to water? The more information we get, the better we can judge. The ham radio story above is new and rings true. This story: http://www.noozhawk.com/noozhawk/articl ... r_in_sierr adds more credence to the likelihood that the location of the accident was the Fall Creek drainage. But note that in this story, she is said to have broken both legs. This is contrary to other reports. At the post-rescue press conference, we were told she had multiple fractures in one leg.

Mike

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Re: Missing Hiker -- Sierra National Forest

Post by SSSdave » Tue Sep 01, 2015 9:39 pm

Mike, your opinion seems to be that Internet boards should not discuss issues about people in trouble in the backcountry beyond whatever public information has been disseminated.

As though doing so may have some negative consequences? I just can't imagine what you might be getting at so you are welcome to expand that thinking. There are other outdoor enthusiast boards like summitpost.org where a few others have piped in likewise about people in unknown troubles that did not gain any traction of support and instead members continued to discuss whatever.

It is true that some people may associate the term "speculating" as being a negative regardless of what it is being used for or discussed. On other discussion boards in the past a few people have reacted so thus am mentioning that since at this point I don't understand your position. Certainly negative if people are gossiping and tossing innuendos about other people they don't like and drawing speculative conclusions. For some people that may be the only way they ever use the term so I can understand how they might feel so.

Of course such narrow use would be non-sense. As part of my career, I've been speculating for decades on various reasons why electronic hardware and software isn't working in team settings with engineers and technicians. It is part of a debug and problem solving processes that all manner of professionals use when there is an unknown to be solved. All manner of business news reporters have been speculating this week why the stock market tanked. A term with definite proper uses.

In our case nothing we discuss herein has an impact on what SAR teams are doing unless they directly contact some of us for information. Otherwise what they do is independent and even if some were lurking, they are experts themselves in imaging various scenarios and weighing how valid information may be. If someone draws a negative behavioral conclusion on a person's actions from too limited information and then blames the person on a public board say for doing something potentially stupid then that would be improper. But if on the other hand say if on a board someone says IF a person did such and such, then that would be foolish or stupid, again there ought not be an issue. On the other hand if a someone said that person did something when they didn't have adequate evidence and then were critical of a person in trouble yes that would be improper. For instance if someone drowned in an ice cold freezing stream and someone without any more information said they were fools for trying to cross the stream, that would be flawed because the person may have fallen in by slipping on a slippery rock at the edge while searching for a safe place to cross without any intention to cross at that dangerous point. The accuser would look to be the fool if later other members of the party explained such to news reporters. I don't see any of that on this board over the last few years and when someone isn't quite seeing all the possibilities there are usually other very experienced and intelligent members here that are quick to correct such.

A way that often plays out on this board is late season in October when winter storm fronts begin sweeping down over the range. If a readily available NWS weather report has been available for days and then we read about a group that got caught in snow while not being properly prepared with winter gear such that they had to be rescued, then we don't need to hear some official report before being critical within discussions.

It is very true there are not a few boards on the web where people make sport with all manner of slanderous name calling towards not only people in the news outside their board but also occasionally any newbies that post in the community and "stumble". That would be malicious slanderous speculation. But such is not the attitude here. And in fact such discussions can be productive for a web community because members become familiar with dangers and safe ways to approach them.

David

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Re: Missing Hiker -- Sierra National Forest

Post by Mike M. » Tue Sep 01, 2015 11:23 pm

Here's a link to an account offered by the hiker's family:

http://www.goldrushcam.com/sierrasuntim ... experience

She apparently summited Blackcap Mountain with the group she was dayhiking with and hurt herself in a fall on the way back. She has a broken left leg and a broken right ankle.

Mike

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Re: Missing Hiker -- Sierra National Forest

Post by Mike M. » Tue Sep 01, 2015 11:34 pm

Here's a copy of Miyuki's statement:

http://dig.abclocal.go.com/kfsn/PDF/Miy ... tement.pdf

It looks like she also has a compression fracture in her spine.

Mike

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