bohdi88 wrote:Three mistakes
1. Didn't tell anyone he was going to hike Bison Peak.
2. Went alone in unfamiliar territory.
3. Went off trail due to panic of sudden change in weather.
Hoping to be sensitive but not too pedantic, but isn't the word "factors" (as opposed to determining "mistakes") generally used in incident reports? Many of us don't consider "Hiking alone" a mistake, but can be considered a contributing factor. Similarly, it sounds like the weather itself was a factor; and the steepness of the difficulty of the surrounding terrain when shelter was sought; but seeking off-trail shelter wouldn't necessarily be a mistake, either. It shows that multiple factors, including human and external ones, compound upon each other.
We're probably on the same page anyway, especially that leaving a note about your plans is always a good reminder; but plenty of us still choose to hike alone on occasion.
RIP, this sounds like a big loss to many people, as this gentleman sounds like an inspirational person.
yes, the language used by someone formally trained as an investigator will be devoid of any blame words or anything suggesting conclusions. That is not the job of the investigator, but for "managment", because after all it will be they who decide what actions to do afterwards. So yeah, using the word "mistake" is a mistake. Not only does it try to persuade the audience that "aha! this is what happened", but it also by reason allows one or more people to ignore other contributing factors. It aint rocket science, but it is something one should have training on. Really all anyone can do is try and identify as many [i]contributing factors[i] as possible, address, correct and prevent as many as possible from recurring.
So going back to our 7th grade science classes; if "hiking alone" is the culprit, then hiking in groups will make one safe. Everyone can see how untrue that statement is as well. Wilderness medicine and PSAR programs are all about prevention! Once you get into a mess, have a little mishap, your day can get really bad, very quickly.
On that note, be safe out there.