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The 7th Principle of LNT

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The 7th Principle of LNT

Postby tlongpine » Tue Sep 10, 2013 11:12 am

TallGrass wrote:While LNT might address how past hikers can preserve the Wilderness experience for future ones,
wouldn't the reg's (group size, distance, etc.) address how present hikers can preserve the Wilderness experience for others also present?
Same place, different times
vs.
same place, same time.


Tallgrass hits the nail on the head of the final and (probably) most overlooked principle of Leave No Trace ethics.

From the USFS: https://fs.usda.gov/Internet/FSE_DOCUMENTS/fsbdev3_058697.pdf

7: Be Considerate of Other Visitors.
Solitude is an important part of the wilderness experience. It is freedom from
intrusion of human sights and sounds. Respect the solitude of others by avoiding boisterous behavior and loud noises
camping in areas that are not visible to other visitors. Let Nature prevail.
-Respect other visitors and protect the quality of their experience.
-Be courteous. Yield to other users on the trail.
-Step to the downhill side of the trail when encountering pack stock.
-Take breaks and camp away from trails and other visitors.
-Let nature's sounds prevail. Avoid loud voices and noises.

The point? LNT isn't as simple as the old axiom "Take only pictures, leave only footprints". LNT also requires understanding and respect for the context in which other visitors experience the mountains. Some people climb the mountains to escape the weekend circus of LoDo. Some people find spiritual retreat in wilderness. Some people fly thousands and drive hundreds of miles to experience the wilderness. Imagine having your once-a-year wilderness retreat begin with kegger and a makeshift TH hot-tub, continue through piles of human waste, and end with an electric neon dance party (FWIW, that experience is available is almost any college dorm). The least any of us could do, is behave is a way that is unlikely to diminish their experience. And, so long as they're making an effort to abide by the same conduct, to do so without passing judgement on how they experience the wilderness.

Eager to yield soapbox I'll close by suggesting much of the recent ill-will among user groups would be resolved by a more thoughtful exercise of the 7th Principle of LNT ethics.
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.

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Re: The 7th Principle of LNT

Postby DArcyS » Tue Sep 10, 2013 11:47 am

tlongpine wrote:
-Step to the downhill side of the trail when encountering pack stock.



Huh, that's interesting. I guess animals get scared if you're looking down on them. I do the exact opposite when coming across humans because it's much easier and safer to step to the uphill side of the trail. Also note there's nothing here about the human having the right away if going uphill, as hiking on a trail is different than driving up a 4-WD road.

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Re: The 7th Principle of LNT

Postby Theodore » Tue Sep 10, 2013 12:04 pm

I tend to go for the uphill side of the trail as well. It's a better defensive position for me when I recognize that the people passing are from a rival e-gang on my favorite mountain information portal.

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Re: The 7th Principle of LNT

Postby DArcyS » Tue Sep 10, 2013 12:08 pm

Theodore wrote:I tend to go for the uphill side of the trail as well. It's a better defensive position for me when I recognize that the people passing are from a rival e-gang on my favorite mountain information portal.


Not to mention, and perhaps I speak only for myself here, I prefer to look down on people.

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Re: The 7th Principle of LNT

Postby Theodore » Tue Sep 10, 2013 12:09 pm

inthemtns wrote:
Theodore wrote:I tend to go for the uphill side of the trail as well. It's a better defensive position for me when I recognize that the people passing are from a rival e-gang on my favorite mountain information portal.


Not to mention, and perhaps I speak only for myself here, I prefer to look down on people.


I'm 5'7" so I have to take the opportunities as they arise!

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Re: The 7th Principle of LNT

Postby J-RockandRockpile » Tue Sep 10, 2013 12:12 pm

Also note you are asking humans to be considerate and respectful of others and that is somewhat laughable.

I agree with everything you are saying but when you come across a few bad seeds, I would recommend doing your best to not let it ruin your trip.
Last edited by J-RockandRockpile on Tue Sep 10, 2013 12:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The 7th Principle of LNT

Postby madbuck » Tue Sep 10, 2013 12:16 pm

Great post.

Avoid conflicts by making a conscious effort to allow everyone their own experience. Avoid the use of bright lights, cell phones, radios, electronic games, walkie-talkies and other intrusive devices.


And note this is in reference to "Wilderness Ethics" -- there are plenty of non-Wilderness options (BLM lands, NF land, local parks and open spaces) which are great options for "Nature Lite" integrated with other activities, like partying, target shooting, mechanized and motorized travel, etc. I think it's easy for us to become conditioned to think of nature and the outdoors in a homogenous way; and while some aspects like waste disposal are universal, the intent and value of Wilderness Areas was very specific and deliberate to set aside a place where people could reliably retreat away from certain aspects of civilization -- always.

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Re: The 7th Principle of LNT

Postby J-RockandRockpile » Tue Sep 10, 2013 12:21 pm

madbuck wrote:Great post.

Avoid conflicts by making a conscious effort to allow everyone their own experience. Avoid the use of bright lights, cell phones, radios, electronic games, walkie-talkies and other intrusive devices.




Again, I hate when people intrude on my experience with their music or cell phone chatter but doesn't this very sentance also allow for people to do those things? It says to "allow everyone their own experience" well if they want to listen to music who am I to tell them they can't or shouldn't or need to stop? Bottom line is these people were raised to not consider others and their space and I don't think LNT Principles are going to do anything to change that, it is something they should have learned in their youth.
Last edited by J-RockandRockpile on Tue Sep 10, 2013 1:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The 7th Principle of LNT

Postby madbuck » Tue Sep 10, 2013 12:32 pm

J-RockandRockpile wrote:
madbuck wrote:Great post.

Avoid conflicts by making a conscious effort to allow everyone their own experience. Avoid the use of bright lights, cell phones, radios, electronic games, walkie-talkies and other intrusive devices.

always.



Again, I hate when people intrude on my experience with their music or cell phone chatter but doesn't this very sentance also allow for people to do those things? It says to "allow everyone their own experience" well if they want to listen to music who am I to tell them they can't or shouldn't or need to stop?


My "always", which you moved out of context, means that people's ability to visit the wilderness and expect others to follow Wilderness regs, esp. considering they may have made a considerable effort to do so, should not be conditioned on random luck.
J-RockandRockpile wrote: Bottom line is these people were raised to not consider others and their space and I don't think LNT Principles are going to do anything to change that, it is something they should have learned in their youth.


Somewhat agreed, but the distinction of Wilderness Ethics is involved in what to expect in Wilderness. One can expect to play music or hear shouting at a public park. One can expect cell phone conversations on NYC sidewalks. One can expect to ride an ATV or mt. bike or your favourite hang glider elsewhere.

This is simple in codifying specifically that electronic devices and excessive noise are a significant detriment to Wilderness experience. It is helpful and important to understand what "Wilderness" means.
It does not mean that every possible pet peeve -- e.g. someone wearing a rival team's baseball cap or cotton or bushy sideburns -- is necessarily a legitimate complaint that is antithetical to the Wilderness ethic.

It means don't come up on a summit and call work or your friends and say, "Guess where I am?" and then discuss details of your TPS report. But if you're certain that nobody's around, or you consciously move away out of earshot or text discretely, go for it. Everybody wins.
Last edited by madbuck on Tue Sep 10, 2013 12:47 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: The 7th Principle of LNT

Postby tlongpine » Tue Sep 10, 2013 12:41 pm

Theodore wrote:I tend to go for the uphill side of the trail as well. It's a better defensive position for me when I recognize that the people passing are from a rival e-gang on my favorite mountain information portal.


:lol:
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.

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Re: The 7th Principle of LNT

Postby Theodore » Tue Sep 10, 2013 12:42 pm

I think a lot of this also falls into the idea that person is generally smart and respectful, but people are dumb sheep.

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Re: The 7th Principle of LNT

Postby J-RockandRockpile » Tue Sep 10, 2013 1:10 pm

madbuck wrote:
madbuck wrote:
My "always", which you moved out of context, means that people's ability to visit the wilderness and expect others to follow Wilderness regs, esp. considering they may have made a considerable effort to do so, should not be conditioned on random luck.
J-RockandRockpile wrote: Bottom line is these people were raised to not consider others and their space and I don't think LNT Principles are going to do anything to change that, it is something they should have learned in their youth.


Somewhat agreed, but the distinction of Wilderness Ethics is involved in what to expect in Wilderness. One can expect to play music or hear shouting at a public park. One can expect cell phone conversations on NYC sidewalks. One can expect to ride an ATV or mt. bike or your favourite hang glider elsewhere.

This is simple in codifying specifically that electronic devices and excessive noise are a significant detriment to Wilderness experience. It is helpful and important to understand what "Wilderness" means.
It does not mean that every possible pet peeve -- e.g. someone wearing a rival team's baseball cap or cotton or bushy sideburns -- is necessarily a legitimate complaint that is antithetical to the Wilderness ethic.

It means don't come up on a summit and call work or your friends and say, "Guess where I am?" and then discuss details of your TPS report. But if you're certain that nobody's around, or you consciously move away out of earshot or text discretely, go for it. Everybody wins.


The always has been taken away, I actually did not intend on leaving that at all - just a poor job in cropping. One could also begin to "expect" music and talking on 14ers as they continue to grow in popularity and the same droves of people whom inhabit the city make there way onto these summits. As many of these people will do little research into the codifying and definition of Wildreness or even consider its ethics. Generally speaking people rarely do any in depth research of anything these days, they may hear that a friend of a friend hiked a mountain and its sounds 'cool' or 'fun' and they then submit themselves to that endeavor. You want to talk "ethics" with the average person go for it, thats a whole new ball game.
I have been to the top of the mountain, and it is good

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