Trailhead Trouble

Trailhead condition requests, questions, alerts, etc.
Forum rules
Please do not use this forum to advertise, sell photos or other products or promote a commercial website. For more details, please see the Terms of Use you agreed to when joining the forum.
Post Reply
User avatar
Will_E
Posts: 263
Joined: 8/14/2018
14ers: 58 45
13ers: 91 2
Trip Reports (12)

Re: Trailhead Trouble

Post by Will_E »

JTOlson26 wrote: Fri Dec 11, 2020 6:21 am
markf wrote: Fri Dec 11, 2020 6:04 am I carry a booster pack for just that reason. It's a lot less work than bump starting, especially if you're traveling alone.
I've read varying reviews on the booster packs.

Which one do you carry and have you ever had to use it?
I have this one: https://www.amazon.com/TOPVISION-2200A- ... 60&sr=8-11

It works great, I have a 12v refrigerator that I run 24/7 while camping, it usually won't drain the battery all the way overnight, but a few times it has and I needed to use it. One caution, Lithium batteries like this don't like the cold, so you want to keep it in the house, especially if your vehicle isn't garaged, in the wintertime. Using it, each jump tends to decrease its battery level by about 12%.
User avatar
Alpinefroggy
Posts: 92
Joined: 5/11/2020
14ers: 20 2
13ers: 2
Trip Reports (3)

Re: Trailhead Trouble

Post by Alpinefroggy »

Friend of mine got stuck 3/4s of the way up Princeton to the towers at 330 in the morning when one of the those white vans that have lots of seats somehow got up far enough to get stuck and my friend in their 4wd truck had to back back down to the 2wd so the van could get out and my friend never made it back up to the towers and never summitted that day.

Luckily they and I did Princeton about 2.5 weeks ago with a bit of snow. Fun day for all of us so it worked out well.
User avatar
Presto
Posts: 1855
Joined: 6/26/2007
14ers: 58 6
13ers: 308 25
Trip Reports (6)

Re: Trailhead Trouble

Post by Presto »

In no particular order (all of this occurring in the early 1980's):
- Parked at the trailhead early in the morning (in spring ... snow still on the ground in many spots) to go climb Mt. Zirkel. We were unprepared (no showshoes) and hiked as far as we could before getting snow and waterlogged boots and eventually deciding to try it later in the year. Returned to the "car" (yes, it was actually a car at the time ... an automatic Plymouth Acclaim) only to find that the brake lines were mostly severed by rabbits (as later diagnosed by the auto tech). The Man drove home, expertly using what brakes were left and downshifting. There wasn't the traffic on I-70 that we have now. (thank heavens) The auto mechanic asked to keep the brake lines to hang on his wall.
- Fuel pump failed on our first trip in to do the Bells. Never even made it all the way in on the pavement even to the parking lot. Luckily, after the entire gas tank had drained, we were able to turn around and coast most of the way back down towards that huge parking lot where the shuttle now leaves. Found someone and used their phone to call AAA. AAA came, towed us to Glenwood Springs. It was a Saturday. We arrived at the Chevy dealership just as they were closing. The guy said we could leave the truck and they would fix it first thing Monday morning. Walked to a motel in Glenwood. Paid more for the two nights at the motel than we did for the fuel pump replacement.
- Went to climb Pike's Peak from the back side in mid-January (crag's). Got there super early and parked as far off the snow covered road to the right side as we could ... at that time, you could drive further than you can now. Wore snowshoes. Everything was totally snow covered ... no trail usage was possible ... cross country was the key. Once we got above treeline, we ditched the snowshoes. We were alone on the summit. Used the gift shop as a windbreak. Hiked back down, found the snowshoes, put them on and proceeded to wallow all the way down our tracks to the road (sinking up to our crotches and crawling around a lot of the time). Got to the truck just before dark only to find that some snowmobilers (whose snow machine tracks has easily made it past our truck) had decided to get off their machines, get onto the hood of the truck and smash in our windshield. It was a dicey drive back to Denver.

Happy trails! :-D
As if none of us have ever come back with a cool, quasi-epic story instead of being victim to tragic rockfall, a fatal stumble, a heart attack, an embolism, a lightning strike, a bear attack, collapsing cornice, some psycho with an axe, a falling tree, carbon monoxide, even falling asleep at the wheel getting to a mountain. If you can't accept the fact that sometimes "s**t happens", then you live with the illusion that your epic genius and profound wilderness intelligence has put you in total and complete control of yourself, your partners, and the mountain. How mystified you'll be when "s**t happens" to you! - FM
User avatar
stephakett
Posts: 828
Joined: 5/30/2014
14ers: 28
13ers: 37
Trip Reports (1)
Contact:

Re: Trailhead Trouble

Post by stephakett »

Will_E wrote: Fri Dec 11, 2020 10:46 am
JTOlson26 wrote: Fri Dec 11, 2020 6:21 am
markf wrote: Fri Dec 11, 2020 6:04 am I carry a booster pack for just that reason. It's a lot less work than bump starting, especially if you're traveling alone.
I've read varying reviews on the booster packs.

Which one do you carry and have you ever had to use it?
I have this one: https://www.amazon.com/TOPVISION-2200A- ... 60&sr=8-11

It works great, I have a 12v refrigerator that I run 24/7 while camping, it usually won't drain the battery all the way overnight, but a few times it has and I needed to use it. One caution, Lithium batteries like this don't like the cold, so you want to keep it in the house, especially if your vehicle isn't garaged, in the wintertime. Using it, each jump tends to decrease its battery level by about 12%.
i have a Duracell PowerPack Pro 1100 and it works AMAZINGLY well. my dad gave it to me as an early birthday present a couple years back for my Jeep, but i still keep it on hand for all of my car camping trips to charge my devices. in case of emergency, it also jumps a COMPLETELY dead battery very quickly, and the battery lasts a REALLY long time, through a LOT of charges and jumps.

and one more shameless plug for investing in good all terrain tires.
“My father considered a walk among the mountains as the equivalent of churchgoing.” (Aldous Huxley)
User avatar
JTOlson26
Posts: 446
Joined: 4/21/2009
14ers: 17
Trip Reports (1)

Re: Trailhead Trouble

Post by JTOlson26 »

stephakett wrote: Fri Dec 11, 2020 12:01 pm
Will_E wrote: Fri Dec 11, 2020 10:46 am
JTOlson26 wrote: Fri Dec 11, 2020 6:21 am

I've read varying reviews on the booster packs.

Which one do you carry and have you ever had to use it?
I have this one: https://www.amazon.com/TOPVISION-2200A- ... 60&sr=8-11

It works great, I have a 12v refrigerator that I run 24/7 while camping, it usually won't drain the battery all the way overnight, but a few times it has and I needed to use it. One caution, Lithium batteries like this don't like the cold, so you want to keep it in the house, especially if your vehicle isn't garaged, in the wintertime. Using it, each jump tends to decrease its battery level by about 12%.
i have a Duracell PowerPack Pro 1100 and it works AMAZINGLY well. my dad gave it to me as an early birthday present a couple years back for my Jeep, but i still keep it on hand for all of my car camping trips to charge my devices. in case of emergency, it also jumps a COMPLETELY dead battery very quickly, and the battery lasts a REALLY long time, through a LOT of charges and jumps.

and one more shameless plug for investing in good all terrain tires.
Must have missed something in the thread in regards to the tires.

I've been happy with my Nitto Terra Grapplers on the 4runner. 285/70/17. I get the slightest bit of rub at full lock even with a couple inches of lift, so I might go 275/75/17 next go-around.
User avatar
handonbroward
Posts: 274
Joined: 5/21/2015
14ers: 42
13ers: 40
Trip Reports (5)

Re: Trailhead Trouble

Post by handonbroward »

CaptainSuburbia wrote: Fri Dec 11, 2020 10:18 am
At least I got my peaks climbed which is all that really matters.
Exactly. I had done LB-Blanca day before and survived Lake Como road in the truck, and got a sweet camping spot and a good lap on Princeton the morning of my kerfluffle. By the that things started to go sideways I had enough endorphins going to take the whole thing in stride.
"I hurt, therefore I am" - Barry Blanchard
User avatar
Vincopotamus
Posts: 353
Joined: 12/5/2008
14ers: 35 3 3
13ers: 8 1

Re: Trailhead Trouble

Post by Vincopotamus »

I think I've shared this before, but around Memorial Day in 2018 I car camped overnight by the outhouse in Yankee Boy Basin, and 24 hours later when I got to work, I noticed a strange smell coming from my engine compartment - sure as sh!t there was a live marmot who had hitchhiked 120 miles back to GJ.



The real fun was trying to get him out. I tried:
  • Polite poking with a stick
  • Impolite poking with a stick
  • Bribing with jalapeno potato chips
  • Starting the car to let it get hot and persuade him to leave (gave up after realizing he'd already endured a two hour drive down into the GJ desert heat)
  • Using a backpack leaf blower on him
all to no avail.

Finally, I grabbed a nearby garden hose and started waterboarding him out. He continued to resist for about 30 seconds of this before eventually resigning, as evidenced by the wet footprints leading to the saddest looking wet cat I've ever seen, making his way to the nearby bushes. Never ended up seeing him again, hope he's managed to carve out a nice life at the GJ airport.

Fortunately, he didn't cause any damage to my Outback, which would proudly soldier on for another 40k miles until it blasted a spark plug out and still runs but now sounds like a helicopter.
The only time I lower the bar is après
User avatar
d_baker
Posts: 2765
Joined: 11/18/2007
14ers: 58 15
13ers: 284 9
Trip Reports (57)

Re: Trailhead Trouble

Post by d_baker »

Not at the trailhead, but in my driveway.
After a Saturday morning of beacon practice in Glen Cove on Pikes Peak, I returned home (dropped off by a friend) to find my truck parked in a new spot.
No note left behind, none of the neighbors heard or saw anything. Wtf!?
My cell was turned off, so once I turned it on, I had a message from the Manitou police department, saying that my vehicle was involved in an accident from a diabetic that went into shock while driving down the hill I lived on, and he hit my truck. No s**t.
The upper driveway is well out of the way of the road I live on! The guy came through the scrub oak and hit the passenger side rear bed and the truck swung around to hit the steal beam that supports the mid-level deck on the house.
The guy continued down the hill and crossed Manitou Ave and went over the curb/sidewalk on opposite side of road, going between a fire hydrant and telephone pole, and then was stopped by a chainlink fence that runs above the creek next to Memorial Park. He was passed out the entire ride as I understand. He didn't get hurt. And his ~70's model GMC blazer had barely a mark. He also didn't have car insurance, but luckily I had full coverage still on my Ranger.
The bed of the Ranger looked like an hour glass! I drove that truck like that for another ~10 years before replacing it in '18.
parking problems.png
parking problems.png (1.47 MiB) Viewed 1019 times
User avatar
Trotter
Posts: 1101
Joined: 6/5/2013
14ers: 57 5
13ers: 186 2 12
Trip Reports (13)

Re: Trailhead Trouble

Post by Trotter »

Once me and a girlfriend were up exploring a tunnel on the grays and torreys road, and a disheveled dude came walking up one of the side roads, carrying an umbrella and a hammer. Waved us down, and asked us to follow him down this road to his truck that was apparently dead and needed a jump. He said he had cables. A lot of alarm bells going off in my head, but we followed him after arming ourselves with pocketknives and rocks. Sure enough, he did have a dead vehicle, but admitted he had no cables. I don't know why he lied about that earlier, luckily we had cables and jumped him. He was down at one of the old mines, digging with hand tools. He had a little camp set up, living out of his truck. He had about 50 lbs of rocks, and was super excited that he had found gold, and was gonna drive into town and be rich. He also tried to ask us for gas money.
Nevermind that its not his mine, its probably got a claim already, it was clearly abandoned 100 years ago because there was no gold, and the rocks he showed me appeared to not be gold ore.

We wondered how many typical yoga pants wearing hipsters he had already tried flagging down while waving his hammer, before we stopped for him.
After climbing a great hill, one only finds that there are many more hills to climb. -Nelson Mandela
Whenever I climb I am followed by a dog called Ego. -Nietzsche
User avatar
nyker
Posts: 2737
Joined: 12/6/2007
14ers: 58
13ers: 22
Trip Reports (69)

Re: Trailhead Trouble

Post by nyker »

Not a trailhead but one evening after a night class I was taking at school I came back to my car in the parking lot to find an axe in my door, it was up the handle and apparently so stuck the person wielding the axe just left it there. No other marks or damage. Was pretty eery since it was after 9:00pm few people around and a dark parking lot. After looking around the car, under the car and in the back seat, then crowbar in hand I opened the trunk, nobody was hiding in there so I got in and drove home, watching my rear view mirror, axe still sticking out of door. I pulled the axe out when I got back and fixed the door later that week. That was like 30 years ago while I driving a 1968 Mustang, forest green 289 V8, I still have the axe today. It was also about 10min away from that house in Amityville that the horror movie (true story) was based on so that freaked me out a little too. :-SS
User avatar
cougar
Posts: 927
Joined: 8/9/2007
14ers: 48 2
13ers: 98 2
Trip Reports (10)
Contact:

Re: Trailhead Trouble

Post by cougar »

Another miner encounter, below the Iowa Gulch trailhead for Sherman, a couple guys were camped in a gypsy wagon. They kicked us off what looked like a BLM public spot, claiming it was owned by a club called LDMA. Lost Dutchman Miners Association, and their members prospected claims in the area and around the country. Actually a real thing, but no signage near their spot.
http://www.listsofjohn.com/m/cougar

"If we don't change direction, we'll end up where we're going."
"Bushwhacking is like a box of chocolates - you never know what you're gonna get."
"Don't give up on your dreams, stay asleep"
User avatar
JROSKA
Posts: 380
Joined: 8/20/2010
14ers: 41
13ers: 5
Trip Reports (10)

Re: Trailhead Trouble

Post by JROSKA »

Thankfully I’ve never had an epic disaster at or near a TH but I’ve had some very close calls. The most notable was in 2011 when I summitted Mt. Lindsey still as a full-fledged newbie. And not a very smart one either. Somehow, I still don’t know how, I got a Ford Focus within 1/4 mile of the Upper Huerfano TH. This was an “80% chance of storms” day and there was only 1 other party up there. I joined up with them at the saddle, we summitted, but it was very obvious the entire descent that the weather was going to get really bad.

From the meadow near the TH and then non-stop, the skies just opened up. Biggest downpour I’ve ever seen in the mountains and to this day, the only time I’ve witnessed continuous lightning / thunder in the high country like that. It just didn’t stop. We agreed to stick together on the way down the road. The water was ponding badly in the depressions and I remember one flat area up there that was really flooding out. No way to tell how deep the water was, and definitely one of those situations where if you’re in the city, you “turn around, don’t drown”. The other guys got through with a truck and then it was my turn. With a 2009 Ford Focus. About halfway through, I could actually see the water about 1/3 of the way up the side window as I could hear the engine sputtering to stay alive and it died just as I came out the other side. The car started up again and I was able to make it back to Denver, although the heavy rain didn’t stop until Pueblo.

So I was perhaps a couple of seconds, and a few inches away, from my car being submerged and stalled in what probably would have ended up being 4-6 feet of water. The guys I hiked with were waiting for me so I could have at least gotten off the mountain but they were staying in a local hotel so I’m not sure how I’d have gotten back to Denver. I’m sure the car would have been totaled. Would insurance have covered it? I’d like to think so, but in all honesty, “why on earth did you have a small passenger car on a road like that” would have been a valid question on their part.

I’ve always wondered since that day, had the worst happened, would my attitude have been “at least I got my summit”, and moved onto the next one, or would I have just quit.
Post Reply