leave no trace

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trekkin_gecko
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leave no trace

Post by trekkin_gecko » Jul 01 2012 1:44 pm

the latest poll question: do you seriously practice LNT ethics?

i answered no because
a. i don't pack out my waste
b. i don't pick up after other people
c. i've thrown a few apple cores in the bushes in the past

curious what others have to say
where do you draw the line?

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Alston_Neal
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Re: leave no trace

Post by Alston_Neal » Mar 14 2013 12:38 pm

@azbackpackr
I call it..hiking the vinegar out and some days I've left a pretty big trail.
In Japan they say only old people and crazy people hike mountains...........yep


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Tough_Boots
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Re: leave no trace

Post by Tough_Boots » Mar 14 2013 5:35 pm

@SgtLumpy

I'm not saying its an excuse to leave trash and junk laying about. I'm saying that calling something "leave no trace" ethics is inherently hypocritical. I thought that was obvious.

Is the wilderness better off if I left my apple core there? Probably not and I never stated otherwise. Is the wilderness better off because YOU were there? Of course not. You are inherently bad for the wilderness.
"there is no love where there is no bramble."
--bill callahan

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te_wa
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Re: leave no trace

Post by te_wa » Mar 14 2013 7:36 pm

ok, all you Cody Lundin wannabe's. just dont litter.
i'm working on my barefoot style, ain't nobody got time for that.

:sl:
:D

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chumley
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Re: leave no trace

Post by chumley » Mar 14 2013 8:19 pm

te-wa wrote:i'm working on my barefoot style
Which will hopefully eliminate the need for future works of LNT art such as this (of which I was an admittedly active participant -- and that ain't no apple tree!). :guilty:
http://hikearizona.com/photo.php?ZIP=263566
Highway to hell

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SgtLumpy
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Re: leave no trace

Post by SgtLumpy » Mar 14 2013 8:28 pm

" ...Is the wilderness better off because YOU were there? Of course not. You are inherently bad for the wilderness."

I think I could argue against that. I (the collective 'we') M/ARE good for the wilderness in the social sense. If we didn't hike, if we didn't encourage/damand/allow trails and trailheads to be built, land to be preserved etc, that wilderness would very likely become a Target and a Starbucks and an Old Navy and spec homes. Anybody who has ever taken someone else on a hike for the first time, or who hiked for the first time themselves, has seen the excitement that some (not all!) people experience when they see nature up close. How cool is it to pass people and say "hi" and be genuinely friendly - "you need water?" "There's a rattle snake up ahead" "Can I help you change your tire?". That doesn't happen in the mall or on the freeway. THAT, to me, is the absolute coolest part of hiking. And that's a very good thing for society, wilderness, humans, wildlife.

So in that sense, yes, I believe I AM good for the wilderness. No need to hug trees. But no need to leave foreign food either. But that's simply my opinion. The beauty of the big picture is that everyone is allowed their opinion in the wilderness. We're all on the honor system. We can choose to pay parking fees or not, leash our dog or not, leave trash, hike off trail, wear obnoxious perfume, leave apple cores - essentially anything. And the positive or negative impact of any of it is up to each one of us to personally judge.

I'd say that's a pretty cool thing.


Sgt Lumpy - n0eq

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ASUAviator
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Re: leave no trace

Post by ASUAviator » Mar 14 2013 8:50 pm

While were all ranting again, how bout them cairn builders?? No ones talked about the trace they leave. Personally im not for them, less so than a properly desposed of apple core ill never find.

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PaleoRob
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Re: leave no trace

Post by PaleoRob » Mar 14 2013 9:10 pm

ASUAviator wrote:While were all ranting again, how bout them cairn builders?? No ones talked about the trace they leave. Personally im not for them, less so than a properly desposed of apple core ill never find.
That's why I'm a cairn kicker. I kick cairns of all shapes and sizes if they are useless. Some are useful for marking a path but 9/10 cairns I encounter (perhaps even higher in places like Cedar Mesa) are constructed by nabobs with no clue about where the trail is heading or where they should be build cairns in the first place.
"The only thing we did was wrong was staying in the wilderness to long...the only thing we did was right was the day we started to fight..."
-Old Spiritual
My book, The Marauders on Lulu and Amazon

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outdoor_lover
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Re: leave no trace

Post by outdoor_lover » Mar 14 2013 9:33 pm

However, there are Cairns that are very useful and are put there for a purpose, such as lack of a defined Trail....Peak 3004 Loop is a perfect example. The Trail is virtually non-existent around the back side and if you're a novice like me that had no idea where I was at the time, it really helped and was really appreciated. :D

I think I would be a little dismayed if someone I was with starting kicking over Cairns that marked a designated Route...Yes, I have seen what appear to be a bunch of useless Cairns, but what may be useless to you and I, may be helping someone else remember a particular spot where they wanted to go off trail to a nice camp spot, or to mark a spot where they leave the Trail to find a reliable Water source, etc. etc....

I have built a "useless" Cairn, "useless" to everyone but me, to "mark" and help me remember where to leave the Trail for a certain area that I'm in the process of exploring....My memory may not be as good as other people's when it comes to that. Especially when I am not in the area more than a couple of times a year....
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty & well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, totally worn out & proclaiming, "Wow What a Ride!"

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Tough_Boots
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Re: leave no trace

Post by Tough_Boots » Mar 14 2013 10:10 pm

@SgtLumpy

so you're basically saying that the wilderness only has value because of our appreciation of it? You might be missing the whole point of it.
"there is no love where there is no bramble."
--bill callahan

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PaleoRob
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Re: leave no trace

Post by PaleoRob » Mar 14 2013 10:21 pm

Outdoor Lover wrote:However, there are Cairns that are very useful and are put there for a purpose, such as lack of a defined Trail....Peak 3004 Loop is a perfect example. The Trail is virtually non-existent around the back side and if you're a novice like me that had no idea where I was at the time, it really helped and was really appreciated. :D

I think I would be a little dismayed if someone I was with starting kicking over Cairns that marked a designated Route...Yes, I have seen what appear to be a bunch of useless Cairns, but what may be useless to you and I, may be helping someone else remember a particular spot where they wanted to go off trail to a nice camp spot, or to mark a spot where they leave the Trail to find a reliable Water source, etc. etc....

I have built a "useless" Cairn, "useless" to everyone but me, to "mark" and help me remember where to leave the Trail for a certain area that I'm in the process of exploring....My memory may not be as good as other people's when it comes to that. Especially when I am not in the area more than a couple of times a year....
I'm not against useful cairns - the ones the mark the way around an obstacle in the path, or let hikers know where the trail is when it may be hard to find.
Cairns that are only useful to one person, or lead hikers away from the trail, are my boot targets. I understand exactly what you are saying but I disagree with leaving those cairns. If everyone built a cairn to mark their favorite spots then soon those spots would be overrun with people either looking for a nice spot or distracted from the main trail. Building a cairn to help remember a location doesn't seem like a good idea when there are plenty of natural landmarks pretty much everywhere - how can you expect to remember a cairn if you can't remember the bend in the canyon, the alcove, or the ledge near your turnoff? And what gives one person the right to build a cairn for their own personal use on a public trail?
"The only thing we did was wrong was staying in the wilderness to long...the only thing we did was right was the day we started to fight..."
-Old Spiritual
My book, The Marauders on Lulu and Amazon

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ASUAviator
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Re: leave no trace

Post by ASUAviator » Mar 14 2013 10:53 pm

Outdoor Lover wrote:if you're a novice like me

:lol: Good one.

While I understand your point, I think they still qualify as litter since they were never naturally there in the first place. They let you know you are following in someones footsteps, especially on 'off-trail' hikes. And what comes after people start going cairn to cairn? A trail. They take alot away from the adventure people like me seek when looking for a remote place off-trail to explore. I wont say ALL cairns are bad, but like Rob said, 9/10 if not more are. There are ways around building cairns to remember a spot, Gps being the best or just a printed map of the area. And any non-novice hiker such as yourself is sure to have researched the trail/area and the features along it before heading out ;)

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outdoor_lover
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Re: leave no trace

Post by outdoor_lover » Mar 14 2013 11:18 pm

The Cairn debate could go on and on. All I can say is that it's the first and only time I have built a Cairn for "personal" use and it was far from a monolith... :sweat: I think I used 4 rocks. Am I "leaving a trace"? Well, yes I am. Am I impacting the environment? Ok, probably as much as plucking a ripe raspberry off a bush on a public trail....Am I littering? Well, I certainly did not haul the rocks in. Every rock was laying within 20 feet of my construction...The Cairn probably has either been kicked or toppled by now anyway. I have no GPS and even with my topo maps, which are showing an "aerial" view, things can look quite a bit different on the ground, when it's not a "prominent" area. I overshot that spot by 1/2 mile the first time I was there, with topo maps in hand. I was in a Canyon...With limited daylight and season, I don't feel like doing it again. I plan on going out there one more time and then if it makes you guys feel better, if the Cairn is still there, I'll remove it....That Cairn marked where I came out (my original plan for exiting the Trail too) and the area I explored and shared that day, and is worth building and a return trip to my original destination. I simply ran out of time that day or I wouldn't need to return....

Am I a Novice? Absolutely, when you look at the experience of 75% of the Hikers on this site. I've only been Hiking seriously for a little over a year and a half....There is still sooo much to learn and so many mistakes to make.... :sweat:
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty & well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, totally worn out & proclaiming, "Wow What a Ride!"

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cactuscat
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Re: leave no trace

Post by cactuscat » Mar 14 2013 11:25 pm

I would rather use cairns than gps any day!
Never had a gps, and probably never will ... kind of pride myself on being able to find my way without one. :D
Where is the "dislike" button?

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SgtLumpy
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Re: leave no trace

Post by SgtLumpy » Mar 15 2013 7:21 am

Tough_Boots wrote:@SgtLumpy

so you're basically saying that the wilderness only has value because of our appreciation of it? You might be missing the whole point of it.
No. I'm saying that leaving an apple core is what I personally consider a less than responsible act. Your views, everyone's views, may vary.


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SgtLumpy
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Re: leave no trace

Post by SgtLumpy » Mar 15 2013 7:25 am

Rob del Desierto wrote:
That's why I'm a cairn kicker...
A cairn kicker am I, as well.


Sgt Lumpy - n0eq

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chumley
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Re: leave no trace

Post by chumley » Mar 15 2013 9:22 am

Outdoor Lover wrote:Am I a Novice? Absolutely, when you look at the experience of 75% of the Hikers on this site.
Don't forget ... 95% of the hikers on this site have never posted a photo, triplog, gps route, or comment. :o Not sure where that makes you rank in hiking, but you're damn near the king of the hill of site participation.

As far as cairns go, a select few can be helpful, but most are useless. Quartz Peak is a great example. If you can't follow that trail (even in the rocky areas where a worn footpath does not exist) to the known destination, I'm not sure you should be outside without adult supervision.

But I don't always consider all the circumstances either. Take the Superstition Ridgeline for example. It's not a trail, but might as well be. It's a well-established route with a clear use-path. There are plenty of cairns along the way, nearly all of which I think are unnecessary. But then I heard one Hazzer tell me about being up there at night, and without the cairns, the route would have been impossible to follow. It would have resulted in countless hours of route-finding or even an unplanned night in the wilderness waiting for daybreak. In fog, rain, snow, etc, the ridgeline can offer you zero-visibility. Topo maps are nearly useless if you can't see the terrain around you. And GPS batteries do run out.

So while I prefer no cairns, I can empathize with people who sometimes find them to be helpful. Even so, they are probably overbuilt and far too numerous. :M2C:
Highway to hell

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Re: leave no trace

Post by outdoor_lover » Mar 15 2013 10:07 am

Ah, I love a good debate.... :D The next time you all kick over a Cairn, all I ask is that you stop and think for a moment....

Who put it there and why? It may be stupid to you, but it may be serving a real purpose, including to Public Land Stewards...How do you know that that Cairn wasn't placed by someone 100 years ago and has historical significance??? The Cairn that you just kicked over may have been placed there by Jacob Waltz or one of the Reavis Clan. They certainly did not have the luxury of GPS or really cool Topo Maps....That Cairn may be a clue to something bigger from past history....

You ask, what gives me the right to build a Cairn on a Public Trail? Nothing. But it's not littering. I'm doing what Native Americans did 600 years ago and using available materials that nature has provided that marks something significant to me....Just like they did with their "graffiti"....Their trash was alot more permanent than mine will ever be....What gave those same Native Americans the right to build their "houses" on "public land"??? Alot of those "houses" are just oversized stacks of rocks and may have been unsightly to the neighbors and peoples traveling through. I'll bet there's not a person on this site that wouldn't excommunicate me if I walked up and kicked one of those walls over.... :o (Trust me people, that statement was made for sake of argument so just chill....)

I'm sure I will cause some indignation with this post, but just rendering an opinion, isn't that somewhat what some topics are for???
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty & well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, totally worn out & proclaiming, "Wow What a Ride!"

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Alston_Neal
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Re: leave no trace

Post by Alston_Neal » Mar 15 2013 11:22 am

Speaking of cairns...Anyone ever notice how many animals, birds, reptiles and mammals (fish would if they could) drop a biscuit on them?
Are they building their own stack, making a commentary, or am I just being anthropomorphic?
In Japan they say only old people and crazy people hike mountains...........yep


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beterarcher
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Re: leave no trace

Post by beterarcher » Mar 15 2013 12:26 pm

@Alston Neal
They even build their own from scratch.http://hikearizona.com/photo.php?ZIP=288598 I've noticed them where one game trail intersects with another.
Understand, when you eat meat, that something did die. You have an obligation to value it - not just the sirloin but also all those wonderful tough little bits.
Anthony Bourdain

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Alston_Neal
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Re: leave no trace

Post by Alston_Neal » Mar 15 2013 12:28 pm

@beterarcher
:sl: That is the perfect analogy of the business world... :sl: :sl:

You just made my day!
In Japan they say only old people and crazy people hike mountains...........yep


Our humble abode..
http://www.oldterritorialshop.com

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