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Author Topic: Man survives weeks after Alaskan cabin burns down  (Read 350 times)

Offline Wilderwes

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Man survives weeks after Alaskan cabin burns down
« on: January 13, 2020, 09:58:38 pm »
Thought some people in this forum might find this news story interesting. Basically, a man survives weeks before being rescued by state troopers after his remote cabin (made of plastic?) burns down. Sadly, his dog perished in the fire. He was able to salvage enough food and non-incinerated supplies to keep himself fed and clothed/sheltered until he was rescued.

http://www.startribune.com/alaska-man-rescued-weeks-after-remote-cabin-burned-down/566933682/

Offline rbinhood

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Re: Man survives weeks after Alaskan cabin burns down
« Reply #1 on: January 13, 2020, 11:04:36 pm »
Proof that a simple mistake---burning a cardboard box in the woodstove, could lead to disaster. Fortunately, he was resourceful enough to find clothes and supplies to get by in sub zero temperatures for 3 weeks, until he was rescued. Lucky to be alive. Luckier than his poor dog was.
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Offline awbrown: N. Illinois, USA

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Re: Man survives weeks after Alaskan cabin burns down
« Reply #2 on: January 14, 2020, 03:08:35 pm »
Obviously inexperienced. Cabins burn down. You need a backup plan. Have a winter capable tent, with a stove, set up a safe distance from your cabin, with emergency food and supplies, including a satellite phone, in a sealed steel drum. Could mean life or death.
I love winter......I don't look fat in wool!

Online Bkrgi

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Re: Man survives weeks after Alaskan cabin burns down
« Reply #3 on: January 14, 2020, 08:13:19 pm »
Highlights the importance of Plan B or C or D. Cold has no forgiveness...
I have been wanting to camp this week but with temps either side of -30c I'm not interested in having to execute a Plan B or C should something fail....so I'll backyard camp it for the experience and head out when temps climb up for late this week or next
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Offline rbinhood

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Re: Man survives weeks after Alaskan cabin burns down
« Reply #4 on: January 15, 2020, 08:27:55 am »
Anybody who can survive 3 weeks in sub zero temperatures with almost nothing is not inexperienced in my book. Anybody can make a mistake, no matter their level of experience.
"Our life is frittered away by detail... simplify, simplify."
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Offline awbrown: N. Illinois, USA

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Re: Man survives weeks after Alaskan cabin burns down
« Reply #5 on: January 15, 2020, 02:36:15 pm »
You know, I could be a master carpenter, very experienced. That doesn't mean I'm an experienced backwoods Alaska resident. This gentleman was new to Alaska, inexperienced with winter living in the bush and was probably very lucky to have survived his ordeal. I'll bet he doesn't make the same mistakes again.
I love winter......I don't look fat in wool!

Offline trapmusher

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Re: Man survives weeks after Alaskan cabin burns down
« Reply #6 on: January 15, 2020, 04:48:02 pm »
The guy didn't make  "A" mistake. He made a list of mistakes. Trappers that know the area are writing that he was about a mile from several cabins.

A master carpenter should have been able to jury rig some type of snowshoe.

Offline rbinhood

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Re: Man survives weeks after Alaskan cabin burns down
« Reply #7 on: January 15, 2020, 07:06:18 pm »
He had food, clothing, a shelter, and a woodstove for heat. I think the smartest thing he did was stay put in a place where people knew where he was, and would come looking for him when he was not heard from. I think he would have made a mistake trying to jury rig snowshoes, and then striking out on his own when he would have had to leave much of what was keeping alive behind, or at a minimum, carry it under terrible travel conditions. The wisdom of the choice he made is born out by the fact that he was found alive, and survived. Not sure that would have been the result had he tried to walk out.
"Our life is frittered away by detail... simplify, simplify."
Henry David  Thoreau

Offline AunNordDuNord

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Re: Man survives weeks after Alaskan cabin burns down
« Reply #8 on: January 15, 2020, 11:38:42 pm »
He had food, clothing, a shelter, and a woodstove for heat. I think the smartest thing he did was stay put in a place where people knew where he was, and would come looking for him when he was not heard from. I think he would have made a mistake trying to jury rig snowshoes, and then striking out on his own when he would have had to leave much of what was keeping alive behind, or at a minimum, carry it under terrible travel conditions. The wisdom of the choice he made is born out by the fact that he was found alive, and survived. Not sure that would have been the result had he tried to walk out.
YEP! He made some mistakes for sure but one he didn't make was to leave his camp! Especially that he didn't really know where he was by the sound of it!

Offline trapmusher

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Re: Man survives weeks after Alaskan cabin burns down
« Reply #9 on: January 16, 2020, 07:21:22 am »
Not knowing where he was WAS the biggest mistake. If he had, he would have known that he was close to help as well as knowing how to reach it.

Offline Hutchy

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Re: Man survives weeks after Alaskan cabin burns down
« Reply #10 on: January 16, 2020, 09:11:59 am »
The guy didn't make  "A" mistake. He made a list of mistakes. Trappers that know the area are writing that he was about a mile from several cabins.

A master carpenter should have been able to jury rig some type of snowshoe.

Funny the power of the internet eh. The guys on trapperman tell it like it is.

Used to be the man made the gear, now it seems the gear makes the man...

Offline AunNordDuNord

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Re: Man survives weeks after Alaskan cabin burns down
« Reply #11 on: January 16, 2020, 11:45:31 am »
Not knowing where he was WAS the biggest mistake. If he had, he would have known that he was close to help as well as knowing how to reach it.
Like I said he made some mistakes for sure..... And maybe the biggest one was not knowing the area well... But since he didn't know the area I think it was "smart" of him to stay put!!
We have lots of people from down south that comes up here and think they are doing good... but in fact they are just lucky. 

Online Bkrgi

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Re: Man survives weeks after Alaskan cabin burns down
« Reply #12 on: January 16, 2020, 01:47:07 pm »
Not knowing where he was WAS the biggest mistake. If he had, he would have known that he was close to help as well as knowing how to reach it.
Like I said he made some mistakes for sure..... And maybe the biggest one was not knowing the area well... But since he didn't know the area I think it was "smart" of him to stay put!!
We have lots of people from down south that comes up here and think they are doing good... but in fact they are just lucky.

Well he did try to leave but snow depth prevented him from getting to far...so if there was little snow he could have augered himself even deeper way too easily....or been rescued faster.
Either way he got into a big pickle with little knowledge/plan to get out from it and is lucky to escape unhurt.
I certainly can not begrudge him for trying and wish him all the best and hopefully he is wiser next time.

As you point out for me it is funny watching southerners come North for the adventure and quickly be face to face with a hard reality and tough decisions.....most retreat back to the comforts of the modern city. See it here lots and we are no where near the remoteness of the Yukon....in fact have one here now that we will see if he retreats back south or sticks it out hahaha.

Fantasy and reality can be a hard lesson........
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Offline scoutergriz

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Re: Man survives weeks after Alaskan cabin burns down
« Reply #13 on: January 16, 2020, 04:58:52 pm »
He was very lucky anyone saw his SOS, it wasn't SAR that found him, it was a pilot that just happened to fly by and looked down at the smoke from his fire. This guy made several mistakes- he didn't make arrangements for someone to check regularly (I know a guy that flies a Swiss flag in an emergency), he didn't have a cache, and he didn't have a backup plan. Even in N Ontario, trappers and hunters have a wood or tool shed with a small stove, that can be emptied and used in an emergency. It's also common to strap a plastic barrel in a tree with dried food,clothing, and survival gear, some even place them along their escape route.