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Re: Yosemite traffic karma - a story

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avatar Yosemite traffic karma - a story
July 27, 2014 07:48PM
I drive 120 through the park a LOT during the summer. Nearly every weekend. I get annoyed by the slow RVs that weave across lane markers, people passing on dangerous curves, and tourists who think that the 25 cars behind them don't mind if they just slow down to 2 mph every mile to get another picture of the lovely views. But I usually crank the tunes, zone out, and try to enjoy the beautiful country and ignore the idiocy. Or, I just take Sonora Pass.

Anyways, this past weekend I pulled out of Whoa Nellie behind a convoy of fire fighting vehicles. They had fueled and gotten food, and were on their way to the El Portal fire. I happily cruised up Tioga Pass behind them, and through Tuolumne meadows and along 120 without a care. They were actually cruising pretty well - above the speed limit several times, but that didn't stop that little white toyota Yaris from being impatient.

First, he tailgated us for a few miles before passing on a blind curve.

Then, he very dangerously tailgated the motorcycle between us and the NPS fire truck.

Next, he sped around the biker on a blind curve and tailgated the NPS fire truck.

We watched him weave around the rest of the fire trucks for the next ~10 miles or so, witnessing 3 near head-on collisions thanks to him passing on blind curves.

Then, near Tamarack Flat campground, we saw him pulled over by a ranger.

What idiot thinks it's okay to drive like that around a bunch of NPS labeled vehicles? You think they don't have radios?

Anyways, moral of the story is DON'T BE AN IDIOT.

Sorry, rant over. I'm usually pretty zen about summer traffic along 120 but this guy just hit every nerve. Especially considering his driving could have seriously delayed fire vehicles from reaching the new fire. Grrrr.
Re: Yosemite traffic karma - a story
July 27, 2014 10:42PM
If I may relate a similar "Blessed by karma" story: In the early spring of 1971, the driver of a Corvette put his vehicle into a deliberate skid and almost hit an NPS maintenance truck - that was equipped with a 2-way radio. A responding ranger made contact with the Corvette, issued a citation and sent the visitor on his way to further adventure. About a hour later, the Ski Patrol brought the Corvette driver in to the Badger Pass ranger station - face down, with his fanny sliced open by the sharp metal edge of a runaway ski. The injury was thankfully not serious and he probably required stitches later, but the second event sure took the starch out of an obnoxious driver and replaced it with an em-bare-ass-ing sting.
avatar Re: Yosemite traffic karma - a story
July 28, 2014 12:52PM
Quote
calipidder
tourists who think that the 25 cars behind them don't mind if they just slow down to 2 mph every mile to get another picture of the lovely views.

Or the ones that slow to nothing for every little curve but floor it whenever there's a chance for them to be passed.
avatar Re: Yosemite traffic karma - a story
July 28, 2014 12:59PM
Quote
calipidder

Anyways, this past weekend I pulled out of Whoa Nellie behind a convoy of fire fighting vehicles. They had fueled and gotten food, and were on their way to the El Portal fire. I happily cruised up Tioga Pass behind them, and through Tuolumne meadows and along 120 without a care. They were actually cruising pretty well - above the speed limit several times, but that didn't stop that little white toyota Yaris from being impatient.

First, he tailgated us for a few miles before passing on a blind curve.

Then, he very dangerously tailgated the motorcycle between us and the NPS fire truck.

Next, he sped around the biker on a blind curve and tailgated the NPS fire truck.

We watched him weave around the rest of the fire trucks for the next ~10 miles or so, witnessing 3 near head-on collisions thanks to him passing on blind curves.

Then, near Tamarack Flat campground, we saw him pulled over by a ranger.

What idiot thinks it's okay to drive like that around a bunch of NPS labeled vehicles? You think they don't have radios?

Anyways, moral of the story is DON'T BE AN IDIOT.

Sorry, rant over. I'm usually pretty zen about summer traffic along 120 but this guy just hit every nerve. Especially considering his driving could have seriously delayed fire vehicles from reaching the new fire. Grrrr.


That man despite ending up with probably a very expensive speeding ticket should feel very fortunate that he is still alive.

Just this past Saturday morning, a 27-year-old man from San Jose was killed when his car drifted into oncoming eastbound traffic on Hwy 120 near the Groveland NFS ranger station. Fortunately the two people in the other car only suffered minor injuries.


Everyone, please, be careful out there while driving. No excessive speed, no texting. And of course, don't drive while drunk. The mountain roads and highways are very unforgiving.


.
Re: Yosemite traffic karma - a story
July 28, 2014 05:11PM
There was another deadly head on in that area earlier this year. While searching for the link to Kevin Gong's hiking website, it hit several articles about a "Kevin Gong" who died in a car accident near Old Hwy 120.
http://www.sierrasentinel.com/2014/03/manslaughter-charge-in-traffic-death.html

Turned out to be another Kevin Gong, an outstanding Cal senior:
http://www.dailycal.org/2014/04/03/uc-berkeley-senior-dies-car-accident/
avatar Re: Yosemite traffic karma - a story
July 28, 2014 11:02PM
Quote
KenS
There was another deadly head on in that area earlier this year. While searching for the link to Kevin Gong's hiking website, it hit several articles about a "Kevin Gong" who died in a car accident near Old Hwy 120.
http://www.sierrasentinel.com/2014/03/manslaughter-charge-in-traffic-death.html

Turned out to be another Kevin Gong, an outstanding Cal senior:
http://www.dailycal.org/2014/04/03/uc-berkeley-senior-dies-car-accident/

Had me thinking, since I knew the Kevin Gong who had that hiking page. Or at least I knew him from HS and college. He wouldn't have been 22 years old in 2014 and to my knowledge has never lived in Stockton. Closer to my age.
avatar Re: Yosemite traffic karma - a story
July 28, 2014 08:08PM
Quote
plawrence

Just this past Saturday morning, a 27-year-old man from San Jose was killed when his car drifted into oncoming eastbound traffic on Hwy 120 near the Groveland NFS ranger station. Fortunately the two people in the other car only suffered minor injuries.


.

Had the misfortune of passing that accident; they had the red screens up to block the carnage. Traffic was backed up for an hour.



The body betrays and the weather conspires, hopefully, not on the same day.
avatar Re: Yosemite traffic karma - a story
July 28, 2014 09:21PM
Quote
calipidder
Anyways, moral of the story is DON'T BE AN IDIOT.

Always a good idea. But if everybody followed that way of thinking, who would win any of the Darwin Awards?
Re: Yosemite traffic karma - a story
July 28, 2014 09:51PM
There are still all those people that we saw on our trip that thought wild animals were domesticated and would get too close to them. We finally got tired of yelling at them.
avatar Re: Yosemite traffic karma - a story
July 28, 2014 11:42PM
Quote
parklover

There are still all those people that we saw on our trip that thought wild animals were domesticated and would get too close to them.


I blame both Disney and PBS for this.

Both tend to personify and anthropomorphize wild animal behaviors to the nth degree. How many times have I watched a PBS nature show where the narrators attach human names to the wild animals they're "documenting".

Sheesh.

No wonder ordinary people think it's alright to get up really close to wild animals. They're almost human, you know!

.
avatar Re: Yosemite traffic karma - a story
July 30, 2014 09:49AM
Quote
plawrence
Quote
parklover

There are still all those people that we saw on our trip that thought wild animals were domesticated and would get too close to them.


I blame both Disney and PBS for this.

Both tend to personify and anthropomorphize wild animal behaviors to the nth degree. How many times have I watched a PBS nature show where the narrators attach human names to the wild animals they're "documenting".

Sheesh.

No wonder ordinary people think it's alright to get up really close to wild animals. They're almost human, you know!

.

Jane Goodall.
Re: Yosemite traffic karma - a story
July 30, 2014 09:30AM
On our way out from Tioga Pass a few weeks ago we got held up by some road work on the stretch of 120 near the South Fork Tuolumne that has the really serious drop-off (where they did the burn-back for the Rim Fire). There was a big line of traffic stationary with engines off. A guy on a motorcycle thought it was a smart idea to pass everyone along the dirt beside the road. But that strip of dirt narrows right down after a while. The back end of his bike stepped out when he tried to swerve back onto the road, and he came VERY close to going over the edge, which would have been a couple of hundred feet of near-vertical fall. It would have been hard to feel sorry for him.
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