police car lights

Between the lines

police car lights

September 23, 2013  Driving back to Florida from Idaho “Primitive Skills Gathering”

So . . .

There I was, alone, singing talking communicating with myself as I pass through Oklahoma.  When all of a sudden flashing red and blue lights caught me off guard.  Dang, State Trooper.

What have I done?  Why am I getting pulled over? So I pulled over and waited . . .

I rolled down my left window and he knocks on my right.

“Do you know why I pulled you over?”  said the Trooper.  “No sir.”  I replied.

“Have you been drinking”  “No sir”

“Are you tired”  “No sir”

“You crossed the solid white line on the right side of the road a few miles back” he explains.

He leaned into the front window and starting inspecting the inside of my truck.  He scanned the front seat.  Scanned the back seat.  My truck was filled with deer skin bags, antlers, horns, and all of my outdoor equipment.

“Please step out of the vehicle sir and step toward my vehicle”  At this point, I am nervous.  And like a penguin I waddle to the back of my truck.  Upon reaching the back of my truck, the officer escorted me to the back seat of his vehicle.  He then placed a hand on my head and one on my side and guided me into the back seat of the squad car.

I thought to myself.  I’ve seen this happen many times on TV but never thought it would happen to me.  I’m now sitting in the backseat of his car.  My back, not touching the back of the seat.  Eyes bugging out of my head.  Hands shaking.  Wanting to fill my pants.

Officer gets into the front seat.  Readjusted the rear view mirror so he could see me.  Removes his sun glasses, breathes heavily on his glasses and precedes to clean them.  Over and Over again.

He then asks me “Where are you coming from”  my response “Idaho”

He then starts typing into his computer, looking up once in awhile to gaze at me through the rear view mirror.

“You look like you are about to have a stroke” was his next comment.  As he continues to alternate between typing and staring at me.

After a few more moments of silence.  Typing, Staring.  Typing, Staring.   He inquired “Why were you in Idaho?”  “I attended RabbitStick which is a Primitive Skills Gathering”  “So, you learned how to skin an animal”  ‘Yes, sir” while my eyes are still bulging, hands shaking.  I proceed to explain that I learned how to skin, process the meat, and use the organs and large intestines to make sausage.

Another few minutes of silence.   He’s pondering and thinking.  Looking at me and staring.  He continues to type on his computer.

Then he catches my eye and says “So, if the government collapsed, you’d be the guy that I would have to go to to learn how to survive”  My response was, “Yea, that’s right”  Then he asked “what type of gun do you carry to kill animals when you’re in the back country?”  And to this I replied, “Trap snares and a bow.  But recently I learned how to use an atlatl.”  :What is an atlatl?”  So I explained, “an atlatl is a spear or long arrow on a lever that is thrown.  It is the advancement of the spear and can be thrown further and with more power.”

For the next 30 minutes we talked about primitive fire making, primitive shelters and all of the other things that I have learned not only to survive but to thrive in the wilderness.

After the conversation had finished, he walked over to the back right door to let me out.  He opened the door and told me to “try to keep it between the lines”.  Hey, “and have a nice day”.

He drove off before I was back inside my truck.

 

Insult to injury Grand finally

Day 26 is missing but basically their are still two groups. Group 1 stopped responding to my whistles and we are a little worried especially because they have poor map reading skills. After trying to track them down for an hour or so we decided that it would be in the best interest if we meet up at the final destination being that the destination had already been planned out a few days in advance and we only had about 18 miles to go. We figured out our bearing and had a pretty good time hiking until we got to the water source, the only one that was any were close to us, where we found out that it had dried up. I set out with 2 full 40oz bottles and when we got to the water source I had about 20oz left. (That was more than the other two guys had) We then started to worry about the other group. There was no sign that they had even been here, so we pressed on. We took a lot of breaks because of the lack of water, energy, and blisters on our feet. We finished the day thinking we were going to get a lot of crap from the other group for being so slow but there was not sign of them at the final destination and the sun was setting. After a few hours of waiting our ride came to pick us up and still no group 1, we were all worried. After the sun had set and the moon had risen we see two dark figures approaching in the distance, It was group 1.  They misread the map and had traveled about 20 miles in the wrong direction. Luckily for them a family had been driving by and told them where they were and also supplied them with a gallon of water being that they had been out of water sense about noon. The vehicle that we thought was here to pick us up was just there to get our gear, they then informed us that our ride was parked a few miles away. So we began to walk. Group 1 left us again because they decided they were going to run it, while group 2 walked it. After about 5 miles of walking we realized this was no short walk, my thoughts (in a more PG way) “this sucks”. Then what seemed like for ever maybe 3-4 miles we came across a member of group 1 who was in hypothermia to the point he could hardly talk or move. I thought about what I know about hypothermia and how to signal for help so I blew my whistle 3 times, but with no response. So I stripped down to give him my cloths and body heat which only helped a little. This was a critical situation we had to find this car soon because he wasn’t going anywhere. So I ran as fast as I could for as long as I could blowing my whistle every few minutes but with no response. Then after a few miles of running I could see a faint light in the distance so I signaled again but still no response. When I finally got to the light I was tired, cold, and extremely frustrated. I then asked why they didn’t respond to my whistles, and they responded “we wanted you to find us on your own.” (FYI 3 whistles, gun shots, or threes in general mean help.)  So I proceeded to tell them where the person was that needed help. Why the car was going to get him, I worked on warming myself up next to the small fire that had just been started. ( remember I still have no clothing) The car returned and I got my clothes back warmed up and then it started to rain, talk about insult to injury. When it started to rain we were informed that we were heading out at first light. So for the rest of the night I slept in the rain. When the sun rose and the rain had stopped on day 28 we all filed in the van liked zombies, after an hour drive back to our vehicles they gave us eggs and yogurt for our first meal, and a steam bath which was amazing. So after a long day hike and then a night hike along with being up for over 24 hours it ended with a nice relaxing steam bath to wash all the dirt away.

Day 23+24 tention

 

 

 

 

utah 2013 476 We are all on the food chain.

The next two days we left the river and continued to head south. There was little water that we came across but came across several mountain lion tracks. We are almost done and on our way back to where we set off from tensions are high in the group and while I know it is wrong the group has split in two because of the different mind sets, navigation abilities, and the pace we want to walk. Even though we are in two different groups now I still keep in contact with the other guys by blowing my whistle once every 20-30 minutes and wait for a response.

 

utah 2013 477 utah 2013 478 utah 2013 479 utah 2013 481 utah 2013 482 utah 2013 483 utah 2013 484 utah 2013 485 utah 2013 486 utah 2013 487 utah 2013 488 utah 2013 489 utah 2013 490 utah 2013 491 utah 2013 492 utah 2013 493 utah 2013 494 utah 2013 495 utah 2013 496 utah 2013 497 utah 2013 498 utah 2013 503

Nice easy day 23

After yesterdays heart racing day this day was calm nice hike and view up and over a mountain.

an exciting 22nd day

Today started as a nice blue skied day and was following the river.  Around noon clouds started to build in the sky and then thunder was heard in the distance. I was told that in the dessert that even if it is not raining where you are a flash flood could come out of no where. After hearing the thunder we as a group decided to get to higher ground just in case. Then out of no where, maybe 5 minutes after getting out of the river the river started to rise and then moments later it went from a none moving ankle deep river to a raging few feet deep river. Then a storm came over us and lightning was cracking all around; so close in fact that you could not even count to one when the thunder sounded. It was a scary and exciting situation, but the beauty of it all was mind blowing.

Solo days

For about 6 days I was alone. It was an interesting time even though I did poor math on how to distribute my food across 6 days and ran out on day 4. While I was alone I did a lot of talking with my self and the animals that came to visit me. I once heard that animals can feel how you are feeling and if you are a good person or a bad person by the vibe you give off. Over the course of 6 day the animals got yous to me being there and came to visit me often during the day and became less scared of me, but after the night with no sleep I was irritable and the animals could sense it because I had almost no visitor for almost the whole day. That was my first truly lonely day. You may not think that being alone for 6 day is hard but the truth is, it is. Humans are social creatures by nature and everything we do everyday all day is connect with other people. We also in today’s society have ways of occupying our minds with t.v. movies, games, texting, and so on, but when you take all those social connections and mind occupying things away you really dig deep into your self and find out things that you may not have known or something you have been denying about yourself. I believe every one should try a solo. Its good for the mind.

Utah 7-30

 

beautiful hike and start of my solo adventure

Utah 7-28

 

 

It was a Beautiful day saw many amazing things this day.

 

 

 

Utah 7-27

 

This day it rained all day the first day that it rained. By the end of the day all my gear was soaked and I was tired and cold. Had to Bro heat to keep warm that night because the blankets were wet. This day won’t be forgotten any time soon.