Mar 5, 2009 at 1:57 pm #1234558
I love it. You love it. We want more of it.
But it occurred to me, I will admit after watching a Man Vs. Wild episode, that on a slope that was steep enough and long enough you could kick up a veritable rock slide coming up behind you. Has that happened to anyone? Is it a plausible concern?
Also, do people have any advice on scree runnning technique in general?
JedMar 5, 2009 at 5:18 pm #1483120
"on a slope that was steep enough and long enough you could kick up a veritable rock slide coming up behind you. Has that happened to anyone? Is it a plausible concern?"
I was on a slope in the Sierra 3 years ago that came real close to being slide prone. I was going uphill and sliding downward 8-10 feet occasionally. I wasn't concerned about getting buried, but I was concerned about getting deposited on a very slick snow band below with a nasty run out. I managed to traverse out of it, very carefully, and eventually found some scree that was more consolidated, but under a cliff that had a lot of rockfall at its base. That was why I was out above the snow band in the first place. It was one of my weirder moments in quite a while. So, yes, I'd say it is a potential concern. I think it depends on the depth of the loose stuff, the mix of particle sizes, and what type of rock you are dealing with. Shale, for instance, is very slick stuff, whereas granite is not, although the stuff I was on was pea sized granite but very deep. I'm probably missing some variables here, but those are some that come to mind.
"Also, do people have any advice on scree running technique in general?"
Downhill? When I was still doing it, I pretended I was downhill skiing. Select a line and carve turns to maintain control. It can be a real trip, especially when you start pushing the envelope. The finer scree is THE BEST. For those among you who frequent the Southern Sierra, (Dave T. are you listening?) the slope on the north side of Upper Crabtree Lake that leads up to the main Mt Whitney Trail is awesome, my personal favorite.Mar 5, 2009 at 6:17 pm #1483148
@bestbuilderLocale: Pacific Northwest
I've had people above me send a slide at me. They were trying the very same thing but didn't think of the consequences. I got out of the way but it wasn't pretty.
Falling on scree can be pretty ugly also- a large gash in the thigh isn't pretty either.
Oh to be young!
Enjoy it while you can.Mar 6, 2009 at 12:23 pm #1483360
@sharaldsLocale: Gallatin Range
Suggestion? Learn to glissade on snow first. Then take those principles to scree.Mar 6, 2009 at 2:07 pm #1483387
@chadnscLocale: Duluth, Minnesota
No offense Sam but glissading down a scree slope is nothing like glissading down a snow slope.
When you glissade safely down snow you do so when the snow condones are right (low avalanche conditions, firm snow, ect.) When attempting to glissade down a scree slope you'll almost always have an avalanche of small rocks following you down that will hit you and anyone in your path.Mar 6, 2009 at 4:40 pm #1483429
"When attempting to glissade down a scree slope you'll almost always have an avalanche of small rocks following you down that will hit you and anyone in your path."
True in many cases. IMO, it's better to move faster and zig zag(carve turns, if you will). That way, if something does kick loose you can continue on a zig without zagging and get out of the danger zone. It goes without saying, I hope, that if the terrain does not permit this tactic(e.g. narrow chute between cliffs), it is time to evaluate whether or not to proceed, or maybe hug the margin of the chute and go slowly, very slowly.Mar 6, 2009 at 7:25 pm #1483466
@bearded1Locale: Pacific Northwest
Downhill, quick, short strides always in a long angled direction. You can always stop at the edge and check your damage before changing course.
I love Man vs. Wild too, but he's been doing some really stupid things this season. I would never recommend entering an abandoned mine shaft to get to the other side quicker, or go spelunking in a foreign land that requires swimming in totally flooded caves and underground rivers. I can't for the life of me figure out why he's doing this except the entertainment value for t.v. I guess it works, cause I watch it.Mar 6, 2009 at 8:05 pm #1483469
To hijack my own thread…
Yeah, I enjoy the show for the entertainment value and the opportunity to see beautiful landscapes around the world. There are interesting facts and tips every now and then. But I agree with you Paul, he's doing really stupid things which, given the fact that the show is presented somewhat as a tutorial for how to survive, are also really irresponsible. The spelunking stunned me. When he got stung by bees after stealing honey comb from a hive… ouch. Killing a rattlesnake, skinning and eating it, retaining the skin as a canteen for his own urine… ok, well that has a certain Rambo-like brutal manliness to it, but is also nuts.Mar 7, 2009 at 10:10 am #1483551
@dwambaughLocale: Pacific Northwest
The man vs. wild show is just the Jack Ass theme gone to the woods. He's a charlatan, a PT Barnum. I just hope his stunts don't get him or someone else crippled or killed.
Watch a couple youtube videos showing a location used in the Hawaii episode.Apr 7, 2009 at 8:35 am #1491985
@malndmanLocale: Central NC, USA
When descending a scree slope at its limit of stability (a slope as steep as it will self support), be careful of losing control. I once came very close to going over a 50' cliff at the edge of a scree slope. I was descending, and barely was able to stop/turn myself before the cliff. Since the slope is at the limit of stability before you messed it up, there is not too much grip for your feet to purchase.
Going across these slopes is also NOT LNT hiking. Up, down or across, one leaves a visible scar.Apr 9, 2009 at 5:30 pm #1492769
"Going across these slopes is also NOT LNT hiking. Up, down or across, one leaves a visible scar."
True enough, Michael, but the same can be said for crossing a pristine snow slope or sand dune. In the first 2 cases the trace is transient. Wind, rain, sun, or winter snow will erase all trace of one's tracks in the mountains, be it on scree or snow. In any case, if travelling off trail in ranges like the Sierra or Cascades, leaving tracks in scree or snow is often unavoidable, whether one walks, runs, or crawls. The same cannot be said of desert environments and I, personally, would tread much more carefully there. Same goes for fragile vegetated areas anywhere.
Regarding frolicking on scree slopes, or snow slopes for that matter, it should be emphasized that before the frolicking begins one needs to very carefully check the run out for cliff bands, crevasses, rocky areas below a prospective playground. In the case of glissading in potentially crevassed areas, ALWAYS glissade standing up or better yet, don't glissade. My 2 cents.
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