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  1. #1
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    mountain biker froze to death, sad story

    I don't know if this has been posted before.
    Too much passion and poor decisions could kill you.
    Very sad story that just happened last weekend.

    CORONA: Widow angry at delay in search for mountain biker | Corona, Norco, Eastvale News | PE.com

    We all can learn from this. Never underestimate the mountain, be prepared.
    Be safe out there.

  2. #2
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    Sad story, but in perspective, that was not a good day to go out in the local mountains. I didn't go back out until yesterday and conditions were still marginal.
    I used to jog but the ice cubes kept falling out of my glass. - David Lee Roth

  3. #3
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    Read it a couple days ago, very sad. Don't know if his battery died or just lost reception, but my phone fully charged is something I will keep an eye on.

  4. #4
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    A sad story for sure... but I have to say I see a whole lot of finger pointing at people who weren't to blame. A little more thought put into the gear he was taking with him probably would have saved him... let's not mention postponing the trip.
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  5. #5
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    Yeah...as a rescuer myself it sucks when conditions prevent you from going out and searching for a lost person. However, if conditions are that poor, you have to consider the safety of many over trying find/save just one.

    And I'm sure that the mountain biker figured like many of us do...I've been there, done that...no reason to think I can't do it again. Well, stuff happens and you gotta be prepared. An 80 mile loop on a mountain bike in what I presume is fairly rugged area is nothing to take lightly...and in marginal weather to boot.

  6. #6
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    This is a very tragic story indeed.

    I get that the rider was ill prepared. Definitely shouldn't be out there if your safety could be compromised. That said, it didn't seem like finding him was too hard. I mean if a small group of volunteers was able to find him in 6 hours, having more support could have saved his life.

    Again, clearly you should be prepared but if it wasn't that hard to find him, would it have been so bad to utilize more resources? We have people that do snow rescue where it's much colder and visibility is much less, I think people can go out with flashlights in rainy conditions, ya?

  7. #7
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    Yeah, this is pretty sad. I'm not going to bash the widow for her thoughts on the rescue - I don't blame her for feeling the way she does. I ride solo a lot and that takes just a little bit more preparation and planning than group riding. You and you alone are responsible for your actions and safety. You can't rely on others to get you out of a jam. Part of this philosophy is making good decisions, chief among them is knowing the weather and acting accordingly. If there's going to be bad weather on the day of the ride then you either cancel, change the time of the ride to miss the weather or go somewhere else where weather won't be an issue.

    I found it strange that he died on the bike. I get it, he was probably getting hypothermic and losing judgement but damn, get off the bike and hunker down, man.

    Unless there's some sort of review that says otherwise I'll support the search and rescue team's decision and take them at their word. There must have been good reason for not conducting the search. They're trained and dedicated professionals and you have to really try to see the situation from their point of view.
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  8. #8
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    Sorry, have to agree sad, but not the sheriffs/rescuers fault. Seriously, who would plan to go out for 9 hours without even food, let alone a rain jacket and other "maybe" things?
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  9. #9
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    Given his confused and disoriented state when he called his wife I wonder if he'd crashed and was suffering concussion symptoms. Hypothermia can cause similar symptoms though, so who's to say? That's the thing that a lot of people don't get about hypothermia is that it doesn't have to be that cold to die from it. 40-45 degrees F and wet for several hours is plenty cold to kill.

    Sad story. As one who also rides solo in remote locations (and has crashed and been disoriented from a concussion) it really made me take a little re-assessment of my preparedness level.
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  10. #10
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    First off, let me say that I am extremely saddened by the story, and the loss of another biking enthusiast. I know that the saying "He died doing what he loved" might be said here, but it simply isn't true. He died by freezing to death, and that probably wasn't what he loved doing.

    All the talk leaning towards blaming the rescue crews is a little disturbing to me. In the end, we are all responsible for our own safety, and when that fails, it is the duty of family, friends, and community to take over. If there is an official government agency that can help, that is great, but it isn't the job of the government to bail us out, or hold our hand, etc. Each man has to be responsible for himself.

    Thoughts and prayers to the family, and those affected.
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  11. #11
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    Sad indeed. This has certainly got me rethinking some of my own future rides and how prepared I am in case of mishap. Usually a minimalist but not anymore! Did a ride yesterday and the boulders that had fallen onto the trail were plain scary!

  12. #12
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    his being purple and still on the bike suggests something swift rather than hypothermia as that would have forced him off his bike.
    living in the blue mountains here in aus and my housemate is a member of the rural fire service. The number of people each year that get caught out is pretty amazing. to try and mitigate it the blue mountains council rent out epirbs if you are going out so if something should happen. Response time is a hell of a lot faster than waiting beyond a certain time.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Luis M. View Post
    Sad indeed. This has certainly got me rethinking some of my own future rides and how prepared I am in case of mishap. Usually a minimalist but not anymore! Did a ride yesterday and the boulders that had fallen onto the trail were plain scary!
    This is how I feel. I'm not exactly a minimalist, in fact I think I pack more than I need. In the future when I'm debating whether or not to bring that extra layer I'll opt to bring it regardless.

    Condolences to the deceased. It's interesting how he was found on the bike. Without knowing the terrain and conditions I wouldn't point any fingers at S&R. They want to head out there and find you safe as much as we want to ride.

  14. #14
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    Sad story but Id rather die clipped in than waste away in a hospital bed. His family can take solace knowing he passed doing what he loves.
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeffw-13 View Post
    Sad story but Id rather die clipped in than waste away in a hospital bed. His family can take solace knowing he passed doing what he loves.
    I was just going to say basically the same thing! It is sad but I can think of a lot worse ways to pass.

  16. #16
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    I read this yesterday and have been pondering it and considering my near misses that could have turned catastrophic.

    Anyone can read and plan, but without more experience it really is hard to know what "being prepared" really means. And "experience" isn't just years of enjoying an activity or living in an area. Sometimes it takes a few near misses or mishaps to make even the most avid enthusiast realize how far bad a normal scenario can turn. Even with that realization, though, the individual weighs their options to "bring everything" or travel light. Maybe this guy pushed his luck too far. Maybe he's never had a mishap in all his years outdoors. Maybe when he left the house he really thought he was up for the challenge. It certainly is a sad story, but it will likely encourage others to evaluate their own situations more critically.

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  17. #17
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    The guy was incredibly foolish and woefully underprepared for his trip. It's completely absurd to blame the search and rescue team for his death.

    But I'm going to take a contrarian viewpoint about the so-called search and rescue team. I think it is a really valid point that if six volunteers can go out into the darkness and find him without any trouble, then why couldn't the official search and rescue team? I have to question their commitment. What is the point of having a search and rescue team that won't even search much less rescue? If you won't do the job when it needs doing, then clearly this isn't a job for you. Obviously, there are at least six volunteers who are willing to do the job, because they are the ones who did it. So maybe they should be the new search and rescue team for Riverside County?

  18. #18
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    Tragic tale. A 10 oz rain coat and a lighter might have saved his life. I always plan for what if. An extra food bar and an extra layer is always with me. I have used my compass, lighter, knife and duct tape on different rides.

  19. #19
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    Re: mountain biker froze to death, sad story

    Quote Originally Posted by mr_spin View Post
    The guy was incredibly foolish and woefully underprepared for his trip. It's completely absurd to blame the search and rescue team for his death.

    But I'm going to take a contrarian viewpoint about the so-called search and rescue team. I think it is a really valid point that if six volunteers can go out into the darkness and find him without any trouble, then why couldn't the official search and rescue team? I have to question their commitment. What is the point of having a search and rescue team that won't even search much less rescue? If you won't do the job when it needs doing, then clearly this isn't a job for you. Obviously, there are at least six volunteers who are willing to do the job, because they are the ones who did it. So maybe they should be the new search and rescue team for Riverside County?
    Until you're the one making the calls for the SAR team, I wouldn't question it too much. The guy who made the call has to weigh the risk of endangering his team to the possibilities of finding who they are looking for.

    As much as some people don't like it, they have no legal obligation to help someone and do it out of their own kindness.

    If I was making the calls and it looked like there was a good chance my team would get hurt, I would make the same call.


    Kudos to the volunteers for doing something. We don't know enough to determine however if the "ease" of finding the missing biker had anything to do with something other than luck. Since no one was with him we can't know if he would have been found in time had a team found him sooner.

    It is a tragedy and I feel for his family, but the fault lays squarely on his own decisions and unpreparedness.
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  20. #20
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    it's a tragic death.

    there is no place to hide from the wet (rain or splatter) on a bike. being wet increases the effect of wind chill exponentially. so once your so cold you are shivering, you cannot get the legs pumping enough blood to raise your core temperature without the cold wet wind bleeding it all away. no matter how warm it is, if i'm going out for the day, a wind/rain layer (thin and nearly weightless will do!) is ALWAYS a layer I carry. and if you are riding in an area where the local search and rescue is afraid of bad weather conditions, i'd carry even more.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tomahawk3Niner View Post
    Until you're the one making the calls for the SAR team, I wouldn't question it too much. The guy who made the call has to weigh the risk of endangering his team to the possibilities of finding who they are looking for.

    As much as some people don't like it, they have no legal obligation to help someone and do it out of their own kindness.

    If I was making the calls and it looked like there was a good chance my team would get hurt, I would make the same call.


    Kudos to the volunteers for doing something. We don't know enough to determine however if the "ease" of finding the missing biker had anything to do with something other than luck. Since no one was with him we can't know if he would have been found in time had a team found him sooner.

    It is a tragedy and I feel for his family, but the fault lays squarely on his own decisions and unpreparedness.
    Again, the fault is his. No question. No disagreement whatsoever. But I still question the point of having a SAR team that won't SAR. Yes, there is risk, but everyone volunteers for SAR. No one is forced to do it. You know the risk when you signed up for the job, and you know the day might come when you will be called on to take that risk. If you aren't willing to do it, then stop pretending, because I'd rather have no SAR team than have one that only goes out when there is no risk. Because, what's the difference?

  22. #22
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    Re: mountain biker froze to death, sad story

    Quote Originally Posted by mr_spin View Post
    Again, the fault is his. No question. No disagreement whatsoever. But I still question the point of having a SAR team that won't SAR. Yes, there is risk, but everyone volunteers for SAR. No one is forced to do it. You know the risk when you signed up for the job, and you know the day might come when you will be called on to take that risk. If you aren't willing to do it, then stop pretending, because I'd rather have no SAR team than have one that only goes out when there is no risk. Because, what's the difference?
    There is always a risk. It just depends on how bad. Sending a team in, if it looked almost certain that they would get lost in a blizzard for example, would be dumb.

    I can't speak to what the conditions were on this mountain because I don't know, but if a trained SAR team calls off because it's too dangerous I'm not going to call them pointless for it.

    I can't imagine the decision was made lightly. The kind of people who do SAR aren't the kind of people that will just let someone who needs help go with out it for no good reason.
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  23. #23
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    Sad story, and my thoughts go out to his family. I always carry a bag of the "10 Essentials" in my Camelbak, and I always pack at least a windshirt as an extra layer (and a puffy if its cold out) in my pack. I've also gotten in the habit of sending a txt message to a friend if I'm riding solo, letting them know where I'm riding and when I expect to return. It doesn't take much to turn a fun ride into an epic, or worse...

  24. #24
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    For those judging the rescuers;

    First rule of rescue - As a rescuer, do not put yourself into a position that you will have to be rescued.

    Don't make things worse -- Granted it is not the same situation, the rules apply the same

    The heart-breaking decision to suspend rescue operations knowing someone may be trapped in the rubble of a collapsed building as happened in Elliot Lake, Ont. is among the hardest for first responders to make, experts said Tuesday.

    At the same time, they said, their top priority must be to ensure that rescuers dont add to the tragedy by themselves becoming casualties.

    Its the most difficult thing for a first responder to cease operations because its not what we do, its not what we want to do, said Jim Young, who heads up the urban search and rescue task force in Vancouver.


    It is sad. I don't know why he went out seemingly so under prepared. Wishes to the surviving family.
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  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by mr_spin View Post
    Again, the fault is his. No question. No disagreement whatsoever. But I still question the point of having a SAR team that won't SAR. Yes, there is risk, but everyone volunteers for SAR. No one is forced to do it. You know the risk when you signed up for the job, and you know the day might come when you will be called on to take that risk. If you aren't willing to do it, then stop pretending, because I'd rather have no SAR team than have one that only goes out when there is no risk. Because, what's the difference?
    People can't count on Search and Rescue because they have to weigh a variety of factors when deciding on when to head out. If you head out to something in the outdoors in rough terrain don't expect them to come and rescue you. But Search and Rescue teams get people out of jams all the time, you know that. So having these resources is well worth it.

    They are not pretending, I couldn't disagree more with that statement. They are dedicated individuals, many of whom are volunteers but they are not under any obligation to risk their lives - that has never been part of the job description. They do go out with some risk but at the same time they will mitigate that risk and if they determine conditions are too severe then they will make the call to stay grounded.
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  26. #26
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    "cellphone extreme athletes", the people who don't need training, skills, proper gear, or proper precaution because if they get in trouble they'll just call for help on their cellphone.
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  27. #27
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    Very sad news. I would be angry with the SAR team as well. Conditions clearly were not so bad no one could go out looking for the guy...his wife and some volenteers did it and they are not trained professionals. I don't think the SAR team are to blame in anyway...this guy made a mistake going out in bad conditions, unprepared and paid with his life. Totally his fault. But if the wife and her friends can do it...so can SAR.

  28. #28
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    Re: mountain biker froze to death, sad story

    Quote Originally Posted by motomuppet View Post
    Very sad news. I would be angry with the SAR team as well. Conditions clearly were not so bad no one could go out looking for the guy...his wife and some volenteers did it and they are not trained professionals. I don't think the SAR team are to blame in anyway...this guy made a mistake going out in bad conditions, unprepared and paid with his life. Totally his fault. But if the wife and her friends can do it...so can SAR.
    I reread the article and it sounds to me like the wife and other volunteers went out early the next morning. If that's the case they could have been in better weather. In cases like this... Once night came if he didn't have a fire his chances of survival are damn slim.

    All this blaming the SAR team... Not sure why anyone would want to do it if they are going to be blamed for someone else's bad decisions and bad luck.

    Wife would have more room to complain if they went out when SAR first called it off. But still...
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  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tomahawk3Niner View Post
    I reread the article and it sounds to me like the wife and other volunteers went out early the next morning. If that's the case they could have been in better weather. In cases like this... Once night came if he didn't have a fire his chances of survival are damn slim.

    All this blaming the SAR team... Not sure why anyone would want to do it if they are going to be blamed for someone else's bad decisions and bad luck.

    Wife would have more room to complain if they went out when SAR first called it off. But still...
    I dunno...while I totally agree blaming the SAR team makes little sense, put yourself in the wifes shoes...your partner is out there and the professionals call of the search on sat night. You get organised with some kit and some mates and head out at 3:45am sunday morning...thats the middle of the night, and we dont know what time the search was called of on Sat night...could have been 11:59pm for all we know. So she sets off with mates and they find her husband dead. There were probably several hours wasted when the search was called off while she argued with the SAR team, and went to make preperations of her own when they would not help. If they had continued the search the outcome may have been different and he may have been found alive. A lot of if's but as his wife can you imagine how frustrating that would be. Like I said, I dont think it is the SAR's fault he died...that was all his fault and responsibility, but as his partner I would be pretty mad at the SAR.

    It is a tough call to stop searching for someone, and I respect that. You have to look out for the search crew's safety as well. In this case, looking at it from the wifes perspective, it was the wrong call. Obviously, it could have gone the otherway as well. Had the SAR team gone looking for him and one or more of the search team were injured, well, it would have been deemed foolish to go out there in those conditions. Tough call, but like I said, if I were in her shoes, i would be pretty angry with the SAR team.

  30. #30
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    Definitely a sad story.

    It's so easy to get so far off the beaten path in such a short time on a mountain bike. Sometimes a simple part malfunction can lead to a really bad situation...especially in cold/wet weather.

    Broken chain? What if your chain tool breaks while repairing, it's 1 hour till dark, and you're 10 miles from the trail head?

    It's so tempting to travel light and fast, and it's easy to forget how far from help you actually are.

    I've had some close calls, my light weight essentials list is as follows:
    -2 tubes.
    -Patch kit
    -Super Glue
    -Pump
    -Shell layer
    -Multi-tool
    -Energy bar
    -Small LED light
    -Small strip of duct tape.

    Some lessons I've learned:
    -Never cross a sloped snow field in the spring, ever. I nearly ended it in a pile of scree, when I didn't, it was still a 1.5 hour hike back up.
    -Never go on an epic loop when there is rain in the forecast.
    -Never descend more than 50 feet down something you can't ride back up.
    -Always let someone know where you're going, and when you plan to return. Confirm with them when you've returned.

    And I still know that I'm woefully unprepared for a crash/injury. Or some types of mechanical issues.

  31. #31
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    I'm not sure where you get "all the talk leaning towards blaming the rescue crew" is coming from. My post was the only post that questioned it.

    That said, I get that if conditions were "safe" to go out and look for him, then they would have done it. My logic is questioning the lack of going out is that it only took 6 hours for non professionals to find the body, I could only imagine if there were more resources he could have been saved.

    I never said that search and rescue is to blame or that they are at fault. I'm saying that IF they were deployed, SINCE 6 inexperienced search and rescue members were able to find him in that short period of time, then maybe he would have had a chance to survive if more resources were allocated to the search and rescue.

    Nobody is saying it is anybody's official job to "bail us out" but at the same time, I've seen search and rescue go out for less. For instance, a back country skier who goes out of bounds and hasn't been seen for a few hours, a loved one reports it and I know that patrols go out (in the dark and in the snow).

    Clearly if I haven't said it enough, it's up to yourself to get out of trouble and to be prepared, but it seems to me that in this case, someone potentially could have been saved without exerting too many resources.

  32. #32
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    Its easy to Monday morning Quarterback what the SAR Team "coulda, shoulda, woulda" done, but none of us were there that night to know the conditions, SAR Team members are VOLUNTEERS, and the first rule of being a Rescuer is to not become a casualty yourself. SAR Teams work with a plan, and if that plan cannot be safely implemented then the search is delayed until it can be implemented. The non-professional "rescuers" were just wandering around in pairs and probably just got lucky in stumbling across him. I wonder how it would have played out had one of the would be rescuers been injured or killed?
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    Quote Originally Posted by kjlued View Post
    ... your idea of technical may be much different than other peoples idea of technical.

  33. #33
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    Sad story, but to be honest the guy sounds pretty dopey, theres basic things you need to take out on any ride, whether riding in snow, cold, heat or just a normal ride.
    If he had been a bit smarter he would be alive today.
    Id put this down to natural selection...
    Dont ever let the truth get in the way of a funny story....

  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tomahawk3Niner View Post
    We don't know enough to determine however if the "ease" of finding the missing biker had anything to do with something other than luck.
    Yes, we do. The volunteers simply went up his planned loop in reverse and found him on the main road.


    Tone's, I think your honesty is a little much. The contributing or causing factors are more than obvious in this case. Just because you can post something doesn't mean you should. Think for a minute about Andre's family members reading this. Thanks.

  35. #35
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    This story reminds me of what happened to Evan Tanner, UFC guy. Died alone in the heat. He was also new to riding. (dirt bike) You wouldn't paddle out on an overhead day as a newb surfer. People don't realize the dangers on land the same way.

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by brentos View Post
    Definitely a sad story.

    It's so easy to get so far off the beaten path in such a short time on a mountain bike. Sometimes a simple part malfunction can lead to a really bad situation...especially in cold/wet weather.

    Broken chain? What if your chain tool breaks while repairing, it's 1 hour till dark, and you're 10 miles from the trail head?

    It's so tempting to travel light and fast, and it's easy to forget how far from help you actually are.

    I've had some close calls, my light weight essentials list is as follows:
    -2 tubes.
    -Patch kit
    -Super Glue
    -Pump
    -Shell layer
    -Multi-tool
    -Energy bar
    -Small LED light
    -Small strip of duct tape.

    Some lessons I've learned:
    -Never cross a sloped snow field in the spring, ever. I nearly ended it in a pile of scree, when I didn't, it was still a 1.5 hour hike back up.
    -Never go on an epic loop when there is rain in the forecast.
    -Never descend more than 50 feet down something you can't ride back up.
    -Always let someone know where you're going, and when you plan to return. Confirm with them when you've returned.

    And I still know that I'm woefully unprepared for a crash/injury. Or some types of mechanical issues.
    Decent list but nowadays it is just plain stupid to go on a long bike ride without an external battery charger for your cellphone. A really solid one can be had for $25-40 and does not take up much space or add much weight.

    There are hundreds of incredibly useful survival apps available for smartphones which more people need to be aware of. How to build a shelter, how to stay warm, how to tell where you are, etc, etc can all be found on a decent survival app.

    Hell, the lightest external battery charger available could weigh 10 pounds and I'd still be packing it every time I go on a long ride

  37. #37
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    We could go on all day about what could have been different, but the focus for all of us should be what we can do to stay as safe as possible. Calling the guy "dopey" and a result of "natural selection" is a ridiculous response (not to mention a complete misunderstanding of natural selection).

  38. #38
    No Stranger to danger....
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    Quote Originally Posted by She&I View Post
    Yes, we do. The volunteers simply went up his planned loop in reverse and found him on the main road.


    Tone's, I think your honesty is a little much. The contributing or causing factors are more than obvious in this case. Just because you can post something doesn't mean you should. Think for a minute about Andre's family members reading this. Thanks.
    I doubt they will be reading this, i did actually think of that as i wrote it, but i understand what your saying, cheers
    Dont ever let the truth get in the way of a funny story....

  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by s0ckeyeus View Post
    We could go on all day about what could have been different, but the focus for all of us should be what we can do to stay as safe as possible. Calling the guy "dopey" and a result of "natural selection" is a ridiculous response (not to mention a complete misunderstanding of natural selection).
    Its a perfect example of Charles Darwins natural selection theory, people just arnt used to hearing it in relation to grown humans, its harsh but true.
    If you got a group of 1000 people to head out on bikes into a possibly life threatening environment only the smartest with the best preparation and the strongest would survive, thus making a stronger,smarter gene pool, its easy to sit around and say poor fellow how sad, but there was many ways he could have avoided this, yes its sad, i feel for his family but its a clear cut case of a lack of thinking on many levels that has led to his death.
    Dont ever let the truth get in the way of a funny story....

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tone's View Post
    Its a perfect example of Charles Darwins natural selection theory, people just arnt used to hearing it in relation to grown humans, its harsh but true.
    If you got a group of 1000 people to head out on bikes into a possibly life threatening environment only the smartest with the best preparation and the strongest would survive, thus making a stronger,smarter gene pool, its easy to sit around and say poor fellow how sad, but there was many ways he could have avoided this, yes its sad, i feel for his family but its a clear cut case of a lack of thinking on many levels that has led to his death.
    Um. No. The guy just made poor decisions. Genetically, he was probably no more disposed to dying in the wilderness than any of the rest of us. But whatever...

  41. #41
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    This is a terribly sad story and there are a LOT of lessons to be learned on many fronts. There will be a significant discussion by the SAR teams and Riverside Sheriff's personnel about the decision making, risk assessment, and other factors in this search.

    Hindsight is always 20-20 and people should be asking what happened and how to avoid it in the future. This certainly applies to SAR personnel and us as individual mountain bikers (or skiers, hikers, climbers, kayakers, etc.).

    Ask yourself, "What would I do if I were forced to spend an unplanned night out?" or "What would I do if my friend were injured?" Apps on phones are great but you shouldn't be relying on them. Phones break, coverage is non-existent, etc.

    Avoid potential problems and take steps to mitigate the risk. Don't hesitate to turn around or stay home. The trail will still be there later when the weather is better. If you go - take the proper equipment and make sure someone knows where you are going and when you'll be back. Have basic navigation skills and info on the area so you can make good decisions on bail out options. Know how to recognize and treat medical emergencies. Take a first aid class. Hypothermia is an insidious killer. It will quickly impact your ability to make good decisions or even recognize that you are in a life-threatening situation. Carry the appropriate tools AND know howto do basic field repairs.

    There are lots of good sources for info (here's one: http://www.mra.org/images/stories/tr...ntrysafety.pdf). Take advantage of the advice a lot of people are sharing. Try some things out BEFORE you need them. See what works for you.

  42. #42
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    Sadly, he was unprepared for things going wrong. As an an old cold weather hiker, backpacker (in my younger days) and rider, I always carry enough stuff to survive an unexpected sleepover or turn in the weather. I feel bad for his family. Let us all take heed and be ready when nature turns unkind.
    Use it, use it, use it while you still have it.

  43. #43
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    The only word I can think of for this situation, regardless or how you look at it, is tragedy. A member of our tribe has fallen. If I could take on the burden of this family's loss, anguish and crushing grief for one second, one minute, one hour, one day, I would.
    Perhaps the lessons learned from his situation may save your life or the life of a loved one some day.
    I would never thought about having a cell phone charger or a light-weight bivy in my pack. Now I know.

  44. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by jerry68 View Post
    Its easy to Monday morning Quarterback what the SAR Team "coulda, shoulda, woulda" done, but none of us were there that night to know the conditions, SAR Team members are VOLUNTEERS, and the first rule of being a Rescuer is to not become a casualty yourself. SAR Teams work with a plan, and if that plan cannot be safely implemented then the search is delayed until it can be implemented. The non-professional "rescuers" were just wandering around in pairs and probably just got lucky in stumbling across him. I wonder how it would have played out had one of the would be rescuers been injured or killed?
    ^^^This.

    It's quite giggle-worthy when I read the statements of people questioning the SAR team's decision not to head out in the conditions (which killed/contributed to the death of the cyclist), as they existed. If I'd been tasked to perform (C)SAR in those conditions, I wouldn't have headed out until the next morning.

    It's unfortunate, yes. But if you can't operate without a cell phone to get your ass home, you shouldn't be out in the back country. A map, compass, flashlight and an emergency bivy bag would have saved this dude.

    He was unprepared, and he paid for it.
    Death from Below.
    RLTW!

  45. #45
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    I don't get people defending the wife. Yeah, they found the guy. This time. That doesn't change the fact that they made poor decisions and tasked inexperienced people to do the job a professional had declared too dangerous at the time. Just because the house doesn't fall on you when the fireman says to not go back inside, doesn't mean the fireman is unprofessional or unprepared. It means you are a fool and got lucky, nothing more.

    One of the actiivities of any decent SAR team is to review ALL rescues, no matter how successful, to determine what they can further do to improve safety, team coordination, time management, etc. Unfortunately for the Sherriff's department, I think they'll be spending most of their time defending their actions from the understandably upset but decidedly ignorant wife. Sorry, but being willing to risk the lives of several members of your family and friends to find one person does not make you brave, smart, or a hero.

  46. #46
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    i've read this thread with great interest since i often do moderately long solo night rides in areas not far from san francisco that aren't used much after dark. you all make good points, especially when it comes to telling someone where you're going and plan to come back. but when it comes to this sad story, two things jump out at me right away:

    "Marin was wearing only a thin shirt that he had recently purchased and cycling shorts. He ignored his wifes advice to bring food."

    and then this:

    "Sheriff's Lt. Zach Hall said ideally, the department would have sent a helicopter to follow the approximately 53-mile route that Marin, 34, had planned to follow along Skyline Trail, Main Divide Road and Indian Truck Trail."

    you planned on riding a FIFTY THREE MILE LOOP in questionable weather conditions wearing only a jersey and shorts with no food?

    how many of you can ride fifty miles without eating anything?

    i know i can't.

    the SARS team has much more experience at their jobs than i or almost any of us ever will. i think they made the right decision.

    i won't say more.

  47. #47
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    I'm kinda thinking an emergency thermal blanket would be a good thing for my pack depending on my ride. Very light to carry, reflective , and probably usefull for temps under 70 for shock treatment of a riding buddy.

  48. #48
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    SAR teams are not professionals. They are organized by the sheriff but they are civilian volunteers many of them teenagers.
    the sheriff is never going the send them out in poor weather at night.

  49. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by mr_spin View Post
    Again, the fault is his. No question. No disagreement whatsoever. But I still question the point of having a SAR team that won't SAR. Yes, there is risk, but everyone volunteers for SAR. No one is forced to do it. You knoerw the risk when you signed up for the job, and you know the day might come when you will be called on to take that risk. If you aren't willing to do it, then stop pretending, because I'd rather have no SAR team than have one that only goes out when there is no risk. Because, what's the difference?
    I agree 100 percent. They weren't entering a war zone, nor the himalayis. They would have the opportunity to save lives, and be able to take all the resources needed. Then again I do not know squat.

  50. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kliemann53 View Post
    SAR teams are not professionals. They are organized by the sheriff but they are civilian volunteers many of them teenagers.
    the sheriff is never going the send them out in poor weather at night.
    you're right...some of them are scout troops.

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