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2016 kick over cairns thread

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: 2016 kick over cairns thread

Postby fishwrong » Tue Oct 11, 2016 5:20 pm

I appreciate the discussion in this topic. Aside from the chance to be a smart-ass, it does bring up a bigger issue of how we can all enjoy a public resource.

I have an opinion which may be a little different than some. I am a firm believer that public resources are for everyone. I bristle when I get a sence someone feels any group should be precluded from using a public resource because "they" don't do things the way "we" do, and "their" use detracts from "our" enjoyment. One of the most common complaints is about 4 wheelers and how those redneck hillbillies are an eyesore to nature. I once had a hiking companion asked to remove her hat because it was disturbing to a guy's horse, and a coworker once petitioned a forest supervisor to ban all horses because horse crap make the the entire forest "unusable". In each of those cases one group thought their interest outweighed the others right to use the same land.

I feel very strongly that so long as any group's activities aren't damaging a public resource it should be allowed. I feel equally strongly that people need to be honest when arguing an activity is damaging vs irritating.

After that it comes down to courtesy. The bulk of folks who hike 10 miles into the wilderness don't enjoy listening to Metallica from at 2:00 AM, and not many folks like seeing and smelling "meadow daisey" from folks who can't dig a hole deep enough. While I don't have a personal problem with stacked rocks, I get that most folks go to the wilderness to get away from society and a cairn obstructing a view can detract from the feeling of solitude.

So with all that said, I don't get the sence SSS Dave is proposing waterboarding rockstackers, and he has a valid arguement that folks should consider how their activities affect the enjoyment of those who follow. I also strongly support Rock Kicker's right to enjoy the experience and satisfaction of leather meeting granite at high velocity. Just don't break any public rocks (toes are private and OK).

Thanks for the topic.

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Re: 2016 kick over cairns thread

Postby tie » Sun Oct 16, 2016 12:09 pm

Of course I believe in leave no trace, but cairns and rock stacks don't usually bother me. I'm a big Andy Goldsworthy fan, too. :) It is hardly an important problem in most areas I've been. The worse problem is when there is a maze of trails defacing the landscape because there is a lot of foot traffic, no official trails, and not enough cairns to control the traffic. Mt Baldy is a good example.
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Re: 2016 kick over cairns thread

Postby oldranger » Sat Oct 22, 2016 6:18 pm


This was constructed as a joke. They were in the middle of the campsite a few years ago. I think Russ posted a movie of markskor getting stuck following the circle of ducks for several minutes before we pointed out to him to look up so he could see that he was going nowhere fast! They were deconstructed a few minutes later as we didn't want Mark to get stuck again. As you pointed out ducks can be of value in some circumstances but when you can see them scattered randomly across a slope it gets a little ridiculous.

Who can't do everything he used to and what he can do takes a hell of a lot longer!
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