Jesse M wrote: flatlander51 wrote: tlongpine wrote:
$120 approach shoes/hiking boots? Sure.
$85 trekking poles. Why Not?
$90 Camelbak? Of Course!
$20 REI membership? I mean, it pays for itself.
$110 polarized sunshades? Definitely.
$35 Patagonia capilene tee. Sure
$200 ultralight tent? Duh.
$700 DSLR camera? Well, yeah. Or...
$300 GoPro? Dude, epic.
$100 Thermarest? A necessity.
$150 down bag? Also a necessity.
$40 hammock? A creature comfort.
$10 access fee? YOU'VE GOT TO BE KIDDING!1!! OUTRAGEOUS!
To tlongpine, this is the best comment I have ever read! So true.
What about those of us who don't have all that expensive gear and need to make sacrifices in other aspects of our life just to be able to pay for the gas to enjoy the outdoors. This activity should not be a rich mans sport, lets leave that for golf, skiing, and technical climbing. The federal government doesn't need another penny from me, they are probably the worst organization at budgeting funds. No new tax, give your money to the CFI or better yet give your time to help improve a trail. If a new tax is forced upon us to enjoy our natural places, people won't give to organizations like the CFI anymore. And Bill's CFI fundraiser wouldn't even break the 10K mark. IMO.
A $10 access fee is nominal. It's less than the price of a movie - and no reasonable person is going argue that the multiplex has become a reserve for the well-heeled.
The reality is that our Federal Taxes are down(1) and this has led to painful cuts to the Forest Services budget. Since less tax revenue flows to the Forest Service they have to recover the lost revenue somehow. Which brings us to the real choice:
To recover the lost revenue, should the Forest Service sell logging/mining rights to timber/mineral companies or charge a usage fee to recreational users?
I prefer the latter because it can be undone if/when we collectively decide we love forests and wild places more than we hate Uncle Sam. We can't un-clear cut a forest or un-remove a mountaintop.
I am unable to walk away from the mountain without climbing it. An unclimbed mountain tugs at my consciousness with the eternal weight of time itself. Until I've pressed my face into it's alpine winds, hugged it's ancient granite walls, and put it's weathered summit beneath my heal I'm unable to resist it's attraction.Knowing nature gives the mountain more time than she gives us adds urgency to the obsession. As has been said before; the mountain doesn't care.
It can wait forever. I cannot.