nice if you like lots of numbers, and we can find bigger numbers to go on about all day... i go tramping to avoid that as do a lot of people.. i grew up in competitive athletics, i did well at it, but it didn't really do anything for me other than leave me exhausted in the end, i had some nice numbers but it didnt leave me with much else that felt positive.
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and thers the issue when people thrash themselves harder just to be the fastest.. yes its their choice, but really think about it before you go there... i used to do it, and i was worse for it in the end...
We may only be here for a short time.
we're here long enough, especially when you go through years of chronic exhaustion like i have, pace yourself...
One comment that has come up a couple of times. Not sure if it was this or the original thread on the temperatures. A USA study a few years ago came to the conclusion that you were more likely to die from hypothermia in temperatures between 5C and -5C than you were in temperatures lower than that. The study was taken from all outdoor sports in USA and only looked at known fatalities. Other factors like wind etc were not considered. There are a couple of reasons why this is the case. First below -5 everything is dry. Doesnt matter if you wear fleece wool or down if it gets wet it doesnt work as well. Its not likely to get wet below this temperature. Even bogs have a nice dry hard coating. More importantly though you know you are going into extreme temperatures and prepare better than a lot of people do if they are not expecting it to be that cold. Ive been guilty a couple of times in this way. It certainly reminds you about the error of your ways. Last time it was 5C and raining. I always cook on hills so still in synthetic t shirt and shorts. Thats fair enough I stayed warm enough. Top of the hill though there was a lot of standing water and only 10 minute walk to a place I knew would be dry. Opted to get there instead of soaking the bottom of the pack which had a waterproof liner in it so would not of been an issue. It wasnt even windy. By then it was every stick of clothing I had including storm gear balaclava etc and running the last 3 km of the track and was still cold at the bottom. Lesson learnt I hope
Yes, the most dangerous conditions are just above freezing and rain, there is nothing worse in my view. I've spent alot of time in -20C and I've always been fairly comfortable. In those conditions I wouldn't even think about taking anything waterproof, we used to carry Gore Dryloft bivy sacks and just sleep on the side of the mountains, or inbetween a good cover of bushes, etc...in the morning just brush the snow off and you're dry. The only time we might have seen actual water would be when we melted snow for drinking water. Those conditions are amazingly peaceful and predictable, it's just brutal cold and you can prepare for that easily enough. But those days that hover around freezing, with heavy precipitation, those days require the correct skill set and gear.
Yes, walking across the tarmac at Dunedin airport the other day in rain, wind and about 5C was a reminder of just how miserable and heat robbing that combination of factors can be.
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