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What is the most scariest situation you have been in your travels?

What is the most scariest situation you have been in your travels?

Old Nov 26, 19, 3:21 pm
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What is the most scariest situation you have been in your travels?

... for me - being driven up a narrow narrow road somewhere in the Himalayas by a 19 yr old who looked old enough to be 15. Other cars hurtling down around corners, steep drop . I was sure we were going to die in an accident that night...
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Old Nov 26, 19, 3:23 pm
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The public toilets in EWR C.
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Old Nov 26, 19, 4:02 pm
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So, yesterday, I am hiking at a state park in Florida. I am by a pond and I see some ducks in the brush so I bend over to take a look. Suddenly, I hear a loud low growl about 5 feet away. I have never heard a noise like that before, but evolution must have left some instincts because I bolted up a sand dune without thinking only to have a very large alligator show it’s face exactly where I had been standing. The park ranger said it was protecting some babies and I shouldn’t have gone down by the lakeshore. Good to know. Just thinking about that growl is chilling.

Before that, it was a cab ride in Bangkok with a driver who cared less about right of way or one way streets.
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Old Nov 26, 19, 11:21 pm
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White Cliffs

Climbing the White Cliffs alone on Kamchatka. My guest-house keeper assured me that I could connect the uphill cliffs walk with the upper trail leading back to Esso city despite the gap on the map.

White Cliffs was bad enough, an hour of near-vertical climbing with scant footholds and not much besides thorns and dirt to grab onto. I had gone up too far to consider going back down. I carefully crafted each step and made myself believe it was just a city hill, even though the possibility of falling and breaking a limb seemed very real. When I finally reached the little bench marking the top of the White Cliffs trail, I was too sullen to enjoy the view.

Then it was another half hour of steep climbing and trying not to cause a rockslide as I searched for a way to the upper trail. There's a reason the paths aren't linked on the map. I kept thinking I was at the top and then there was another layer or I had to backtrack and find another way. Finally crosswinds clued me in that I must be at the top, and I saw the trail marker. I sang out in joy with relief and also to ward off bears. I'd never been so happy to see a person as when I returned to town.

Full details of the trip

Seth
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Old Nov 27, 19, 9:36 am
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Most of my scary moments involve being a passenger in a vehicle.

First, there's the trip to LAX with Mr. SanDiego behind the wheel. (kidding, sort of)
Driving in Peru along the steep mountains in a double-decker bus. I couldn't sit in front and watch, too scary.
Taxis in Cairo. They just make lanes wherever they want to.
Being on the back of a motorcycle on the freeway between Venice and Milan. The drivers seem to think it's a game of chicken, and pass so close you could almost touch them. They all want to be Mario Andretti. My imagination goes into overdrive, picturing the carnage that could be. I close my eyes to avoid seeing them.
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Old Nov 27, 19, 5:06 pm
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I've become pretty immune to being worried in a car/other transportation. NYC taxis, drivers in Italy, India, Peru, etc - I act more as a spectator, being impressed by the show than scared by what may happen.

Walking the "Stairs of Death" at Huayna Picchu and such - if lots of tourists are doing it, and accidents only happen infrequently, I'm confident I'm more capable than the average tourist.

I suppose getting lost off trail in Nevada, solo, falling and fracturing my ankle, and having to hop, crawl, etc., back was a bit worrisome as the day was going to get hot. But I knew it couldn't have been more than a mile since I last saw a marker, so I couldn't be that far off.

The most scared/worried that comes to mind was waking in the middle of the night with our 11 mo. old daughter screaming, in a cabin about 30 minutes outside of Denali National Park. We had arrived late and they just left a key under the mat - no "front desk" at a bunch of cabins - cell phones didn't work, and I had no idea where any kind of services might be - we hadn't seen anything since Talkeetna 2+ hours back and hadn't ventured to the park entrance area to see what was there. It worked out OK, but that was one of the few times I was significantly concerned about a bad outcome.
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Old Nov 28, 19, 7:05 am
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A one-day hike in the Black Mountains in Ireland a few summers ago (with my teenage son, a same-age friend of his, and my SO). We had an arrangement with the travel agency for a 3 day hike from B&B to B&B: they took care of the luggage, gave us the documentation (including maps and instructions) and booked the B&Bs. We had a 6 hour hike that day, and left at 10am. Then it started raining a little, then it started really pouring, and it poured on and on. My balance is not very good, there were bits with mud and clumps of grass, other bits with very unstable rocks, up or down, depending, so I was in constant dread of falling and breaking something. It was a nightmare. Everything was slippery and sloped. There was no stopping the hike - we were in the middle of it, it was either go back or go forth, equally bad. We were soaked through and through after 2 hours, and I fell a lot (without breaking or spraining anything, thankfully). The 6 hour hike turned into a 9 hour one, and I have never been more relieved than when we finally arrived at the B&B. I couldn't eat anything that evening (and that's after 9 hours of walking), I was under the physical shock of it.
When I asked the specialized travel agency why they haven't warned us of the rain forecast (we were at the departure B&B till 10am, after all), they said that they hadn't had time - right . When I asked them why they hadn't mentioned a walking stick in their (extensive) list of things to take with us, they said oh yeah, maybe that would be a good idea. I gave an earful about them with my Swiss travel agency, who had subcontracted them for that part of a bigger Ireland trip.
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Old Nov 28, 19, 10:43 pm
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I was a passenger in a vehicle that experienced brake failure on a long hill in Cameroon. The transmission was also in poor shape, the driver was able to hold the speed down to about 45 mph (the road was straight enough he could stay on it) but it was a very rough ride. We also ended up running a military guardpost at the bottom of the hill--fortunately they realized we were out of control rather than trying to crash the checkpoint. I saw their weapons--they had rifle grenades loaded.

(Turns out some bozo had assembled the brakes upside-down. They worked but the contact area was far too small and when we hit that hill they overheated.)
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Old Nov 29, 19, 12:27 am
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Solo hiking in the Rilas (Bulgaria) with a 25kg pack on a downhill slope with scree (loose gravel) and a muti-hundred-metre drop off one side; one slip on a curve and I realised I needed to slow down!

That, or Pristina in 2003 with a Serbian surname. I tried to pretend it was Maori. Didn't work!
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Old Nov 29, 19, 9:22 am
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Air travel related - three walk-away crashes out on the Alaska Peninsula/Aleutian Islands. Miraculously nobody hurt (the planes, not so much.) All three were landing-related; two because of williwaw downdrafts, the other because one of the main gear broke off, leading to a fairly violent ground loop. Needed underwear changes.

On land - sleeping in a 2-person tent next to a salmon spawning pool on a fly-in fishing trip to a remote lake on the Kenai Peninsula of Alaska. In the middle of the night I heard the fish going crazy in the pool then heard bear noises. Then said bruin bumped my arm through the tent fabric. Then did it again. I was frozen in my sleeping bag then heard the fish go nuts a second time as the bear departed the scene. In the morning I finally crept out of the tent and looked around. The paw prints were the size of dinner plates, from a very big brown bear.

On land 2 - arrested at gunpoint in Rasht, Iran, for taking a picture of a cute building that turned out to be the local office of Savak, the Shah's secret police. I was finally released after the cops learned I was working on a project for the provincial governor, who, surprise surprise, was one of the Shah's cousins.

The building - still cute -


Last edited by Gardyloo; Nov 29, 19 at 9:29 am
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Old Dec 1, 19, 5:58 am
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Blue Mountains Australia

On a guided hike down the blue mountains I suddenly found myself laying on the ground after being pushed by the guide.
he pointed down to a snake, which my foot was apparently about the step on! He said it was just a baby and it wouldn’t have killed me, but I would have had a helicopter ride and a few very painful days in the hospital!
Needless to say I was more than happy to accept a bruised bottom and never hiked in Oz again without heavy hiking boots and a good eye on the ground around me!
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Old Dec 1, 19, 7:34 am
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28 June, 2016 being in the Istanbul airport during the terrorist attack.
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Old Dec 1, 19, 9:41 pm
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Originally Posted by Gardyloo View Post
On land 2 - arrested at gunpoint in Rasht, Iran, for taking a picture of a cute building that turned out to be the local office of Savak, the Shah's secret police. I was finally released after the cops learned I was working on a project for the provincial governor, who, surprise surprise, was one of the Shah's cousins.

The building - still cute -

Yea we stayed "hotels" that looked sort of like that building in Iran 1976. One time a small group of us were escorted out of Jolfa on the next train by SAVAK for creeping too close to the USSR. That was memorable. The whole trip was quite an experience for a college junior doing her semester abroad.
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Old Dec 2, 19, 1:10 am
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Trying to get around Phnom Penh at night in 1997. Lots of heavily armed military in transport trucks and moto drivers saying they had to be very careful about routing. Someone threw a grenade into a political demonstration about a month or so later. Siem Reap also still had the KR not far away and lots of mines, but crowds were low at Angkor.

Getting food poisoning in PP and landing in the hospital there in 1998 was no fun. No drinkable water easily available and the toilets were clogged and really gross.

Also got to see the impacts and alterations on day-to-day life in Manila, Iligan and Colombo even before 9/11.
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Old Dec 2, 19, 11:15 am
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On ground me and the missus...surrounded by 6 guys trying to rob us in Delhi.
Taxi driver took us just off a main road where we were met.
I told the cab driver that he may take our stuff but he was going to be hospitalized because my only goal was to hurt him badly.
This startled him enuf to back him off for a few seconds and me and my missus just ran....right out into traffic.
We almost got run over but we stopped a rickshaw and just jumped in.
They didn't get anything.

In the air was a landing a Sault Ste. Marie Ont. were in mid winter upon landing the pilot basically screamed over the PA assume crash positions as the runway was completely iced over and we were in an uncontrolled skid.
We hit a fence at the end of the run way with barely a tap.
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