1977 Airplane Crash in Yosemite

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AE

climber
Boulder, CO
Jan 18, 2018 - 11:45am PT
Someone should file a FOIA request on Licky, which might provide some insight into this entire nightmare.
I have been compulsively watching "The Curse of Oak Island," and am starting to wonder, if Licky's fabled tome isn't buried at the bottom of the Money Pit.
Or, to be more precise, there is a greater likelihood of finding the Ark of the Covenant, Shakespeare's manuscripts, the Holy Grail, and vast hordes of gold hidden by the Knights Templar in and around Oak Island, than there is the likelihood of Licky ever publishing a book.
In the tone of the show's narrator:
"A rusted bolt? A record of an airplane's registration number? Rumors of untold fortunes made by a seamy group of furtive ne'erdowells, seen lurking in the woods and rocks in the notorious 'Yosemite Valley'? Could this all really be proof, finally, of some vast, global conspiracy between international drug smugglers and secret government agencies bent on subverting everything good God-fearing Americans find holy? Or, will new revelations revive the "Curse of the Valley," as legend says a few dozen more old gray climbers must die before the truth can be finally laid bare. Tune in, same time, next year, for "Airplane Crash in Yosemite."
gruzzy

Social climber
socal
Jan 18, 2018 - 01:05pm PT
Sounds like a cool climber adventure. Wouldve been a cool scuba diver adventure if it had landed in the sea
zBrown

Ice climber
Jan 18, 2018 - 01:31pm PT


The answer to What is Mind is there at Oak Island

The trifecta of answer(s), treasure and the book will win, place and show simultaneously

Squint

Trad climber
Colorado
Feb 26, 2018 - 08:44pm PT
I was sleeping ten feet from Jack the night he left for that rescue. It didn't rain---we were both sleeping out in the open. I would have known. We were to leave the next day to buy property in Colorado, Wyoming, New Mexico. We were going to drive his car that his (I think) his mother gave him. It was a red convertible. I will never forget waking to find Jack gone and going to the cafeteria. The word that someone had fallen was already circulating. When somebody said that the victim had a chew in his lip I knew it was Jack.

I find all this BS of being Jacks friend appalling. Jack was an outcast. Few people would give him the time of day.He was a wildman, a freak even by Yosemite standards, a misfit in the Valley scene. He had an inside to Valley goings on as a Park service employee and the crazy guy that hung around the fringes of the valley elite.
Jack and I had many drunken nights together. Chewing Copenhagen, drinking crap liquor and making bad choices. I knew Jack when he was known as "pig". Overweight and naive as any new arrival to the Sierras as I had ever seen. He took on a crazy mountain man persona and took to conditioning himself with a dedication I have never witnessed. Damn--he toughed it out.
But this BS that he was some accepted, known, loved character in the Valley really disturbs me.He wasn't going to be seen bouldering with Kauk or Bridwell, he wasn't going to be seen hanging with any of the Valley elite. Really--they didn't even know his name.
He took "dirtbag" to a level the Stonemasters would have aspired to. He knew how to live like a Mountain Man or maybe he just did it because he didn't have any choice. He was a lovable nutcase, but loved by few.
I was aware of the money he and his buddy found, and I was aware of the documents he found, and I was aware he was going to meet with "an attorney" that was concerned with the documents. But I was not prepared to lose my crazy friend suddenly, on a paved trail that he would have run up blind.
Jeez I'd like to be drinking crap liquor with him right now.
frostback

Social climber
great white north
Feb 26, 2018 - 08:52pm PT
That is quite the plot thickening first post to the Taco sir.
The Warbler

climber
the edge of America
Feb 26, 2018 - 09:24pm PT
That is a pretty spot on description of Jack. An outcast among outcasts. Jack hovered on the very edge of the core Camp 4 crew This poster is for real

I saw him on the trail just below the lake after his find. Those crazy eyes were bumped up a notch er two...

Jackís death was mysterious enough without all the other craziness happening in the weeks surrounding the gold rush
ionlyski

Trad climber
Polebridge, Montana
Feb 27, 2018 - 07:55am PT
Whoa! This is getting good again. Licky ain't gonna like this. You didn't clear this through him did ya. His sources haven't told it that way atall.
Reilly

Mountain climber
The Other Monrovia- CA
Feb 27, 2018 - 08:02am PT
The plot thickens...😈
gruzzy

Social climber
socal
Feb 27, 2018 - 11:59am PT
I dont understand why people are so silent on something that happened so long ago.
A bunch of dirtbags made money, bought houses, cars etc..
Unless, those same dirtbags did other "bad" stuff to maintain their
gruzzy

Social climber
socal
Feb 27, 2018 - 12:01pm PT
gifted freebies. Now, THAT would be a worthy thickener of the plot
Squint

Trad climber
Colorado
Feb 27, 2018 - 12:40pm PT
Just for the record...I know the trail is not paved. Just a figure of speech.

I haven't read much of this thread and don't know what you guys are talking about when it comes to differing stories. No matter.
I was Jacks friend and saw him fairly regularly. I was the one that told his girlfriend he was gone.
I knew a little about his background and his mom. I used to see the brand new nice cashmere sweaters she used to send him in the mail. They were black and filthy within days, just like everything else he owned. He was a slob and had a big booming voice you could hear across the valley. The first time I made him laugh, I about came out of my skin from the volume of his guffaw. He chewed Cope constantly and drank with conviction. I've forgotten more mad days and nights with the guy than I remember but they were all entertaining.

I suppose it is unimportant that people only took note of him after his death , it is kind of human nature to do that. It just irks me to read about feigned respect where there was little when he was alive.
For all the talk in those days about the cool of not conforming, there was still little tolerance for a whacko like Jack. Of course, if he had more climbing talent, his presence might have been accepted differently.
The good thing is that none of it mattered to Jack, he was having the time of his life every single day. He didn't mind showing it. I've met very few that were as exuberant about every damn thing as he was.
WBraun

climber
Feb 27, 2018 - 12:47pm PT
Squint, were you his girlfriend?
T Hocking

Trad climber
Redding, Ca
Feb 27, 2018 - 01:21pm PT
^^^
Werner; Don't think so...

I was Jacks friend and saw him fairly regularly. I was the one that told his girlfriend he was gone.
The Warbler

climber
the edge of America
Feb 27, 2018 - 01:52pm PT
I didnít ever climb or drink with Jack, I just used to see him around a lot - he stood out in a crowd by his bulk, that goofy grin, and the coke bottle bottom lenses on his wire rimmed spectacles.

He seemed happy to be an oddball, and I liked the guy, he was always friendly to me, and I returned the favor. Climbing was top priority then, and the circle I hung out with kept me entertained and occupied, so I never got to know Jack

Come to think of it -

I still donít know Jack

Or as Eddie Barry used to say - ďone thing I know is nothingĒ

Kinda like Sergeant Schultz
throwpie

Trad climber
Berkeley
Feb 27, 2018 - 04:25pm PT
My two cents about Jack...he was a pretty cool guy, a friend and partner on quite a few climbs...we probably backed off of as many as we did. We shared a common love of climbing based on having fun mostly. I'm not sure if it was lack of talent or desire, but neither of us came close to the standards of the day but we had a blast nonetheless . Haven't thought of him for years, and It terrifies me to imagine his demise. I hope it was just a dream to him.... He was one of those many characters that colored my time in the Valley and I remember them all. RIP
zBrown

Ice climber
Feb 27, 2018 - 05:00pm PT
A friend of mine, an acquaintance, and a guy I didn't know killed another guy in a gone sour drug deal in Otay.

Still puzzling over whether any good came of it. Don't know if there's enough material for a book.

None was named Jack and I never thought to ask if they got the money back.

Risk

Mountain climber
Marooned, 855 miles from Tuolumne Meadows
Feb 27, 2018 - 07:01pm PT
I saw him on the trail just below the lake after his find.

Kevin,

Were you camped on the uphill side of the trail with TT in your group, just down from the lake that night (maybe 1.5 miles)? If so, I stumbled into your camp the same day headed down, just as it got dark. No other campers were just below the lake that day, to my knowledge. Could there have been two wallets? Because, some lone guy (I didn't know Jack) showed me a soaked wallet full of $50's right at the outlet of the lake as I arrived earlier that afternoon. More puzzle pieces. . . .
Squint

Trad climber
Colorado
Feb 27, 2018 - 07:32pm PT
Warbler...what did you say to him when you met him on the trail? What ever it was, it must have scared the sh#t out of him because he buried everything but the money off to the side of the trail on the way down.
The Warbler

climber
the edge of America
Feb 27, 2018 - 07:58pm PT
I camped on one trip out about that far down the drainage with 4 or 5 other guys. We were hiking back to the Valley, had no lights or headlamps, and we were tired from the dayís hike out there and the associated work. I knew the moon was to rise around 1am, so when it got dark, I suggested we rest up on the side of the trail and go for it when the moon rose. My fellow hikers left the Illilouette drainage at the Mono Meadows junction probably around 3 am and I hiked to the Valley floor alone via the Panorama Point Trail and on down past the Falls.

I caught the first shuttle of the day from Happy Isles back to Camp 4, with a very heavy pack.

I think that was the trip I encountered Jack coming out as I was going in. He had a handful of $100 and $50 dollar bills, all silver certificates, and with trembling hands showed me a small but thick black address book full of names. He had fished a jacket out of the lake with a long piece of hydraulic tubing, and found the stuff in the pockets. He was freaked out and didnít really know if he should keep the book.

That concern grew with him in the next week on the Valley floor, especially after the NPS caught on. There were lots of strange guys lurking around all of a sudden at a time of year when things were ordinarily really slow. These guys werenít there to ski Badger. He was so nervous he left the Valley for a while as I remember, and died shortly after he came back.

I didnít tell Jack anything to freak him out - he was already there. Iím not surprised to hear he stashed the book if he did.

To answer your question Risk, that Camp was to the right side side of the trail, on the way out.
Itís hard for me to imagine Jack approaching you if he didnít know you. When I saw Jack, he actually motioned me off the trail a ways to show me.
ionlyski

Trad climber
Polebridge, Montana
Feb 27, 2018 - 08:41pm PT
Kevin,
One of the better posts on this forum and certainly this thread to come out in a long time. Cool!

edit-not cool someone lost their life but cool recount of 1st hand history
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