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Thread: thunder storms

  1. #11
    Senior Member Just Jeff's Avatar
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    I just rely on my trusty tin-foil hat to ward off lightning strikes. I wear it in thunderstorms and I've never been struck, so it works. Works to keep away pesky hikers, too, so it's multi-use.
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    Senior Member Ramblinrev's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Just Jeff View Post
    I just rely on my trusty tin-foil hat to ward off lightning strikes. I wear it in thunderstorms and I've never been struck, so it works. Works to keep away pesky hikers, too, so it's multi-use.
    Be extremely cautious if you ever meet a bear wearing an ursine tin foil hat. They are not to be trusted.
    I may be slow... But I sure am gimpy.

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    this may have been said already but i think most people are struck by lightening through the ground than directly from the sky.

  5. #15
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    After reading a book about lightening strikes killing several people here in the Sierra (on Half Dome) I took away from it:

    Don't go in caves.
    Don't sit/stand around on wet rock - water carries electricity.
    Don't be the highest point on the landscape. Don't stand next to the only tree around, either.
    Put all your metal objects apart from you, crouch and minimize contact with the ground - only the soles of the shoes. Get on a foam pad or sit pad if possible.
    Move away from anyone else - your group should spread out, not huddle together. About 50 feet apart from each other if you have time to get there.
    If you feel static in the air, stop! moving! and get into the safe position, crouching with arms wrapped around your knees.


    Here is a NOLS flyer on the subject:
    http://www.supertopo.com%2Fimages%2Flightning.pdf

  6. #16
    Senior Member lizzie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lori View Post
    After reading a book about lightening strikes killing several people here in the Sierra (on Half Dome) I took away from it:

    Don't go in caves.
    Don't sit/stand around on wet rock - water carries electricity.
    Don't be the highest point on the landscape. Don't stand next to the only tree around, either.
    Put all your metal objects apart from you, crouch and minimize contact with the ground - only the soles of the shoes. Get on a foam pad or sit pad if possible.
    Move away from anyone else - your group should spread out, not huddle together. About 50 feet apart from each other if you have time to get there.
    If you feel static in the air, stop! moving! and get into the safe position, crouching with arms wrapped around your knees.


    Here is a NOLS flyer on the subject:
    http://www.supertopo.com%2Fimages%2Flightning.pdf
    My gosh that was good reading. Thank you! I have wondered what it would be like to be in one of those observation towers in the Sierra's during a thunderstorm.

  7. #17
    Senior Member Barefoot Child's Avatar
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    Hey Lizzie,
    take it from me...it is verrrrrry scary to be in an observation tower during T-storm activity, but that is when fires can be started by lightening strikes, so you are already geeked up for something to happen.
    You just have to have faith that the lightening rod will do it's job, so just sit back and enjoy the show!
    I mean really...just where you gonna go?

    BTW-You get to call in the sighted lightening strike using a phone or a radio too...that is always fun and real safe to do in a T-Storm situation. LOL
    Last edited by Barefoot Child; 08-24-2010 at 10:45.
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  8. #18
    Senior Member Jsaults's Avatar
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    Ground spikes

    Good info Lori. And teh reminder to use anything available for insulation from the ground got me to thinking.

    Last year a lightning strike to a phone pole 100 yards from my place of business caused a ground spike to travel across a rail line, across an asphalt road, across an asphalt parking lot and to trip a 2000 amp breaker for my building's main electrical service. And yes, 2000 (2K) is not a mis-type.

    So it may be true that one is somewhat safer in a hammock than on the ground. Of course, as has already been noted, lightning acts arbitrarily so there is no guarantee of 100% safety.

    That Faraday cage is beginning to sound like a good idea......

    Jim

  9. #19
    Senior Member split's Avatar
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    Anybody know 'bout those electronic "lightning detectors"?
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  10. #20
    Senior Member photomankc's Avatar
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    So many variables that can determine the way that high-voltage electricity can act. I don't usually get too worked up about it in the woods. There just is not much that can really be done. I know that in high voltage fallen lines there can be very strong voltage differentials even over just the width of a single stride. I think that has a lot to do with the advice to keep your body in contact with as little earth as possible. You get electrocuted just by the potential difference across one foot to the other.

    Based on that I'd think you would be in greater danger in contact with the ground from nearby strike for electrocution. I think you would be in more danger from debris caused by the strike hitting trees and breaking heavy limbs or blowing large chunks out. Really heavy winds scare the crap out of me more than lightning. I try to watch out for really dead looking stuff but a good 60 to 80 MPH gust can bring down even not-so-dead looking stuff.

    I've only been scared camping once and that was in storm complete with hail and thunder loud enough to hurt for a few minutes in the dead of night. The site I was at was the top of a local 'mountain' and you could tell it was drawing strikes in close. I wanted to be anywhere else but there for about 15 minutes. That was as a tent camper.

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