With everyone getting into winter mode, and while all the usual armchair chatter about “what it takes to be a REAL Alaskan woodsman, (or hunter)”; or what’s the best bolt-action, piston-driven, .53 caliber, black, lever-gun, for personal defense against rabid porcupines, while float fishing the Kenai; or what cartridge best fills the slot between the 6.5x55 and the .260 Remington; or how to start a fire with gadgets, gizmos, or golf cart batteries and a g-string, is entertaining, I thought I’d be so bold as to challenge everyone with a seasonally relevant potential scenario to ponder:
You are aboard a small aircraft enroute a remote section of river in the Interior. It is late September, and the weather has been unseasonably cool. Temperatures have been holding well below freezing, and there is heavy pan ice forming on the river. Upon short final for your would be gravel bar strip, your aircraft abruptly loses power. At stall speed you clip a group of tall White Spruce, and cartwheel into the channel. Miraculously, you make it to shore, however the aircraft and all its contents are lost to the river. You are clothed in only whatever you were wearing for the flight. You are soaked to the skin and rapidly becoming hypothermic. The nearest human is an hour flight away, it will be dark in two hours, and it will be much longer still before you are declared overdue. What will you do to survive the next 24 hours?