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Nature joins "Occupy" movement, throws tree across trail in protest.
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Steven Paris
(saparisor) - M

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Nature joins "Occupy" movement, throws tree across trail in protest. on 11/03/2011 22:23:11 MDT Print View

A 1500-year-old sequoia falls:

Eli .
(Feileung) - F
re: Nature joins "Occupy" movement, throws tree across trail in protest. on 11/03/2011 23:26:19 MDT Print View

Yosemite Falls joins in solidarity:

"Well, sometimes timing is everything.

On Friday, a friend and I went up Sunnyside Bench and then up the slabs at the base of Upper Yosemite Falls to enjoy a nice lunchtime spot. We had finished lunch and were hanging out in the spray at the base when he heard that distinctive crack and looked up to see a huge block breaking off near the top of the falls. He yelled and I looked up a moment later, a second that will forever be burned in my memory, to see what looked like a 2 car garage hurtling downward toward us. It struck a ledge about 2/3 of the way down, leaving a couple distinctive white scars (maybe why one might assume it originated there), fragmenting and continuing its 1,300 foot freefall. He sought cover and I RAN LIKE HELL as rocks rained down. One about the size of a refrigerator missed me by about 20 feet. It was very, very intense. Life changing, almost. We were pleased and astounded to find each other afterwards completely unharmed. The huge dustcloud and rocks scattered over several hundred yards down to middle cascades spoke to the awesome impact.

We have a few low res cell pics of the aftermath but pictures and words cannot convey the experience. You take your chances...etc.

The rest of the weekend - fun scrambles up Illilouette Gorge, Sierra Point and the Ledge Trail were all fantastic - but a bit anticlimactic!!!


Edited by Feileung on 11/03/2011 23:26:58 MDT.

Clayton Mauritzen
(GlacierRambler) - F

Locale: NW Montana
Almost as old as Jesus on 11/03/2011 23:45:18 MDT Print View

Humbling... If only we could see the forest for the trees.

Justin Baker
(justin_baker) - F

Locale: Santa Rosa, CA
Re: Nature joins "Occupy" movement, throws tree across trail in protest. on 11/04/2011 00:49:58 MDT Print View

They should just cut a section to free the path, and leave it so people can witness the natural decomposition of the huge tree.

Erik Basil

Locale: Atzlan
stealing my thunder on 11/04/2011 07:14:45 MDT Print View

Leave it to mother nature to steal the thunder from our plan to protest the 1%'ers that score all the campsites in Yosemite Valley. "OCCUPY YOSEMITE 2012" will be this summer, when 99%ers will exercise our free speech rights, chanting, hanging out, consulting with one another about how our ultralight ti shoelaces correspond to carbon fiber carabiners and the vast injustices facing our nation, and will take over the entirety of Camp Four and anywhere else we find it necessary to excercise our rights.

A related movement, OCCUPY HIGH SIERRA will be excercising free speed rights by occupying prime campsites and trails anywhere we like in the High Sierra, to spread the word about our political views. No permits and no leaders, man.

Warren Greer
(WarrenGreer) - F

Locale: SoCal
Yep on 11/06/2011 19:24:48 MST Print View

Just as I thought, if a tree falls in forest it does make a sound. Now, just cut a sliver out of it so the trail can continue to be used and people can marvel at the rings the sliver will expose. Pretty cool stuff.

Eric Blumensaadt
(Danepacker) - MLife

Locale: Mojave Desert
Epiphany moments... on 11/14/2011 14:10:46 MST Print View

I had a similar moment in the summer of 1980 while working as a professional trail builder on the Snow Creek section of the soon-to-be PCT.

We were blasting across a cliff area with boulders the size of Volkswagen Bugs sitting on top of the gently curving cliff. One worker was assigned to watch them for movement. Just as the boss and I were crossing the blast scree Rocky, the worker, yelled "FALLING!". We scrambled/ran like hell and the three boulders missed us by about 30 ft.

The boss just sat there saying over and over, "Jesus, that would have been Christmas."

I didn't say anything but thought, "Either I go back home to Pennsylvania now or this is the worst that can happen and I'll stay." I ended up staying for another month before I went back to my wife and two young daughters and my teaching job.
I have never been happier to see my family than I was at the end of that summer.

Piper S.
(sbhikes) - F

Locale: Santa Barbara (Name: Diane)
Re: Epiphany moments... on 11/14/2011 15:50:30 MST Print View

Hey Eric can you confirm the rumor that that section of the PCT was paid for by the mile?

When I hiked that section myself the first time by myself, it was rather annoying how it took so long to get down the mountain. Being by myself, I endured it fairly stoically.

I hiked it again last spring with my boyfriend. He had total temper tantrums over that section. At one point he slammed his trekking poles down and yelled "F***!!!" Then he sat down on a rock and said, "That's IT! I'm Done with this S***!" I had to try so hard not to laugh. It's like a rite of passage or something.

Anyway, back on topic, I heard a really huge boulder, several tons, crash down the mountain somewhere around me on the PCT. I couldn't tell where it was exactly, but I could definitely hear it and it was close. This was in Washington. When I saw the damage on the trail, which was switchbacking, it gave me the chills. Man! I could have been creamed!

Eric Blumensaadt
(Danepacker) - MLife

Locale: Mojave Desert
@ Piper on 11/18/2011 21:45:00 MST Print View

The U.S. Forest Service controlled the area in the lower elevations of Snow Creek 9 mile section (the desert Wilderness area) and they were the boys that laid out the trail. We just followed their stake markers, stitchback after switchback after...

Yeah, Ma Nature almost zapped you too. It's amazing how random the universe can be. Humans don't count for spit in the Big Picture.

Edited by Danepacker on 11/18/2011 21:46:15 MST.