Mike Lane's accident site
After talking to Park County Search and Rescue tonight, I think that the following happened:
Mike came up from the Middle Fork of the Swan River and drove South-West on a closed trail following the continental divide for a few hundred yards. He then drove down (off-trail) into a basin/bowl on the South side, but was unable to make it back up the divide. When he was turning around, he got cross-ways on the hill and it started rolling. (I photoshopped in the path I'm guestimating he took in a purple/pink color.)
I believe he was in a basin above Gibson Lake (below Whale Peak). However, you can't drive to Gibson Lake. It's a hiking trail. So, if he was truly above Gibson Lake, I'm not clear how the Gecko Jeep Club would have gotten his jeep out without a helicopter, as it's only a foot-path going up to the lake. Unless they winched it back up and across the divide?
I don't really give a rats @ss that he went "off trail". The soil up there isn't fertile enough to grow bushes, and I always see the most flowers on the sides of the trails anyway. So, please don't flame me for pointing out that he went "off trail". I think it's sad he's gone. I just wanted to point out, for the record, exactly how the accident occurred so that none of us will make the same mistakes Mike did. He was, by all accounts, an excellent driver.
I still plan to drive up to the top of the divide and look down to shoot some images of the bowl from above.
Posted by Peenie Wallie on August 24, 2005 at 09:40 PM