MAN vs. WILD | High Sierra Topix  

MAN vs. WILD

If you've been searching for the best source of information and stimulating discussion related to Spring/Summer/Fall backpacking, hiking and camping in the Sierra Nevada...look no further!
User avatar

M v. W: San Joaquine Area

Postby DoyleWDonehoo » Sun Dec 31, 2006 6:01 pm

Ok, I viewed the whole thing today and saw a few things. I don't know if they filmed it all in the same area, but one shot was of Banner Peak from the West side over Jackass Rock or Fuller Buttes. So, the area he went through must have been in the San Joaquin River drainage.
Now, I think that this whole 'survival' stint must have been more like a montage to show various survival techniques. As a trip, it seems disjointed.
I could not find the exact lakes he landed at (looking 9000 foot-ish), but in that area there is no place you cannot get down from fairly easily and avoid steep granite. The area is famous for its many meadows and forests, but there are no wild horses in the area that I know of. Cattle and horses graze the area to be sure. You would really have to go out of your way to avoid trails and roads to get from ~9000 feet to chaparral (and presumably Redinger Res., the only body of water in the area that matches the flora). Even though I did not find a likely lake set, only a few areas fill the bill for high lakes and a rapid descent to roughly 3000 feet and a river raft trip, and one is around Kaiser Peak (if you can ignore the many roads and trails). Still, I wish I knew exactly what lakes was the starting point.
One thing for sure, you cannot get from point A to point B in that area without running into roads or trails, or both. I suppose it really could have been shot in the southern Sierra, the only other place that matches the conditions and geography, but even there seems unlikely judging from the events of the show.
In short, I think the trip he made was mostly made up with the primary purpose of demonstrating survival techniques in the Sierra.
Doyle W. Donehoo
Sierra Trails:
http://www.doylewdonehoo.com" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;



User avatar
DoyleWDonehoo
Founding Member
 
Posts: 480
Joined: Wed Dec 14, 2005 2:06 pm
Location: San Jose, CA
Experience: N/A

User avatar

Postby Shawn » Sun Dec 31, 2006 10:28 pm

From SummitPost -

http://www.summitpost.org/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=24465&start=0

Anyone catch the Sierra Nevada installment? Until this episode I had only seen the one in Alaska. Well here he is in the sierra nevada-lost. Now let me point out that he says he is in the high sierra stranded then...hey wait a minute he is right next to the road up at Shuteye. Then he starts heading west because he doesn't want to go to the Nevada Desert, but hikes east!! Next shot: he is floating down the san juaquin (you can see the bull pines everywhere and even the road on occasion) but says he is in the high sierra and must camp. Next shot: back up by Shuteye for camping ( no more bull pines). Finally, he is saved when he finds a road @ redinger lake.

I just thought this was ammusing since it is in my backyard, and yes, I know it is just a show but I thought it was pretty funny since all the time they are acting llike he might be lost forever unless he gets rescued. Admittedly, I thought the guy was pretty hard core based on the Alaska episode, but now believe it was the same thing. Roads everywhere as well as people, etc.

Anyway, just wanted to know if anyone else caught it on Discovery Channel?
-JR
User avatar
Shawn
Topix Expert
 
Posts: 795
Joined: Sat Nov 12, 2005 9:56 pm
Location: Paso Robles, Ca
Experience: Level 4 Explorer

User avatar

Postby DoyleWDonehoo » Tue Jan 02, 2007 5:21 pm

My comments have been fairly mild (I give Bear marks for survival credibility) compared to some things people are saying on other forums. I think what bothers some is that the show is trying to represent Bear jumping into a situation and hiking out as a single continuous event, when clearly this is not the case in the Sierra episode. I am very familiar with the San Joaquin drainage from Yosemite to Muir Pass to the Minarets and the Minarets Scenic Byway. The rapid changes of locations and life-zones gave it away: at a lake at about ~9000 feet, then on the domes of Shuteye Peak/Ridge (no lakes there), then down on the San Joaquin river at ~2500 feet, then back up to about 4500 feet, then back down to what looks like Redinger Res. at about 2000 feet, all the while saying the whole trek was a drop of 2000 feet and a single continuous trek. Is it any wonder many people are questioning what was represented?
In any case as far as MvW is concerned, there is good advice there, but there is plenty of questionable advice as well. Bear too often gets wet, climbs down dangerous routes (sometimes getting wetter!), jumps off something he shouldn’t, or similar questionable things, without so much as a “Don’t do this unless you absolutely have no choice!”
In North American high country, I think it is a very bad idea to get wet if ‘lost’, and it should be avoided. Additionally, I would frown on surfing any river, particularly in the Sierra where a placid stretch can turn into rapids that can batter you to death in seconds. The number one way to die in the Sierra is to drown, followed by hypothermia. Log-rafting a river may make good TV, but it is bad advice. Find a dry way over rivers, and go around lakes. Bear was surfing the San Joaquin River (which has a good number of trail bridges), and there are many steep cascades and waterfalls: All the more reason to avoid makeshift boat travel. If this was general advice, it was bad advice.

There was the assertion by Bear that it was no good heading east because of the California/Nevada desert. This is misleading because, as everybody here knows, the entire length of the Sierra is backed on the east side by heavily traveled highway 395, just a few miles from the Sierra Crest. It is actually the closest way out if you are on or near the crest. More correct would to be to say there may not be a safe pass to use nearby and the crest can be very sheer and hazardous, and the southern-most or northern most sections of the Sierra have ‘crest’ areas somewhat far from 395. That being said, there are large numbers of trailed passes (and trails!) in the Sierra, depending on the location of the ‘lost’ individual. If I was ‘lost’ near the Crest, I would try to find the PCT and then a pass to the east to 395 rather than risk a 20 to 50 mile cross-country trek down an eventual chaparral and bush choked cliff guarded whitewater river canyon. Heck, you should hit a major trail or road long before then anyway.

The most likely place to be lost would be far from the crest in deep forest with no landmarks. Two people were lost for a week here in the SF Bay Area at Castle Rock, even though they were within a mile or two of roads on three sides, and within a few hundred yards of trails on two sides. The MvW advice would have held if they had just followed a streambed to the road/trail (they had no maps or information about the area they were in). I think if you were lost in lower Sierra elevations (in particular outside of parks, Wilderness areas and well trailed and roaded areas) in deep forest with no idea where you were and unfamiliar with the area, the MvW advice may come in handy, and if you tried it, I think you would still keep running into those pesky roads and trails anyway. I am sure Bear found that out hiking around Shuteye Peak.
Doyle W. Donehoo
Sierra Trails:
http://www.doylewdonehoo.com" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
User avatar
DoyleWDonehoo
Founding Member
 
Posts: 480
Joined: Wed Dec 14, 2005 2:06 pm
Location: San Jose, CA
Experience: N/A

User avatar

Postby rightstar76 » Tue Jan 02, 2007 8:39 pm

I think that Man v. Wild chose the wrong place for a show. The Sierra Nevada doesn't lend itself the way most of Alaska or some other trailless and roadless place does. It would have been better if Bear Grylls had been straightforward. Then the show would have been acceptable.
User avatar
rightstar76
Topix Regular
 
Posts: 178
Joined: Mon Jun 26, 2006 3:22 pm
Experience: N/A

User avatar

Postby Sierragator » Sat Jan 06, 2007 8:35 pm

nothing more than entertainment for the uninitiated. He engages in some stupid manuevers.
Therefore we are all, in some sense, mountaineers, and going to the mountains is going home."
User avatar
Sierragator
Founding Member
 
Posts: 35
Joined: Sat Oct 29, 2005 11:48 am
Location: Lake Isabella, CA
Experience: N/A

User avatar

Postby SSSdave » Mon Jan 08, 2007 7:26 pm

I've been occasionally watching the series since it came out. Especially some of the exotic locales I've never been to. He does offer some reasonable advice and has some good survival skills. However there is jby program design ust a vague audience understanding of what is actually going on so the viewer has to wonder how much is fake, staged, and hyped for dramatic effect. For instance I think they purposely choose some routes down from areas in order to stage things they think will be interesting. So when there is a glacier about they end up going over part of the glacier even though it could have probably been totally avoided. That is why they never show us a map summary at the end that would show us their game. And one has to wonder what sort of campfire fun goes on between him and the camera crew once that is turned off. Can almost see him finishing a desert segment grabbing and eating a lizard raw then after the film stops rolling, the camera guy laughs while tossing him a beer they helicoptered in.

What would be more interesting to me would be someone else at the start of each episode providing a view of topos and information of difficulties about where they were going to drop him. Of course information they were not going to tell him. Then as he made progress down or out, the rest of us could assess his decisions or have a unbiased expert give opinions. ...David
User avatar
SSSdave
Topix Fanatic
 
Posts: 1965
Joined: Thu Nov 17, 2005 11:18 pm
Location: Silicon Valley
Experience: N/A

Previous

Return to Backpacking / Hiking / Camping



Who is online

Users browsing this forum: stoat and 2 guests