View Full Version : Interesting grave

09-13-2009, 09:30 PM
While wandering through the local historic cemetery, I happened to notice this stone:

He is listed on one of the pages here on the website with the following information:
NAME: Simon Joseph

AGE: 19

RESIDENCE: Brookline, MA

DATE: June 18, 1933

CAUSE OF DEATH: Hypothermia

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: Joseph and two friends had camped out near the Crawford House the night of Saturday June 17, in preparation for their hike to the Lakes of the Clouds Hut the following day. They brought no food supplies with them and decided not to travel the three miles to the Willey store to obtain nourishment. The three set out the next morning (Sunday), still without food, but with adequate gear for fair summer weather. However, they lacked gear for potential cold and wet conditions.

The day began with cold winds and rain below treeline. As the hikers grew weary, they apparently drifted apart. One exhausted member reached the Hut that afternoon. A search party departed immediately to locate the other two. The second hiker was found in a dazed state and alone. Joseph had hiked ahead and had missed the trail junction to the Hut and wandered instead on the old Crawford Path. Thick fog hindered search conditions. It was not until Wednesday that the search party located Joseph's body a mere quarter mile from the Lakes of the Clouds Hut. He had succumbed to the cold, wet, windy conditions and had died.

LESSONS TO BE LEARNED: The consistent combination of cold, wet and windy weather on Mount Washington provides ideal conditions for hypothermia. Often referred to as "exposure", hypothermia is a potentially fatal cooling of the human body. Several symptoms can alert a mountain traveler to this serious condition; one of the first to occur, and perhaps the most dangerous is the loss of one's rational thinking ability. Hypothermic individuals frequently make poor decisions which further endanger their lives and the lives of others with them.

To avoid hypothermia, expect bleak conditions to prevail, any time of year. Many people have died of hypothermia in the White Mountains during the summer months! Be aware of the forecasted weather conditions for the day(s) you intend to be out. Bring the proper gear for wet, windy and cold conditions, including: -a rain suit (parka and pants) -insulating layers for your upper and lower body that are made of wool, or synthetic fibers - not cotton, as it loses its insulating ability when wet -sturdy, comfortable hiking boots -plenty of food -water, at least 2 quarts per person per day.

When hiking, it is important to keep your entire party together if at all possible. Once a party divides, it becomes more vulnerable to mishap. Always bring plenty of food and water. Your gear should provide protection for winter-like conditions, even if you are out during the summer. Learn what you can about the trail you selected, using a map and guidebook. If weather conditions above treeline are severe, turn back. Dense fog can alter even familiar trails, making them unrecognizable.

Jimmy Legs and Little d
09-14-2009, 10:03 PM
I thought the name sounded familiar. Joseph Simon's story can be found detailed in Nicholas Howe's book; Not Without Peril. A must read for all hikers.
Have you read it?

Little D:)

09-14-2009, 10:25 PM
I did have a copy, but I seem to have lost it. Definitely need to buy a new copy :) I just thought it odd that I'm surrounded by reminders of the mountain wherever I go