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gael

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 #16 
If my daughter came home with such a brainless beta I would shoot them both.
davantalus

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 #17 
Personally I enjoyed reading the story!

I could see myself falling into the same traps (just with bigger rocks and more clearance and water). "This has to get easier..."
D T

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 #18 
I hope Betsy is smart enough to get insurance on you!
Flyfisher

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 #19 
Sorry I'm so late into this thread but I do have a couple of comments to make concerning  use of Death Valley. This is because I love to go into this area and try my hardest to be prepared. Every time someone has to be rescued the managers of the resource question letting the public into potentially dangerous places. I firmly believe that people should be able to decide for themselves what situations they want to get into, BUT people who do this TOTALLY unprepared, with no forethought as to the results of their actions, threaten access for everyone. Lets not provide ammunition to closures for "the safety" of the public.
Death Valley and Saline Vally are visited by lots of folks each year. I don't want to lose that right because of a small number of unprepared people.
Was black the only color of camry available? That doesn't make sense knowing you are going into 120 degree heat.
Lots of mistakes were made, like not getting out of the vehicle to see where the road actually goes. Really???
David, I hope you use more sense in other endeavors!
I'm really glad this story has a happy ending.
SilverBob

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 #20 
Thanks David, that's much better!  And here's to hoping that everyone reads all the way to the end of your blog!

Cheers![thumb]
uhrdavid
 #21 
In case you're interested, I updated the last part of the story. Hope that gets the point across.

davidsworld.org
Big Jeff

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 #22 
Well you know she wasn't much of a camper, enough said.
winks

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 #23 
Big Jeff, I agree this thread has run its course. Except for the part about how your relationship with Mr. Burkharts and his daughter panned out. [rofl]
samjust

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 #24 
Please indulge my closing thoughts on this thread. My initial purpose for posting was several fold. One, I wanted to see people's reaction to this very unfortunate situation, two,I know of at least two major news papers and many blogs and websites that glorify the valley but conveniently leave out the inherent dangers of remote desert travel.I have been a visitor to the valley for almost 35 years.Mostly in July and August. When I was younger I would spend my summers working on the Parker Strip. I am familiar with how unforgiving the dessert is. I hope that people making their first trip to the valley (bolson) would read this thread and David's blog. I would never refuse help to those in need. But those in need because of bad decisions should remember that fellow travelers who stop to help are sometimes giving up a portion of precious vacation time. Three, I just had to share the pictures of that Toyota. From now on I will be driving my Tacoma instead of my Ranger.

In closing I am sorry for the sometimes harsh criticisms that David and Betsy had to endure but you did post this on your blog and I assume that you knew people would read it. David I think you wrote a very fine and entertaining blog on your adventure. I am glad you survived even though your wallet might be hurting more than you. I stand by my initial comment that I think you both are  good people. You will definitely have a good campfire story to tell for a long time. My message to David and Betsy. "What doesn't kill you makes you stronger."
 
P.S. One year I drove a 1984 Pontiac Grand Prix into the valley. It faired  a lot better then the Camray though.


Big Jeff

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 #25 
Good luck David, thanks for providing the basis of a very lively discussion and Samjust for starting the thread, things were getting a little boring around the old Saline Valley Talk forum.   Also I am with Silver Bob, it's time to move on and get back to the pressing problems at the Springs.[cool]
uhrdavid
 #26 
Haha, "Camry-Killer" - that certainly has a nice ring to it. Thanks for your thoughts, Florida & TeleFunKen, I think we all have a better understanding. I appreciate you reading my story and your comments. SilverBob, I definitely see these forums as a good source of tips and advice for future visits. I wish I had known about them before-hand. I hope to put your guys' wisdom into action in the future. 
TeleFunKen

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 #27 
David -

Thanks for sharing your story, and thanks for livening up our forum that is all too often about bleach, TP, and personal jabs. I'm often too private a person to chime in on the forums, much less write about my exploits on a blog. I find your openness refreshing.

I live in Bishop, and Saline Valley is my backyard, so to speak. Being surrounded by wilderness on all sides, we are constantly hearing news of death and survival. It seems that most of those involve not one single mistake, but a series of bad judgements that get progressively worse. (the first one being that of underestimating the environment they are in) Being one who spends a good chunk of my free time in the wilderness, I always think about whether or not I would have made the same choices as the survivor (or victim) in question, and try to learn from those who made the 'wrong' ones.

I have to admit, that when I read your story, there were MANY times I said to myself what an "idiot" you were for making the choice you made. I'm sorry for being judgmental, but it is hard not to think you made a number of very poor choices, and were VERY lucky it didn't end up ending tragically  I know it is very easy for me to sit here in the comfort of my house and think that. I also know that when put in your situation, I would possibly have made similar choices (and have).  I don't want to get into each decision and where it went wrong, but what I find particularly interesting was your choice to leave your vehicle and walk back... Many 'survivalists' will tell you the order of importance in a survival situation is shelter, water, food, fire, navigation. (or something like that) But number one being shelter... You chose to leave that, to the surprise of many, and that choice is what ultimately got you out of there. Like you said in your blog, had you stayed with your car, you would have waited quite some time for a rescue. Some choices seem bad at first, but are sometimes the ones that save you. I can't help but think of Joe Simpson, (Touching the Void) who chose to travel further down into the crevasse he was stranded in, and ultimately found another way out.

With that said, you should know that the majority of the people on this forum are not haters. (with a handful of exceptions). The regulars of Saline are some of the most eclectic, heartwarming, and interesting people I have ever met. I'd like to extend a personal invite to you and Betsy to visit the springs, and the regulars who make it special, and see what a paradise you nearly died in... Take the week of President's Day off and travel to Bishop, and we can take you the rest of the way (with the proper gear and provisions) if you like. It appears you've already earned your Saline nickname (Camry Killer), so you're a step ahead in that regard.  [smile]

-ken
SilverBob

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 #28 
I think we can give this a rest, now.  We've all said our piece.  David understands, and even if he didn't appreciate the manner in which the message was conveyed, I think he gets it.  I'm not worried about his trying that stunt again. 

David, most of us can relate to your adventurous spirit (Betsy's too!) and your curiosity about what may be around the next turn.  It would be a shame if you never came back to complete your quest to see the moving rocks and the rest of the treasures the area offers.  But if you do come back, I hope you'll take advantage of the collective wisdom of the folks who do this type of thing all the time.  This forum and the other one you're posting on are excellent sources of good advice.  Read 'em, learn, ask questions.  And maybe we'll see you for a beer on the porch at Panamint Springs Resort.

Cheers! [thumb]
florida

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 #29 
David, you have done us all a favor by relating your story with all its dumbass bits. Many people would have edited it to put themselves in a better light. But we see it in all its tawdry shame, and it makes us think, and perhaps reconsider what we are about to do out there. Maybe you even saved someone from something worse than a big rental car bill. Who knows?

So, Camry-Killer, come on out and enjoy the Springs with us. Bring Betsy.
uhrdavid
 #30 
It's not about being thin-skinned. It's just about being a little more respectful, when flippantly tossing out statements that seem (to me at least) to be trying to cast doubt on the credibility of a pretty important portion of my life (that would be the "supposedly" remark). And yes, I suppose I did get a bit thin-skinned when you decided to make light of driving IED laden roads, but I would just say that if you'd ever seen the death and destruction inflicted on another person by an IED or EFP, then I think you'd understand well enough why I don't find the humor or fodder for comparison in these two situations. If you had bothered to read my posts on my blog, then clearly I understood that my vehicle was overmatched by the terrain, but that there were mitigating factors, which I allowed to cloud my judgment. I take my licks for those. Hell, that's why I'm on this board in the first place. I would just rather take the chiding for this situation, without people feeling the need to insult other areas of my life that they know nothing about as well. 
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