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GSMNP hypothermia death

December 24 2000 at 10:26 AM
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Thursday night father of three from Chapel Hill NC was found dead at 4400 ft, on the Alum Cave Bluff trail, on 6593 ft Mt LeConte(southern sixer, not a HP, though not far from Clingmans Dome) in the GSMNP. He was wearing blue jeans, two cotton t-shirts and a wool sweater. Receipts show he purchased gloves near home, drove 300 miles,and likely arrived at the trailhead at dusk. He was found 1.5 miles from the TH with food and a thermos jug. Temps at that elevation that night were near or below 0. Has been a cold December here in the south with some high mountain/valley lows approaching -10. Weather in the Smokies, the Blacks(Mt Mitchell), other 6000+ peaks, and Mt Rogers(Virginia) can be extreme:Be Prepared!

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