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Old 09-15-2011, 01:47 AM
Location: CA
250 posts, read 350,525 times
Reputation: 169


If you pull up youtube videos of people filming animals in Yellowstone..Particularly Bears.. you'll see why there are so many deaths. A few million visit Yellowstone every year, and most are morons.
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Old 09-16-2011, 04:46 AM
Location: Oxford, England
13,036 posts, read 22,016,442 times
Reputation: 19908
As most people said, the problem is people doing stupid things and expecting Nature to be like a landscaped, managed park. A lot of visitors to National Parks are from thoroughly urban environments and never venture outside of cities and are not used to the concept of Wilderness in its raw state.

As well as ignorant I think a lot of visitors also can be very arrogant and complacent and do not expect anything will happen to them. I suspect laziness has a lot to play in those accidents as well, not bothering to be prepared properly and to find out what is the safest way to handle certain places and situations.

I used to date a Mountain Guide and every single year some idiots would walk up the mountains without enough food, water and warm clothing to sustain them, no experience of how to build a shelter or spend a night safely in a hostile environment. People just drove from the city, decided it was a nice day and just started to walk. He used to laugh at how many people he saw going up in jeans and t-shirts , some women in Bikinis ! Of course the not so funny side of this is people like Mountain Guides then having t risk their own lives to rescue those morons.

We have become so removed from our Natural environment that we behave as though Nature is just like our back garden which is just idiotic beyond belief. I can no longer hike but we do visit National Parks and I am always prepared as much as is humanly possible just in case something happens. Better to be over-prudent and better safe than sorry IMO. A basic understanding of the environment you are in is simple common sense. Just as you would not wonder around a ghetto at night covered in designer watches and cash oozing out of your pockets you should not be assuming that that cute Bear cub is not going to be accompanied by very protective Mommy somewhere.

We were in Vancouver Island a couple of years back and saw a Black Bear feeding on the side of the road. We watched him from the car ( windows closed ) from the opposite side of the road and enjoyed it. Suddenly a car full of Japanese tourists screeched to a halt, and started to snap photos and one guy actually came out and started to walk towards the bear. A couple of arms were out of the car taking photos too. Quite frankly those people deserved to be mauled and just as well it was a Black Bear than a Grizzly.... The Bear looked stressed and ran off but I could not believe the sheer stupidity of those people.

At the Grand Canyon last year we saw so many people doing stupid things right by the edge of the ledge, some people with small kids and babies on their backs too. A young woman was doing a Ballet pose for her boyfriend right on the edge.... One wonders why not more people die to be honest.

I tend to have a healthy respect for Nature and Animals as I know both are unpredictable and can turn on you at any time. And that one false move on the edge of a gigantic chasm is a pretty moronic thing to do.

Arrogance, Complacency and Stupidity are not great companions of Wilderness enjoyment.
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Old 05-01-2012, 11:14 AM
Location: Idaho
535 posts, read 471,350 times
Reputation: 1029
In two visits to Yellowstone/Tetons several years ago, I was shocked that most of these people managed to put their pants on without somebody helping them.

1. There was a bear in a field to one side of the road, about 50 yards out. Of course about two hundred cars were stopped on the side of the road to look at it and take pictures. Understandable, it is a magnificent creature. Then, one gentleman decided to start shouting at it, trying to call it over. A Ranger promptly told him to ****, which he did not like at all, and left in a huff.

2. A similar situation, people were parked to admire elk on the side of the road. A car drives through, right down the middle of the road. Again a Ranger sees them and tells them to stay in their lane. The woman behind the wheel snaps: "There's nobody coming!" and speeds off. The Ranger turns to me and says, "Yes, but there might be right around the curve, dumb [EXPLETIVE]".

3. Parents on a hiking trail in the Tetons were leading their kids out onto a ledge that had a half dozen signs saying it was unstable and not to walk on it under any circumstances. Their reason? So their kids could feed the chipmunks that were out there.
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Old 05-02-2012, 02:04 PM
Location: Earth
24,639 posts, read 24,822,206 times
Reputation: 11318
There are natural wonders all over the world.
It seems like there are more foolish people in the US who apparently think that the Darwin Award is something to strive for.
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Old 05-03-2012, 03:49 AM
5,823 posts, read 10,152,124 times
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As long as they don't litter the place, I couldn't care less if Darwin takes its due course with these people...after all, we're 7 billion, and increasing...the Parks and their inhabitants and wilderness in general unfortunately NOT...
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Old 02-04-2014, 09:08 AM
Location: Type 0.7 Kardashev
10,577 posts, read 7,274,031 times
Reputation: 37474
Originally Posted by Alley01 View Post
There is an entire book about Death at the Grand Canyon. It is actually quite interesting. I debated whether to buy it or not when we made the trip about five years ago, but I couldn't put that book down. Most deaths were negligence and I would imagine that is the case no matter what National Park. They aren't made to be the safest places in the World...as part of enjoying the great beauty that they possess yet some still feel they are in Disney or something.
I've read that, as well as a very similar book called Death In Yellowstone - the decriptions of the deaths in the thermal features (mainly hot springs) are horrific.

That said, millions of people visit Yellowstone every year. The number who are injured or killed is extremely small in comparison.

Originally Posted by Jeromeville View Post
Unfortunately, the dumbest (and saddest) thing I've read about recently was the mother who took her 11-year-old son to Death Valley National Park in the middle of summer for an overnight camping trip. (Why the heck do people even GO to Death Valley in summertime? But I guess many people do...) Her car's GPS took them way off course onto a defunct road that hadn't been in use for 40 years. Or "road," since it barely was a track.
Because Badwater Basin is extremely impressive when the temperature is 120F. I wouldn't want to go hiking there, but 30 minutes outside of your air-conditioned car isn't a big deal for someone in reasonable shape who stays hydrated.

Other than that, Death Valley National Park is the size of Connecticut. It includes several mountain ranges, the highest of which tops out at over 11,000 feet. Thorndike and Mahogany Flat Campgrounds are at 7400' and 8200' and very nice in the summer - and in the winter, they're closed due to snow and ice. The problem wasn't intending to camp in Death Valley National Park in the summer, the problem was letting GPS take her onto a remote road. Basic common sense and the widely-available Trails Illustrated Death Valley National Park map were all that woman needed to avoid getting lost in the Owlshead Mountains (wandering into that remote corner of the park by accident in itself is an impressive feat).
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Old 02-04-2014, 09:31 AM
Location: Idaho
836 posts, read 1,376,911 times
Reputation: 1554
I'd go back to Yellowstone if they took down all the ropes and warning signs; now THAT would be worth filming

As it is now I couldn't get out of there fast enough- I prefer wilderness sans Teeming Masses

View from campsite by Mexico- south of Arivaca, Arizona - YouTube
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Old 02-04-2014, 09:51 AM
35,324 posts, read 25,165,179 times
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Every Nevada Barr book I've read set in a National Park includes at least one death. It's rather amazing.
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Old 02-04-2014, 09:58 AM
2,634 posts, read 2,190,667 times
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Jeez I go out hoping for bear, bobcat, whatever.

Got lucky with a great bobcat sighting, but I was a little worried because, while not aggressive, he seemed to have no fear of me.

I saw a couple of photographers crawling down the edge of an impoundment to photograph some baby gators. The mother could have easily been right there, and it would have been very hard for these people to crawl out of the water and away from her. That's why the embankment was so steep-to keep the gators in.

Another thing-a few of the wetland areas here have boardwalks, and I can't tell you how many times I see parents balancing the kids on the rails to look at the big gator! He's alive, people. If your kid falls in, forget it.
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Old 02-05-2014, 10:43 PM
Location: Type 0.7 Kardashev
10,577 posts, read 7,274,031 times
Reputation: 37474
Originally Posted by notoriouskelly View Post
I'd go back to Yellowstone if they took down all the ropes and warning signs; now THAT would be worth filming

As it is now I couldn't get out of there fast enough- I prefer wilderness sans Teeming Masses
99% of Yellowstone is wilderness (not designated, but effective) - no crowds, no signs. Anyone who hangs out at Old Faithful or Mammoth, instead of the 1000+ miles of backcountry trails, the majority of which receive light to very light to extremely light traffic, then complains about the crowds needs to have their head examined.

In 2012 my son and I hiked the Rescue Creek Trail - 8 miles in the backcountry, we encountered one hiking group (the passed us - as they did, we chatted and enjoyed a sighting of a pair of grizzly cubs a 200-300 yards away, scurrying up a tree). Five hours on the trail, maybe 10 minutes of that in the company of others. And Rescue Creek is listed as 'moderate', not even 'light' for traffic. Terrific hike, starting in high meadows and descending to arid semi-desert near the Roosevelt Arch.

If people did more exploring and less whining about the fact that there are other people around, they'd probably enjoy themselves a lot more.
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