Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson go on a camping trip, set up their
tent, and fall asleep.
Some hours later, Holmes wakes his faithful friend.
"Watson, look up at the sky and tell me what you see."
Watson replies "I see millions of stars."
Holmes says" What does that tell you"
Watson thinks for a minute. "Astronomically speaking, it tells me
that there are millions of galaxies and potentially billions of planets.
Astrology wise, it tells me that Saturn is in Leo. Timewise, it
appears tobe quarter past three. Theologically, it is evident the lord is
all powerful and we are small and insignificant. Meterologically, it seems we
will have a beautiful day tomorrow.
"What does it tell you?"
Holmes is silent for a moment, then speaks. "Watson, you idiot,
someone has stolen our tent."
A father came home from a long business trip to find his son
riding a new 21 speed mountain bike. "Where did you get the
money for the bike? It must have cost $300," he asked.
"Easy, Dad," little Johnny replied. "I earned it hiking."
"Come on Johnny," the father said. "Tell me the truth."
"That is the truth," Johnny replied. "Every night you were
gone, Mom's boss, Mr. Reynolds, would come over to see Mom.
He'd give me a $20 bill and tell me to take a hike!"
TALES FROM THE WILD
These are actual comments left on US Forest Service comment cards by
backpackers completing wilderness camping trips:
* "A small deer came into my camp and stole my bag of pickles. Is there a
way I can get reimbursed? Please call."
* "Escalators would help on steep uphill sections."
* "Instead of a permit system for hikers, the Forest Service needs to
reduce worldwide population growth to limit the number of visitors to wilderness."
* "Trails need to be wider so people can walk while holding hands."
* "Found a smouldering cigarette left by a horse."
* "Trails need to be reconstructed. Please avoid building trails that go
* "Too many bugs and leeches and spiders and spider webs. Please spray
the wilderness to rid the area of these pests."
* "Please pave the trails so they can be plowed of snow in the winter."
* "Chair lifts need to be in some places so that we can get to wonderful
views without having to hike to them."
* "The coyotes made too much noise last night and kept me awake. Please
meradicate (sic) these annoying animals."
* "Need more signs to keep area pristine."
* "A McDonald's would be nice at the trailhead."
* "The places where trails do not exist are not well marked."
* "Too many rocks in the mountains."
A visitor to Glacier National Park in Montana lost his car keys while
attempting to lure a ground squirrel by dangling the keys out in front of
the critter. The squirrel grabbed the keys and ran down a hole with them.
The keys were never retrieved, a ranger cited the man for harassment of
wildlife, and a locksmith was called to make new car keys.
.... putting our loved ones at risk for a photo
In May of 1994, Tony Moore, 43, of Marietta, Georgia, was gored and
seriously injured by a large male bison in Yellowstone, next to the Lake
Hotel. Moore and a friend had approached to within 15 feet of the bison to
have their pictures taken. While they were standing with their backs to the
animal, it charged. Moore's companion escaped, but Moore received a severe
puncture wound in his right thigh and was taken by ambulance to a hospital
in Jackson for treatment.
.... watching for falling rocks
A visitor setting up camp at Lake Eleanor in Yosemite National Park hit
herself on the head with a rock while trying to string up her food to
protect it from bears.
.... requesting assistance
In 1994, a woman visiting from the Bay Area embarked on a solo hike to the
summit of El Capitan in Yosemite. When she became lost and saw a storm
brewing, she called 911 from her cellular phone and asked to be rescued. A
helicopter found her barely off the trail and one-fourth to half a mile
from the top of El Cap. When the 'copter lifted off and the woman saw how close
she was to her summit goal, she asked the crew to set her down on top. When
the crew declined, she threatened to sue them for kidnapping.
... caring for the creatures
A woman, appearing rather distraught, came into the visitor center at
Redwood National Park in California to report that she had seen several
Irish setters lying along the edge of the highway and she feared they were
dead or injured. Rangers explained to her that these were pieces of
redwood bark that had fallen off logging trucks.
.... asking for directions
Darryl Stone, now superintendent at Jefferson National Expansion Memorial
in St. Louis, remembered working the entrance station at Yosemite when a woman
drove up and asked, "Which way are the geysers?" Ranger Stone directed her
to continue 1,000 miles further to Yellowstone and told her there were no
geysers at Yosemite. "Yes, there are," she said. "I have a friend who saw
them." Stone and the woman went round and round several times before she
left, insisting that there were geysers at Yosemite. Later she wrote a
letter to the chief ranger complaining that Stone had refused to provide
her with the information she wanted.
.... back-seat driving, as always
When an elderly couple stopped to film some bears at Dunraven Pass in
Yellowstone, a young bear crawled into their car searching for food.
Unable to make the bear leave, the exasperated (but well-dressed) couple drove
about 17 miles to the ranger station at Canyon Village with the bear in the
backseat. When the husband got out to report the incident, the bear hopped
over into the front seat so that investigating rangers found the woman in
the passenger seat and the bear behind the wheel.
.... all tuckered out from our day hikes
In 1993 a woman called 911 from the top of Half Dome using her cellular
phone. According to dispatch, she reported: "Well, I'm at the top and I'm
really tired." The answering ranger asked if she felt sick. "No," she said,
"I'm just really tired and I want my friends to drive to the base and pick
me up."The dispatcher explained that she would have to hike down the trail
she had ascended. The visitor replied, "But you don't understand, I'm
really tired." What happened next? "It turned out we got really lucky," the
ranger said,"her phone battery died."
... taking mementos home with us
Each year visitors to Petrified Forest National Park in Arizona pocket an
estimated 12 tons of petrified wood to take home (despite numerous warnings
not to take wood and the fact that this criminal violation carries a
minimum fine of $275). Some years back, several female foreign visitors, clad only
in bikinis, were observed hiding wood in their garments. Another time,
rangers received a report that a man had put a large piece of wood in his
car. Upon searching his vehicle, they found a 40-pound piece of petrified
wood in his trunk. According to rangers, this visitor said he didn't know
how it got there. "My four-year-old son must have put it in there," the man
.... ever alert to terrorism
A group of European visitors came into the Wawona ranger station in
Yosemite National Park and said, "Our car is parked at the trail head and it's been
blown up by terrorists." Though rangers expressed some doubt, the visitors
insisted that a bomb had exploded in their car and that they could see
powder residue from the explosives. Investigating rangers indeed found that
a door had been torn off and a powder-like substance--pancake flour--was
strewn about the car."They were quite embarrassed when we showed them the
bear prints," the ranger said.
... ignoring the sage advice of rangers
A camper at Long Pine Key in Everglades National Park decided to take a dip
in the lake with her dog despite signs saying "No swimming--Danger--Alligators.
"She swam to an island about 75 yards from the shore, then saw some alligators
and refused to swim back. "Didn't you seethe signs?" asked the ranger who retrieved
her in a canoe. "Sure," she said, "but I didn't think they applied to me."
Great Outdoors quotes
"What time do they let the animals out in the park?" --Visitor at Denali
"Why did the Indians only build ruins?" --Visitor at the Grand Canyon
"What is your best parking area?" --Visitor at Zion National Park
"Where's the road to the summit?" --Visitor at Mount Rainier National Park
"Don't you think the polluted sky makes a much prettier sunset?" --Visitor
at Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore
Grand Canyon National Park:
Was this man-made?
Do you light it up at night?
I bought tickets for the elevator to the bottom--where is it?
Is the mule train air-conditioned?
So where are the faces of the presidents?
Everglades National Park:
Are the alligators real?
Are the baby alligators for sale?
Where are all the rides?
What time does the two o'clock bus leave?
Mesa Verde National Park:
Did people build this, or did Indians?
Why did they build the ruins so close to the road?
Do you know of any undiscovered ruins?
What did they worship in the kivas--their own made-up religion?
Why did the Indians decide to live in Colorado?
Carlsbad Caverns National Park:
How much of the cave is underground?
So what's in the unexplored part of the cave?
Does it ever rain in here?
How many Ping-Pong balls would it take to fill this up?
So what is this--just a hole in the ground?
Yosemite National Park:
Where are the cages for the animals?
What time of year do you turn on Yosemite Falls?
What happened to the other half of Half Dome?
Can I get my picture taken with the carving of President Clinton?
Denali National Park:
What time do you feed the bears?
What's so wonderful about Wonder Lake?
Can you show me where yeti lives?
How often do you mow the tundra?
How much does Mount McKinley weigh?
Yellowstone National Park:
Does Old Faithful erupt at night?
How do you turn it on?
When does the guy who turns it on get to sleep?
We had no trouble finding the park entrances, but where are the exits?
The Top 16 Signs You've Chosen the Wrong Mount Everest Guide
16> The last three days, all you've had to eat is s'mores.
15> Every morning greets the group with, "Wonder who'll die today?"
14> Doesn't worry about provisions, as there's bound to be a
Starbucks or McDonald's every half mile or so.
13> Gets lost in the "Sherpa Shack" gift shop.
12> Makes everyone do upside down shots off the St. Bernard's
11> First day's preparation devoted entirely to making snow angels.
10> Every 10 minutes, stops and yells, "RICOLO."
9> Throws a fit when her stiletto heel gets stuck in the ice.
8> Has everyone stick their tongues to a cherry popsicle "for
7> Keeps repeating, "Is it me, or is it cold up here?"
6> "Map, schmap -- you see the top from here!!"
5> Two words: Golf Clubs.
4> Forgets to wear socks with his sandals.
3> Keeps using the oxygen tanks to make balloon animals.
2> Every so often, turns and screams, "Stop following me!"
and the Number 1 Sign You've Chosen the Wrong Mount Everest Guide...
1> Squeezes your ass then yells, "Hey, if we get stranded we can
live off Tubby here for a week!"
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