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#286855 - 10/22/17 06:37 PM Sad Ending for lost Joshua Tree hikers
hikermor Offline
Geezer in Chief

Registered: 08/26/06
Posts: 6230
Loc: southern Cal

Apparently he shot her as she was suffering from head injuries incurred while hiking and then killed himself as he embraced her.

Not exactly Romeo and Juliet, but infinitely sad and tragic. Perhaps the first and most fundamental slip was the decision to hike at all in Joshua Tree in hot summer conditions. I have to ponder how many items would have been of more use than a firearm in their situation - FAK? equivalent weight in water? a good map?

The desert in summer if extremely formidable - not to be taken lightly. Much more pleasant during the cooler months.
Geezer in Chief

#286856 - 10/22/17 07:49 PM Re: Sad Ending for lost Joshua Tree hikers [Re: hikermor]
Phaedrus Offline

Registered: 04/28/10
Posts: 2079
Loc: Great Plains
I found the story to be heartbreaking. Maybe more details will come out, maybe we already know all we'll ever know. There does seem to be the implication that they were doomed and decided to commit suicide- it doesn't seem right now to be a murder/suicide in the conventional sense. And while I do carry a gun you're right, in that situation a PLB and an extra couple bottles of water would have been more useful.
“You can tell whether a man is clever by his answers. You can tell whether a man is wise by his questions.” Naguib Mahfouz

#286863 - 10/23/17 10:14 PM Re: Sad Ending for lost Joshua Tree hikers [Re: hikermor]
Pete Offline

Registered: 02/20/09
Posts: 1343
very sad.

I was a "local" at Joshua Tree for well over a decade. I know it well. But 'nobody' goes there in summer. It is insanely hot. Perhaps the young woman in this tragedy had a head injury - but very likely the severe heat was a contributor. People get delirious when they become dehydrated. The whole thing is just a tragic loss of 2 lives.

We never went to J. Tree in the summer, and never earlier than Sep-Oct. Peak time for users is Nov-April. It is sad that these young people did not have the opportunity of advice from the experienced climbers and hikers.

Practically ... I am not sure why the young man did not climb a rock and fire his gun into the air several times. It might have alerted rangers, and started a rescue. But I don't want to second-guess. Heat-stress injuries are a bad experience ... I have been there.

#286879 - 10/25/17 04:56 PM Re: Sad Ending for lost Joshua Tree hikers [Re: hikermor]
clearwater Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 03/19/05
Posts: 999
Loc: Channeled Scablands
Five mile loop trail. Walk either way and you are out.




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