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  1. Melinda Kinsman says

    I know it is serious and shouldn’t, but your interesting post made me remember my youth and smile a little. I began taking to our UK hills on my own as a 20 year old university student. Roundabout that time a disturbed man was occasionally going around one of our national parks and taking odd pot shots at people from a distance with a gun.

    My parents were horrified when I started to head off alone, and when I tried to reassure them that I was taking as many mountaineering safety precautions as I could, I discovered they hadn’t even any concept of those dangers, and were instead scared that I’d be shot. When I asked my Mum how walking in a group was going to help me avoid that, she replied, “They might shoot someone else instead!” Sorry, but 25 years on that still makes me smile.

    Thankfully our main risks here are still falling off something or being overcome with exhaustion. If people in the US are at risk of being beaten, would carrying pepper spray (as I think some do for bears anyway) be helpful, to back up the hiking poles?

    • valinreallife@gmail.com says

      Ok, have to say I laughed. It’s one of those odd truths.

      Yes, pepper spray is another option and, like you said, some people already carry it for bears. Multipurpose! 🙂

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