BWCA 2010 - Leadership Challenge #10: (Emotional Rescue) Boundary Waters Group Forum: Wilderness Challenges
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      2010 - Leadership Challenge #10: (Emotional Rescue)     



distinguished member(3141)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
02/01/2010 11:01AM  
This is # 10 of the Leadership Challenges I will be posting. The purpose of these is to get feedback on what you would do under these circumstances. I'm not looking for a "Right Answer" I'm looking to see how the many very knowledgeable people here on would react in a time of decision in Canoe Country.

Challenge #10: (Emotional Rescue)

* NOTE: This is not a technical challenge. This involves how important group dynamics are to making a successful trip. If you don't think things like this do or can happen. You are mistaken.

Situation: You are traveling in a party of 4 (Combined crew weight of 800 lbs) in two rental Old Town Penobscot 17 foot Royalex Canoes (max load weight of 1100-1150 Lbs). You are carrying 4 large packs, 4 smaller personal packs and misc. fishing gear with a total gear weight of approximately 350 lbs split evenly between the two canoes.

The Crew:

P.J. Hawkes (HAWK): A burly and boisterous Irishman. “Hawk” has been on several canoe trips to the BWCA/Quetico but this is his first trip with this group.

Melvin Milktoast: Melvin is a Librarian and this is his first trip to Canoe Country.

Randy Ready: Randy runs a bait/tackle and aluminum can recycling center. He lives for the outdoors and only works to support his “habit’ and takes 2-3 trips a year to Canoe Country.

Dusty Trails: Dusty work for a local food co-op and heavily into Yoga and is a Vegan. He goes to Canoe Country with Randy once every year to “Purify himself in the scared waters of the Ojibwa”

The crew had been planning this trip since last year but had to make some changes when two original members dropped out a few months prior.

Dusty had met Melvin at the library while checking out some books on Vegan camping recipes and was excited about “trying out this canoeing stuff” and was invited to join the crew.

Randy had known “HAWK” for years as he would regularly drop off his Jumbo sized garbage bag of crushed beer cans and they would always talk canoeing. Hawk jumped at the chance to “Teach you guys how to do it”

The original plan was to go to the BWCA and do a little fishing, relax and take it slow. HAWK would have none of this! He stated the BWCA was for Boy Scouts and church groups and they HAD to go to Quetico and see the real wilderness.

Of course this created additional cost and issues with getting permits but no one raised an objection to HAWK. HAWK said he would handle everything; he would plan the route, menu and provide most of the gear. Everyone else just needed to have their personal gear straight and be ready for the “Trip of a Lifetime”

Additional Information:

The Date is May 10, 2010. Sunset is at 8:35 PM, Twilight lasts until 9:07 PM. The Weather is cool and temps are in normally the mid 60s in the day and dipping into the low 40’s at night.

Current Temperature is 52 Degrees.
Current Winds are from the West at 5-10 MPH.

The Challenge:

You have completed DAY 1 of “The Trip of Lifetime” HAWK had everyone up and on the water at Moose Lake at 06:00.

Hawks plan was to get most of the way up Lake Agnes to an island he had camped at a few years ago. He stated that “It was only about 20 miles and if we push it we can get there just before sundown”.

Hawk pushed the crew through the tough North Portage of Bayley Bay and then across the challenging meadows portages into Lake Agnes.

HAWK and Melvin had been paired up in one canoe and through the day HAWK had been chiding Melvin to “Put your back into that paddling and quit Lilly Dipping” even at one point splashing him with is paddle and saying the next thing he would feel on his back was his paddle if he didn’t “Crank it up” . On every portage Melvin was always the last to cross over and usually by several minutes only to be greeted with a gnarly comment from HAWK.

It was almost 1:00 PM when they got to Lake Agnes when HAWK decreed “We are behind schedule we still have 12 miles to go today, so you can forget about lunch and stopping at Louisa Falls for a swim. We will eat snack bars in the canoe and you can take some pictures from there”

Dusty voiced a soft objection stating that he really wanted to bathe in the flowing water of the falls. HAWKS response “No worries my pony tailed, tree hugging friend you can splashy splashy in the water when we reach camp – Now lets get moving!”

For the next four hours the group paddled up the long length of Lake Agnes reaching the planned island about 5:00 PM. HAWK got out his Jug for a celebratory snort of Irish whiskey. “I knew if I drove you guys, you could make it – NOW lets get this camp set up” after barking at the crew for the next hour while they set up the tents, tarps and bear hang. HAWK commanded to Melvin. “Make yourself useful to this group and go get some firewood”

After 30 minutes, Melvin had not returned. HAWK barked “Where is that waste of oxygen with MY wood!”

Randy went to look for Melvin, finding him sitting on slab of granite, trembling with tears in his eyes. “I want to go home” was all that could come out of Melvin’s mouth.

“The Trip of a Lifetime” was becoming the “Trip to Hell”

Now What: (Pick one and comment)

a. Go back and get your paddle and beat HAWK to death and sink his body to the bottom of the lake with rocks.

b. Call a “Council Fire” and discuss the issues that the group is having and come to democratic decision on how the rest of the trip is going to go.

c. Immediately pull the plug and plan to head back in the morning.

d. Your ideas: (free flow thought)

* Additional comments welcome on how this could have possibly been prevented.

Upcoming Challenge:

Challenge 11: “The Ely 6”

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distinguished member (436)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
02/01/2010 12:12PM  
b sounds like the logical thing to do. Discuss it out and figure out what you want to do from there - that may include taking it easier or possibly even starting to head home (hopefully not).

Certainly the group members have different expectations of what they are looking for to get out of the trip.

Also sounds like the members of the group don't all share similar personalities. I'd be surprised if Hawk's comments towards Melvin where intended to be taken negatively, probably Hawk was just trying to "ride" him a little thinking it would motivate him. Not everyone takes to that well, while others will get a "well I'll show him" attitude.

As a side note - for me anyway, when planning a trip with people that have never been there before, death march travel days are never on the itinerary. it can not only ruin the trip, but also sour the experience enough for the first timer(s) that they will never return.

Additionally, with any trip, i always try to get a feel on the priority of the trip - Fishing, Travel, Scenery, etc to get a sense as to how hard everyone wants to work.

Setting expectations ahead of time goes a long way towards a successful trip.
distinguished member(3311)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
02/01/2010 12:47PM  
I agree with what moosedrool (nice moniker moose) just said. You have to set expectations before the trip and take into consideration the experience level and physical abilities of each person in the group.

Communication is key and like most of you (probably) our groups always get together prior to the trip and go through equipment lists, menu items, trip expectations, etc. It definitely makes for a smoother trip. Even taking those precautions, however, things can and will happen that may raise friction between group members. When that happens I always think it's a good idea to clear the air so that people can get over it and enjoy the rest of their trip.

In this case - I suspect Hawk is just trying to show the other members of the group how much he knows. What he fails to realize it that "no one cares how much you know until they know how much you care". I think the others in the group ought to call him on his behavior, have a sit down, everyone cool off around the campfire and clear the air. Otherwise, this trip will be a disaster for all.

Humor can be a good tool to smooth over the bumpy spots and this group is ready for a little humor. My advice - break out the wine, the cigars, and start telling some jokes around the campfire. When Hawk lightens up a bit - I'd make light of his "Sargeant Carter" like behavior that day. If he bites on this bait and can see how big a dork he was, then you've made some progress, if he doesn't, then you can regroup with the others in the morning and lynch the a-hole.
distinguished member(1382)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
02/01/2010 01:09PM  
I would pick B. And hope all went well...with some "tactics" around the campfire to clear the air. I would suggest that Hawk & Randy be canoe partners and let Melvin go with Dusty to help ease the situation. Hawk may not realize just how he is coming across to others. Strong possibilities of trip reroute or reduction on where each day has to be in the sense of miles/goals. This will upset Hawk but hopefully Randy can smooth things out a little when in canoe. And how many days is this trip going to be? If you can come to a smooth conclusion after campfire meeting this may turn out okay. Hawk will have to reduce his expectations, Melvin and Hawk will somehow have to get this behind them...the other two can help in this.

This is going to be a interesting campfire discussion...I would hope it turns out reasonably well. Trip planning ahead of time may have prevented part of this. It will be most interesting to see what other ideas people will come up with!
02/01/2010 04:54PM  
After allowing Hawk to bully them, the rest of the group is going to have a tough time reining him in. I could second-guess all day about what they should have done - most notably not giving in to Hawk's heavy-handedness - but that doesn't change the situation as given. This is the beginning of the trip and it doesn't bode well. I can see several outcomes but I can't say just what I'd do if I were one of the other three.
02/01/2010 06:03PM  
i would never be in that situation to begin with so i cant relate to it.
02/01/2010 07:36PM  
Obviously this is primarily the result of very poor planning. This is why when I went with a group of 8 that we all sat down and listed our priorities. Goals of the trip should be completely worked out prior to heading out. I did get a good laugh when I read the scenario and don't doubt that it has and will happen again.

Here's what needs to be done:

Randy needs to take Hawk aside and let him know, in no uncertain terms that they will not be moving from that site until the situation has improved. I don't remember how seeing how long the trip was going to be, but Hawk has two choices: 1) Lighten up and apologize to Melvin or 2) Watch us while we take whatever food/gear is necessary and head back with Melvin sitting in our canoe. If Hawk can apologize, then perhaps we can stay where we are and reassess. If not, we need to head out in the am.
02/01/2010 07:48PM  
My initial reaction would want to be A, but that would only cause trouble :) so would try B. However, I wouldn't trip with anyone that I didn't know well - and I definitely wouldn't go with HAWK based on the egotistical comments he made. My point, I wouldn't have gotten myself in that situation in the first place.
That Guy
distinguished member(532)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
02/01/2010 10:55PM  
I would kill HAWK and sink him.
distinguished member(5354)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberpower member
02/02/2010 03:42AM  
"No, we can't have lunch yet. Here are some M&M's and let's go." Yes, actually said on one of our trips by my lovely bow paddler. In fairness, we were trying to cover a lot of ground that day because we had acquiesced to an earlier change in plans to spend an extra day at the previous campsite. And we did have lunch a bit later, and when we did get to camp, camp was set up in and swimming was done in an hour with no one telling anyone what to do. We have in the meantime realized that people in this group have very different eating schedule/needs. But as very good friends we keep it working.

1. Beating HAWK to death is too crude and I like my paddles too much. If you are going to get rid of him then I think you need to make a better plan of all three of you and carry it out late at night. Or maybe take a day trip with him and challenge him to paddle solo through some rapids. Although, beating him to death right now might allow you to claim a crime of passion.

2. Start by sitting with Melvin a bit longer and talking just to him about how you understand how he is feeling and that some changes need to be made but that hopefully he can stay and with some changes enjoy the trip.

3. Go talk to Hawk alone a bit to gauge his ability to take some criticism.

4. Then have a group talk. Based on that, make plans for the next day.

Personally, I think a rest day is in order after a tough first day even if everyone becomes a happy camper.

Sometimes people do want you to make all the plans and get all the food together. And that can be tough in its own way because even without being HAWK you can make some mistakes and bad assumptions. Have gotten out into the wilderness with food that was too spicy for someone. Have learned to ask more about that. Have learned to give beginners more room to make their own mistakes, figure stuff out on their own, ...

Have also been on the other side on our first trip. The husband of the couple that took us along was very interested in sharing all of his knowledge and it was a bit of a problem as he realized we were very experienced campers even if it was our first canoe trip and we had some ideas of our own about how we liked to do things. There was a bit of friction but in the end we did fine.
02/02/2010 07:52AM  

I am constantly amazed at how often I hear this kind of situation occur, a total mis-match of personalities, skill levels, and goals.

I understand when someone has a "bad day" and maybe has a little freak-out, that can happen in any group with a multitude of personality types. But any group leader who does not recognize the need for pre-trip discusssions and evaluations deserves what he/she gets. Well, most of the time, anyway.

I have lead many trips of both the day and multi-day variety. I had a 45 person raft trip group where one person refused to get into the raft at the put-in and another thought there would be restaurants, rest rooms, and snack joints all along the river.

Now I had talked addressed these issues in writing and in verbally, in person with everyone on the trip, yet they did not get-it or hear-it or were just stupid.

In a wilderness canoe trip, it is clearly critical to deal with group dynamics before the put-in.

Ok, thats the rant. As far as the present situation goes I would take Melvin out in the canoe for a paddle around the area, talking and assuring him we had all been abused to some degree. Switching paddle partners is clearly called for, Dusty should take this role on since he brought Melvin into this. Hopefully he has the savvy to deal with this issue.

02/02/2010 08:33AM  
While the urge to smack him is there, it's not a good idea. That hard head will probably damage my paddle.

It might be a good idea to pull Hawk off to the side to tell him that not everyone has his "Gung-Ho" attitude. From what I've read, I guessing he will get defensive and continue to be a hardass. I'd let him vent it out and tell him that his "my way or the highway" tactics probably are not best way for this trip. I would then bring up the suggestion that it would be a good idea to make this island "Base Camp" for the remainder of the trip. Those who want to relax and hang out are free to do that. Those who want to "go all out" & burn calories are free to do that on some day trips. This approach has worked for me in the past. I have learned that when going up with newbies, you have to find out "what" they are hoping to do. Not everyone is into fishing all day, or going off and exploring.

As everyone has suggested, you need to go over everybody's plan/agenda BEFORE you head out.
02/02/2010 11:48AM  
I think andym has a good plan, esp. with talking to Hawk alone first. Just confronting him as a group without giving him a heads-up first seems like a disaster. Perhaps play into Hawk's self-centeredness by saying something like, "I know, I know, Melvin's a real wimp...but if we want to salvage this trip at all, we need to slow it down and do it more by his pace, or it's not going to work at all" (even if you think Hawk is the one at fault here, not Melvin...I don't think Hawk can really recognize his own faults).

Taking a newbie can be a challenge. My husband had a problem with it when he took a newbie who didn't pitch in, even after my husband sprained his ankle. It wasn't that he didn't want to be there or thought the pace was too much; he just didn't really DO anything except the bare minimum. Partly it's probably because he didn't know WHAT to do, though after the sprained ankle you'd think he could have carried the canoe at least. But in this situation, putting this particular group together seems like a disaster from the start. There are groups where Hawk would be fine and groups where Melvin would be fine, but Melvin and Hawk together just seem like a disaster waiting to happen.

distinguished member(992)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
02/02/2010 01:11PM  

I agree with everyone who said that a better job of trip planning would likely have meant that the make-up of the group might have been different, or at least everyone's thoughts about what they wanted out of the trip would have been heard.

I would choose option B. (Like most of you, I thought about option A. I would have suggested to gung-ho HAWK that we bushwhack in to a small remote lake. I would have left his body there... Lol)

While I have never been faced with exactly this situation, I have been involved with issues that required a good sit-down session. Here's a methodology that has worked for me. The rules are simple:

1. Each person gets a chance to speak their piece.

2. No one can interrupt the person who is speaking.

3. No other person is allowed their turn until everyone has repeated back to the speaker in their own words what the speaker said and meant. If the speaker has to repeat until everyone gets it, so be it.

It's amazing what can happen when everyone has a basic understanding of how each of the others feel. It can turn a bad situation into something better.

If this fails, I would then suggest packing up and heading home in the morning.
distinguished member(2020)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
02/02/2010 01:19PM  
d. Council Fire, but in the morning.

Hawk sounds like a pain in the ass and Melvin appears to be a little wimpy. To his credit, Melvin's probably worked harder on Day 1 of this trip than he's ever done in his entire life. He's exhausted, mentally and physically. Dusty or Randy should tell him he'll feel better after some food and a good night's sleep. Tell him to hit the bag early while the other guys talk to Hawk. Council Fire in the morning over breakfast.
If Hawk's got half a brain, he'll listen to Randy and Dusty, maybe apologize in some way in the morning even if he doesn't want to and be willing to flex some on the ambitious itinerary. Tell Melvin in the morning that he needs to suck it up a bit because we're not turning back. Unless Melvin has a total breakdown, he'll accept it. If he has a total breakdown, trip's over.
They all went into this trip with good intentions. You'd think the four of them would realize they all need to give a little so they all can enjoy the rest of the trip.
distinguished member (247)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
02/02/2010 04:56PM  
obviously noone wants to pull the plug. i would go with b first and explain everyone is there for a good time and not a forced march and it was everyone desicion on how the trip was going to go. I would have made this more obvious earlier in the day and probably found a campsite earlier in the day.

convince him to come back to camp and have some irish whiskey around the fire and come together as a group. Take some time to relax and hopefully everyones attitude are better in the morning.

distinguished member(1722)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
02/02/2010 08:04PM  
Wow. This is certainly a challenge...
It is complicated by the fact that most of the gear is Hawk's and I assume no one really wants to go home.

Solodad's approach is certainly the best approach and has the best chance of success.

But, it seems to be too structured and too "feel good". I don't know if you can convince someone as boneheaded as hawk to participate in such an exercise.

I also like PineKnot's idea of waiting until the morning. It is nearly impossible to get people to come to rational conclusion when they are tired and hungry.

So, here is what I would do (assuming that I am Randy)...

First, I would try to calm down Melvin. I would agree that Hawk was too harsh. I would also point out that he is tired and hungry. Hopefully, he calms down and agrees to go back to camp.

We try to get back to camp and have dinner and relax. Hopefully, everyone calms down and gets a good night sleep.

Someone needs to pull Hawk aside and say that this isn't what folks signed up for...

I wish this was like the "lost" challange so I could see how it turns out...
distinguished member (431)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
02/02/2010 08:45PM  
This is what you get when you don't nip it in the bud. From what we know of Hawk before the trip even started, I would for sure not have gone. Hawk displayed enough of an attitude early on, that a person would have to be pretty blunt of mind not to realize that this was not going to be a good situation. Sorry, but a scenario like this should never have even started. But, I'm sure it does. So I'm planning another solo venture.
02/02/2010 11:45PM  
I think that we should actually find out from Melvin what's bothering him before we assume that it's Hawk's abrasive personality. Granted, that's the likely reason, but maybe Melvin has just now realized how far he is from 'civilization' and is anxious about that. Or he's forgotten his heart medication in the car, or he and Mrs. Milktoast had a huge fight about his leaving her at home alone with the kids for the week, or he saw evidence of a bear near the campsite, or any number of other things.

True story: on my wife's first trip to the BWCA as an adult, she basically had a panic attack on the first night in camp because of terrible no-see-ums followed by rain and then finding out that our bagels were moldy. We ended up heading out the next morning because I could tell that she was still too anxious to make the trip tolerable. She was in a state that she couldn't be talked out of; or at least not in any reasonable amount of time. Just knowing that I was taking her feelings seriously went a long way to easing the situation; had I tried to convince her to keep going I think it only would have been worse.

With luck you'll be able to get Melvin talked down, but he may be in an emotional place where that just isn't possible.
distinguished member (285)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
02/03/2010 08:33AM  
Wow. Throw in the Griner brothers and the Cahulawasse and you have the recipe for a 1972 movie classic.

The group is too tired to make it back out in one day so you all have to come to a reasonalbe agreement. At the evening Pow-wow the group must make it clear to Lewis ( hawk ) that the group moves no faster than the slowest member of the group, they won't make him sing kumbaya at the evening campfires if he promises to dial it down a notch or two.

Sometimes a very direct approach is best. Just flat out tell the jerk his behavior is abusive and will not be tolerated by the group. His wisdom is welcome but this is a social and recreational trip, not a competition.

BTW if you hear banjos steer clear.
02/03/2010 08:38AM  
Wow - I can see that a fella needs to jump on these posts pretty darn quick! Lots of good responses already.

Pre trip planning is critical but sometimes different facets of ones personality will manifest themselves depending on the situation and mix of other personalities in the group. I can be pretty hardcore and very laid back - depending on the need and demands of the trip.

Talking to Hawk and Melvin individually before having a group chat is a good idea. Perhaps playing on Hawk's insecurity, ego and desire to teach everyone could be an advantage if channeled in the right way. Establishing base camp and letting Hawk do his own day trips might be the best answer - if none of that works - then heading out with or without Hawk is probably the only choice.

Melvin (and the others) needs stop Hawk's bullying by confronting Hawk. If Hawk is like the burly, boisterous [insert nationality here] guys I know, their behavior is unlikely to change much but can be mollified to a degree just this side of bearable. Then, you just gotta deal.

distinguished member(5354)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberpower member
02/03/2010 11:47AM  
Also, at some point someone should give Melvin some kudos. 20 miles on day one of trip one is pretty good in my experience.
02/03/2010 12:42PM  
At the risk of being an 'Oracle of the Obvious', group chemistry is a delicate balance. The bigger the group the chances of a misalignment probably increase geometrically.

The adult thing to do is to sit everyone down and recalibrate the trip. I've had to do this with family and it turned out fine - what was going to be an extended loop, became a trip with a couple of base camps.

We all had a great time, fishing and pictures abounded - but in this case I had to be flexible in meeting the expectations of my son and brother.

It's all good and all in your attitude.
02/03/2010 03:51PM  
Imagine being 14 and signed up to a school BWCA summer trip guided by someone like Hawk (wait a second, my moniker is danhawk.) The poor kids have little say about the itinerary when things get tough, and almost no chance of changing the group leader's goals. This BWCA experiences would be torturous! I am sure many kids are scared away from future canoe trips.

For your scenario, there is no doubt that everyone expressed their goals and desires during the car ride. These things will have to be brought up again during a "council fire."
distinguished member (182)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
02/03/2010 04:35PM  
I read the challenge and then chose to respond before looking at others answers so if this is redundant, my apologies.

Clearly the first mistake was in letting Hawk have control before the trip began. Expectations should have clearly defined and everyone should have been on the same page. There are so many red flags in this scenario that, unfortunately, this trip is doomed from before a paddle blade hit the water.

Since that didn’t happen I would call a ‘council fire.’ Some good ground rules would need to be set for that meeting. Everyone would need to be able to participate and everyone would need to have a say without being interrupted. With that in mind, I would start by asking everyone to describe what they want from this trip. When Hawk buts in, I would remind him that he will have time to talk but in turn. After getting input from the crew I would ask if the current trip plan was a good blend of the different expectations. Since the answer to that question is clearly no. The next question would be “how do we modify the current plan to better fit everyone’s expectations?” This would not be an easy or short meeting.

The challenge is that, with this four man crew, if Randy does not step up and lead, Hawk may very well end up getting them to concede that this is the trip they signed up for and so they need to stick to the plan.

02/03/2010 06:55PM  
Of all the decisions that need to be made in planning and carrying out a trip I think the one of picking trip mates is the most important. Choose wisely and you'll have a great trip no matter what-choose wrong, here's what you get. Faced with this situation, I'd use a lot of the ideas already given and write the trip off afterwards in the "lessons learned" column.
02/03/2010 07:37PM  
D. Sounds like Randy might be the most experienced in canoe country and also the most level headed in the group. Randy should step up to the plate and talk to HAWK one on one. I think people are less likely to be confrontational in a one on one situation than if confronted by a group. Then sit down around the fire and figure this thing out. "The original plan was to go to the BWCA and do a little fishing, relax and take it slow." I feel most people are rational and things will be worked out. Group dynamics are important but that does not mean that people with totally different ideas of a trip can't go along on the same trip. I have had "mixed" groups go basically on every trip I have taken but we know ahead of time what others are planning on doing while on the trip. If HAWK can not become rational I would not just leave him behind. I might consider hog tying him up and toting him along as gear until he "figures" things out (this is a trick I learned in the Corps). Switching paddling partners around might help ease some of the situation also. Todd
02/03/2010 08:21PM  
A key consideration in dealing with Hawk is his ego. Whatever is said to him, he has to hear recognition for his knowledge and skill, and thanks for his putting up most of the resources for the trip.
02/05/2010 05:25PM  
I have a hard time believing that these 4 would ever go on a trip together in the first place.
If you were Randy, you probably were the one to set up this foursome, and you would feel responsible for working out the problems. Obviously a switch in canoe partners is in order. After 20 miles on the first day I would be in for a very light day 2. Fishing and relaxation is in order, put the hippie with milktoast and if Hawk complains, tell him the trip is over! I suspect that this is Hawk's first trip with this group because nobody else wants to go with him anymore!
I would have spoken up long before it got to that level of animosity. We always have several planning talks and if there is/are new people in the group we figure these kinds of problems out long before we go.
distinguished member(607)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
02/08/2010 10:35AM  
Randy and Dusty are the 2 that have been doing trips together for the past few years so they better take over and get control fast. I blame Randy for everything that has happened to this point. Randy set this trip up and then let Hawk take over the planning without anyone else having any input. It should be up to Randy to be a part of the solution. If I were Randy I would acknowledge that this is all my fault and that from here on out we need to work together to still make a good trip out of it. If we can't do that, then option A will be in effect.
I do large group trips and am the trip planner but everyone is allowed input and the group makes the decisions together. Once the trip starts, the natural leaders lead and the natural followers follow. If something comes up we deal with it and be honest with everyone involved.
02/15/2010 04:24PM  
having been the Randy in a trip
and had a Hawk and Melvin with

here is the solution we used (we tried to beat him to death with paddles but you cant kill the undead)

separately talked with Melvin and dusty and decided we were not moving no matter what tomorrow.

with the type of personality our "hawk" had we knew it would not be pleasant, in the morning when he started packing everything up, rolled his tent and filled his pack and yelling for breakfast to get done we all just said nope aint going anywhere.........scream and yell all ya like we aint leaving this campsite, and in fact tomorrow we aren't leaving it either, and we are day tripping back to (choose the missed landmark here)

our hawk person was not going to be happy the rest of the trip, no matter what happens from here, however the happiness of the many out weigh the happiness of the one, and in reality when he finally came to terms that he was outvoted and vetoed.....after a 3-4 days a degree of calmness returned

of course after we had stated our unity in not following his death march plans, we were serenaded for the rest of the day to the sound of bottle rockets, every 5 or why he had so many I do not know, but we just let him have his tantrum on the shoreline, knowing he would run out eventually.

the takeaway from that trip was, everyone is involved in the trip where we go

funny that was the last trip ever with hawk......actually dont even speak to each other anymore......a loss? who knows, but my trips are all relaxing now
distinguished member(3141)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
02/15/2010 06:02PM  
Randy thanks for sharing this. I think all the posts have hit it on the head. Everyone needs to be involved in planning and every effort must be made to meet expectations of the group as a whole.
02/16/2010 09:06AM  
I guess I need to add that the reason hawk was even in charge of where we went was that a couple years prior we had the bright idea of everyone take turns planning the route and entry point. you know kinda like a surprise.......
the prior 2 went well, then this particular year......SURPRISE
02/16/2010 10:31AM  
in order of attempts.

Was this a fer real trip?

Or are you thinly disguising some of us members from this board?

The only thing closely resembling this scenario would be from my Boy Scout days. A little peanut butter in the middle of the night works wonders.
distinguished member(7653)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberpower member
01/08/2011 08:43AM  
The issue, as always when talking about people, is power. HAWK has it. He'll want to keep it. Melvin has removed himself. If the other three stand against HAWK, HAWK might remove himself, likely through sullen silence. HAWK will try to make the other three pay for the stripping of some of his power. I agree with an earlier poster (or more) that HAWK has acquired too much momentum and he'll be a hard train to stop.
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