HST Community      Should there be a campfire?

Should there be a campfire? | High Sierra Topix  

Should there be a campfire?

Grab your bear can or camp chair, kick your feet up and chew the fat about anything Sierra Nevada related that doesn't quite fit in any of the other forums. Within reason, (and the HST rules and guidelines) this is also an anything goes forum. Tell stories, discuss wilderness issues, music, or whatever else the High Sierra stirs up in your mind.

Re: Should there be a campfire?

Postby ERIC » Mon Oct 06, 2014 7:58 pm

:rolleyes:
It's a figurative campfire.

Can't believe this is even a thread.
New members, please consider giving us an intro!
Follow us on Twitter @HighSierraTopix. Use hashtags #SIERRAPHILE #GotSierra? #GotMountains?
Follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HighSierraTopix



User avatar
ERIC
HS Topix Owner & Forums Administrator
HS Topix Owner & Forums Administrator
 
Posts: 3122
Joined: Fri Oct 28, 2005 9:13 am
Location: between the 916 and 661
Experience: Level 4 Explorer

Re: Should there be a campfire?

Postby balzaccom » Tue Oct 07, 2014 8:18 am

ERIC wrote::rolleyes:
It's a figurative campfire.

Can't believe this is even a thread.


It's a figurative thread.
Balzaccom

check out our website: http://www.backpackthesierra.com/
User avatar
balzaccom
Topix Fanatic
 
Posts: 1569
Joined: Wed Dec 17, 2008 9:22 pm
Experience: N/A

Re: Should there be a campfire?

Postby richlong8 » Tue Oct 07, 2014 8:27 am

oldranger wrote:Actually, mark, you can remove fire scars. it is a tedious process involving oven cleaner and wire brushes. Some people can't resist rebuilding a fire ring even when the site is clearly illegal especially when there is a when there is a fire scared rock visible. So would not remove rings unless I could remove all evidence of them. One of my pet peeves is a broken up fie ring with fire blackend rock in evidence all around, even less appealing than the original fire ring. If you are going to do a job do it right!

Mike

This year, I never bothered with a fire, but it can be a real nice experience. I see more and more places where fire rings have been taken apart and the soot covered rocks in the camping area are very apparent, and an eyesore. Apparently, some folks have never seen a fire ring that they did not feel justified in taking it apart. If the end result of no fire rings is the "herding" of backpackers into regulated and monitored camping areas, that does not seem like a true wilderness experience to me. Might as well camp at a campground....John Muir would be chuckling! O:) And in a survival situation, no one is going to keep me from having a fire.
User avatar
richlong8
Topix Expert
 
Posts: 739
Joined: Tue Nov 25, 2008 6:02 pm
Experience: N/A

Re: Should there be a campfire?

Postby ERIC » Tue Oct 07, 2014 2:25 pm

balzaccom wrote:
It's a figurative thread.


B.S. At its core this is an opinion thread criticizing campfires in general and in conclusion the use of the concept of a campfire for this sub-forum.

Certainly there must be more important things needing to be saved by your morals. :\
New members, please consider giving us an intro!
Follow us on Twitter @HighSierraTopix. Use hashtags #SIERRAPHILE #GotSierra? #GotMountains?
Follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HighSierraTopix
User avatar
ERIC
HS Topix Owner & Forums Administrator
HS Topix Owner & Forums Administrator
 
Posts: 3122
Joined: Fri Oct 28, 2005 9:13 am
Location: between the 916 and 661
Experience: Level 4 Explorer

Re: Should there be a campfire?

Postby TahoeJeff » Tue Oct 07, 2014 4:07 pm

ERIC wrote:Certainly there must be more important things needing to be saved by your morals.


Like having anglers file EIRs?
“Scholars have long known that fishing eventually turns men into philosophers. Unfortunately, it is almost impossible to buy decent tackle on a philosopher's salary.”

RIP Patrick McManus
User avatar
TahoeJeff
Topix Expert
 
Posts: 797
Joined: Thu Mar 08, 2007 11:03 am
Location: South Lake Tahoe
Experience: N/A

Re: Should there be a campfire?

Postby Eiprahs » Fri Oct 10, 2014 10:39 am

I am pro campfire. When conditions are adverse they are awfully nice to have, especially 'shoulder season', like right now, when days are short and nights cold. Yes, they are not needed most of the time, pose safety risks, skew the balance of dead material in the ecological cycle, but prohibition??

The places I have been to after being "cleaned" are well-used...often at destination lakes where there may be only one or two good areas to camp. Now instead of just one or two rings which may be somewhat too large but the rest of the site looked clean, now there are countless black scars and fire remnants scattered all about the site, the benefit of the cleaning crew. How does this coincide with LNT?


People like campfires and will build their campfire rings regardless of regs.
So for popular spots, campfire ring removal is futile. At high use sites the end result will be every movable rock is soot stained, large areas of soil are disturbed to bury charcoal and ash, and back country rangers' time has been needlessly expended 'repairing' damage that didn't need fixing.

There is no accepted 'best practice' for camp fires, so each area has its own rules. Here are the policies at places I've been within last two years:

Wind River Range, Wyoming: Fires permitted: pile camp fire ring rocks with sooty side down or to the inside of pile when leaving campsite.

Sawtooth Wilderness, Idaho: Off trail fires not permitted Memorial Day to Labor Day, fires prohibited some drainages, when permitted fires must be built on a fire pan or fire blanket with 3-6" of mineral soil on top of fire pan/blanket. Bury ashes and mineral soil. $250 citation for failure to comply.

Mt Hood Wilderness, Eagle Cap Wilderness, Oregon: Fires permitted except where listed/posted--signs are small wood signs on entry trail (what if you come in x-country or after dark?).

John Muir Wilderness, Inyo National Forest, California: Fires prohibited above 10,400' or 10,000' depending on area, or in areas listed on 'no campfire' list (where I went was listed, but the campsite I used had sooty rocks).

Yes, I want to minimize my impact. To that end I look for pre-existing camp sites no matter how remote the area. I like it when I find a site with cleared sleeping area, a stove rock with sit rock, and yes, maybe even a fire ring. Those who have gone before me had similar needs--proximity to water, wind/precipitation shelter, exposure to morning light--so finding signs of past use suggests I'm on the right track, saves me some trouble, and allows me to minimize my footprint by using an old one.

Due to 150 years of prospecting, timber cruising, hunting/fishing, peak bagging, management inventories and activities, etc. across the West I won't be the first to visit any area. Our wild lands do have a history of human use in which the camp fire figured prominently, and denying that past history is both arrogant and discredits those whose footsteps we follow.

Pragmatism? Honor the past while being aware of and minimizing our impacts on the future.

And thanks to all for the discussion.
Dave
User avatar
Eiprahs
Topix Regular
 
Posts: 104
Joined: Sun Mar 18, 2012 7:12 pm
Location: Mount Angel, Oregon
Experience: Level 1 Hiker

Re: Should there be a campfire?

Postby Cross Country » Sun Oct 12, 2014 11:15 am

The overly used places I visited were somewhat ugly and to me at times offensive. My cross country destinations were almost never like that. I rarely made a campfire but usually made fires to cook my fish because I like BBQ fish. I'm sure some of you will realize what this means a like me less than ever.
Cross Country
Topix Fanatic
 
Posts: 1309
Joined: Thu Dec 24, 2009 11:16 am
Experience: Level 4 Explorer

Re: Should there be a campfire?

Postby ERIC » Mon Oct 27, 2014 7:04 pm

TahoeJeff wrote:
ERIC wrote:Certainly there must be more important things needing to be saved by your morals.


Like having anglers file EIRs?


Point taken, but not an ideal comparison IMO.

Anyway, this sub-forum has a history of being warm to hot, and kind of smoky and controversial at times. I think "The Campfire" fits it well. :wink:
New members, please consider giving us an intro!
Follow us on Twitter @HighSierraTopix. Use hashtags #SIERRAPHILE #GotSierra? #GotMountains?
Follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HighSierraTopix
User avatar
ERIC
HS Topix Owner & Forums Administrator
HS Topix Owner & Forums Administrator
 
Posts: 3122
Joined: Fri Oct 28, 2005 9:13 am
Location: between the 916 and 661
Experience: Level 4 Explorer

Previous

Return to The Campfire



Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests