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Thread: Backpacking pet peeves......

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    -Trail etiquette is all but dead it seems its a free for all its a little better up above the Timber line and no Problem when you are off trail just Cruising
    -people leavin wag bags
    -Horses not having to use them lol
    -any officials that blouse their boot
    - Rangers and Scouts that dont wear the Hat or uniform properly Never was either but I have Known some Truely squared away ones
    -Initials carved in anything
    -Loud talkers
    -Non Howdy sayers
    - The Guy that came to our Camp and asked to borrow Tooth picks in the tent cabins in Yosemite I was looking at him like the No Coke pepsi Chips Chips Chips Bill Murry SNL skit Sshaking my head as he spoke He must of thought I was touched I told him he was standing in one of the most Beutiful forrest areas on then Planet with a floor littered with a Gajillion perfect little sticks with a belt knife and you come to ask for tooth picks go away...He left saying I was a rude Kid Maybe so I just couldnt belive it my uncle held up a tin foil and willow stick fry pan we used to cook Trout and said He Made this lol
    -anyone that Goes on trailside or anywhere about how light their load is while sporting 30 pounds of Dreadlocs 2 pounds of dirt and petulie oil

    -Geo Cash Midden piles of crappy plastic do dads that arent stowed

    Again I could go on and on may even pop back in lol


    I just try to avoid the things that driveme up a Wall and just enjoy the time
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    Bushmaster Bush Class Basic Certified tennecedar's Avatar
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    If seeing someone else ruins your day... do you go home and stay off the trails because you just screwed up someone else's hike?

    If I hike into the back woods and someone else is there don't I have the right to get peeved? I mean really... they should know to stay away when I decide to hike. Sheesh


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    What bums me out is seeing all the "Environmental Police" that have taken over the local forests. Lately the place has been swarming with them - ninja suits, bloused boots, .40 cals, hut -hut - hut - hut. I've hiked the woods all over the Berkshires for over 50 years with seldom a sight of the MAN. I don't like it. Last time I went to the state forest I found an EP pickup and half a dozen of the boys in green milling around the parking lot. When I asked what was up all I got was, "Nothing happening here. Move along. Move along." Used to be that the state forests belonged to the people. Seems like we're just uninvited visitors now on the Gumment's Land. Yes, I can avoid them easily, but know you all that the evil empire is expanding.
    Go in peace.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr.Black View Post
    I just try to avoid the things that driveme up a Wall and just enjoy the time
    M/BK
    I agree, and if I can't avoid them I try to not let them get to me too much. It only makes it worse if you let it under your skin. Brush it off and enjoy yourself, is the best policy.

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    Default My backwoods pet peeves

    Almost all the backpacking and canoe-tripping my wife and I do is on Crown lands in Ontario, and as untrammeled as those woods are, there are there three things that annoy and anger me: backpackers and campers who try to ‘improve’ a site, people who litter, and destructive ATVers.

    The first is a heavily impacted or “improved” campsite: Some people seem to think that anything that’s served others as a campsite - be it an official, designated campsite in a park, or an established campsite on Crown land - is a place where they can build crappy furniture (benches, tables), hammer nails into trees, build up bonfire-sized fire pits, string up clothes lines all over, and then leave the site with all this crap behind. I have canoed and backpacked to some pretty remote places to discover beautiful sites that were strewn with broken folding chairs, huge fire pits with enormous half-charred logs, 3 or 4 fire grates lying about, rope and string left up from where they'd hung their wet clothes, old wet and rotting socks, not to mention unsightly and flimsy camp carpentry. When such a spot is the only suitable spot on a lake, one feels like one is moving into a dilapidated shanty, rather than camping in wilderness. How I wish that people would pack out their crap and dismantle what they build, or at least build it out of natural materials so that there aren’t rusty nails sticking out of live trees and bits of wood.

    Invariably, where there are large fire pits or fire rings, the sites are beaten down to bare dirt, with all ground litter and nearby firewood having been consumed. Even in such places as Algonquin Park, which is well-maintained, it’s common to have to paddle away from one’s site and go off in search of firewood and then paddle back with it, all because people think that camping means having a large roaring fire every night.

    Here’s an example of a site where my wife and I camped that had been ‘improved’ by previous campers:

    Note the crude ‘table’ made by hammering a board and pieces of cut live wood into a tree. That table stank so badly of fish guts (a lure to bears) that we dismantled it and burned it right after making our supper.
    Note also how the ground has been picked clean of ground litter, lacks all ground vegetation, tree roots are exposed, meaning that the site turns into a mud pit whenever it rains. Notice also the size of the fire ring in the background.

    In this next photo, notice the absurdly large fire pit, the iron grate over it (one of 3 on that site), the nails in the trees from which I have hung some gear (I pulled these out when we broke camp), the abandoned and broken folding chair to my left, and on the far right you can make out part of a heavy iron table that was also abandoned. Note the complete lack of ground litter or living ground vegetation.


    Sadly, sites such as these are typical of Algonquin Provincial Park, which is why I avoid camping there or in other parks.

    The second thing that bothers is, of course, litter. In fact, it infuriates me. Whenever we hike, go backpacking, or canoe-tripping, we carry along one or more plastic garbage bags to pack out litter we may encounter on my way back. I’m happy to say that I don’t find much most of the time on Crown land, but there have been occasions where I have picked up entire large garbage bags full of crap left behind by inconsiderate campers and hikers.

    Below are a few photos of one site we paddled by on our way home after a short 4-day canoe trip. We filled two large garbage bags on that occasion from one camping site, but even at that, we had to leave some of the garbage behind because we had no more bags and little room left in our boats. Predictably, this site was one that was accessible via motorboats and by ATV. Most backpackers and canoeists, as one would expect, do not pack in folding chairs, iron grates, nor bring lumber, tools, and nails, much less cases of beer. It never fails to amaze me that people who reach a camping spot by a motorized vehicle (and therefore didn’t have to do any heavy lifting to get their crap there) cannot be bothered to just leave with their junk.

    Below are some photos of my wife and I and our camping buddies cleaning up one such site.






    The third thing that irks me when backpacking or canoe-tripping is inconsiderate ATVers. It seems that some significant portion of the ATV community loves to cut trails into virgin woods solely for the pleasure of despoiling the woods and wrecking existing trails and portage routes.

    I've had the misfortune of discovering a section of a portage trail I'd used just days before, and which was undamaged on my way in, was completely unusable on my way out. ATVers had been 'mudding' there in the meantime. The section in question had been a narrow foot trail through a low-lying area with dense spruce on both sides. Once the ATVers had their fun with it, those lower areas were effectively permanent, wide, shallow ponds of mud and water, and deeply rutted, and so impossible to portage or hike through, forcing us to portage around through dense, uncleared bush and thus forcing us and other canoeists and backpackers and hikers to create a parallel trail along sections of this once lovely trail. I have not revisited it this area. It’s a write-off.

    I've seen the same thing happen along the Seguin Trail (a hiking trail) in Sprucedale, Ontario. It's supposed to be a multi-use trail (it's an old railway bed) but sections of it are impassible even on dry days without knee high rubber boots because sections of the trail have been turned into wide mud pits and one cannot get around them because the rail bed passes through a sensitive low lying bog. The trail is actually the only raised area where one can walk, but that section is now usable ONLY by ATVers. And that unusable stretch keeps getting extended. Through-hikes for backpackers are no longer viable along some sections of the Seguin Trail because of ATV use. The number of backpacking trails in woods lost by backpackers to ATVers grows every year.

    Hope this helps,
    - Martin
    Last edited by PineMartyn; 01-18-2013 at 05:55 PM.


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    Quote Originally Posted by justin_baker View Post
    I hate trash as well. It seems like hunters are the biggest cause of this. One of the most common things I see is people throwing their tin cans into a fire pit and leaving them there.
    I have noticed that many hunters seem to think nothing of leaving their shotgun cartridges and bullet casings lying around on trails, along with burned and squashed cans left in the fire rings they've made for their lunches.

    What is it with people who are willing carrying in a full can, a full box, or a full bottle of something, but can't pack out the empty containers? There seems to be in inverse correlation between how far a person must travel on foot and how willing they are to litter. The shorter and easier the trip back to the car (be it on foot, by motor boat, or by ATV), the more likely they are to leave a mess behind. I guess when you have to lug stuff a long way, you learn that you don't bring in anything in a can, bottle, or cardboard box. Packaging is useless weight and volume. Leave it at home. Put everything in ziplock bags. They weigh nothing and take no space on the way home.

    Hope this helps,
    -Martin

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    Quote Originally Posted by tennecedar View Post
    If seeing someone else ruins your day... do you go home and stay off the trails because you just screwed up someone else's hike?

    If I hike into the back woods and someone else is there don't I have the right to get peeved? I mean really... they should know to stay away when I decide to hike. Sheesh
    I see your point, but yeah it does ruin my day a bit to run into someone. I don't resent them for it or anything just sayin I like to feel like I'm exploring areas for the first time when I'm out and an interuption just breaks up the unreality I like to place myself in while on a jaunt. What I have noticed by responses to this thread is that a lot of you seem to hike parks I generally walk in different places where you really wouldn't expect to see people.

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    Quote Originally Posted by PineMartyn View Post
    Almost all the backpacking and canoe-tripping my wife and I do is on Crown lands in Ontario, and as untrammeled as those woods are, there are there three things that annoy and anger me: backpackers and campers who try to ‘improve’ a site, people who litter, and destructive ATVers.

    The first is a heavily impacted or “improved” campsite: Some people seem to think that anything that’s served others as a campsite, be it an official, designated campsite in a park, or an established campsite on Crown land, is a place where they can build crappy furniture (benches, tables), hammer nails into trees, build up bonfire-sized fire pits, string up clotheslines all over, and then leave the site with all this crap. I have canoed to some pretty remote places to discover beautiful sites that have are strewn with broken folding chairs, huge firepits with enormous half-charred logs, 3 or 4 grates lying about, rope and string left up from where they hung their wet clothes, not to mention unsightly and flimsy camp carpentry. When such a spot is the only suitable spot on a lake, one feels like one is moving into a fleabag motel, rather than camping in the woods. How I wish that people would pack out their crap, dismantle what they build, or at least build it out of natural materials, so that there aren’t rusty nails sticking out of live trees and bits of wood. Invariably, where there are large fire pits or fire rings, the sites are beaten down to bare dirt, with all ground litter and nearby firewood having been consumed. Even in such places as Algonquin Park, it’s not uncommon to have to paddle away from one’s site and go off in search of firewood and paddle back with it because people think that camping means having a large roaring fire every night.
    Here’s an example of a site where my wife and I camped that had been ‘improved’ by previous campers:

    Note the crude ‘table’ made by hammering a board and pieces of cut live wood. It stank so badly of fish guts (a lure to bears) that we dismantled it and burned it right after making our supper.
    Note also how the ground has been picked clean of ground litter, lacks all ground vegetation, tree roots are exposed, meaning that the site turns into a mud pit whenever it rains. Notice also the size of the fire ring in the background.

    In this next photo notice the absurdly large fire pit, the iron grate over it (one of 3 on that site), the nails in the trees from which I have hung some gear (I pulled these out when we broke camp), the abandoned broken folding chair to my left, and on the far right you can make out part of a heavy iron table that was also abandoned. Note the complete lack of ground litter or living ground vegetation.


    Sadly, sites such as these are typical of Algonquin Provincial Park, which is why I avoid camping there or other parks. I always feel like I’m moving into some delapidate shanty instead of camping in wilderness.

    The 2nd thing that bothers is, of course, litter. Whenever we hike, go backpacking, or canoe tripping, we carry along one or more plastic garbage bags to pack out litter we may encounter on my way back. I’m happy to say that I don’t find much most of the time on Crown land, but there have been occasions where I have picked up entire large garbage bags full of crap left behind by inconsiderate campers and hikers. Below are a few photos of one site we paddled by on our way home after a short 4-day canoe trip. We filled two large garbage bags on that occasion, but even at that, we had to leave some of the garbage behind because we had no more bags and little room left in our boats. Predictably, this site was one that was accessible via motorboats or by ATV. Most backpackers and canoeists, predictably, do not pack in folding chairs, iron grates, nor bring lumber, tools, and nails, much less cases of beer. It never fails to amaze me that people who reach a camping spot by a motorized vehicle (and therefore didn’t have to do any heavy lifting to get their crap there) cannot be bothered to just leave with their junk.
    Below are some photos of my wife and I and our camping buddies cleaning up one such site.






    The third thing that irks me when backpacking or canoe-tripping is inconsiderate ATVers. It seems that some significant portion of the ATV community loves to cut trails into virgin woods solely for the pleasure of despoiling the woods and wrecking existing trails and portage routes.

    I've had the misfortune of discovering a section portage trail I'd used just days before, and which was undamaged on my way in, was completely unusable on my way out. ATVers had been 'mudding' there in the meantime. The section in question had been a narrow foot trail through a low-lying area with dense spruce on both sides. Once the ATVers had their fun with it, those lower areas were effectively permanent wide, shallow ponds of mud and water, deeply rutted, and impossible to portage or hike through, forcing us to portage around through dense, uncleared bush and thus forcing us and other canoeists and backpackers and hikers to create a parallel trail along sections of this once lovely trail. I have not revisited it this area. It’s a write-off.

    I've seen the same thing happen along the Seguin Trail (a hiking trail) in Sprucedale, Ontario. It's supposed to be a multi-use trail (it's an old railway bed) but sections of it are impassible even on dry days without knee high rubber boots because sections of the trail have been turned into wide mud pits and one cannot get around them because the rail bed passes through a sensitive low lying bog. The trail is actually the only raised area where one can walk, but that section is now usable ONLY by ATVers. And that unusable stretch keeps getting extended. Through-hikes for backpackers are no longer viable along some sections of the Seguin Trail because of ATV use.

    Hope this helps,
    - Martin
    Yeah ATVS I hate ATVS

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    Anything motorized. ATV's, Personal Water Craft, dirt bikes, 4X4's, snowmobiles...

    I also hate mountain-bikers who build jumps, ramps, rails and such on trails.

    I have no problem with horses, though. But I ride myself, so I may be biased.

    LJT

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    I hate trash and litter left behind. Me and my buddies have packed out one full 35 gallon bag of trash from a single trip in the past.

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