"Maybe Cooper had a wet suit on under his suit. Cut off at the knees and arms like a "Shorty" of today. Maybe he had a different pair of shoes in his brief case. Along with a compass and some road flares that looked like a bomb."
All that is possible, but he'd have been sweating noticeably if he had even a shorty wetsuit on underneath his business attire.
Road flares would have been a terrible idea for illumination due to the huge heat signature emitted. If any FLIR (thermal imaging systems) equipped aircraft were looking for him that night, flares would look like thermal beacons. FLIRS were not common in 1971 but they certainly did exist. Hughes Aircraft made them and so did other companies. I have used FLIRS made by Hughes and by Raytheon. Anything warmer than the surroundings shows up as a noticeable hot target. The bigger the temp DIFFERENCE, the better it shows up. Sulphur road flares have a huge delta T over winter ambient outdoor object temps. People have a much lower delta T than anything burning, but are still detectable even when hiding in brush that obscures them visually. You can literally see the heat they emit unless they are 100% blocked by thermally opaque material.
A compass wouldnt have been of too much use unless he knew where he was. Knowing which way is North isnt all that helpful if you are in an unknown location.
A different pair of shoes would have been a great idea, but more stuff to carry. More suitable jump clothes and jump shoes (parka and hiking boots?)wouldn't have drawn much attention, but perhaps he needed to look like a businessman rather than an outdoorsman when he landed.
(This post was edited by 377 on Feb 5, 2008, 5:35 PM)