Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Motorcyclist & Blogger Evan Tanner goes "Into the Wild", doesn't survive.

"I plan on going so deep into the desert, that any failure of my equipment, could cost me my life." Strangely prophetic words from one of Evan Tanner's last blog posts before he embarked on his fatal motorcycle journey.

Evan Tanner, a man well known in the sport of "Mixed Martial Arts" (MMA) was found dead about 2 miles from his campsite out in the remote desert area of Imperial County California, near the Arizona border.

On September 8 he used his cell phone to text a friend. He apparently had run out of gas while riding his Kawasaki KLR650 and was attempting to hike through the 115 degree desert heat back to his camp. Preliminary reports cite the cause of death was heat related.

Evan's very last post, just 5 days before he died was titled "Into the Desert", suggestive of his probable awareness of the book and subsequent movie titled "Into the Wild" about Chris McCandless. Chris was another young man with a penchant for adventure, going out alone to places well beyond the bounds of human civilization. He too didn't survive.

Was Evan Tanner's death preventable? Certainly. He could have stayed at home and sat on the couch. Tragic story yes, but at least he died doing what he loved most, treasure hunting. And now he rides on the ultimate adventure, out beyond the boundaries of life.

"Treasure doesn't necessarily refer to something material."- Evan Tanner

So, what do you think?

I first heard about this story over at Motorcycles Can Save the World

Evan Tanner's prophetic posts: "Treasure Hunting in the Desert" dated August 16, 2008 and his last post "Into the Desert".

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Baron's Life said...

I don't know Kano,
Seems to me this is a most tragic story.
"At least he died doing what he loves most" possibly yes...But was it worth it? Not in my books. Nothing is worth putting someone's life needlessly at risk

irondad said...

Everyone dies, but not everyone lives. We all make choices. What is the saying?

You pays your money and you takes your chances.

Heinz N Frenchie said...

It is always tragic when a life is lost, especially when we think it could easily have been saved.

Conchscooter said...

My buddy who motorcycles remote New Mexico out of cell phone reach (and who does not have a death wish) carries a gagdet that sends a signal to a stellite with GPS location if he needs help. Personally I'd rather be alive in "almost writhing mass of humanity" in Southern California than dead and desicated in the Mojave desert. Darwin award.

Kano said...

baron's life -We all take calculated risks every day. Some things are riskier than others. His choice of risk was a little beyond what most of us would take but humanity needs people like that, people willing to go above and beyoned what the average joe would do. For some the risk pays off big time, for others the risk doesn't work out so well.

irondad -Yep, when I read his blog entries it seemed that his ride wasn't any kind of foolhardy spur of the moment idea. It appeared to be well thought out and planned. But there's no getting around it once in awhile things just don't work out as planned. S**T happens.

heinz & frenchie -Tragic indeed. Evan seemed like a very interesting person, so young and so much ahead of him. Everyone has their time though I guess and his time was up.

conchscooter -The gadget sounds like the way to go for those extreme minded individuals who love to push the envelope. Evan described himself as an "adventurer" and a "minimalist". He probably could have afforded the GPS locating device but may have opted out on that option.

Motorcycle Philosophy said...

Sounds fishy. Tanner says he's taking this trip seriously, studying all about survival, in an attempt to find himself. What happens, the guy runs out of gas and dies. How could a motorcyclist miscalculate his gas on such a dangerous outing? Maybe he never intended to come back?

Kano said...

motorcycle philosophy -Yep, I don't know, that's what makes his story such an interesting one. The mystery of his motivations make for good subject material. Maybe someone will write a book or make a movie, that would be interesting. I've heard 2 different things about the out of gas situation he was in. One is that he was trying to walk out of the area and the other is he was trying to walk back to his camp. Maybe he had more gas back at his camp, which was a few miles away from where he died. -Maybe he did have a bit of a death wish though and was tempting fate. His occupation of a fighter shows that he was certainly no stranger to tempting the fates.

FLHX_Dave said...

"A man has got to know his own limitations" Well, at least he put himself to the test. I'm not sure what to think. Kicking ass will not help you against mother nature. She does what she wants to. Disrespect her and she will slap you down.

Strange enough I fully understand his desire to do what he did and why. I guess if you plan on surviving you need a plan to survive.