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[l/m 9/6/2006] learning (I) Distilled wisdom (3/28) XYZ

( Part1 - Part2 - Part3 - Part4 - Part5 - Part6 - Part7 - Part8 - Part9 - Part10 - Part11 - Part12 - Part13 - Part14 - Part15 - Part16 - Part17 - Part18 - Part19 - Part20 - Part21 - Part22 - Part23 - Part24 - Part25 - Part26 - Part27 - Part28 )
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Panel 3 Learning, part 1

See reader questions & answers on this topic! - Help others by sharing your knowledge
TABLE OF CONTENTS of this chain:

3/ Learning I	<* THIS PANEL *>
4/ learning II (lists, "Ten Essentials," Chouinard comments)
5/ Summary of past topics
6/ Non-wisdom: fire-arms topic circular discussion
7/ Phone / address lists
8/ Fletcher's Law of Inverse Appreciation / Rachel Carson / Foreman and Hayduke
9/ Water Filter wisdom
10/ Volunteer Work
11/ Snake bite
12/ Netiquette
13/ Questions on conditions and travel
14/ Dedication to Aldo Leopold
15/ Leopold's lot.
16/ Morbid backcountry/memorial
17/ Information about bears
18/ Poison ivy, frequently ask, under question
19/ Lyme disease, frequently ask, under question
20/ "Telling questions" backcountry Turing test (under construction)
21/ AMS
22/ Babies and Kids
23/ A bit of song (like camp songs)
24/ What is natural?
25/ A romantic notion of high-tech employment
26/ Other news groups of related interest, networking
27/ Films/cinema references
28/ References (written)
2/ Ethics

So you want to learn?

	A rabbi turns to another rabbi and said,"
	"Why does a rabbi answer a question with a question?"
	"Is there a better way?"

 The joke you begin with should substitute "Jesuit" for "rabbi". For two
 rabbis the reply is "So, why not?".

Gerry Wildenberg                         
St. John Fisher College                  
Rochester, NY 14618            

A person is an expert in a subject when he not only knows everything
you can learn about it, he also knows which of that stuff is wrong.
Marilyn vos Savant

The standard first question most interviewers ask me is
"What is the most dangerous thing in the world?"  My answer is always
"Ignorance."  Many people make the assumption that they know the
difference between dangerous and safe.
--Robert Pelton, Fielding's Guide to the World's Most Dangerous Places
	2nd ed.

Without question, the best way to learn is to find a mentor.  Then you can
pick up all their mistakes.  But seriously, it is true (both meanings).
Good mentors are very hard to find these days.  You can't expect instant
learning. Apprenticeship takes years.  There is no such thing as a bad
mentor; a mentor is or isn't: you will only know after a period of time
working with a person.  Mentor is a term which only comes after a period
of time.

The information below are given as suggestions.  REMEMBER THE DISCLAIMER
two days ago.  The activities you are about to begin upon are capable of
DEATH or SEVERE INJURY.  Liability is the major issue of coming years.
Don't think you are just going to sample, if you want to do such as build
character, then consider a short stint in the Armed Forces (very good way to
learn about the outdoors of Washington, CA, the Alps, etc.).  You will learn
the value of life quickly.

But back on track.....

Expensive are Guide Services:
Yosemite Mountaineering, Rainer Mountaineering, Exum Guides, Fantasy Ridge,
PSOM [defunct, Palisades School of Mountaineering], Alpine Skills, Sobek,
various European organization, and Alpine Consultants [defunct, specialists in
climbing, computing, and environmental impact (with specialities in
remote sensing and image processing 8^) ].
The point isn't to enumerate all; the point is the interested reader to
get out of one's lofty ivory tower armchair and go seek out the possibilities.

In the past, and to some degree today, you can take classes from
large organized non-profit organizations: the Sierra Club, The Mazamas,
The Mountaineers, the Colorado Mountain Club, the App. Mountain Club,
and many other organizations.  Best to find the ones local to you.
And if you are not satisified, go make your own.  Many companies
have their own outing organizations.

These organizations have the value of continuing wilderness values.
It also gives a chance (just a chance) to meet like minded people.

Local schools and colleges may have an outdoor education or PE program.
Many of these are bad, but you have to find out such.  A few are good.
Check them out.  In particular watch out for the liability problem here.
The outdoors isn't first on their agenda.  Consider also academic
classes which may have field trips: geology, geography, surveying,
biology, botany, etc.

Outdoor "mills" (like degree mills) include:

Outward Bound (1-800-243-8520, or 1-203-661-0797 in Conn. [not limited here]
[and also])
National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS) (Lander, Wyoming, [,
or ])
These are not survival or outdoor skills schools.  They are now personality
development organizations including special programs for executives, the
handicapped, the old, and the problem youth.  They use the outdoors as
a tool, hence, they are not skills or training organizations. [But they do
give SOME training.]  Perhaps one of the most rigorous for very young
are the Devil Pups (not for the faint).

Specifically AVOID the quickie outdoor classes given by some groups
and one day short things like given by SAL.  They have different motives
entirely (the motivational).

On just going on trips, there are a host of interesting and unusual
opportunties distinct from the above.  The expensive ones include
such agencies as Mountain Travel (Berkeley) and REI.  You can organize
your own expeditions (you should be good enough by that point, that's
a goal).  Cheaper alternatives include the yearly Sierra Club trips, but
consider some of the following:  if you are in the private sector (have
money), consider using your money to help fund a research endeavor while
going on a trip: University Research Expeditions Program, UC Berkeley,

For younger people, be warned and be aware of Scouting and the Explorers.
Some groups are good, seek these.  But many are not good.  Use good judgment.

If you are in school, consider your general education requirements.
Take classes with field trips: geology, biology, botany, etc.  Find
profs to work with on research projects which involved field world.
Volunteer.  Get experience.  Use your imagination to do these things.
Consider summer employment in the field.

	The net has pluses and minus when it comes to asking about equipment.
First, it's something beginners really get hung up on: avoid buying anything.
Borrow or rent if at all possible.  Be prepared to replace.  Study up.
Make certain what you read is current.  Ask advice in a personal rather
than broadcast way (If you are ever afraid of looking like a fool, this
is the easiest chance to avoid it).  Ask lots of questions.  Remember
this isn't the end, it's a means to an end.

Smart people buy winter gear in summer, and summer gear in winter.
Buying in season can be costly.  Patience.

Let's be really frank about the Net and equipment.  Simply to get
access to the net implies some amount of money.  What's amazing are
the discussions about things like Thermarest(tm) pads.  These things
are kind a expensive, but the vast majority of people don't use them, and
don't need them.  If you listen too close to the Net, you'd conclude
going outdoors is expensive.  It isn't.  You're looking at a highly
biased sample.  You have to look upon the net with a very skeptical eye.
As a start always remember that the American Indians didn't have most
of this technology.  Ask yourself how they survived?  Muir didn't
have most of this junk, nor Hermann Buhl.
And when you answer this you will have learned something.
Beware the gear freaks.

You see it's kind a silly to learn most topics covered on the net because
written literature in the field is generally so much better (but not perfect).
CRTs are a very poor way to learn this stuff.  A few topical exceptions
exist because knowledge about them is changing rapidly.  If you really
want to go learn something, start with books, but keep in the back of your
mind that those are highly limiting.

Oh yes as noted on the net: RTFM (in general principal):
	Read the (original: fuckin'/MPAA: fine) manual.
From a clothing manufacturer who asked that his name not be used:
if you don't want to abuse your expensive outdoor clothing,
remember to read your F care label typically on the inside of the clothing

For caving--join a grotto of the NSS and learn how to
"Take Nothing but Pictures,
leave nothing but footprints,
kill nothing but time".

The National Speleological Society
2813 Cave Avenue
Huntsville, AL 35810-4431

	I know your line.  I was once a young man like you.
	Train yourself.  Distinguish yourself in war.
	Become somebody, maybe a warlord.
	But time flies, before your dream materializes
	you get grey hair.  By that time, your parents and friends
	are dead and gone.
				-- Kambei Shimada in S.S.

	Something's hidden, go and find it.
			-- Kipling



Looking for an H-912 (container).

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