P. Edronkin

Emergencies during wilderness trips (IV).

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"Maybe, the best compromise would be to establish an hybrid system able to guarantee, on one hand, some expediency in some cases, and the possibility of taking into consideration all opinions in others. After all, everyone enduring the situation has the right to do what is better for his or her own survival too.

A competent and veteran expert in this realm knows that on many occasions he would have to confront the opposition of inexperienced people. Such individuals donít usually want to listen to the words of such experts, at least in the beginning.

An example of this conduct is that of a group walking thorough hilly terrain by means of a vehicular route. If the Guide suggests to use trails which cross the road to make shortcuts, most people would fear getting lost and thus, seldom accept such proposals.

However, trails usually are shorter than roads. Those paths have been created by animals and local inhabitants, and follow the shortest possible lines between points. Roads intended for vehicles, given the fact that they are bigger, more complicated to construct and must be constructed taking into consideration the tolerances of cars, lorries, etc. are usually much longer.

First explorers at Cerro Hensley, Chubut, Patagonia.
This is the first picture taken on Mount Hensley, in Patagonia. It was
the first time that it was ever climbed. The mountains on the background
are mostly uncharted and inexpored. In such places, emergencies
could become serious due to the isolation. If you are the first one
there, who would come to look for you in any case?

The fact that roads are ostensibly safer is what makes people like to stick to them despite everything else, and unless the trekkers know their leader, they will not believe the fact that they can profit by going out of their safe trail."

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