Critters car-munching at the trailhead. | High Sierra Topix  

Critters car-munching at the trailhead.

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Postby mountaineer » Wed Jul 25, 2007 11:08 am

Thanks mamabear. I'll have some up in a couple weeks from the Crater Lake, OR area that I took last Friday.

Here is a link to a marmot thread from last year. Interesting reading and photos.

http://www.highsierratopix.com/communit ... ht=marmots



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Postby mountaineer » Wed Jul 25, 2007 11:10 am

dave54 wrote:Too bad. I was hoping you would share how to make a small lightweight inexpensive home-made silencer.


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Postby giantbrookie » Wed Jul 25, 2007 8:26 pm

I've never had critters chew up stuff under the hood, but I do have a critter experience that was fairly interesting. We drove off from some trailhead after a backpacking trip and some time later noticed this burning smell. I pulled over and looked under the hood. There was a nest of sorts of grasses and twigs that was smouldering on top of the exhaust manifold. If I had driven a bit more before stopping I might have had a serious fire. I would presume the builder of the nest was some kind of rodent. Fortunately I didn't see any barbecued animal on the manifold, too. Another time at the Dinkey Lakes trailhead I checked under the hood for some funny reason after reaching the car after a hike (I'm not sure why, I don't usually do this). When I opened the hood there was this squeal and this big fat marmot came jumping out. I checked carefully for damage and didn't see any, although it's possible the critter did gnaw on the insulation on the hood a bit (didn't notice anything, but if the nibbling was minor enough I may not have thought it was the work of the marmot).
Since my fishing (etc.) website is still down, you can be distracted by geology stuff at: http://www.fresnostate.edu/csm/ees/facu ... ayshi.html
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Postby Take-a-Hike » Wed Jul 25, 2007 9:28 pm

Well....this is the Campfire dept, it's a slow Wed. nite, and this story does involve some critters of sort..so here goes. I've seen the vehicles marmot-proofed in MK, never had a problem personally, although I've only been in Aug., but we did have some mystery guests last summer on our 10th anniversary trip to Glacier NP and sister, Waterton Lakes NP, in Canada. We flew to Kalispel, rented the standard, new (<6K miles), mid size American made car, stopped after the wonderful airport gestapo raided some of our backpacking supplies and to get food at a major grocery store, then headed in to Glacier to go to battle with the NP ranger staff. If you really want a tale of horror try to deal with their back country camp site reservation/lottery system!! But, bottom line is we had one two nite trip and two 3 nite trips planned over a 11 day period, one of which was totally in Canada, which, btw, was a piece of cake to set up. So we had all our supplies tucked safely into a large fairly new duffle bag on wheels, divided into our trip schedule and tucked into the trunk so that all we had to do was open up the bag, throw out all the trash/refuse from the completed trip and stuff in the new provisions for the next trip into our backpacks and we were ready to go again. We did have lodge reservations for single nites in between trips to refresh, etc. Upon our return from the second overall trip, a wonderful three niter in Waterton Lakes, a loop that covered some very wonderful back country and a few lakes (where I caught my one and only cutthroat trout, released), we threw our stuff into the trunk of the car and when we got back to the lodge, only about 15 miles away, we pulled out the duffle bag to get our next three nite set of provisions and I'll be doggone if something had chewed a hole in the duffle bag, got into the food and pretty much stowed enough stuff for a family of I don't know how many for those long Canadian winters. Needless to say, we were out of food except for the stuff they had no diet for. I still haven't figured out how the things got into that trunk cause as far as I could tell, it was pretty tight. The holes they chewed weren't big, so it had to have been of the mouse/rat/ground something or other variety.
So wife 'n I got a pretty good chuckle out of that after we got over the shock, more or less. But in retrospect it worked out ok....we figured the heck w/trying to re-supply in Waterton Lakes, got a lodge for three more nites..(it wasn't easy, had to shuttle between two different ones) because we really wanted to do some very nice day hikes, one rated in top ten in all of Canada, but couldn't originally fit in into the schedule. And, in one lodge only room available one nite was the "honeymood suite"...Now, before you think I should have put my foot down and camped out somewhere (it was about $150 for the nite), when my wife came out of that room after the inn keeper showed her the room, the look on my wifes face made me realize my goose was cooked. "No" was not in my vocabulary at that time. Life has taught me a thing or two after 55 years, two marriages, raising five kids, (still in process I think, Do they ever go away?) and a trip around the world in four years time, so when I went in saw the king size (+) bed with a bear bigger than me in the middle, the jacuzzi, bar and fresh homemade cookies on the table, heh, who am I to say no and stare that gift horse in the mouth?
So, I guess I have to thank those critters for giving us the opportunity to get in two wonderful 12 mile day hikes, spend a nite (it was only three days past our 10th anniversary) in a honeymoon suite, :unibrow:, and knowing that after we talked to the owners of the outfitter store there in town, we'll have to go back. When I asked him about the area that we missed on the three niter we didn't take, he just shook his head and said that it was some beautiful country there. But I'll have to think long and hard before I can deal with those US guys and their reservation system again. .... That was pure hell...and I'm sure those kids they hire for summer help still remember us when we checked in....and they wanted me to watch a 40 minute video on grizzlies before they'd give us our permits...yeah, right!
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Postby mountaincat » Tue Aug 14, 2007 5:34 pm

It's been a long time since I visited Mineral King, but that's the place to visit if you want animal tales. Once upon a trip, a long time ago, we returned to find marmots had eaten 5 different hoses on our vehicle. Fortunately, that pickup truck was always needing some sort of repair and we had replacement hoses with us.

Another visit up that way, as I was hiking down the trail, I encountered a pigeon sitting in the middle of the trail, way up above timberline. The bird was exhausted. I looked around and decided the poor thing probably had no clue which direction to fly, and the landscape towered above, so I stuck the bird in my vest and hiked downhill for miles. At some point, we let it go, after it warmed up, napped and got a snack.
Nature beckons, and I must answer

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