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Thread: thunder storms

  1. #21
    Senior Member ikemouser's Avatar
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    I love a good thunderstorm in my hammock. I sleep with earplugs(can still hear thunder if its close-which i enjoy hearing and helps me sleep, as does the sounds of rain on a tarp), and the swaying trees usually give me a lil sway in my hammock. A few considerations you may or may not have considered:


    Storm considerations:

    Widow makers:

    Your number one concern should be widowmakers, limbs that look dead and may even be hanging. Storms can shake these branches loose as they are often hanging by a thread. If a whole tree appears dead, move on. These limbs can fall and pierce the soil several feet deep, they would impale you instantly whether you were in a tent or a hammock. So do not sleep under them. SITE SELECTION

    Drip lines:

    If you whoppie slings/suspension does not already trail water off to the side into a water container(for drinking), or onto the ground, add some half inch to inch thick fabric to do so.

    Tarp tearing:

    It is best to tie your tarp to a continuous ridgeline with prussics. At the guylines make your prussics no more than 3 wraps. why? if a strong gust of wind uses your tarp as a sail and it has no give(cannot slide on the ridgeline or let our more slack for a stake), you will rip your tarp to shreds. Especially with these lightweight fabrics like cuben and spinn, although from what i hear, cuben has a very high ripping strength. Anyway, 3 wraps, no more and use a continuous ridgeline. Also caryring an extra stake or two, or making one from a stick or two before you goto sleep if you know a storm is coming is a good idea. Imagine trying to resecure a guyline without a stake, in your hiking boots/shoes/crocs getting rained on with no socks on, while lightning cracks and creatures roam. Being in a place with natural buffering is ideal, in a small valley or depression with short stocky trees/vegitation surrounding can act as a wind buffer prorecting your tarp. SITE SELECTION

    Lightning strikes:

    Don't be the tallest thing around. Find the tallest trees, keep 150 yards distance from them. Opt for lower to mid-elevation trees if possible. SITE SELECTION
    Last edited by ikemouser; 08-24-2010 at 13:48.

  2. #22

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    Quote Originally Posted by split View Post
    Anybody know 'bout those electronic "lightning detectors"?
    I have a Strike Alert lightning detector. It is about the size of a pager and will tell you approximately how far away the strike is and if the storm is approaching or leaving. I do carry it while camping. It gives some advance warning if you are in an area where the horizon is blocked by something like a mountain. The range is 40 miles and it only detects cloud to ground strikes.

  3. #23
    a lot of the advice you hear about lightning is pure myth and there's always exceptions to every rule. a couple of months ago one of my mates was doing some strimming down by a river surrounded by woods and trees when a thunderstorm kicked up so he started walking back up to the buildings to get into some shelter. he was walking through a clearing when a lightning bolt struck the ground about 60 feet away from him completely missing several 70 odd foot trees. getting off the ground doesn't make you safe either just because you aren't earthed it doesn't mean you won't get hit. the lightning has just jumped however far through the air to get to you it won't stop for a few more feet.
    one of the safest places to be is inside a car because the bodywork acts like a faraday cage
    Last edited by Wattsy; 08-27-2010 at 10:05.

  4. #24
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    A note from the medical community: Prompt, agressive CPR can be effective on lightning strike victims. An interesting note: preliminary research be conducted seems to indicate it may be fruitful to perform CPR for one hour. I KNOW that seems like a crazy long time. If any of you have done CPR like I have, you know it's really hard work to do for a couple of minutes, much less an hour. But the research has found a trend of the brain rebooting after 47 minutes of CPR. I will attempt to nail down the lecture notes where I heard this and post a link...

  5. #25
    Senior Member babelfish5's Avatar
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    I've been in plenty of thunderstorms and never been hurt. I usually stay away from the tallest trees anf highest spots. Plus, I hunker down. Personally, I think more campers die each year from peanut allergies than lightening strikes.

    That's just my opinion, I could be wrong.
    "Once you start down the Dark Path, forever will it dominate your destiny." - Yoda


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  6. #26
    New Member Starrione's Avatar
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    Lightening, CPR and Flash Floods, OH MY!

    SilverbackBob is right on the money! Guys, if you don't know CPR, you really need to. Get off yer duffs and git that done. Cardiac arrest is a very real possibility in this situation, Knowing CPR gives a friend a chance.

    I know this thread has been all about lightening.. there is tons of great info written too.. I just wanted to say a brief word about flash flooding.

    Flash flooding seems like a remote probability that could just never happen to you.. but, I would urge you to think again. Thirty mins of intense rain results in boiling hot street runoff that CAN find you. It hurts and nobody wants to hike out of any woods with scalded legs. Been there, done that. That simple little one mile hike was hell.. and I was deep way off in the woods... Keep your head about you.. know where you can escape, and, like the boy scouts, be ready for anything.

  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by SilverbackBob View Post
    A note from the medical community: Prompt, agressive CPR can be effective on lightning strike victims. An interesting note: preliminary research be conducted seems to indicate it may be fruitful to perform CPR for one hour. I KNOW that seems like a crazy long time. If any of you have done CPR like I have, you know it's really hard work to do for a couple of minutes, much less an hour. But the research has found a trend of the brain rebooting after 47 minutes of CPR. I will attempt to nail down the lecture notes where I heard this and post a link...
    I've heard recently that full CPR is not needed and that compressions alone are equally effective for cardiac arrest. For those who don't have any first aid training: You should get some. That said, to do compressions all you have to do is place your palm on the center of the sternum (the bone that the ribs connect to) and start pressing down at 100BPM (think of the song Another One Bites The Dust or Stayin Alive) and keep at it until the help you called has arrived. Not sure how well this would work for 47 minutes though.

    Quote Originally Posted by dmrichm View Post
    The only way to be completely safe is to build a Faraday cage to sleep in, which is impractical for backpacking.
    Hmmmm... maybe a new idea for a hammock.... the anti-lightening hammock.... it will only weigh 30 lbs, BUT you will be safe from electrocution. Buy now and for a limited time you'll get a car battery to turn it into an anti-bear cage!!
    SPECIAL BONUS: If a nuclear war occurs, any electronic gear housed inside will be safe from EMP waves! Act now! Call today!!!1
    Last edited by Slanket; 02-22-2011 at 09:36.

  8. #28
    MrClean417's Avatar
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    Many people ALREADY HAVE a Faraday cage with a car battery attached. But they leave it in the parking lot when they take off hiking.
    From Somewhere near Parkville, Mo
    William Crane
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  9. #29
    Senior Member Beast 71's Avatar
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    I always try to be as safe as I can but, when your numbers up it's up. I'd rather bite the big one camping instead of in traffic or something.

  10. #30

    thunderstorms

    Awesome thread gang. Good to know my mindset and thought process is in line with most.

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