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Thread: Is it possible to get frostbite......

  1. #11
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    Bill-O,

    I thought I would expand "cooling rate modifier" to describe the physics behind it.

    I imagine you could get that serious cooling if it were nice and windy and bone-dry, and you are dragging yourself up out of the river. Your skin would already be shut off from bloodflow, and the wind is sucking the water off.

    In Palm Springs, they use evaporative cooling a great deal - and get tens of degrees of temperature reduction. I, though, would like to see some case studies first before I would say that it would happen. All I am willing to say right now is that it is possible.

  2. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by BillPatt
    Bill-O,
    In Palm Springs, they use evaporative cooling a great deal - and get tens of degrees of temperature reduction. I, though, would like to see some case studies first before I would say that it would happen. All I am willing to say right now is that it is possible.
    Evaporation is very powerful in low dewpoint environments. When I lived in Salt Lake my place was cooled with a swamp cooler. Essentially just a fan drawing air over a wet mesh. Mine was old, but it worked.

    I always thought they used to make ice in ancient Egypt through evaporation.

    Lastly, the summit crew utilizes evaporative cooling everytime they measure the dewpoint with their wetbulb thermometer. I've seen the wetbulb turn to ice when the air temp was well above freezing.
    Bill
    Next up: Vermont City Marathon: May, 2011
    EasternLight

  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill O
    I've seen the wetbulb turn to ice when the air temp was well above freezing.
    Aha! Doesn't this show conclusively that frostbite can happen at ambient temps above freezing?

  4. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike D
    Aha! Doesn't this show conclusively that frostbite can happen at ambient temps above freezing?
    If you were careless enough to leave water on your skin, and you were cold blooded.
    Bill
    Next up: Vermont City Marathon: May, 2011
    EasternLight

  5. #15
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    I do a lot of scuba diving, sailing, kayaking, etc, including in cold water/weather. Re: hypothermia, water sucks the heat out of your body about 25 times faster than air...

  6. #16
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    So, I would say that you need evaporative cooling (wet skin and high winds)to get frost bite if the temps are above freezing. High winds, dry skin, and above freezing temps will only cause frost bite like conditions and hypothermia.

    Dunk a man in cold water, spin him around at high speeds and walaa, instant Popsicle.
    Steve
    Is there really any BAD weather???

  7. #17
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    I asked this question of my son in law yesterday as we were hiking back into Tucks. He is a geologist, hydrologist, plant guy, DNA dude, you name it. He could understanding getting cell damage - but, not frostbite.
    Brad (a 6288 club member)
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  8. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill O
    If you were careless enough to leave water on your skin, and you were cold blooded.
    I thought wind chill was the result of evaporation of the skin's water, either on the surface or in cells near the surface. I am speaking way out of my element. Ha ha pun!

  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike D
    I thought wind chill was the result of evaporation of the skin's water, either on the surface or in cells near the surface. I am speaking way out of my element. Ha ha pun!
    Evaporation plays a trivial role in the effects of wind chill, unless you are covered in wet clothing. Then you are dealing with something else.
    Bill
    Next up: Vermont City Marathon: May, 2011
    EasternLight

  10. #20
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    Hello,
    I spent the day skiing with the local emergancy room doctor ( also a ex- pro ski patrol and inventor of a step in telemark binding), and when ask the question " Can you get frostbite when the temp is above 32 F? " there was no hestitation before his answer of-- Frost bite- No, cold tissue damage-yes.
    As the chair lift ride continued, he added that since the "liquids" in the body contain salt, the maximum temp for frostbite to occure may be lowered to about 30F......

    Pete

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