Aug 27, 2010 at 10:18 am #1262699
sad …. a bit of a warning on neglecting essential gear …. not everyone is survivorman
No sign of missing hiker as rescuers cover entire Boise trail
Friends post plea for help on social media site
Tyler Wright was photographed on the afternoon of Aug. 10 when he was last seen.
Search and Rescue crews have now covered the entire length of the Boise Creek Trail, where missing hiker Tyler Wright was last seen, with no sign of him.
It’s been 10 days since the 35-year-old Vancouver resident took off for a 50-kilometre hike starting 35 kilometres up the MacMillan Bloedel Forest Service Road on route to Pitt Lake, Coquitlam Lake or Indian Arm.
He was expected to return on Monday (Aug. 16), and rescuers are now on day three of their search.
With the Boise Trail covered, searchers from Squamish and the Lower Mainland are now turning south into the Mamquam Pass, said RCMP Cpl. Dave Ritchie today.
Although Wright is an experienced hiker, it’s unclear how prepared he was for the arduous trek, said Ritchie.
He was carrying four food packs, granola bars and pans in which to gather water, but no tent or sleeping bag, just a tarp.
“People that we talked to you described him as capable, some described him as moderately capable, and some described him as not totally experienced to go into wilderness, so I don’t know where he fits, to what category,” said Ritchie.
Friends have launched an online appeal for help from others planning on hiking the area at http://www.MissingTylerWright.blogspot.com with a photo of Wright taken the afternoon he went missing.
“Anyone planning on hiking in the Indian Arm, Squamish River, Pitt Lake or Widegdon Creek areas please keep your eyes open for Tyler,” states the site.
“By no means are we encouraging people to search in areas they are not comfortable or equipped to travel through. If you happen to be in the above areas, please comment on this blog where you have been in as much detail as possible.”
Wright is described as six feet, four inches tall, with a shaved head, wearing a green T-shirt, black fleece, green toque and grey pants.
Anyone with information is asked to contact RCMP at 604 892-6100 or 911.Aug 27, 2010 at 11:17 am #1640999
Jeffs ElevenBPL Member
SuperUltraLighters are ruining BackpackingAug 27, 2010 at 1:00 pm #1641023
Talk about jumping to conclusions, there's nothing in that story that could lead you to the conclusion that (a) he's even hurt/dead and (b) that his gear had anything to do with it. He could have just taken off or he could have had a heart attack. There's no way to know at this point.
Also, the story makes it sound like he went off into the woods with nothing, but in that picture he clearly has an entire pack of who knows what with him. His pack looks as big or bigger than most of the packs you see here on BPL, but the story makes it sound like he shoved a few bread crumbs in his pocket and took off for a hike.
In any event, I hope for the best. And if not, wish his family well.Aug 27, 2010 at 1:04 pm #1641025
Piper S.BPL Member
@sbhikesLocale: Santa Barbara (Name: Diane)
Yeah, I was going to say that if they haven't found them yet, how does anybody know what he actually brought or even if he is still on the trail.Aug 27, 2010 at 1:28 pm #1641035
Steven HanlonBPL Member
@asciibaronLocale: Mid Atlantic
i have no idea what the trail is like up there, but after 10 days, i hope for his safe recovery.Aug 27, 2010 at 4:05 pm #1641071
For another take on that :
FrancoAug 27, 2010 at 5:24 pm #1641094
1. He didnt take a sleeping bag … Just a tarp … In the pnw thus aint enough unless u wanna play bear gryllis
2. There was no safety margins for food on an offbeat trail that i dont believe sees much traffic
3. Not everyone carries spot or plb when they hike … But its something to seriously consider when soloing despite the weight
4. As noted the scary thing is that the gear doesnt look totally unlike what some would carry here … And he doesnt seem totally inexperienced
hopefully hes somewhere sipping coffee right now … But after 10 days …
If yr soloing light make sure u know what can happen, have enough of a safety margin … Or at least have a locatorAug 27, 2010 at 5:42 pm #1641098
drowning in spamMember
They said he didn't bring a sleeping bag. Maybe he brought a quilt?Aug 27, 2010 at 6:54 pm #1641110
Since people cannot be bother reading up first, this is from my link :
"Family and friends said 35-year-old Wright is an adventurous, physically fit and smart man. He’s been hiking on his own for decades said friend Evian MacMillan. “He has shelter and sleeping equipment with him.”
FrancoAug 27, 2010 at 8:46 pm #1641134
Different sources say different things …
1. They found a camp fire they believe to be his …
2. Theres been a camp fire ban in effect for most of bc … This has just recently been lifted … The fires were so bad that they were issuing health warnings about the smoke in the prairies
now why would someone experienced start a fire in the middle of a fire ban … Most likely because the person was cold …
Only time will tell the outcomeAug 30, 2010 at 12:35 am #1641512
Dan DurstonBPL Member
It looks like the search for Tyler has been called off. This sure is a weird/sad situation.Aug 31, 2010 at 9:00 am #1641831
hopefully there's a resolution … the summer weather is over with dropping temps and heavy rain starting …
Search for missing camper suspended
Date: Sunday Aug. 29, 2010 8:20 PM PT
After an intensive 12-day rescue effort, authorities have suspended the search for missing hiker Tyler Wright.
The decision was made on Sunday night after a final day of searching rocky West Coast mountain terrain turned up no sign of the 35-year-old.
Authorities say outstanding search tasks will still be completed, weather permitting, and Wright's missing person case will remain active.
A total of 111 areas were scoured, covering 200 square kilometers of terrain. Rescue teams and volunteers spent a combined 5,000 hours searching on the ground and several more in helicopters.
Wright was last seen on Aug. 10, when he headed out onto the trail alone.
****Squamish RCMP say he is not an experienced mountain hiker and did not take a sleeping bag, tent or compass with him into the woods.****
Wright had planned on hiking overland to the Coquitlam area in four or five days. He was reported missing on Aug. 18, and search crews have been looking for him ever since.
Mounties say Wright's family has asked for privacy, but will make a statement in time.Aug 31, 2010 at 11:28 am #1641881
Well, I'm still hoping for the best. After this length of time and the intensity of the search, it seems unlikely that he will be found alive. Still, he may still be alive and lost or he may have run away. Just look up the name Carolyn Dorn. She was hiding in the Gila Wilderness for 40 days and nights.
Still, I think we should all hold our assessments until AFTER he has been located one way or another.
For one thing, all these reports seem to disagree about his level of experience and what he was carrying with him. Yet, if you go to the blog site with pictures of him backpacking, he (a) looks pretty comfortable in the backcountry and (b) clearly has more gear with him than is listed in the "gear lists." For instance, in this picture he has several items that aren't listed and seems to be quite at ease in his surroundings.
****Squamish RCMP say he is not an experienced mountain hiker and did not take a sleeping bag, tent or compass with him into the woods.****
With all due respect to the RCMP, I'm not sure what one must do to become an "experienced mountain hiker."
And if a person has backpacking with a tarp, then to say that they don't have a tent doesn't make much sense. Also, it just doesn't make a lot of sense to me that a guy with trekking poles, dehydrated meals, multiple layers of clothing, ziplock bags and stuff sacks, etc. wouldn't have a sleeping bad or quilt of some sort. And finally, until they find him and check his pack, who knows whether he has a map and compass with him? I wear my compass under my shirt on a lanyard or in my pack. How would anybody else know that except MAYBE my girlfriend.
In any event, until he's found, we're all just guessing and speculating based on VERY questionable news reports. I don't have a "horse in this race," but I think it's a mistake to jump to conclusions.Aug 31, 2010 at 11:35 am #1641885
Travis LeannaBPL Member
+1 to Thomas's post.
And why all the hubub about his gear? They can't even find him. A person could take 100 pounds of the most bomber gear in the world and still get lost and die. I don't think his tent or tarp told him how to get lost.Sep 2, 2010 at 6:36 am #1642492
this isnt some walk in the park … it's a rarely travelled backcountry alpine bushwhack in a westcoast rainforest with glaciers, streams, scrambling, gullies,etc …
the SAR teams at times couldnt move more than 3 km per day … and this is in optimal weather conditions in the middle of summer
if you're going out on this kind of endeavor alone make sure you
1. bring what you need
2. bring a bit more in case something happens
3. bring something that will help someone locate you
4. leave a detailed itinerary with someone with exact checkpoints
it's that simple
backpack light … don't backpack unsafe … not just for yourself … but for the SAR teams that need to look for you
getting lost can be survivable …. even getting hurt as well .. with luck, the right skills and the right equipment …
list of equipment from the family's site …
A reminder of the items Tyler has with him:
1. white t-shirt
2. green shirt
3. black fleece
4. grey pants
5. black backpack
6. blue puff jacket
7. tarp (color maybe blue?)
8. green toque
9. cook pot
10. trekking poles
11. red nalgene
12. orange socks
13. black sandals
14. black, grey and orange Nike (size 16)
from the Province …
"The problem for Watt and the dozens of volunteer searchers who have set out daily for more than a week is that the 35-year-old Vancouver man went alone into the mountains without a map or a compass.
Worse still, he had no set plan on where he was going.
"The intent was that he was going to have a four-or-five-day spiritual experience in the forest," said Watt Saturday. "His words were, 'I was looking for God to direct me.' "
Watt said the fact that Wright didn't have a firm idea of where he was going is a big part of the problem for searchers.
"He had a rudimentary concept of the area and the mountain ranges from Google Earth," said Watt.
"His friend tried to convince him, 'Please have a trail to do,' " said Watt. "When they parted, there were three ideas that Tyler had."
One was to go via Boise Ridge and come out in the Pitt River area.
Another was to go on what's called the Fool's Gold Trail, a rough route that comes out at Widgeon Landing, Coquitlam.
The third was to head south and "hit salt water" at Indian Arm, north of Deep Cove.
from the northshore news …
The major challenge for the teams was not so much the size of the area as it was the nature of the terrain, said Jones. The landscape in that region includes dense, tangled forest, steep canyons, alpine areas and even glaciers. At times, teams were moving as slowly as three km a day, pushing their way through dense vegetation while at the same time trying to keep their eyes open for signs of the hiker's passage. Helicopters leapfrogged volunteers from spot to spot in an effort to establish Wright's route. Adding to the challenge, communications and the movement of aircraft were frequently hindered by low cloud, said Jones.
Wright, an experienced hiker, was well supplied with food and had studied the area before setting out on his excursion. The region has also seen relatively warm weather at lower elevations, said Jones. On the down side, he was wearing relatively light clothing and appears not to have taken a compass or map with him. Also, his garments were green, grey and black, meaning rescuers would have trouble spotting him even if they were nearby.Sep 2, 2010 at 11:22 am #1642558
I don't think anybody disagrees about the general tenants of safe travel in the back country. Yes, a prudent/responsible person travelling in that type of terrain should leave a route plan, have signalling devises, etc.
The problem I have with entire story and some of these posts is with the assumptions that are being made in the telling of the story. Half of the reports seem to say he's an inexperienced and unprepared, while the other half say: "Wright, an experienced hiker, was well supplied with food and had studied the area before setting out on his excursion." Which is it???
Also, the "gear list" seems to be simply based on the items that can be seen in a few pictures. Until he is found, nobody will know what he was actually carrying with him at the time AND nobody will know if the gear he had played ANY role in this situation.
Regardless, trying to draw any concrete lessons or morals from this story at this point, based on what is actually known, is just not helpful. The only thing I can draw from this story are the following: If any of us here on BPL go missing on a trip, there will be rampant, uninformed speculation in the press/web forums about our (a) level of experience, (b) the quality and weight of our gear, and (c) route decisions.
On the other hand, if somebody drives their car into a ditch and is stuck there for several days before they are found, none of these types of statements will be made even if there is an equally exhaustive/expensive search. Would anybody ask why the driver didn't have a SPOT locator or leave a route plan? Why didn't the driver where brighter colors? This actually can happen too, it happened to my former neighbor who was trapped in a ditch for several days.
Are situations like this awful? Yes, of course they're terrible. That said, how many busy highways or dangerous neighborhoods do EMTs, fire, police, etc. have to enter and deal with every day? Perhaps we should shut down all the highways and place everybody in hamster balls to keep them safe.
I guess I'm just sick of the fear-mongering and finger pointing when there's such a limited amount of real, accurate information provided on this case.Sep 2, 2010 at 12:09 pm #1642567
Its not fear mongering or finger pointing to say simply that
– you should carry gear adequate to your situation
– you should have a buffer if soloing in rugges backcountry
– its a good idea to have a way to be located
– have a detailed plan of yr trip with someone
im just sick of seeing people here say dont bring this or that .. Sure thatll work on a well traveles trail or if yr as skilled as skurka
for some its dangerous advice
light … Not unsafeSep 3, 2010 at 11:42 am #1642833
For the Nth time, those are pretty basic, widely agreed upon tenants of back country travel, BUT at this point there is no way to know if your points have anything to do with what has happened to this young man.
Since you now admit that you have an Ax to grind, you should have have either (a) waited until the facts of the case become clear or (b) started a thread without making reference to a person is missing. And, if you are "sick of seeing people here say dont bring this or that," than why not just respond in that thread?
If the week you or I were to go missing, do you think it would make any sense for people here on BPL to start making uniformed judgments about your gear selections or level of experience, based on contradicting news reports? "Yup – he should have been carrying a signal flare and worn a camo Snuggy." "That guy was unprepared, he should have carried a tarp to put over his tent and then dug a moat."
The funny thing is that you might even be right in your assessment. BUT, there's just no way to know at this point. Trying to make this connection with what is known right now is pretty pointless.
Anyway have a great long weekend everybody!!! Get out there!Sep 3, 2010 at 6:34 pm #1642902
the only axe to grind is to stay safe … regardless of weight … if you call that an axe sure …. ill grind that all day long
its funny how there isn't too much on here about safety, accident reports and analysis, etc …
on climbing sites those incidents are gone through with a fine tooth comb … we'll make assumptions if we have to, sometimes the physical evidence is never found …
because at the end of the day climbing is a dangerous sport and it's all about making decisions about the risk/reward gain
and yes we are gear whores as much as BPL … but when we cut weight we knowingly make that risk analysisSep 3, 2010 at 7:28 pm #1642920
The problem here is that you and some others have automatically assumed that the cause is "unpreparedness" particularly regarding his gear.
What has since transpired is that the guy is not exactly inexperienced.
As a matter of fact a lot of experience climbers and adventurers have died with the right gear and after many years of practice. Accidents do happen.
FrancoSep 3, 2010 at 7:37 pm #1642923
i agree accidents do happen … and a rock falling on yr head can kill you no matter what … of course having a helmet helps … so does avoiding areas of high rockfall
that being said … i suspect not too many deaths happen directly from the accident itself … but rather from what decisions were made before and the actions after …
in the former equipment and preparation helps … in the latter skills and experience
fall down a ravine on a trail and break a leg? … PLB, shelter, fire and a bit of extra food can save yr life … as long as you stay calm and know what to do…
fall into a stream and go hypthermic? … pray you can start a fire … or packed a sleeping bag that stayed dry …
etc … just as it's not earthquakes that kill most people but rather the lack of building codes or response … i think a lot of "accidents" can be survived …
you could of course prove me wrong by showing mosts accidents are fatal …Sep 3, 2010 at 8:29 pm #1642933
This has nothing to do with proving someone right or wrong, it has to do with you assuming that the problem with Taylor is him being unprepared.
Last year a mate of mine was out of contact in Alaska during a snow storm, in Feb , bad enough not allow satellite phones to work. All sorts of assumptions were made and in fact about the only two that go it right were me ( I have known him for over twenty years) and the race organiser (Bill Merchant) who himself was stuck in the storm and out of contact for a couple of days.
BTW, I have no clue about what has happened to Taylor, but neither does anyone else, including you.
I just feel that your assumption are an insult towards someone that you do not know. Same as it happened to my mate who had done survival courses with the Israeli Army, with Bill Merchant himself (in Alaska) trekked in Scandinavia ,by himself, for months (in winter) spent 3 years guiding in Nepal and six months in Antarctica, yet everyone "knew" that he had to be a fool for being in his predicament. BTW he is just back from another adventure trip and he is doing very well…
FrancoSep 3, 2010 at 8:39 pm #1642934
Perhaps, this is NOT fundamentally an issue about experience or equipment.
As analytical beings, we naturally attempt to dissect the factors of any situation to which we relate. Bottom line: we attempt to explain to ourselves conclusively what went wrong & why. If we can identify something we perceive to be an error or omission by the individual who was injured, lost or whatever (. . . fired, divorced, diagnosed, etc.), we can convince ourselves that we are safe. We believe we would never have done the thing that we determine to be the critical “error.” Since we would have . . . (fill in the blank) left an exact plan, carried a certain piece of equipment, or whatever . . . that the same outcome could never happen to us.
Basically, at the risk of causing offense, isn’t this really "magical thinking"? As children we are told we have to look both ways before crossing the street in order not to be hit by a car. In one lesson after another, we are taught early that, if we do everything right, we will be safe.
Would that it were so. The reality is that “stuff happens.” A highly experienced & equipped hiker can prepare perfectly — and still encounter a serious mishap. Our need to assure ourselves that we are not vulnerable to trouble leads us to find fault, to attribute blame.
Rather than judge, let’s re-dedicate our energy to further raising awareness of safety equipment, trail difficulty levels, self-help rescue procedures, whatever. Is there an organization that could make available an affordable, pack of approved small, lightweight emergency essentials, including a locator, and distribute them through retail outfitters (or, “lend” them to hikers for a deposit)? Can you assist in facilitating the safety of future hikers based on your passion? Is there a way to generate a positive outcome to a potentially tragic situation?
(There you go: there is my magical thinking. If you feel the need to criticize, you can attack my naiveté. Just, please, hold positive thoughts for Tyler’s return.)
We would be most grateful. Thank you.Sep 3, 2010 at 8:48 pm #1642937
"I just feel that your assumption are an insult towards someone that you do not know. "
you can say im insulting all you want …
the simple facts are that
1. the person disappeared
2. most sources agree that he did not have adequate gear … and that doesnt mean having ultralight gear as being inadequate
3. his experience in back country mountainous trails is questionable according to some reports
4. proper precautions for a solo rugged hike were not taken such as detailed iteneraries, emergency device, most sources say he did not have a map or compass, etc …
5. this has been the largest search in BC history and likely one of the costlier ones all in the middle of the peak outdoor season
if you think it insulting for me to suggest having the proper gear and preparation before hiking solo in this environment … so be it
i seriously hope he's OK …Sep 3, 2010 at 8:54 pm #1642939
"Perhaps, this is NOT fundamentally an issue about experience or equipment.
Basically, at the risk of causing offense, isn’t this really "magical thinking"? As children we are told we have to look both ways before crossing the street in order not to be hit by a car. In one lesson after another, we are taught early that, if we do everything right, we will be safe."
it might not be … but then theres a reason why we look both ways before crossing …
you could do everything right and still have issues …
but that's no reason not to try to figure out what can be done to control the risks and prevent future incidents
hopefully he's alright …
im not going to post anymore on the subject save for the news article where there's hopefully a good resolution
hopefully anyone reading this thread will take the proper precautions on their trips
thanks and best wishes
You must be logged in to reply to this topic.