Notes on the Atrocities
Like a 100-watt radio station, broadcasting to the dozens...

Monday, January 13, 2003  

Outside the east windows of second story buildings across Portland (on clear days), sleepy webfeet sip java and gaze at our own little Mount Fuji. We call it Mount Hood. Mountain climbers call it "easy." Thus thousands of weekend enthusiasts trudge up our gorgeous 11,237-foot mountain each year. I believe it's the most-climbed mountain in America.

But it ain't all that easy to climb. Yet again the mountain has made national news because a party of boneheads--ah, mountaineers--got trapped at the 11,000-foot point in a blizzard. And then the predictable: a cell phone call which begat 50--50!--rescuers who had to climb up the mountain in a blizzard that was dropping an inch an hour. Fortunately, all was well.

It begs the question, however: why rescue the boneheads? According to the National Parks Service, the best time to hike Hood is May or June. This is America, so I say hike to your heart's content. But, when you find yourself at the top of a mountain in the middle of winter in a blizzard, you're on your own. You have revoked your right to force a (badly in-debt) state to spend tens of thousands of dollars and risk 50 lives to save your sorry butt.

posted by Jeff | 11:39 AM |
Blogroll and Links