Author Topic: Memorable Moments  (Read 1541 times)

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Offline John Van Gelder

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Memorable Moments
« on: April 21, 2017, 02:12:16 PM »
At the nearly 3/4 century mark, I have a lot of very memorable moments.  There is a line from one of my favorite movies.  It is the soliloquy of the replicant in the Blade Runner..  "I have seen things you people wouldn't believe", he goes on to say that all of those experience will, after his death, be lost "like tears in rain". 

I have many such experiences and I am sure a lot of the folks here do as well, I feel that if we do not share them than they will in fact be lost "like tears in rain".

When I lived in Alaska, I would accrue a block of vacation time, which after some of the long winters in Alaska, I spent in the tropics. one instance was of a bow hunt I was on in Hawaii, I met up with the president of the local bow hunters club and he kindly consented to take me out for a feral goat hunt.  We left the motel at "zero dark early hours" and drove to a point hear the top of Haleakala, on Maui, about the 14,000 foot level.  We sat on the side of the volcano and watched the sun rise, a pretty impressive sight, and in-spite of the  "flat Earth" retards, you can see the curvature of the Earth. 

We hiked from there down to the beach, a total distance of 22 miles, but it was all down hill.

 

 

Offline hayshaker

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #1 on: April 21, 2017, 07:48:04 PM »
jhon itoo saw that sunrise from inside the crater, at 9'500 ft it was cold. photographed it from
my hammoc. and to watch the clouds rise at evening into the crater only to slide right back out in
morning to around 4-5 thousand feet was cool. maui no ka oi brah.

Offline John Van Gelder

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #2 on: April 21, 2017, 08:56:50 PM »
Then there was the evening in the Northern Territory of Australia, sitting around the camp fire after a day of hunting wild pigs and water buffalo, there was a thunder storm, just off the coast near Darwin, you could see the lightening light up the clouds, but it was far enough away there wasn't much sound, every time there was a flash you could hear the dingos howling in the night. 

Offline John Van Gelder

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #3 on: April 22, 2017, 06:38:00 PM »
hayshaker

I really enjoyed my time in Hawaii, when I lived in Alaska, the Public Safety Employees Association (read State Troopers Union) used to have their annual meeting in Hawaii.  Coming from -20 deg., getting off the plane in Honolulu, the first thing you noticed was the smell of green things.  We all had a moral imperative to get sunburned the first day, and swim until we were exhausted.

A wonderful place..

I dabbled with the thought of buying a place on Maui, probably my favorite island.   But things changed after I retired and here I am in Oregon.  After retiring I had also thought of going to Australia, another really neat place to visit. Lots of beach there and most of it is unused, some of that is because of the high incidents of salt water crocodiles.

 

Offline woodsorrel

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #4 on: April 22, 2017, 07:22:02 PM »
I spent some time tracking Killer Whales by sea kayak in the Johnstone Strait.  A ~25' long Killer Whale sped underneath my 17' sea kayak.  It turned sideways to glance up at me as it passed underneath, like a ghost.  I will never forget that moment, the amazing scenery, bald eagles, and putting in on remote beaches to camp for the night.

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Offline Punty

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #5 on: April 23, 2017, 05:55:58 AM »
  Mine are not so exotic.

  What comes to mind for me is time spent at my cabin in the mountains of Maine. It's on a lake. In the summer, I sleep outside in a hammock, and sleep to the sound of the water lapping on the shore.

  In the morning, I get up early, make myself a cup of coffee, and watch the sun rise. In the mornings, the mist is so thick over the lake, you can't see the other side. As the sun rises, you watch the mist dissipate and float away.

   It all takes about 2 hours.  It's a damn fine two hours.
If the iron be blunt, and he do not whet the edge, then must he put to more strength: but wisdom is profitable to direct.
Ecclesiastes 10:10

Offline John Van Gelder

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #6 on: April 23, 2017, 07:09:34 AM »
woodsorrel

I have killer whale stories, a spent some of my time as a trooper in Alaska in SE Alaska, one of my collateral functions was serving various civil process.  I had a patrol area of about 17,000 sq, miles.  The only way to get to most of the places was to charter a float plane or go by boat, I had no luck getting the department to provide a boat so I used my own.  I had a 17" Smoker Craft flat bottom river boat, with a 40 hp Evinrude engine, that boat would get right up and plane, it only drew about 3" of water when it was on the step.

Early one morning I was on my way to a logging camp, it was one of those mornings when there was not a breath of air, the water was just like glass, more like skimming along a big mirror.  A sunny day, a rare thing in SE Alaska, you could see the reflection of the mountains in the water, I was totally caught up in the ambiance of the day, when three huge dorsal fins broke the water the closest not ten feet from my little boat, I was moving right along, they broke water dove and were gone like I was standing still.

Another time I was returning home after a trip to Wrangell in my boat, when I came across a killer whale that had beached himself, in an attempt to follow some salmon up a little clear water creek.  That whale had done that before, he started rolling back and forth and worked his way back into deep water.

I used to take that boat up the Stakine river, I have sat on a gravel bar several miles from the mouth of the river next to a clear water creek and watched the seals ambush the salmon as they were going up stream.

Punty

I used to camp in places like that in Alaska, you forgot to mention the loons, they make a neat sound in the morning when the mist is hanging over the low places.


 

Offline madmax

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #7 on: April 23, 2017, 10:18:36 AM »
    Wow.  58 years of moments.  Here's one.

    I had lived out west.  My wife had never been there.  We took a pop-up slide-in camper on  a circumnavigation of the USA road trip.  Glacier Nat. Park.  We went to sleep in nice mild temps.  Woke up to very quiet camp.  Went outside to discover 6 inches of snow.  AND.  Tracks circling the camper.  Grizzly tracks.  Big tracks.  Kelly had one of the Memorable Moments looking down at those huge prints.
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Offline woodsorrel

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #8 on: April 23, 2017, 10:01:29 PM »
... I have killer whale stories...

John, those are terrific stories! 

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Offline woodsorrel

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #9 on: April 23, 2017, 10:07:21 PM »
   ... Tracks circling the camper.  Grizzly tracks.  Big tracks...

Madmax, on a four-day backpack in Glacier NP, I found that I was following a mother grizzly and her cub.  I took a picture of my hiking boot next to a rear track, and I could fit my entire boot in the floor of it. 

Needless to say, I proceeded with caution the rest of the day.  Eventually caught a glimpse of the cub from a safe distance.

- Woodsorrel
The best backpacks are named for national parks or mountain ranges. Steer clear of those named for landfills.
Bushcraft tips and tricks:  www.NatureOutside.c om

Offline John Van Gelder

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #10 on: April 24, 2017, 07:09:27 AM »
When I was stationed in Glennallen Alaska, we went on a search for an older fellow, he was retired Airforce and also a diabetic.  His daughter called our office and advised that she had not heard from him for some time and she was afraid he might be out of insulin. 

The fellow were were looking for lived back in the mountains about 10 miles off the road, the trail going in there was not great so we loaded my motorcycle and one of the department's Honda trail 90s into the back of the Fish and Wildlife officers truck, we took the truck in as far as we could, unloaded the bikes and rode the rest of the way to the guys cabin, he wasn't there, but there was a new set of caterpillar tracks leading away from the cabin.  We followed those tracks on foot and it was pretty muddy in places, we finally found our guy he was with another fellow and they were trying to work on an old gold mine, he was fine and had an extra supply of insulin,  As we were walking back to the cabin to get our bikes we cut a set of grizzly tracks right on top of the tracks we made when we were walking in, that bear followed us until we met up with the guys with the bull dozer, lots of contour there so we never saw the bear. 

Back in those days the F&W officers carried a 2" .38 spl., that never made any sense to me and we had .357 magnums, but when we got off the road I always carried my .44 magnum, when we found those tracks I was glad I had the .44, and even gladder I did not have to use it.



 


Online Orbean

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #11 on: April 28, 2017, 08:43:25 PM »
Outside of Norwood, Co i witnessed a pair of hawks kick the crap out of a golden eagle that got too close to their nest; it was like watching two fighter jets tag teaming a bomber.
Nice matters

Offline John Van Gelder

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #12 on: April 29, 2017, 06:47:53 AM »
Ravens and hawks do not get on well, usually with the ravens harassing the hawks.  One day as I was returning to camp I came across an entire flock of ravens that were in a high state of agitation, They were concentrated near a blow down just off the old logging road I was walking on.  Thinking that there was some predator in the brush, I knocked an arrow and worked my way into the tangle.  When I got to the "core" of the problem I discovered a Goshawk, with a Raven clutched in his talons, he was slowly dissembling the Raven.  I backed out of there leaving the hawk to his revenge.     

Offline John Van Gelder

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #13 on: May 06, 2017, 12:28:44 PM »
Who remembers what they were doing on their 21st birthday?  I do, I was working a torpedo plot on a soviet tanker in the North Sea. I had kind of forgotten it was my birthday, since we had been at battle stations for several hours.

What brought it to my attention was when the ships Yeoman came up to me and said, the "Captains compliments" happy birthday.  The best people I have ever worked for were submarine commanders. 

You would have had to have been there....!

Offline madmax

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #14 on: May 06, 2017, 12:38:01 PM »
Not 21st but 50th.  A big milestone in the family.  I was adamant about no party.  Right.  Kelly convinced me to go to Cracker Barrel and I walked into a bunch of relatives all dressed just like I did back then.  White V neck t, surfer trunks, flip flops.  A bunch of black balloons.  I couldn't be mad.  Then after the niceties one of the kids gave me a paper to read titled, "50 reasons We Love Tony."  I made it through about 4 or 5 and just started crying.

Damn bipolar disorder.
"Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving pretty with a well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways in a cloud of smoke, thouroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming, Wow! What a ride!" 
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Offline imnukensc

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #15 on: May 06, 2017, 03:10:37 PM »
Don't remember the 21st, but I was on a submarine, too.  Whether I was at sea at the time, I don't recall.
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Online wsdstan

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #16 on: May 06, 2017, 07:04:21 PM »
Absolutely no recall of that day. 

I seem to only remember events and where I was when they happened.  Things like when Kennedy was assassinated, the day the space shuttle blew up, when the twin towers were destroyed, and so forth.  One can recall the more mundane sometimes.  The first Turkey, the first deer, maybe the first kiss.     
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Online wsdstan

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #17 on: May 06, 2017, 07:05:21 PM »
Not 21st but 50th.  A big milestone in the family.  I was adamant about no party.  Right.  Kelly convinced me to go to Cracker Barrel and I walked into a bunch of relatives all dressed just like I did back then.  White V neck t, surfer trunks, flip flops.  A bunch of black balloons.  I couldn't be mad.  Then after the niceties one of the kids gave me a paper to read titled, "50 reasons We Love Tony."  I made it through about 4 or 5 and just started crying.

Damn bipolar disorder.

That is very touching.  Nice post.
A man who carries a cat by the tail learns  something he can learn in no other way. 
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Offline John Van Gelder

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #18 on: May 07, 2017, 08:00:30 AM »
imnukensc

That was also my first trip North of the Arctic Circle.

Offline John Van Gelder

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #19 on: May 07, 2017, 08:02:48 AM »
Max

I have bi polar as well, the downs are usually after a day of stacking hay and the ups are every morning..

Offline John Van Gelder

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #20 on: May 07, 2017, 08:25:28 AM »
Stan

I remember all of the days you mentioned.

Another memorable moment on a submarine, was when we were down in a transit lane, deep and fast, heading off to a test area with a new boat.  The collision alarm went off, followed by the message, "flooding in the engine room", that will get your hear beating when you are in a submarine.

A plug had blown out of a fitting in the main seaw water injection system, the plug was only about 1/2" but at that depth the water pressure turned that little stream of water into a column about a foot across, when it splashed off one of the propulsion turbine supports.

We were trained for just that sort of thing, and everyone went into automatic, the chief of the watch hit the emergency blow switches, the planesmen pulled the yokes back into their laps, the diving officer rang up a full bell, and we headed for the "roof"..

The emergency blow system on those "subsafe" boats sounds just like a 747 taking off.

I was electronics supervisor at the time, and after we settled out on the surface, I needed to check the radar mast and went up on top of the sail.

I sat down on the sail with my leg hanging off the port side, we were in the Gulf Stream, there were some pretty substantial swells some were breaking over the fairwater planes.  I actually got my foot wet.  Of all that had happened I think what made the biggest impression was that here was the big piece of metal, moving through the water at speed and it was not making a sound,  There is a point in front of the sail where the bow wake breaks and creates a low pressure area at the line on the pressure hull, and you can hear the air moving into that vacuum, it makes a hissing sound.. 


Offline imnukensc

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #21 on: May 07, 2017, 08:58:47 AM »
imnukensc

That was also my first trip North of the Arctic Circle.

Yep, did one of those, too.

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Offline woodsrunner

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #22 on: May 07, 2017, 11:09:28 AM »
It was week seven into an eight week canoe trip, High winds and rough seas kept me stranded three days on an island in the Bay of Fundy just off the coast of New Brunswick Canada ???
In the evenings i could see the lights of Lorneville Harbor some six? seven? eight? miles off in the distance...also i noticed the winds would would die down a bit in the evenings.
The Bay of Fundy boast the highest tides in the world and when the tide turns it empties from those Harbors like a swift flowing river...i thought to myself, 'time this right and i can make this...time this wrong and me and my vintage 18' old Town canoe would be carried out to sea.
So on the third day, with drinking water gone since yesterday, an hour or so before dark, i decided to make a run for those lights at Lorneville Harbor.
I hopped in my canoe and paddled toward shore heading south west, seas running three to four feet, i had maybe two hours till bull tide.
I took the waves at an angle, loosing sight of the shore down in the holes between swells...at one point a seal broke the surface and seemed to wonder at my presence, then he would vanish only to re appear and wonder some more.
Then, (almost suddenly) the darkness came, wind and seas seemed to calm down just a tad and i concentrated on those now visible lights, those beautiful lights.

As i was entering the mouth of The harbor i realized the Tied had turned and was heading back out to sea, if i stopped paddling, even a stroke i would begin to lose hard earned ground.
Already exhausted from the effort of getting this far, i now had to dig in with all my strength for any reserves paddling for all i was worth.
Making my way along the steep breakwater wall, I spotted several wooden Docks and a road or boat ramp lit by a streetlamp coming down to the waters edge.
I ran my canoe into the gravel next to that boat ramp, got out of my canoe and onto shaky legs..."i made it!...that was insane!...but i made it!"
I sat on the ground very tired now and watched as a Canadian police vehicle was coming down the ramp toward me.
The officer asked me several questions and then called his Dispatch saying something like "yes i think its him...fits the time of the report and description of the canoe"

Dispatch..."all right, Dammit all...your sure?...well ill let em know to call off the search...planes in the air...their not gonna like this"

epilogue:...apparently, sometime before dark, someone using binoculars from shore had spotted me and was watching my progress until they lost sight of me in the rolling seas.
With darkness approaching and fearing i had capsized they notified authorities and everything happened very quickly from there.

It was not until i returned home a week or so later that i learned my little stunt had caused quite a stir, making Canadian TV and Press...people were actually contacting a couple of my family members to get my side of things...

My much belated thanks to the fine people of the Canadian Coast Guard and the Local RCMP authorities as well as the residents of Lorneville, who provided me with sandwiches and soda while i sat in the Police car awaiting my fate...and my humble apologies to all.

It has been 28 years and many canoe trips since that little incident...but that one stands head n shoulders above them all...taker easy,but taker!...woods   


 
 
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Offline wolfy

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #23 on: May 07, 2017, 12:47:46 PM »
That was quite a story, Dave!   I've been in a similar situation, but on a much smaller scale......enough of a heart-stopping event for ME to never forget for the rest of my life!  The body turns to rubber after a life-threatening event like that, but you sure sleep well that night! :tent:
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Offline woodsrunner

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #24 on: May 07, 2017, 06:40:33 PM »
That was quite a story, Dave!   I've been in a similar situation, but on a much smaller scale......enough of a heart-stopping event for ME to never forget for the rest of my life!  The body turns to rubber after a life-threatening event like that, but you sure sleep well that night! :tent:
Reckon we all have a hair raising story to tell...the lucky ones that is ???..I'd like to hear that story of yours one day my friend...for brevity and believability sake i left out all the drama...you know...the white knuckle death grip on the paddle BATTLE to keep the canoe from turning sideways to the wind and waves :canoe: :P...the occasional splashes of water making its way over the gunnels at an alarming rate ???...too dang busy to bail :doh:...the promises i made to myself and to God if he'd just see me through this mess  :hail: :rolleyes: :shrug:...arms ,shoulders and back straining with the effort to the very end ...and finally, that dammed seal :pissed: popping up from time to time with that condescending look as if he was just waiting for what must be the inevitable result :popcorn: and reminding me how much removed from my element i was...
...the whole thing lasted maybe 1 1/2 to 2 hours, but those were some of the longest hours in my life!!!...thanks for reading the dang thing!...lol...dave :cheers:

 
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Offline John Van Gelder

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #25 on: May 08, 2017, 07:55:30 AM »
woodsrunner

The only way we know we are alive is when we are almost not..! 

I got into a high head wind coming across a lake in Alaska,  I dug in so hard that I snapped a wooden paddle, fortunately I had another close at hand, canoing can be a real adventure.

A good story nicely told..

Offline John Van Gelder

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #26 on: May 08, 2017, 08:05:46 AM »
imnukensc

The last attack boat I was on made a trip under the pole, and surfaced for the photo op, I missed that trip at the time I was TAD to Sub School in New London. 

My first trip above the Arctic Circle was on a missile boat, for two weeks of that patrol we had company, a soviet diesel boat, we knew it was a diesel because he ran up on the surface every night to charge batteries and air banks.

We were not too concerned about the "tail", if we needed to launch we could have run away from him. 

Online wsdstan

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #27 on: May 08, 2017, 08:27:46 AM »
Great story Dave.  One I could visualize pretty well having floated a few rivers when I was young but never in the big water of an ocean. 

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Online wsdstan

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #28 on: May 08, 2017, 08:57:33 AM »
Wood's story reminded me of a scary moment from my younger days.  We were hiking into a high mountain lake from above it.  There was an access jeep road a couple of miles from the draw the lake was in and you came into it about about fifteen hundred feet higher than the lake.  There were a couple of routes down.  Both were steep rocky gullies that were easy to climb down when it was dry.  Trouble was this was June and there was still a lot of snow in the routes.  There were four of us in the party and I was in the lead when we dropped down into the nearest gully.  We ran into a spot where we could not go any lower due to the snow and I had the other three wait while I traversed an arm of the snow field about fifty feet across to get to a spot that looked okay to descend.  Half way across the snow let go.  I shot down the snow field facing into the snow but had to turn over and see where this was going to end.  There was a dog leg in the drop that went to the right and, luckily,  my speed was fast enough that I skidded across the top of the steep drop and into the rocks on the far side.  Had my angle been a bit different the fall line would have gone all the way to the bottom of the snow field, another thousand feet or so.  Sleep did not come easy that night and dreams of going over the edge of the dogleg and into the bottom of the chasm were what is remembered.  I was banged up from sliding into the rocks but nothing broke.  We retreated to higher ground and went somewhere else to fish the next morning.  Had not thought of that day in several years.
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Offline John Van Gelder

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #29 on: May 08, 2017, 10:10:51 AM »
I did a lot of search and rescue when I was in Alaska, a lot of search and body recovery and not much rescue.  One year I did a number of plane crash investigation and hauled a lot of bodies out of the woods.

One of these dealt with a light aircraft, that had gone missing sometime after leaving the air strip in Wrangell, the pilot had all of his children in the plane.  When they had not returned by dark, everyone assumed the worst.  An Alaska Airlines pilot on approach to Wrangell picked up an emergency locater beacon.  The rescue coordination center had a plane in the air shortly after, trying to get a fix on the beacon.  They got a rough location and the plane was down within a mile of the airport. 

By then it was too dark to search, no easy task, SE Alaska is rain forest and anything below the canopy is hard to spot from the air.

We mounted a ground search, we were hauling searchers with helicopters  up to the ridge above the drainage where we thought the plane was.  On one of those trips one of the chopper pilots spotted the wreckage.  We got a doctor from the local hospital, and myself and my partner the F&W officer, loaded into a Coast Guard helicopter, the foliage was so dense, that there was no place to land, so they lowered the doctor down on the cable, and then my parter and I went down to the wreck, from the condition of the wreckage we were sure everyone was dead, the doctor crawled into the plane, and found one of the children still alive. He was the youngest and had been in the back of the plane, on impact, everyone was thrown forward, and the other bodies protected the little guy.

The doctor bundled him up, went back up the cable and straight into the hospital, my partner and I then went about sorting out what was left. The chopper returned and we winched the bodies out, after we finished up, the helicopter returned for us, but we told them we had enough of aircraft for one day and walked back to town. 

My partner, a long time friend, who has since succumbed to heart disease, had a house in Wrangell, when we got there his wife and daughters were lined up in front of the house and gave us big hugs.  A hard thing taking young children out of a crash.

When the little guy that survived, got to the hospital he asked for his puppy, they suspended hospital rules for the day and got the little boys dog. He asked one of the nurses, to talk to his dad (not knowing that he was dead) and tell him that he did not want to do any more "roller coasters", which pretty much told us what had caused the wreck.

Just one of many plane crashes, but my first with a survivor.   

 


Offline woodsrunner

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #30 on: May 08, 2017, 10:43:48 AM »
Wow! ???
Stan...Reckon The Lord has Bigger Plans for you my friend :)
I have nightmares like that...or when standing on a ledge looking down onto a vast moraine, thoughts of slipping and falling have to be supressed and put aside....good story Stan :camp:...gave me the willies it did :shocked:...woods

John...a truly tragic story...so sad
Iv'e had some experience dealing with incidents where fatalities occurred, thankfully none involving a child...i wonder what ever became of the boy?   
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Offline John Van Gelder

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #31 on: May 08, 2017, 10:48:45 AM »
The boy's mom was not on the plane, he had some of his family left.

Offline hunter63

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #32 on: May 08, 2017, 04:59:38 PM »
There are just way too many to relate....
Even some that can only be dealt with by saying...."Some day we are gonna laugh about this"
Geezer Squad, Evoking the 50 year old rule..First 50 years, worried about the small stuff, second 50 years....Not so much

Offline John Van Gelder

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #33 on: May 15, 2017, 06:43:54 AM »
We used to get on the plane in Rhode Island and fly to an Air Force base in Scotland, then were bussed to Holy Loch where the sub tender was,  I remember going through the little towns along the way and having protesters on both sides of the road with their "Ban the Bomb" sighs.  I am pretty sure that the Soviet submariners did not have that to contend with.

Offline madmax

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #34 on: May 20, 2017, 10:49:23 AM »
   Spearfishing out of a 16' johnboat under the 7 mile bridge in the FL Keys.  Timing is crucial.  You mess up and you are helpless against the tide.  Nice fish there though back then.  Plus you have the bridge fisherman you have to avoid and the boat fisherman that are rabid to catch fish.  So it's dead low tide and Kelly is in the boat jigging for some grunt.  I feel this pressure wave push me up against the pilon.  At a glance it looked like a gray wall that went by. I shot to the surface (free diving/ shallow water so no bends worries) and Kelly yelled, "HAMMERHEAD!".  I swear with those big flippers I Jesus walked on the water back to the boat.  Kelly said it looked as long as the boat.

    Sharks there are known for biting hooked 150 lb Tarpon in two.
"Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving pretty with a well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways in a cloud of smoke, thouroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming, Wow! What a ride!" 
Hunter S, Thompson

Offline John Van Gelder

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #35 on: May 20, 2017, 08:45:37 PM »
We used to tie up at Port Canaveral, waiting our turn on the "sound" ship, down over the trench in the Caribbean .

We used to just dive off the boat and take a swim, one day I was chatting with the top side watch, when one of the guys came up in his swimming trunks and was just getting ready to go over the side when I looked down under the pier, there was a large barracuda, "idling" up against one of the pilings, we picked another place to swim.

A storm came through while we were there and it was too rough for sound testing, so we ran up on the surface and the "Skipper" thought it would be a good day for "swim call".  We posted one of the torpedomen up on the sail with a Garand, in case of sharks.  Sure enough one came along to see what all the noise was about.  The word was passed. shark, and everyone got out of the water, almost everyone, one of the guys was swimming along with his head down and could not hear all of the yelling, he had no idea that something was wrong until the .30 cal. rounds started hitting the water behind him.  Walking on water is definitely a function of how scared you are...!

Offline John Van Gelder

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #36 on: June 02, 2017, 06:21:00 AM »
Some of the most memorable moments in my life involve horses, one such was in the mountains of SE Australia, I was visiting with a friend a Victoria State Policeman, we went to a cattle station that a longtime friend of his owned, just a little place by Australian standards only 20,000 acres.

We spent the first night there in his sheep shearers cabin.  There is nothing like early morning in the mountains of Victoria, they are hundreds of birds that all tune up at first light. We were making some breakfast, when the man that owned the property rode up on one of his stock horses.  I being a horse person had to go and fuss with the horse,  our host asked me if I rode to which I replied a "little". I should add here that at an earlier point in my life I used to guide folks on trail rides, where I encountered skill levels ranging from very good riders who just did not have a place to keep their own horse to folks that had never been on a horse.  My experience there was that anyone who claimed to be an expert rider, probably was not. 
 
Our host Alf, stepped down off his horse handed me the reins, and told me to have fun, how could I not?  What an incredible day that was, just imagine the scenery from the movie The Man From Snowy River, which was just a bit north of where I was.

Offline madmax

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #37 on: June 02, 2017, 07:24:16 AM »
I smelled like horse until I was 17 and moved to FL.  While guiding in MN the kids from another lodge came over to ride.  One kept insisting that he get to ride my guide horse.  He was my guide horse because nobody else could keep him calm.  Had a barn taken down around him in a tornado.  Big stallion.  About killed me the first spring after being cooped up in the barn all winter.  So this red headed spoiled PITA kid just kept on and on and even threatened me to go his Dad who was friends with my boss... etc.  Well we had an audience so finally I just said go ahead.  He finally got mounted with the horse solid as a rock.  He sat there with this big $hit eating grin at me when the horse bolted at the speed of light.  We saw him desperately holding the horn as he disappeared into the woods... followed by a whiney squeal of pain.  The horse threw him in no time.  Broken arm.  The horse had a ball letting me get juuuuust almost close enough then stepping away.  Half a day of total frustration and a lot of retraining.  I never really liked that horse.

Mom had an Arabian named Dolly.  Sweetest animal you've ever met.  The city kids would come out paw and crawl all over her.  She was my favorite in all those years.
"Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving pretty with a well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways in a cloud of smoke, thouroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming, Wow! What a ride!" 
Hunter S, Thompson

Offline John Van Gelder

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #38 on: June 02, 2017, 08:59:27 AM »
Back when I was guiding "city folk", my horse was a Buckskin mare, most Buckskins are mustangs, hard as nails.  This horse, "Lady" was just an incredible animal, she was Quarter horse fast, had a great disposition, and was just perfect in the woods.  If we got into a blowdown and she got tangled up, she would stand  completely still until I had things sorted out.

We had a whole network of old logging roads we used to do the trail rides on, a lot of up and downs, big rocks and washouts, not so good for any sort of vehicles, but really nice for horses. 

One Saturday, I had a bunch of young folks and that was back when I was still a young "folk". came out to ride, the usual questions "have you ever ridden", and of course the response was yes lots.

I put a young lady who had assured me of her competence on a little  bay horse, who was within a "finger" of being a pony, and off we went, the "dudes" went in front and Lady and I in the back where we could keep an eye on every one.  We went up a couple of steep inclines in the old road, lots of rocks, gravel and washouts and then along a straight stretch into a long 90 degree turn, in a heavily forested area, I momentarily lost sight of every one, but we had been out for a while and things were going well.  "Until" the little bay horse came by me at the gallop headed back to the barn.  The passenger and that is all she was, was hanging on for dear life and started screaming, that was not helpful.

Of her own volition Lady spun around like a cutting horse and took off, she was stretched out so far I was worried about my feet hitting the ground, we went down the first incline flat out, (again imagine Man From Snow River") then there was a bench, the next steep down slope had a bunch of deep ruts, I pulled my horse in, I was not going to risk a good horse for some fool.

We walked down to the next bench below the bad stretch and my "expert" rider was sitting in the middle of the only sandy spot on the road, blubbering away...

That was the old days, now there are legal documents one must sigh, release forms, etc., etc.

I have had a lot of adventures with horses, I have found myself on the ground under 1300 lbs. of horse, one occasion I was out giving the herd, nine horses back then, some treats, everyone liked carrots, I had carrots in my back pocket and was feeding some of the "gang", when one of the mares came up in back of me, spotted the carrots, and grabbed them, and my jeans as well, she picked me up off the ground like I was a rag doll, not sure who was more surprised her or me.

I cannot imagine life without horses.

Offline John Van Gelder

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #39 on: August 09, 2017, 06:59:52 AM »
Haven't done an installment on this for a while.  A moment that comes to mind is of a birthday back in 1991, it was early in the morning, I was just getting ready to watch the news on CNN, had just turned on the TV, and was getting a cup of coffee.  The phone rang, it was my daughter who was in the Air Force, she said happy birthday dad, "we just bombed Baghdad".. The beginning of the First Gulf War...

Online wsdstan

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #40 on: August 09, 2017, 08:11:16 AM »
A memorable moment was the 9-11 attacks.  We had company from out of town and were drinking coffee on the deck in one of those rare respites from bugs and wind that occur in South Dakota a few times a decade.  My neighbor called.  His only words were "you got the TV on?  They are attacking us."  He hung up after saying that.  We turned on the TV to Fox News in time to see reruns of the two planes. 
A man who carries a cat by the tail learns  something he can learn in no other way. 
(Mark Twain)

Offline John Van Gelder

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #41 on: August 09, 2017, 08:22:28 AM »
I missed 9-11.  I was off at elk camp, when we were off in the forest we did not even turn the radio on.  My hunting partner and I where sitting in the shade after the morning hunt, he commented on the fact that we had not seen any planes fly over, we were along the commercial route between Seattle and Boise.


Offline madmax

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #42 on: August 09, 2017, 08:45:06 AM »
Ya ever had you BS flag unfurl and fly only to find out the truth?

Grand Canyon 14 day river trip.  Shuttle driver picks us up at the bottom and tells us all about OJ murdering people and a slow speed chase.  Man we thought this guy was so full of #### his eyes were brown.  Well slap me and call me Suzie.

Grand Canyon 21 day river trip.  3 weeks with 0 human interaction.  Bus shuttle picks us up and we listened to this kid/driver tell us Tyson bit Holyfield's ear off.  yeah right kid.  We didn't buy it until Flagstaff and got confirmation.
"Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving pretty with a well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways in a cloud of smoke, thouroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming, Wow! What a ride!" 
Hunter S, Thompson

Online wsdstan

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #43 on: August 09, 2017, 09:19:45 AM »
Wow, 21 days on the river must be an adventure.  No news would be great for that length of time.  I am not sure there would be room in the boat for all the medications I have to (or have been duped into) take for that long.
A man who carries a cat by the tail learns  something he can learn in no other way. 
(Mark Twain)

Offline madmax

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #44 on: August 09, 2017, 10:14:11 AM »
LOL.  Long ago and far away.  I was younger and bulletproof (in my mind).  We got to know each other in ways that we kinda didn't want to know.  Hahaha!

"Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving pretty with a well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways in a cloud of smoke, thouroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming, Wow! What a ride!" 
Hunter S, Thompson

Offline John Van Gelder

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #45 on: August 09, 2017, 12:11:49 PM »
When we were young, we thought we would live forever, when we got old we were afraid that we might..!

Offline John Van Gelder

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Re: Memorable Moments
« Reply #46 on: August 11, 2017, 01:28:06 PM »
I have a moment that was a near death experience.  I start off with kids do not try this at home... My youngest son and I were taking turns taking a "pull" out of a bottle of hot sauce.  Right off this sounds like a really dumb idea, but when you are goofing around with your kids, sometimes you do dumb stuff. 

I cant remember the brand of hot sauce, it was labeled as pepper sauce came in a bright red bottle with flames on the label.  We had each done this a couple of times, when it got to be my turn again, it took a swig, my son said something funny and I tried to laugh, I aspirated the hot sauce, my wind pipe clamped shut, like slamming a screen door, and I could not breathe, a bit like anaphylactic shock..

I managed to take very small shallow breaths, and finally the effects wore off.. that definitely cut down on my consumption of hot sauce..