Trundling | High Sierra Topix  

Trundling

Grab your bear can or camp chair, kick your feet up and chew the fat about anything Sierra Nevada related that doesn't quite fit in any of the other forums. Within reason, (and the HST rules and guidelines) this is also an anything goes forum. Tell stories, discuss wilderness issues, music, or whatever else the High Sierra stirs up in your mind.
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Trundling

Postby SSSdave » Sat Sep 22, 2007 2:11 pm

Something for mountain people to join together in consensus and condemn:

http://www.summitpost.org/phpBB2/viewto ... sc&start=0



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Postby hikerduane » Sat Sep 22, 2007 6:42 pm

I must say in my younger days I did that at least a couple times. More like launching a rock down the hillside to see how far it will go in Nevada. I get after any kids who are on my property now that throw rocks into the creek here. How we change.
Piece of cake.
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Postby giantbrookie » Sat Sep 22, 2007 9:31 pm

Yes, it is very dumb. However, many of us can confess to having rolled a rock a some time or another, including geologists doing field work in "the middle of nowhere" rolling rocks down on places where nobody (not hikers, climbers, ranchers, geologists, even dope growers) would venture. In fact, geologists in general tend to be rather fond of trundling. The most theatrical example I ever saw was during a field trip for a conference on the engineering geology of highways. For the climactic field trip stop, Caltrans geologists stopped traffic on Hwy 1 for a good half an hour at a spot south of Big Sur. The purpose was to demonstrate how certain types of "rockfall fences" along highways work. As the field trip participants watched from a spot out of the fall line below (the traffic was also stopped at a point out of the line of fire), Caltrans folks who had roped up and climbed to a point high on the cliff above the highway, used huge crow bars to pry boulders and send them screaming down the sea cliff. The vast majority of these either slammed into the rockfall fence and were stopped (showing how the rockfall fence protects passing cars from rockfall), a few took some good bounces and flew clean over the rockfall fence and the highway and headed for the ocean. There was a collective "ooooohhhh" from the crowd when one boulder bounced perfectly and sailed over the fence and landed right on the highway--well nothing is 100 percent effective short of enclosing the entire highway (which would spoil the famous view, of course). I suspect the folks sitting in the traffic jam weren't nearly as amused as the attendees of the field trip.
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 mountaineer » Sun Sep 23, 2007 8:59 am

Trundling is part of the wilderness experience. I love trundling. After building a campfire, I go up on the hillside and roll boulders down trying to put it out.
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Postby markskor » Sun Sep 23, 2007 9:47 am

I think we are talking about apples vs. orange here...two different meanings of the word "Trundling."
On one side, anyone dislodging rocks and boulders over the side of any cliff where others may possibly be ascending/ climbing is just plain asinine. The risks and dangers of human fatality need not be discussed further...we all can see the obvious danger...just a real bad idea, and thus, should be avoided at all costs.

On the other hand, as Brookie quite succinctly points out, this is not all encompassing. “Many of us can confess to having rolled a rock at some time or another, including geologists doing field work in "the middle of nowhere" rolling rocks down on places where nobody (not hikers, climbers, ranchers, geologists, even dope growers) would ventureâ€
Mountainman who swims with trout
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Postby Timberline » Sun Sep 23, 2007 10:07 am

Thanks, Markskor, for offering some reason and balance to this murky issue. While I will say I do not approve of trundling, I'm guilty nonetheless, at least on one youthful, impulsive occasion. I also consider myself an enthusiastic fan of your excellent stories because they instill such fond memories of people and places I have collected on my own. The responses by you and others to this topic prompt me to add my own offering. So, with everyone's indulgence, here goes :)

THE KIBBIE LAKE TSUNAMI (copyright 2007 by Bruce Peet)

“Let’s go fishing at Kibbie Lake,â€
Let 'er Buck! Back in Oregon again!
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Postby giantbrookie » Sun Sep 23, 2007 3:08 pm

Nice. Yeah, we remember the best ones. At a certain spot in the NE Sierra I chair pressed a boulder off of the top of a knife edge ridge. By the time the huge triggered rockfall (the one boulder knocked quite a few more loose that loosened still more, etc.) stopped, it had gone over 3000' vertical feet. I didn't do any more that afternoon because I worried about sparks starting a fire. Grassy or dirt slopes tend to be even faster than rocky ones. There were some epic ones down spurs into Upper San Leandro Res. (no public access) that vaulted off the final set of outcrops and raised huge depth-charge-style waterspouts.
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 Timberline » Sun Sep 23, 2007 4:42 pm

So, sometimes the temptation can be just too great, eh gianbrookie?
I understand :D
Let 'er Buck! Back in Oregon again!
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Postby cgundersen » Thu Sep 27, 2007 10:22 am

First, Bruce, that's a great story that certainly should inspire anyone who comes across a similarly poised boulder (though, as I tried to recall whether I'd seen any similar situations, I tend to think some charlatans have cleared the Sierras of most of the better examples; too bad).

Anyway, then I have a question for the "experts" out there (though I'm not sure quite what expertise is needed here). Long ago, I had the good fortune of walking along the shore of a small Sierra lake when a rockslide kicked up across the lake (initiated by some unseen "trundler"?). Aside from the obvious cacaphony and waterspouts accompanying the rocks that rolled into the lake, the other unexpected consequence was jumping fish: with each rock/boulder that hit the water, the surface exploded with dozens, if not hundreds of leaping trout. Being curious (but not malicious), I have, of course, tested whether this phenomenon can be artificially recreated. On the several occasions that I have rolled rocks into trout-infested waters, one can induce the same leaping behavior. So, the question for the experts is: is this a uniform behavior among trout (because I tend to go backpacking for the peace and tranquility, I have not done this experiment enough to know how reproducible it is, but I'd guess I'm 5 of 5 or thereabouts)? Does it serve a purpose (other than entertainment); after all, are jumping fish any less prone to get crushed by falling rocks? Or, is it just a startle response? Obviously, these musings are partly rhetorical, but I'm also curious whether the tsunami Bruce kicked up included leaping trout, though, perhaps it was just too extreme for the fish to respond?
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Postby mountaineer » Thu Sep 27, 2007 10:25 am

Hey! I made the funniest post in a long while on HST and nobody is laughing, how come?
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Postby caddis » Thu Sep 27, 2007 10:53 am

mountaineer wrote:Hey! I made the funniest post in a long while on HST and nobody is laughing, how come?
I did...I was waiting for somebody who didn't catch on to react to it :lol:
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Postby Timberline » Thu Sep 27, 2007 11:51 am

Thanks, everyone, for the favorable responses to the story.
Actually, cgunderson, I can't recall if any fish jumped at the time of the tsunami. It was so long ago that, for example, drinking from Sierra streams and lakes without filtering the water was still expected. Besides, I was pretty distracted at that moment, watching the wave lap the shoreline across the lake.
Mountaineer, you may not have heard me laughing, but your post was one of the remarks that prompted sharing the story. So you can take some credit, gladly! :nod:
Let 'er Buck! Back in Oregon again!
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