Thank you, Janice. Great information for all of us.
FROM AN INTELLIGENT AND NOW MORE AWARE FORAGER:
I went over on the old McKenzie Hwy this morning and tried to find a spot a friend and I had worked a few years ago. I got below the 2000 foot elevation marker and walked in. It was raining and definitely moist underfoot. The trees and forest bed were the sort that I have found chanterelles, pigs ears and lobster mushrooms in the past. I didn’t see a single mushroom. Not anything. I did manage to get myself lost for about a half hour. The forest was pretty dense and the sun was overhead and behind the rain clouds. I thought that because I was close to the highway I would have the sound of cars to fall back on in case I got turned around but all I could hear was the rain and the occasional airliner. I finally got my bearings by listening to the airliners which I was pretty sure were going north and south. One sounded like it was descending so I put that direction to be north, PDX, and adjusted my course accordingly. I think the thing I learned that was surprising is a person can get lost while they are moving slowly and not going far and being very mindful to not get lost. I finally found the forest road I had walked in on and went back. I determined that I hadn’t walked in from the highway as far as I was having to walk out and there was no way I traipsed through the uneven terrain such a great distance. So I turned around on the road and went the other way hoping to hell it was the same road I walked in on. The other way had a fork which eventually yielded two dead ends. Thank God! So that just left my original direction of choice and I came out to the highway right where I left my car.
When I admitted to myself that I was lost, a painful process in and of itself, I kept telling myself to hug a tree. I didn’t actually stop but I slowed way down and started thinking very critically because it was either that or succumb to panic. Even the assumptions I made with the information I had I held at arm’s length. “Knowing” where I was going would lull me into complacency and I might miss some important feature that I would need later when my direction proved to be wrong.
Of course I had no cell service. I did have food and water and enough clothing to not die. I told Rick if I wasn’t home by dark to come find my car on the highway. A good reason to leave your car on a main road I guess.
You might want to cover getting lost some night in your class. It’s a lot easier to do than I thought.
Sorry for rambling but in summary.
Test your assumptions. Can you really hear the road?
Is the forest so dense that you can’t see any landmarks?
Once you are lost keep an open mind and continue to test your assumptions so that you stay alert to new data.
A compass wouldn’t hurt.
So how could I not find even one tiny little anything at 1800 feet today? I drove on down to the Delta Campground where I have seen tons of mushrooms. Nothing.
Thanks for the website.