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bigcat2
12-19-2003, 16:34
How do you feel about people having cell phones on the trail?

Lone Wolf
12-19-2003, 17:03
Doesn't bother me any. Bring em on! I don't like smokers though.

Peaks
12-19-2003, 17:12
Doesn't bother me any. Bring em on! I don't like smokers though.

I don't mind smokers, just as long as they don't exhale.

Likewise, I don't mind cell phones, as long as they are turned off

rumbler
12-19-2003, 17:17
For as often as they are able to get a workable signal - which was apparently never unless you were in a town- a phone card works just as well and weighs a lot less.

I saw a few folks carry them, but never saw anyone using one.

MOWGLI
12-19-2003, 17:28
I saw a note on the AMC's BBS that someone encountered 15 different folks chatting away on cell phones (at the same time) atop Mt Lafayette one afternoon. "Hey, you know where I am?"

Rain Man
12-19-2003, 17:44
... a phone card works just as well and weighs a lot less.

AND... you don't even have to haul that heavy calling card, but only the numbers on a piece of paper! :)

bailcor
12-19-2003, 19:44
I don't like to but find it necessary. I would leave it at home if I were younger and had young friends and parents. On my last trek, on the 5th night, right outside of Great Barrington, MA. I got the word that my wife's sister had died. I also have a 95 year old Father and many elderly friends.

I do not turn it on during the day and rely on the leave a message service to keep me informed. I try to remember to turn it on when I get to the top of a mountain. If there is anyone near me, I excuse myself and retreat far enough so that it does not disturb anyone that might object to them.

Footslogger
12-19-2003, 21:12
Rumbler said it best ...carry a phone card. My wife and I have experience with this, since she carried one on her thru-hike in 2001. I can recall several instances when she pulled it out and could not get or maintain a signal. Not worth the weight in my opinion. Just get a good phone card and you'll be able to stay in touch as needed.

One word of caution though ...if possible get a card that uses an "800" number and not an "866" or "867" for dialing. There are a lot of motels and hostels (motels mainly) that have their outside lines programmed to allow only "800" outgoing calls on a local line. I had an "877" number on a card purchased later on the trail and often had to go outside to a pay phone because the motel phone would not let me make the call.

Doctari
12-20-2003, 00:19
I carry a phone card for calls in town.

I have my cell phone safely stowed in it's holster on my work pants, , , at home.

Smokers as long as they don't exhale & cell phones as long as they are turned off, Yea, that sounds good to me.

Doctari.

Bankrobber
12-20-2003, 01:03
I carried one, and used it only in towns where I could get a signal. I saw people chatting away near Bake Oven Knob in Pennsylvania and Harriman State Park in New York.
If you want a more exciting response, go to Wingfoot's site and ask him. Nothing gets him more riled up than this topic.

Sand Crab
12-20-2003, 11:29
I don't mind cell phones which are turned off, smokers who don't exhale, talkers who don't open their mouths. But STINKERS, what can you say? :(

bigcat2
12-21-2003, 16:28
I recently carried my phone for emergency purposes and to contact my ride when I was halfway on my last day. I do agree w/ the extra space it took up more than the actual weight, but I also like the idea of the phone card. I may do that this Spring when my buddy and I do the GA section. Can't wait to hit the trail again!

Former Easy
12-21-2003, 17:14
These issues have been re-hashed over and over and over again. Theres gotta be 20 threads on this.

The bottom line is the AT is a public place, as much so as I-95, anyone and I mean anyone has a right to access and use the AT in a legal means. Even the ATC has no authority in who hikes on the AT, nor can anyone be banned from hiking it. That being said if you feel comfortable carrying a cell phone do so, if your a smoker bring your cigarettes and smoke whenever you feel like it as long as its not in a shelter or other enclosed space. Please do pack your cig butts out though.

For those who don't like cell phone users or smokers, its very simple move on and stay away from those who use these devices and you won't be affected.

One last thing I need to mention here, you will be suprised on the number of smokers on the trail, atleast half. For you smoke nazis its in your best interest to keep your mouths shut or move on. I was smoking 50 feet away from a shelter, standing over a roaring fire, and a smoke nazi said my smoking was bothering them, my comment was "to bad". The nerve they had when they had billows of smoke from the fire also blowing in there face.

2 things I can't stand are smoke nazis and PETA* supporters.

*PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals), has used illegal extremes to get there message across. Don't support this organization under any circumstances. Also their anti-fishing campaign just shows how ridiculous members of this organization are. Also boycott Disney whom supports this organization. I can't stress this strongly enough, this organization is a joke and an embarresment to true outdoor lovers.

(sorry for rambling & getting on my PETA soapbox) If anyone would like to sign a petition against PETA , contact me.

c.coyle
12-21-2003, 21:10
The bottom line is the AT is a public place, as much so as I-95, anyone and I mean anyone has a right to access and use the AT in a legal means. Even the ATC has no authority in who hikes on the AT, nor can anyone be banned from hiking it. That being said if you feel comfortable carrying a cell phone do so, if your a smoker bring your cigarettes and smoke whenever you feel like it as long as its not in a shelter or other enclosed space. Please do pack your cig butts out though.

For those who don't like cell phone users or smokers, its very simple move on and stay away from those who use these devices and you won't be affected.

:clap :clap :clap

Nokia's developed a cell phone with a built-in lighter. I'm prayin' my wife got the hint. Already got a couple boxes of cigars in the humidor. Let's hike!

Former Easy
12-21-2003, 21:20
:clap :clap :clap

Nokia's developed a cell phone with a built-in lighter. I'm prayin' my wife got the hint. Already got a couple boxes of cigars in the humidor. Let's hike!

What an awsome combo ...... that device will surely please the smoke nazi's and cell phone haters :D :D

bigcat2
12-23-2003, 21:34
I too agree that the AT is part of public domain and should be enjoyed by anyone who does so in a respectable manner. On the issue of the cell phones though, I wasn't implying they should be banned, I just wanted to see how many ppl actually have them while they hike. I have hiked w/ and w/o one and was just wondering if there was more of a benefit to carring one.

As for the smoking side discussion, I am somewhat surprised by the percentage quoted about those who smoke on the trail, even if it is a guesstament. I just find it ironic is all. I'm not a smoke nazi unless you're too close ;) . Just remeber to put the right end to your ear w/ the combo phone. LOL ;) :p .

Lumberjack
12-24-2003, 07:55
I gotta a zippo and im not afraid to use it....

I carry a cell phone for emergencies only. I have nothing against them but I really dont want the real world to intrude on my hike.

smokymtnsteve
12-24-2003, 10:08
I think that if you were hurt real bad..you would thank someone for calling for help on thier cell phone...

Peaks
12-24-2003, 17:05
I think that if you were hurt real bad..you would thank someone for calling for help on thier cell phone...

True, but serious injuries are rare along the trail. Most of us have blisters, aches and pains, maybe a cut or two, or a bruise here and there.

And having a cell phone usually isn't going to get you out of the woods that much faster. For someone concerned about injuries, then perhaps a better answer is to carry more medical supplies to deal with the injury.

I'm not trying to pick an argument. Everyone has their own opinion on what to carry. For those who bring along a cell phone, then in their mind, it's weight justifes the safety and comfort it gives. So be it.

smokymtnsteve
12-24-2003, 18:07
Peaks ...being able to call for help in a true emergency can be the difference between life and death...not even counting the comfort factor and believe me you get hurt real bad ..you will want all the help you can get and you'll want it fast... and yes serious "accidents" happen on the AT....the scenarios are so varied that I will not even try to discuss them here...but having worked in Emergency medicine and having volunteered in the National park.. I know the communications are vital in rescue.

mdjeeper
12-25-2003, 21:49
i always have my cell with me when i am on the trail..not for me to use in case of an emergency (chances are if "I" need it, I am at the bottom of some ravine and couldnt get the durn thing out of my pack anyhow or a signal for that matter), but so that my family has a way to leave a msg for me if there is a problem and I need to get back home. Only time i cut it on is at night and away from everyone else, if I get a signal and there are no messages, then it gets cut back off and tossed back in the pack. When my dad had his heart attack and passed away, I was in the middle of the sticks in Ohio with 4 more days before I was set to head out of the woods, made camp that night, walked up a ridgeline, cut my phone on and luckily got a signal, unluckily had the msg waiting for me. Granted having a cell with me did not change the final outcome, but by having it with me, I was able to get home to be there for my mom and hence, my phone is ALWAYS with me.

Blue Jay
12-26-2003, 11:12
I hereby give up all of my objections to these devices from hell. The woman who I will be hiking with next year will be carrying one, therefore due to hypocricy issues I cannot oppose them anymore. Also it is clear that opposing them is like trying to stop the sea with a sandcastle. Go ahead make your calls in the middle of the night and yell HELLO a thousand times, you win.

smokymtnsteve
12-26-2003, 14:12
blue jay cellphones are things they are nethier good nor bad ...it is the people who have and use them .... they can be used properly or improperly

I'm sure Lone Wolf had heard the expression about guns it's not the jerk on the trigger that does the harm but the JERK behind the trigger ;)

Lone Wolf
12-26-2003, 14:17
Guns don't kill people. Abortion clinics kill people.
Pro gun
Pro life
Semper Fi :cool:

Bonehead
12-26-2003, 18:35
Guns don't kill people. Abortion clinics kill people.
Pro gun
Pro life
Semper Fi :cool:

Ain't it the bullet that kills people, not the gun.
Pro gun
Pro bullet
Pro abortion
Pro corn squeezins

Bonehead
12-26-2003, 18:37
Ain't it the bullet that kills people, not the gun.
Pro gun
Pro bullet
Pro abortion
Pro corn squeezins

Faster horses
Younger women
Better squeezins
More money
!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Jaybird
01-26-2004, 12:45
How do you feel about people having cell phones on the trail?


i HATE cell phones on the trail....don't carry one...don't need one...

i hike to get A-W-A-Y from the everyday grind & techno-gadgets that we have to use in our "everyday life!"


BUT....if you MUST carry a cell phone...be courteous...set it to vibrate....there's nothing worse than hearing a cell phone ringing in the middle of a quiet forest!




"......Faster horses
Younger women
Better squeezins
More money!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"
YO BONEHEAD! Tom T. Hall just called ...he wants his royalty ck! hehehehe! :D

papa john
01-26-2004, 15:32
Jaybird hit the nail on the head. We were recently out section hiking north out of Dick's Creek Gap and both had our phones with us. I had forgotten to turn them off while at the parking lot. About 30 minutes into the hike, right as we were getting tuned into the woods, the phone rang. I was sooo irritated. After that we always made sure the phones were off. Voice mail can handle the situation until we get back to the van in the future.

If you have one with you keep it turned off or on vibrate so as not to disturb other peoples escape from the "real world". Same goes for laptops, pocketmail, palm pilots, electric can openers, electric knife, etc....

jojo0425
01-26-2004, 16:59
The technology is out there, use it...sparingly. Don't mind cellphones if they are used for emergencies or occassionally. I do hate people who (anywhere, not just the woods) get on there and say "CAN YOU HEAR ME?! WHAT? YOU'RE BREAKING UP" If you can't hear the person or they can't hear you, hang up, don't torture the rest of us with your yelling. :datz

Blue Jay
01-27-2004, 09:02
Expecting a cell phone person not to yell "HELLO" or "CAN YOU HEAR ME" at their sacred ego devise is like offering a thru some food and expecting them not to take it. It is something they simply have to do, they could not stop even if they wanted to.

Kozmic Zian
02-11-2004, 11:27
One of my pet peves..........Cell phones would be ok (maybe)lll...ilk...if the people using them would receive and make their calls off to the side, around the bend where other people would't have to listen. A loud, one sided conversation is very rude, especially in Da Woods. I want to hear birds, wind, trees talkin' , quiet things, not city s*** out there. The whole key to weather or not cell phones are acceptable is in the hands of the users. I can't stand it when some conversation breaks out behind me and distracts me, and I turn around or look to see if someone is addressing me, and its some Cell Jockey talking about nothing just so's he can look and feel important, or somethin'. Yuucccckkkk. KZ@

Pencil Pusher
07-26-2004, 16:10
Glad to see it's not the instrument itself, but the accompanying behavior. I like them, but agree they can be both a blessing and a curse.

grrickar
11-25-2004, 00:20
I carried one on my last section hike to talk with the wife as many nights as I could. I left the thing on by accident and the battery died a couple of nights into the trip. I had it off except when I was using it, and did not talk on it at or near any shelters. Calling my folks from Max Patch (from inside my tent) was great. I got to share with them my first day experiences (we hiked 20 miles from Hot Springs that day, and that was day 1 of 10). I feel like as long as you are respectful and do not annoy anyone with it, or have it on so it is ringing incessantly, why not carry one?

BTW, my .02 on the 'cell phone for safety' comments: Some stated that it would not help because rescuers would likely not get there any quicker, and that may be true, but consider this - a 911 operator could give you lifesaving advice that may save your own or someone elses life. Imagine if you are hiking with someone, and you had a heart attack and that person did not know CPR. If they could get a signal and reach 911 the dispatcher could walk that person through it. Same goes for snakebites and other such emergencies. Anaphylactic shock from a bee sting is another such case where med advice might help save someone's life.

It could even come in handy if somehow you got lost. My hiking buddy and I were discussing how they would get someone down if they dislocated a leg or broke their leg. If hiking alone that could be a real problem.

AND the cell phone can be used to start fires. Huh? Yep. Steel wool across the battery contacts will start a very hot fire by igniting the steel wool. We used to do the same with 9V batteries and steel wool just to see it work. The battery would not be good for much after (most likely the steel wool would melt to the battery), but hey - think of it as a multi-purpose tool;) (Ok so that is stretching it a bit):D

So my take is either don't carry one, or carry one and be respectful to others desires to be away from it all and not have to listen to a cell phone ring or someone jabberring away in the shelter next to them.

Ridge
11-25-2004, 02:11
I wouldn't carry one on a thru-hike, but on a section or day hike I might. The batteries are too much trouble to keep charged on an extended hike.

Pencil Pusher
11-25-2004, 03:59
Why should people get offended by someone talking on a cell phone while on the trail or in a shelter? If two people were holding a conversation on the trail or in a shelter, within reason that would be acceptable. And that is exactly what is happening with someone talking on the cell phone, yet the lack of the second person physically being there drives the anti-cell phone people nuts. It's like they have to be able to hear both sides of the conversation to feel comfortable...

bigcat2
11-25-2004, 09:48
I agree w/ you in theory that it is the same as two ppl having a discussion, but there are slight differences that cause incesant cell phone usage to become annoying. Personally, I know how frustrating it can be when talking on the cell off the trail and you can't hear the other person. Between the now infamamous, "Can you hear me now?" and the sometimes broken reception, you tend to have to repeat yourself more often than if the person was right there w/ you. As for me, I usually take one w/ me on my solos but leave it in the car otherwise. I always leave my hike plan too, which I know doesn't help in an emergency, but it is helpful for my piece of mind. Just thought I'd put in my two cents worth in.

Jaybird
11-25-2004, 10:19
Why should people get offended by someone talking on a cell phone while on the trail or in a shelter? If two people were holding a conversation on the trail or in a shelter, within reason that would be acceptable. And that is exactly what is happening with someone talking on the cell phone, yet the lack of the second person physically being there drives the anti-cell phone people nuts. It's like they have to be able to hear both sides of the conversation to feel comfortable...



YO PP:


It's not the people thing...its the intrusion of TECHNOLOGY into a wilderness environment setting that most of us HATE.

AGAIN, most of us "walk in the woods" to get AWAY from the everyday things in our lives....computers, cell phones, lap-tops, etcetcetc.

I work in the TV biz (i'm an audio engineer) & like to get away from anything related to techno.....while i'm hiking.

thanks for listening & letting me "double-dip." :D

MOWGLI
11-25-2004, 11:05
Why should people get offended by someone talking on a cell phone while on the trail or in a shelter?

Well, when I pay good money for a meal, I don't want some schmuck sitting at the next table arguing with his wiife, or closing a business deal on a phone. It ruins the experience. Similarly, why should I (or you) be subjected to the same nonsense in a shelter in the backcountry, or on Avery Peak in Maine? IMO, we have lost common courtesy as a society.

Let me share something to lend a little perspective. One of the great hikes on the AT is along Franconia Ridge in the White Mountains of NH. I was on the AMC bulletin board, and saw a posting where a hiker counted 15 or 16 people atop Mt Lafayette talking on their cell phones at the same time. "Hey, you'll never guess where I am..." Thankfully, that wasn't the case when I went over Lafayette in '00.

Over 4 years ago, while employed by Verizon Corp, I predicted that the day would arrive when people viewed the lack of a cell phone signal as a safety hazard. Unfortunately, that day has arrived. That logic is now being used by the NY State Troopers to justify placing cell towers on the peaks surrounding Lake George, and in the Adirondacks. That logic was used to attempt to justify cell towers in Great Smoky Mtn NP. The "if we can only save one person" logic doesn't resonate with me. Going into the backcountry is an activity that should have some risks. If you don't like the risk, stay out of the backcountry.

So, the bottom line is, you can not have both your cell phone and natural ridge lines. It's not brain surgery. If you don't mind walking past cell towers every mile or so, I guess its not a big deal. To me, it is.

If I was the king of the forest... I'd place devices that rendered cell phones useless in places like GSMNP, Baxter, Shenandoah and..... Seriously! The technology exists, and is being deployed in theatres and other public places where cell phones are a nusiance.

I guess that's one reason I'll never be king of the forest.

So, on this Thanksgiving, among other things, I will give thanks for cellphone dead zones. May they live long and prosper!

Happy Thanksgiving

Lone Wolf
11-25-2004, 11:12
I don't own a cell phone. Never will. On my first thru-hike in 86 I spent the day and camped on Lafayette. Twasn't no cellular phones then.
Happy Turkey Day to you and yours, MOWGLI.

Glee
11-25-2004, 12:39
Sorry for the long rant.

I started in late April 2004 on the AT. I don't have a cell phone. However, it was due to cost, and the difficulty to get reception on most the trail.

However, on the 2nd night out, some girl (@30 years old), standing on top of the picnic table, saying to her father, "Hey dad, guess where I am?"

On the other hand, that night, what was even worst, were the 3 guys (Late 20's, early 30's) standing next to the shelter, (With people trying to sleep) smoking, drinking a bottle of whiskey, talking BS, and talking about their belts in Kung Fu and Kung Fu movies.

There must have been about 20 times on the trail when I stayed at shelters and I had to ask someone not to smoke inside the shelter. (Both cigs and weed) I'm an ex-smoker of both, and I have always liked the smell of cig smoke ever since I was a little boy. (I know it's weird). However, it now gives me a headache having to breath it in, and I don't want to be tempted even after so many years since I quit. Yet I understand how there are people who hate, detest and despise even the smell of them. Look at it this way. I donít think many smokers would welcome someone walking over and farting in their face. (Sorry for being crude)


Inside the shelters, there are enough difficulties as it is. People who've not showered for days. (Some weeks) Or, the socks and boots, which smell so bad that it has kept the mouse population in check, and most bears miles away from human contact.

Yet, it really amazes me how insensitive people are to what is appropriate in and around the shelters. To name just a few.

Hikers coming in late and waking everyone up, and keeping people up as they talk about their latest party in town and how "f...ked up they got".

People with their gear all over the place and won't move it so you can sit down and unpack.

Dogs inside the shelter and having to step in dog crap 5 feet from the shelter.

However, when it came to people using cell phones, the 6 months I was out there on the trail, there was only one other time someone used a cell phone where I heard him talking and he was done in 2 minutes.


To be honest, I found people on the subway of New York City more polite and caring then many people at the AT shelters. I'm sure in part, it was due to my late start of having to deal with the younger party crew, yet still a pain in the butt to deal with after a long day of hiking.

However, back to cell phones. I was 8 days between re-supplying on the AT. I got into town, and stopped in an outfitter for some gear. He allowed me to check my email... I found out my mom died and the funeral was the day before. They had been trying to find me for over a week... With a cell phone, there would have been places on the trail, where I could have checked phone messages.

The other time, my boot blew out on me on top of Orchard Knob Shelter (I think that is the name of it) in a really bad storm. This guy had a cell phone and let me call REI (They replaced them for free). I had a new pair of boots waiting for me when I got into the next town 3 days later. It saved me from having to hobble along the trail with a busted boot for an extra 2 or 3 days.

Anyway, there 's a lot of great people on the trail. Yet, at the same time, just like here in the world, there are some people you would love to smack with a tree limb.

The bottom line. It has nothing to do with technology. Yes, it's the person. Anyone with a little brains, common sense and sensitivity to others, would take the time to find out what is proper trail, shelter behavior and the good old "Do unto others as you would have done unto you".

I know there are choices. Don't stay in shelters. Move on, camp out. (Ya, isnít nothing better then a major storm with 70 mph winds in a hammock)

I know there are people who say, "Learn ways to help your fellow hikers understand the do's and don'ts of the trail. (Without the tree limb), wear earplugs, pray for their lost souls, ad infinite, ad nauseum items, and on and on.

Lone Wolf
11-25-2004, 12:49
Shelters suck. Burn em' all! The AT would be much better without them.

Skeemer
11-25-2004, 12:50
Absolutely Great post MOWGLI16! I live in Ohio...they like to call it "Beautiful Ohio" I71 runs the length of the state from Cleveland through some rolling farm land and woods to Columbus and on to Cincinnati. I can remember seeing the towers being built one after another and thinking, even along a commercial interstate, how "invasive" and ugly these things were. I can't imagine them popping up along the AT, in the Smokies or in the Adirondacks (where I hiked for years). You don't have to be an environmentalist to "see" the damage.

When I was on my thru-hike I would tent next to a friend I had met on the
Trail who was carrying a cell phone. At night, I would hear him and thinking he was talking to me, would yell back to him, "What?...what do you mean?...Huh" until I realized he was on the phone to his wife.

When we did the John Muir Trail and summited Whitney there was a woman gabbing away on her cell phone while the rest of us were in awe of the tremendous views from the highest point in the lower 48. After gabbing away, she hung up she passed the phone to her friend and it started all over again. Definitely took something away from the experience. You think your in the wilderness...with nature...up with birds and animals and next to you is someone yelling, "you'll have to speak up...I can't hear you!" You realize you're right around the corner from one of those ugly steel structures. I guess it's the price we pay for progress.

Lilred
11-25-2004, 13:05
That logic was used to attempt to justify cell towers in Great Smoky Mtn NP. The "if we can only save one person" logic doesn't resonate with me. Going into the backcountry is an activity that should have some risks. If you don't like the risk, stay out of the backcountry.


In other words, you'd rather see someone die than use a cell phone that could possibly save their life???? :confused: That just doesn't make any sense to me at all. Maybe you need to be a little less 'offended' by people. Get over it.

Ridge
11-25-2004, 13:06
The bottom line. It has nothing to do with technology. Yes, it's the person. Anyone with a little brains, common sense and sensitivity to others, would take the time to find out what is proper trail, shelter behavior and the good old "Do unto others as you would have done unto you".

I know there are choices. Don't stay in shelters. Move on, camp out. (Ya, isnít nothing better then a major storm with 70 mph winds in a hammock)

I know there are people who say, "Learn ways to help your fellow hikers understand the do's and don'ts of the trail. (Without the tree limb), wear earplugs, pray for their lost souls, ad infinite, ad nauseum items, and on and on. Preach on Brother Glee,
I invested in an excellent, lightweight, tent just because of the BS that goes on in and around shelters. This activity will always go on, rude and crude hikers, and those with dogs. I'll just have to find a rock to get behind when the 70mph winds hit, and they will. I'd rather get no sleep in a tent with peaceful surroundings than none in a shelter with smoke, smell, and hell raising.

MOWGLI
11-25-2004, 16:46
In other words, you'd rather see someone die than use a cell phone that could possibly save their life???? :confused: That just doesn't make any sense to me at all. Maybe you need to be a little less 'offended' by people. Get over it.

Actually, that's not at all what I think. I just don't think we should try and implement safety precautions for every potential hazardous scenario, especially in backcountry areas. When someone enters a designated wilderness area on a backcountry trail, they do so understanding that their actions involves a certain amount of risk. What I have a probblem with, is installing cell towers everywhere to ensure 100% cell phone coverage, so that some people will have a false sense of security.

I don't have any problem with someone carrying a celll phone while they hike. It is the behavior that is asociated with the technology that I have issues with. If you have to carry a cell phone while hiking, because without it, you don''t feel safe, IMO you don't belong in the backcountry. The very essence of backcountry travel is self reliance. People who fail to understand that concept.... "That just doesn't make any sense to me at all."

Hey Lone Wolf. How the heck did people ever survive on the AT before cell phones? :confused:

c.coyle
11-25-2004, 17:59
... If you have to carry a cell phone while hiking, because without it, you don''t feel safe, IMO you don't belong in the backcountry. ...

C'mon, I've never heard anybody say "I wouldn't be here in the woods if I didn't have my cell phone." :rolleyes:

Dances with Mice
11-25-2004, 19:28
C'mon, I've never heard anybody say "I wouldn't be here in the woods if I didn't have my cell phone."
I've said that. I have to carry one on all my trips.

My wife said so.

Skeemer
11-25-2004, 19:30
c.coyle wrote:
I've never heard anybody say "I wouldn't be here in the woods if I didn't have my cell phone."

Unfortunately I did...a great guy I hiked with about half my hike...said his wife would not let him do the thru-hike unless he agreed to carry a cell phone and attempt to call her every night. He would not have been there in the woods without the cell phone cause he loved his wife and wanted to stay married more than hike the Trail.

Lilred
11-25-2004, 19:31
.

I don't have any problem with someone carrying a celll phone while they hike.

"If I was the king of the forest... I'd place devices that rendered cell phones useless in places like GSMNP, Baxter, Shenandoah and..... Seriously!"

sounds to me like you do have a problem with people carrying a cell phone. Why else would you want to make it impossible for them to get a signal in the woods???

TDale
11-25-2004, 19:43
If you carry a cellphone (I do, turned off and packed away), and it gets reception, you ain't far enough into the woods.

Lone Wolf
11-25-2004, 20:37
I don't get it either MOWGLI. Back in the day we got by with no cell phones, or websites like this. Used to be the first thing a hiker wanted when getting to town was something to eat, a shower then something more to eat. Now they want a computer to check e-mail first thing. Guess since most aren't backpackers and they ain't carrying any weight they got no appetite. We also got by without friggin Leki sticks, palm pilots, filters, Go-lite s**t, titanium, LED lights, Gore-Tex, $200 BS Marmot rain jackets, etc., etc., etc. All the high tech, light weight, high dollar gear don't guarantee a summut date at Big K. Today's walkers are weenies.

MOWGLI
11-25-2004, 21:06
sounds to me like you do have a problem with people carrying a cell phone. Why else would you want to make it impossible for them to get a signal in the woods???

I have a problem with the notion that people are entitled to a cell phone signal. That's what it has come down to, and the technology is for all intents & purposes - less than 10 years old. What is this going to be like in 10 more years? 20 years? What will the AT experience be like then?

If we really want to make people safe and protect them from injury, we should immediately eliminate Mahoosuc Notch from the trail, end the AT at Katahdin Stream Campground, pave the AT through the Whites (and put up hand rails), eliminate all fords in Maine, and on & on... Heck, why don't we station a LEO every mile along the trail to keep us safe?

My point is.... it's a slippery slope (pun intended) and no one is thinking about where this is all headed. Since I'll never be the King of the Forest, I'm simply sharing my thoughts on the subject.

Regarding people not feeling safe on the AT without a cellphone (Coyle's remarks) I am 100% certain that there are folks on this website who either would not, or could not hike without a phone. I've seen it before. "My wife (or kids, or parents, or husband) won't let me hike unless I take a phone." That is a dangerous mindset that creates a false sense of security.

On a different more pleasant note, what did y'all have for Thanksgiving dessert? I had English Toffee Cheesecake made by my daughter who is a Culinary Institute Grad. Simply awesome!!!

Lone Wolf
11-25-2004, 21:10
I had a cupcake made by Food City.

MOWGLI
11-25-2004, 21:51
I had a cupcake made by Food City.

Vanilla or chocolate frosting?

Lone Wolf
11-25-2004, 21:59
Vanilla cake, vanilla frosting.

smokymtnsteve
11-25-2004, 21:59
I had the bread pudding with the wine sauce and a nice cup of organic cuban cofffee.

Dances with Mice
11-25-2004, 22:36
Regarding people not feeling safe on the AT without a cellphone (Coyle's remarks) I am 100% certain that there are folks on this website who either would not, or could not hike without a phone. I've seen it before. "My wife (or kids, or parents, or husband) won't let me hike unless I take a phone." That is a dangerous mindset that creates a false sense of security.

On a different more pleasant note, what did y'all have for Thanksgiving dessert? I had English Toffee Cheesecake made by my daughter who is a Culinary Institute Grad. Simply awesome!!!

Mowgli, you'd get my vote for King of the Forest.

It is my wife's sense of security that the phone ... enhances? creates? Whatever the word. She tells me to take it so I have to take it. To spell it out: My hammock's ok but I like my bed better. I know you're probably thinking "Whipped!" If so you'd be absolutely right!

Since we have turkey several times a month it really isn't a special dish for us. So we never have turkey on Thanksgiving. This year we had a dry aged standing rib roast and a baked capon. The capon was brined for two days in an apple cider, honey, and salt solution. Stuffing. Corn from the summer garden and pies made from blueberries picked this summer and fingerling sweet potatoes dug a few weeks ago.

c.coyle
11-26-2004, 08:44
I've said that. I have to carry one on all my trips.

My wife said so.

I wasn't counting whipped hikers. :D

This whole cellphone thing, like a lot of other things, comes down to a question of common courtesy.

MOWGLI
11-26-2004, 09:53
This whole cellphone thing, like a lot of other things, comes down to a question of common courtesy.

Yeah, lets talk about something less divisive, like guns, dogs, or politics. :D

Bloodroot
11-26-2004, 10:12
I had CRations pumpkin pie. Ummm good. Actually it was quite the surprise over here. Had excellent food, a delightfully decorated chow hall and a band.

Rocks 'n Roots
11-26-2004, 20:50
Regarding people not feeling safe on the AT without a cellphone (Coyle's remarks) I am 100% certain that there are folks on this website who either would not, or could not hike without a phone. I've seen it before. "My wife (or kids, or parents, or husband) won't let me hike unless I take a phone." That is a dangerous mindset that creates a false sense of security.There's a good possibility that the man who died near Madison Hut a few years ago was stretching it with the confidence that his cell phone would bail him out. He even made an emergency call after realizing he wasn't doing too well. He died anyway. I got called a monster for pointing that out, but I suspect it's pretty much accurate and they just don't want to hear it...

Good post Mowgli16, but in my experience you aren't ever going to get a serious answer reflecting what you are talking about from people who pretty much don't care to begin with. The real reason is wilderness intrusion - but that's obviously way over some hiker's head...

The poll needs a choice saying "Conflicts with Trail's wilderness purpose".


I'd also be curious how many of those "carry for emergencies only" use the phone in a way that diminishes the Trail's wilderness purpose? Some would say that even the carrying of the cell phone alone would constitute this...

grrickar
11-27-2004, 16:58
What business is it of anyone as long as the person carrying the 'deemed offensive' device is being respectful? That goes for guns, dogs, radios, TVs, cell phones, PDAs, MP3 players, etc. etc.

Sure some consider these to be unnecessary, and I would agree that all of them are - but if someone is willing to lug any of said items up a mountain on his or her back and they are respectful of others, what difference does it make?

No one knew I even had a cell phone on my last hike except my hiking partner; who incidentally has his on him too. We are both married and wanted to check in with our families whenever we could. The only time we used them in sight of the trail was 3/4 of the way up Bluff Mountain when we stopped for lunch, and no hikers were anywhere around us. When I wanted to call my family, I would walk a couple 100 yards from the shelter and call them - well out of earshot and sight of others.

I did find that one guy in a shelter brought a radio to listen to a ballgame, he turned it on but it wasn't too loud, and turned it off early so everyone could turn in. It did not bother me at all that he brought the radio, because he did not disturb me with it.

I would think that the issue at hand here is that there are rude people who do not respect others.

weary
11-27-2004, 18:05
In other words, you'd rather see someone die than use a cell phone that could possibly save their life?.
Yup. I went to the woods to confront the essentials of life, so that when it came time to die, I would not discover I had never really lived.

Weary, with apologies to Henry for garbling his great words.

Lilred
11-27-2004, 18:20
Yup. I went to the woods to confront the essentials of life, so that when it came time to die, I would not discover I had never really lived.

Weary, with apologies to Henry for garbling his great words.

Yes, but if you had a cellphone, you might prevent it from being your time to die, thus giving yourself more time to really live...... :-? :D

weary
11-27-2004, 19:06
Yes, but if you had a cellphone, you might prevent it from being your time to die, thus giving yourself more time to really live...... :-? :D
No. You don't understand. As Henry told us, "In wildness is the preservation of the world." Wildness is the absence of civilization. Wildness is remoteness.

Instant communication with spouses, civilization, other worries, destroys wildness, as Henry and as wise people understand reality. Wildness is a subtle thing. It's not nature, but our perception of nature.

A guy we met on a tour of the 37,000 acres AMC has purchased in the so called "100-mile-wilderness" probably said it best. "Whatever, you do, don't put another camp on my pond."

He was seeking to prevent the beginnings of evil. His pond was his Walden. Civilization -- development -- would destroy that wildness. Cell phones would destroy that wildness.

Weary

Lilred
11-27-2004, 20:11
No. You don't understand. As Henry told us, "In wildness is the preservation of the world." Wildness is the absence of civilization. Wildness is remoteness.

Instant communication with spouses, civilization, other worries, destroys wildness, as Henry and as wise people understand reality. Wildness is a subtle thing. It's not nature, but our perception of nature.

A guy we met on a tour of the 37,000 acres AMC has purchased in the so called "100-mile-wilderness" probably said it best. "Whatever, you do, don't put another camp on my pond."

He was seeking to prevent the beginnings of evil. His pond was his Walden. Civilization -- development -- would destroy that wildness. Cell phones would destroy that wildness.

Weary


Actually, yes I do understand. I haven't had the displeasure of listening to someone talk on their cell phone on the AT yet, but I know it would ruin my experience if I heard, 'can you hear me now?' on top of Standing Indian Mountain. Although I did carry one on my last section, I kept it off until I needed it. Unfortunately, I became injured and had to bail off on a side trail two days early. The cell phone came in handy calling my husband the night before to let him know what happened and the change in plans, since he was my pick up ride. I made sure to wait until I was in my tent, away from others before I called him. No one knew I had it, and I wouldn't have had it if he didn't insist on my taking it with me, since I hike alone. I'm not against cell phones on the trail, but like others have said, use it with common sense and don't intrude on other people's wilderness experience by talking on it in front of them.

I don't want cell towers to obstruct the view. I don't even like seeing houses on a mountainside. You can barely go through the Smokies now without seeing someones summer 'cottage' chopped into the mountainside. I think the AT is becoming way too civilized and wouldn't mind seeing all shelters removed, or at least not one every five miles or so. Maybe every 50 miles would work.

Rocks 'n Roots
11-28-2004, 02:35
The very concept of AT, as it was designed by MacKaye, was not to argue why some uses compromise the overall effect - and are therefore normal - but to try to uphold and maintain the concerted effort of creating wildness that the Trail was originally meant to be. The wilder the better...

c.coyle
11-28-2004, 09:25
What business is it of anyone as long as the person carrying the 'deemed offensive' device is being respectful? That goes for guns, dogs, radios, TVs, cell phones, PDAs, MP3 players, etc. etc. ...

... I would think that the issue at hand here is that there are rude people who do not respect others.

Bingo *****

Rocks 'n Roots
11-28-2004, 13:02
So lessening the AT's sense of disconnectedness, so therefore wildness, is simply not a discussable or acknowledged factor with some hikers?


This is why I give a "Bingo" to Baxter for banning cell phones. To me, the worst kind of rudeness is ignoring or demonizing persons who try to best express the Trail and its purpose. If ATC had any AT guts they would ban cell phones up and down the entire Trail and say why...

smokymtnsteve
11-28-2004, 13:18
some hikers and I would say the majority of spring NOBOs are patronzing and encouraging an evergrowing system of hostels and other near trail businesses.

Rocks 'n Roots
11-28-2004, 13:20
That's why anyone who points that out sounds like a party pooper. But it's vitally important to keep voicing the Trail's main concern - and that is wildness and buffer...

Lone Wolf
11-28-2004, 13:27
Officially, Baxter bans alcohol and cell phones. The use of both is over-looked.

swamp dawg
11-28-2004, 13:40
Cell phones are a fact of modern life and will not go away. I do like folks that use them for emergencies only not for every little event on the trail. Some people have class and are discrete while using their phones which makes everyones trail experience better.
Life is good.......Swamp Dawg

c.coyle
11-28-2004, 13:50
So lessening the AT's sense of disconnectedness, so therefore wildness, is simply not a discussable or acknowledged factor with some hikers?

This is why I give a "Bingo" to Baxter for banning cell phones. To me, the worst kind of rudeness is ignoring or demonizing persons who try to best express the Trail and its purpose. If ATC had any AT guts they would ban cell phones up and down the entire Trail and say why...

I know you didn't mean it, but that sounds a little elitist. We've been discussing it. No one's "ignoring or demonizing" anyone here.

"Best express the Trail and its purpose"? The "purpose" of the AT is to allow each of us to walk in the woods in a manner that is personally satisfying, leaves no trace, and doesn't bother anyone else. Outside of that, I don't think you should presume to know what's best for anybody except yourself.

I'll decide when I feel sufficiently "disconnected". I don't feel any less "disconnected" with a powered-down phone in my pack. If you feel less "disconnected" because someone near you is simply possessing a phone, you've got a problem (I use to love going to my boys' Legion baseball games and standing there with an unlit cigar in my mouth. You could tell it drove certain folks nuts. "Oh, God! Is he going to light up?").

As long as we all realize that our freedom stops where the other guy's nose (ears) begins, we'll all be OK.

The ATC can't "ban cell phones" in 14 different states. Baxter hasn't banned cell phones. It's banned their use. I believe the only reasonable interpretation of that is "non-emergency" use, as that term would be understood by reasonable people such as you and me.

SGT Rock
11-28-2004, 15:19
In other words, you'd rather see someone die than use a cell phone that could possibly save their life???? :confused: That just doesn't make any sense to me at all. Maybe you need to be a little less 'offended' by people. Get over it.

Oh please. Someone jabbering on a cell phone ain't saving their lives. It is a selfish act of annoying everyone else with the intrusion of the dang thing and the rude behavior of carrying on a conversastion like that. It would be the same as if a gy pulled out his bongos and started playing them badly. People hiked for years without them and survived. Talking on a mountain with an anoying friend ani't saving anyone - just justification for boorish behavior.

c.coyle
11-28-2004, 15:49
I think almost everyone who has posted to this thread agrees on a basic point: Outside of a bona fide emergency, you shouldn't use a phone in the woods within earshot of anyone else.

Rocks N Roots came up with the term "disconnectedness". I like that. That's a big reason why I hike. To get away from work, friends, family, finances, politics, and a million other worries. Here in Pa. however, when it comes to the AT, you are almost never in anything approaching "wilderness". From reading other posts, it sounds like that's true for the majority of the AT in other states. So, "disconnectedness" is a relative thing.

I'm just a day hiker and weekender who spends 40 to 50 days in the woods per year, often in high dayhiker areas. I hate hearing people talking on their phones in the woods. Every time I've encountered people blabbing on their phones - and I can only remember twice in the last three or four years - they've been "casual hikers": people who are staying at campgrounds and looking for something to do, boyfriend and girlfriend out for a Sunday walk, parents with little kids, etc. It may be the only time they are ever in the woods.

Most of these people aren't trying to annoy anyone; they just don't know any better at this point. And, each of them is potentially a "serious hiker", like we all like to think of ourselves. I think we could use more "serious hikers" who appreciate how precious and fragile Mother Nature really is. So, rather than get angry at them, the best way to handle the situation is to politely tell them why what they're doing isn't acceptable trail etiquette. I've done it once, and the people were very nice about it. Maybe next time they'll get upset, but who cares.

There's no easy, black and white answer to this. Banning phones just isn't realistic. Educating people might be.

weary
11-28-2004, 16:54
Officially, Baxter bans alcohol and cell phones. The use of both is over-looked.
Baxter does not ban alcohol. It does ban the USE of cell phones. When I was there in October I was specifically asked if I had a cell phone, presumably had I answered yes, I would have been told that it's use was illegal in the park, which is what the regulations say.

The only mention of alcohol in the regulations is: "General laws of the State pertaining to liquor and drugs apply within the Park. Maine law prohibits drinking of alcoholic beverages in public places."

Your leanto, cabin or tent space is not a "public place" under Maine law.

The regulations specifically mention audio devices and specifically includes cell phones along with radios, tvs and record players.

Weary

Rocks 'n Roots
12-04-2004, 17:02
Rocks N Roots came up with the term "disconnectedness". I like that. That's a big reason why I hike. To get away from work, friends, family, finances, politics, and a million other worries. Here in Pa. however, when it comes to the AT, you are almost never in anything approaching "wilderness". From reading other posts, it sounds like that's true for the majority of the AT in other states. So, "disconnectedness" is a relative thing.


So what's your point? Are you arguing that the AT isn't worth preserving? "The AT isn't wilderness anyway, so go ahead and do whatever you want and don't listen to extremists".

The AT and it's purpose - and the importance of that purpose - needs to be constantly expressed. Especially so less committed people with pondering indifference can't reason it away...

Thank you Appalachian Trail Conservancy...

Kim Clark
12-04-2004, 17:51
Are you arguing that the AT isn't worth preserving? That's exactly his point!

Rocs 'n Roots and I know that because we are members of the PEA - Psychic Environmentalists Association. We use our gifts of extrasensory perception to save the world from wilderness spoilers.

neo
12-05-2004, 09:51
i carry a cell phone on all my hikes,i never use it in the presence of any hikers:bse i love it,i have doppler weather radar program on it a map program also,i do not use it as a kinky sex toy set on vibration though.:bse :sun :jump :D

Tha Wookie
12-05-2004, 11:01
HEY! HELLO? WA..... YEA! GUESS WHERE ... HELLO? GUESS WHERE I AM? HELLO? DAMN.... HEY! I'M ....HELLO? HELLO! CAN YOU HEAR ME?!!!?!?!?!?! WHAT? YES!! I'M IN THE WILDERNESS!!!!!! HELLO? :confused:

saimyoji
12-05-2004, 22:12
I carry a cell phone on all my (day, weekend, section) hikes. Not because I want, or think I may want to call someone, but because I may GET the phone call that breaks my hike/weekend/week/month. Some people need to have a link, while still living their lives. Fortunately I've never gotten "the call" but it will inevitably come one day, whether I'm on the trail or not. If I miss "the call" I'll be in a bad place indeed. I'm sure there are others in my canoe. People who just want to chat/brag while on the trail/ at the peak: sssshhhhh.

OK I did call my brother once from the trail, but only because I couldn't reach him while in town, and the signal was never good from off trail locations. I think I disturbed some slugs and maybe a mosquito or 20 for which I appologise.

C-Stepper
12-06-2004, 08:59
I "carry for emergency use only"...

This isn't my preference. Cell phones, in general, annoy the crap out of me.

And, being a certain type of woman, I HATE to ask for help from anyone.

However, since I prefer to hike alone, my husband "feels better" if I contact him periodically while I'm out and about so that he knows I'm OK. Carrying a cell phone "allows" me to hike without jeopardizing his peace of mind...it's a small "weight price" to pay (damn, it screws with my base pack weight :)

Rain Man
12-06-2004, 11:42
This past Saturday I took two visiting guests on a quick hike at Radnor Lake State Natural Area here in Nashville. It's not a "park," it is a Natural Area. For instance, pets are not even allowed on the trails, nor is jogging, etc.

As we strolled along the lake, watching the sunning turtles, the ducks, and watching for deer, along comes a man carrying on a LOUD, BUSINESS convesation on his cell phone. This JERK didn't even have the curtesy to quieten down as he passed us going the other way on the trail.

I wished I had one of those illegal, aggressive dogs I've been reading about on WhiteBlaze, to let tug at the end of a lease and snarl at him.

I don't really mind "private" cell phones in the woods, but sometimes it does seem if we give an inch, they take a mile. ARGHHHH.

Perhaps like guns, it's the owner who ought to be banned? But how do you ban oblivious bozos? You can't. So, does it have to be the phones (I hope not) if people don't exercise more restraint and curtesy?
:-?
Rain Man

.

Rocks 'n Roots
12-06-2004, 17:25
It's obvious that most hikers are clueless as to the cell phone's affect on the AT and its purpose of being detatched and remote from civilization.


"Some people need to be in touch with their lives".


Hmm. More important is being in touch with wildness. The AT is one of the few places you can still do it. Are you saying we should end that for your convenience? Isn't this conflict exactly what the AT was designed for? To force man to protect pure nature?


This is why ATC should ban cell phones and explain why to those who aren't listening. Baxter already has for the same reasons. This discussion should be over how exactly cell phones harm the AT and its purpose...

Shrike
12-06-2004, 19:20
Tell us how the ATC or anyone else can "ban" cell phones?

Who's going to enforce this? You maybe?

I'd like to be around when you try.

Pencil Pusher
12-06-2004, 20:44
You can wear your Mountain Hardwear $450 rain jacket, GoLite Extreme plastic $300 bivy, $150 Leki hiking poles, $80 titanium spork, and $100 water filter but the buck stops at bringing a cell phone into the wilderness, damnit!!! Yes, I am going to hike with thousands of other people and demand my own peace and solitude. Ack! A cell phone! Must... run... save... my... inner nature... self.

Lone Wolf
12-06-2004, 20:48
I'm gonna get me a toy cell phone for this spring and when I get to popular overlooks act like I'm talking to someone. :D

Tha Wookie
12-06-2004, 21:13
User:
http://www.cellular.co.za/health.htm

http://www.pcworld.com/news/article/0,aid,92444,00.asp

Birds:

http://www.njaudubon.org/Conservation/opinions/98win.html

Wilderness:

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/4731143/

"Every action has an equal and opposite reaction" -Einstein

Everything has a price.

Dances with Mice
12-06-2004, 21:20
[QUOTE=Tha Wookie]
Wilderness:

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/4731143/[QUOTE]

Includes quote from W-B member.

Youngblood
12-06-2004, 21:31
I'm gonna get me a toy cell phone for this spring and when I get to popular overlooks act like I'm talking to someone. :D

You would like my new cell phone... it has a GPS built into it that transmits your position during 911 calls. Can I call 911 and ask how far it is to the next shelter? :)

Rocks 'n Roots
12-07-2004, 02:04
Tell us how the ATC or anyone else can "ban" cell phones?

Who's going to enforce this? You maybe?

I'd like to be around when you try.

I appreciate your hard-thought and difficult consideration of the sensitive AT wilderness issues I outlined and your deference to the valid AT sources from which they originated.

If you wish to fight someone over cell phone banning I suggest the Baxter rangers would be happy to accommodate you.


If ATC did the right thing and banned cell phones people who didn't care about AT wildness would be on the side of the line this kind of post puts them on and in the right place as far as the AT...

Mountain Dew
12-07-2004, 02:24
What exactly is "AT wildness" ? Oh wait...That would be cutting a trail through many wilderness areas, state parks, national parks, AND the taking of private property thuse making them less wild. I got it now. :bse

ps. if you object to cell phones in the woods then you should go to where you are almost guaranteed to not see others on your hike. i.e. CDT enjoy :banana

Ridge
12-07-2004, 06:33
Tell us how the ATC or anyone else can "ban" cell phones?

Who's going to enforce this?
Probably the same people who enforce "Reserved spots in shelters for thru hikers" or "Dogs on a Leash". That said, cell phones are basically useless and become extra weight on any long hike.

Youngblood
12-07-2004, 07:31
Probably the same people who enforce "Reserved spots in shelters for thru hikers" or "Dogs on a Leash". That said, cell phones are basically useless and become extra weight on any long hike.

I respect that your statement applies to you, your needs and your requirements. However, I don't agree that is a blanket statement that applies to everyone.

Youngblood

orangebug
12-07-2004, 08:53
"AT wildness" consists of TVA power lines, highways, small towns, hostels, delis, groomed trails, removed blowdowns, steps, switchbacks, water bars, shelters, tent pads, blaze templates and the like. Thank goodness it doesn't include work camps and lumber mills per the "Creator's" little essay. Thank goodness it hasn't been transformed into a low cost insane asylum as He thought nifty, then again, maybe it is.

We have our hi-tech fabrics, sleeping pads, radios, GPS units and cell phones. Some even carry light weight firearms.

Some live in a fantasy world. They seem to have their day ruined by the presence of a cell phone tucked away in someone else's backpack.

Today, cell phones aren't all that useful due to limited reception and power. That will change as technology advances toward satellite phones. The genie is out of the bottle. I hope we can deal with the etiquette of how phones should be used in the least obtrusive manner possible, rather than wasting time and emotions on nostalgic pipe dreams.

rickb
12-07-2004, 09:38
The late Guy Waterman wrote some good stuff on how learning of a partner's 2-way radio (he wrote before cell phones became ubiquitous) had a very real impact on the essence of a bushwack in the Whites. It was in either "Backwoods Ethics" or Wilderness Ethics", not sure which. Both are well worth reading. He frames these ideas in ways that I can't, and sure haven't read on line.

That said, these posts might persuaded me to accept the idea that the genie is out of the bottle on the AT most months, if others might be persuaded that the AT is worse off for it (at least on some criteria). Because it is-- at least on some criteria. Even if we can't do anything about it.

I hate to think that my hiking partners (and future generations of hikers) will be as likely to have a cell phone, GPS, or locator-beacon, or get-out-of-jail-free card in the bottom of thier packs on future adventures (beyond the AT during high-season) as they are to have a bit of duct tape and a spare lighter.

I fear they will, however. Without even giving it a thought. And that is perhaps the most important part-- giving it a thought.

Rick B

Tha Wookie
12-07-2004, 12:31
" I hope we can deal ... rather than wasting time and emotions on nostalgic pipe dreams.

Spoken like a true section-hiker. (I am a section-hiker sometimes myself)

Thanks to view like this, businesses like the cell-phone industry can do whatever they want, build wherever they want, send any frequency of SAR signal through the earth and atmoshpere that they want, and so can other companies, like those that directly or indirectly threaten the AT and its natural characteristics.

If OrangeBug had spent more time on the trial, he/she might have noticed that the problem is that most people do not abide by any etiquitte with cell phones. Talk about a pipe dream!

"the genie is out of the bottle"? God, send help!

Blue Jay
12-07-2004, 12:37
"the genie is out of the bottle"? God, send help!

There are a whole mess of Genies on the loose, in fact all of the bottles may now be broken. But remember, "just because we're hypnotized, don't mean that we can't dance".

Lone Wolf
12-07-2004, 12:43
I can't dance and it's too wet to plow. Guess I'll build a cell tower.

Blue Jay
12-07-2004, 13:33
I can't dance and it's too wet to plow. Guess I'll build a cell tower.

I know you ain't got dancen shoes, but do you have a plow and a cell phone?
Just go riding your hog. I would but I've got snow up here now.

Lone Wolf
12-07-2004, 14:05
I ain't got a plow or a cell phone. It's 68 deg. and sunny right now and within the hour me and the Fat Boy will be puttin around town. :D

orangebug
12-07-2004, 14:38
Spoken like a true section-hiker. (I am a section-hiker sometimes myself)
...

If OrangeBug had spent more time on the trial, he/she might have noticed that the problem is that most people do not abide by any etiquitte with cell phones. Talk about a pipe dream! I recall when the idea of limiting the "rights" of smokers was a foolish pipe dream. It could be done, or I guess you'll just accept defeat, grumble about unholy section hikers and be done with it.

I work in an area that deals with human behavior, including etiquette. I've never seen that demeaning others does a lot to change minds or influence others. Yep, I'm not a purist. Yep, I don't plan to binge on a thru-hike. Yep, I use the trail on a continuing basis much as Avery and others invisioned. Yep, I am not all that thrilled with some new-fangled inventions like the cell phone and the light bulb, but I try to remain in the real world.

Rocks 'n Roots
12-09-2004, 02:08
"AT wildness" consists of TVA power lines, highways, small towns, hostels, delis, groomed trails, removed blowdowns, steps, switchbacks, water bars, shelters, tent pads, blaze templates and the like. Thank goodness it doesn't include work camps and lumber mills per the "Creator's" little essay. Thank goodness it hasn't been transformed into a low cost insane asylum as He thought nifty, then again, maybe it is.

It's obvious that some people's personal nature just can't tolerate preserving primitive wildness on a organized basis. If I were to make an attack on the Appalachian Trail and it's general premise these are the things I would say. I would try to work away at the Trail's purpose with equivocations and contrivances, but in the end, it would just be an attack on what the Trail is and strives for.

Not very enlightened I must say. It's obvious that these thoughts contain just about everything but the Trail's accepted purpose and respect for it. When I read these thoughts the message is clear. "I want to bring my cell phone and I don't care. And I'm willing to attack any and everything (including accepted Trail definitions) to do it."

There's a difference between a "purist" and simply somebody who respects the AT for what it is and what it was originally intended to be. It's a farce to pretend that modern contempt and disconcern is somehow an advance over "nostalgic pipe dreams". Especially when one of those pipe dreams literally gave you the Trail you don't seem to respect that much beyond your own needs.

I really think some people just don't like conservation and organized primitiveness and just can't admit it directly so they attack those who do...

Youngblood
12-09-2004, 11:55
Rocks 'n Roots,

The Appalachian National Scenic Trail is used by many, many, many people, not just folks that want a wilderness trail. It is a wonderful thing with much variety and that is not likely to change, why not appreciate it for what it is instead of lamenting what you think it should be... there are other trails that possibly offer what you are looking for.

Youngblood

Lone Wolf
12-09-2004, 12:36
He's too skeered to go to real wilderness. No computers or phones or shelters, etc., etc., etc. :D

Tha Wookie
12-09-2004, 12:59
...but I try to remain in the real world.
Yup, once again, spoken like a true section hiker (I am also a section hiker)

;)

Rocks 'n Roots
12-10-2004, 20:38
Rocks 'n Roots,

The Appalachian National Scenic Trail is used by many, many, many people, not just folks that want a wilderness trail. It is a wonderful thing with much variety and that is not likely to change, why not appreciate it for what it is instead of lamenting what you think it should be... there are other trails that possibly offer what you are looking for.

Youngblood

I guess this quote would make sense if you ignored the Trail's background, how it was formed and by whom, and everything ATC currently does.

Youngblood, any thoughts on why ATC conspicuously changed its name to "Conservancy"?


If you did some reseach you could see how cell phones subtly change the AT both physically and conceptually. The worst case is outsiders who want to build Trail-marring race tracks and windmills seeing these conversations and claiming that even Trail users don't seem to mind intrusions. And seeing Trail members argue against those who try to maintain the Trail's proveable purpose. Do you get that, or do I need to explain it in more detail? Apparently some think the AT is a National Park Service theme park geared towards their entertainment. The AT is a (now get this) Conservancy. I'm sure some hate that.

Once the Trail loses its wild character and reputation it becomes more vulnerable. When you can access civilization from any point on the Trail it then becomes less wild in people's minds. The stupidest thing is then seeing people who are responsible for this lessening of wildness claim the Trail isn't worth backing because "it isn't wild anyway". I believe these people realize this, the just don't give a "rat's ass". Sure, people who haven't bothered to care, research the AT's background, or support its purpose then come in and tell people who do that they're pipe-dreamers. It's contempt at best, wanton ignorance at worst.

Time to ban them and let the mugwumps figure it out. Bravo Baxter. Time for the AT to back its purpose according to its needs.


Don't answer this unless you can answer the specific points I made about the Trail changing because of cell phones...

minnesotasmith
12-10-2004, 20:47
are like people being smokers in everyday life. IMO, if you don't live with them, you should have to ask them about it to find out if they are one. That is, hikers with cellphones shouldn't be so indiscreet about using them that other hikers see/hear them using them by accident, any more than anyone should be smoking in public off their own property.

Youngblood
12-10-2004, 21:26
Rocks 'n Roots,

I don't think I can say anything that will change your mind, you seem totally committed to your convictions and it is not real clear to me just what your convictions are. I don't usually feel inclined to read vague or long winded post that don't particular get to the point but concludes that it does and that any reasonable decent human being would obviously agree with it in totality and that if they don't then that proves that don't give a "rat's ass". That is an unreasonable conclusion to the point that further discussion is pointless and I refuse to participate any further with you regarding this matter. I conclude that the observation I made regarding your post describing your anguish in these post were to help you realize the situation as it is and to come to terms with it. This was and still is my observation: "The Appalachian National Scenic Trail is used by many, many, many people, not just folks that want a wilderness trail. It is a wonderful thing with much variety and that is not likely to change, why not appreciate it for what it is instead of lamenting what you think it should be... there are other trails that possibly offer what you are looking for."

Youngblood

Rocks 'n Roots
12-10-2004, 22:19
"The Appalachian National Scenic Trail is used by many, many, many people, not just folks that want a wilderness trail.
Sorry, but the cart is before the horse there. I'm familiar with AT wildness being over the head of the average AT member. Your answer isn't surprising.

If a proper reckoning was done of who does the most for the Trail and who lead to it being what it is, it most definitely isn't the "some people who don't go there for wilderness" who made it that way. If proper respect were given in proper order, disconcerned people wouldn't be given heed over critical Trail influences and those who promote them...

Any idiot can just not care Youngblood...

(PS - the "rat's ass" was a quote from another list from those who don't care for AT wildness advocacy. It wasn't a gratuitous remark towards yourself.)

orangebug
12-10-2004, 22:21
It takes a special idiot to be so fanatic about so little.

Rocks 'n Roots
12-10-2004, 22:51
There's no argument against the fact that cell phones help network previously isolated and disconnected parts of the AT with civilization. Because of this pizzas are ordered at roadside shelters, shuttles are arranged with call-in contact plans, and minds are brought right back to the heart of civilization from Trail locations that were once separated by nature and hard walking. Hikes that become difficult for the least of reasons can quickly be bailed out by a structured, cell phone-based network. The message there is wilderness and its demands are undesireable, and civilization infrastructure is. But this is completely counter to the Trail and its purpose. Go ahead, study the Trail and what it is. It's a concerted effort to create wildness in an organized corridor under an organized plan.

You can't argue that this new networking doesn't diminish the AT's previously existing state. That state wasn't accidental. All you have to do is study how the Trail came to be, its design, and what it was intended for (and also ATC's own definitions) to understand.

Internally, people are now on a Trail that possesses less remoteness and is therefore "tamed" by connectivity. Their experience is lessened. Externally, people now see the Trail as less of a wild thing. When you need to you can get in instant contact and impose civilization into the experience at will. This external view is much more damaging because there are people out there who want to ignore the Trail's wildness needs to their advantage. These are people who want to develop Trail areas and destroy the AT's natural surroundings. These people are only aided by Trail users who scoff at wildness preservation as a critical Trail component.

Beware of Trail members who answer difficult AT questions with one-liners containing words like "fanatic". There's a whole AT universe they just murdered without even realizing it. The tragedy of the AT today is that people who voice it the best are seen as outsiders by an ill-informed majority. They fail to realize that the Trail, and how it came to be, are products of exactly what I wrote...

Youngblood
12-11-2004, 09:16
It takes a special idiot to be so fanatic about so little.

Yeah, and it isn't a real big step from there to make it to 'lunatic fringe'. If they get a Homeland Security type organization to check for and prevent cell phones on the AT, I guess the good folks of Hot Springs, Damascus, Duncannon, etc will have to step back into the 1970's. Wonder if they will allow them to have cable or even satellite TV in the wilderness corridor of the AT... maybe they will allow them to get the TVLand channel that only has older reruns? I guess they could route all interstate highways around the AT, either north of Baxter or south of Amicalola... now, about them pesky airplanes overhead, a no-fly zone? ... and we can't have all those town people treating the AT as if it is a sidewalk or heaven forbid, a paved road, they will have to do something about that.

Sometimes you have to compromise with reality. The AT is not remote in all places from the modern world and it is not remote in all places from wilderness. It touches on both, that is the reality of the AT... ain't it a marvelous thing? I bet if you look you will find some real wilderness trails in places that aren't as heavily populated as along the east coast of the USA that will satisfy your wilderness cravings. The western USA, Alaska, Canada, Costa Rica, South America, Australia and many others that you would be in absolute heaven with if you truely seek wilderness, where you can mingle with grisslys, polar bears, wolves, etc without worrying about troublesome cell phones, towers, tourist, etc.

Youngblood

Skeemer
12-11-2004, 09:55
Rock 'n Roots wrote in part:
The message there is wilderness and its demands are undesireable, and civilization infrastructure is. But this is completely counter to the Trail and its purpose...people are now on a Trail that possesses less remoteness and is therefore "tamed" by connectivity

At least this discussion has got me thinking more about the controversy of using the cell phone on the Trail. During my hike, I sat in a shelter next to a person openly using her cell phone. She was explaining to the person on the other end how " it was okay to use her phone now that is was widely accepted on the AT."

I also met and hiked with a guy I got to know and liked a lot. He carried a phone because his wife insisted that he try to call her every night. Unfortunately, he got in the habit of using it wherever he was at the time, not realizing how "rude" it may have appeared others.

Both of these examples did take something away from the "wilderness" experience.

The one thing I loved about the AT was the balance. I could hike and sleep in "the wild" for days then hitch into town where I could eat at restaurants, stay in a hostel or motel and be ready to return easily to the Trail. I can see how it would be beneficial to try and keep these experiences as separate as possible and not meld them into one. I can see how using electronics openly can be viewed as threatening to many...not just the "lunatic fringe."

Buckingham
08-19-2005, 16:29
I carry my cell phone, but I leave it turned off during the day to conserve battery power. But once I set up camp for the night it's nice to be able to check in with my wife and daughter to make sure all is well on the home front while I'm away.

DavidNH
08-19-2005, 18:02
Cell phones. If they didn't necessitate the erection of these god awful huge towers on what once where lovely mountain tops..I might be a tad more open minded on this subject. As it is.. I hate them. I see people talking to who knows who in malls, in supermarkerts and nearly every where else. Just one more way to prevent folks from communicating with those around them. And why the heck do they have to also have cameras, video recording, and instant messaging? Just a fancy toy if ever there was...

We did not need cell phones in the wilderness 30+ years ago when they did not exist and we sure as heck don't need them now.

If you and I are ever at a shelter together..and you have one of these things..it best stay burried in your pack or we wont be good friends.

Sorry if I come off oppinionated and closed minded here.. but I really hate cell phones. They are as offensive as seeing people smoke in the wilderness.

nhhiker

Ratbert
08-19-2005, 19:05
I have to admit that at this point in time I always toss my cell phone into my pack when I hit the trail, whether it's for the day or for two weeks ... but I always wonder why I do it. I have never used the thing while hiking and have never even turned it on. I just mentally shrug and tell myself that I'm carrying it for those undefined "emergencies" that could be out there. But as I become weight conscious, it irks me that I still debate carrying it.

With all of our members, WhiteBlaze represents a staggering number of hiker-miles on the trail, stretching over many years. So, my question is, has any member actually witnessed an instance (not hearsay or anecdotal) where the use of a cell phone on the AT either prevented an emergency, or facilitated a rescue that could not have been accomplished without the phone? I'm not talking about gear breakdowns or family emergencies at home ... I mean the cell phone actually saving someone's life on the AT.

Just curious, since the "emergency" rationale is the reason most often cited (myself included).

Skeemer
08-20-2005, 07:22
Ratbert asked...
...has any member actually witnessed an instance (not hearsay or anecdotal) where the use of a cell phone on the AT either prevented an emergency, or facilitated a rescue that could not have been accomplished without the phone?...

Well, not exactly, my friend and I were out for a hike...he stumbles on a tree root...hits his head on a rock and dies.

In a panic, I pull out my cell phone and call 911, "I think my friend is dead!...he just fell, hit his head and is unconscious!!!"

911 operator says to me..."Now just calm down and take it easy...first, let's make sure he's dead."

So I pull out my 45 and shoot him twice in the head, then ask the operator, "Okay, now what?"

Mini-Mosey
08-20-2005, 08:39
I do carry my cell with me on hikes but I keep it off at all times and only carry it for emergency purposes. And then I only use it when away from others. I did use it when out on one trip(March 2004)to check in with my family due to my mom being ill. I'm glad I did. (She has since passed away.)

rainmaker
08-20-2005, 22:58
This flame war has been going on for several weeks and probably still continues at "backcountry.net". RnR has done his or her best to see that it doesn't die out . Since no one will change their mind, we should probably just forget about it. However , just one last thought . I'll be on the AT this fall in Central and Northern Virginia and I will be carrying a cell phone for the same reasons as Mini-Mosey. I can be recognized by my large Dana Design pack , full leather hiking boots, and lekis. Though I will not have a dog , I have been known to bark like one. If perchance our paths meet and you are injured or in need of assistance, should I use my cell phone to call for help or will this infringe on your wilderness experience? Ta ta....

Buckingham
08-21-2005, 03:28
This flame war has been going on for several weeks and probably still continues at "backcountry.net". RnR has done his or her best to see that it doesn't die out . Since no one will change their mind, we should probably just forget about it. However , just one last thought . I'll be on the AT this fall in Central and Northern Virginia and I will be carrying a cell phone for the same reasons as Mini-Mosey. I can be recognized by my large Dana Design pack , full leather hiking boots, and lekis. Though I will not have a dog , I have been known to bark like one. If perchance our paths meet and you are injured or in need of assistance, should I use my cell phone to call for help or will this infringe on your wilderness experience? Ta ta....I'm with Rainmaker, anyone of these closed-minded hard asses who thinks of a cell phone user as some kind of pollution to the trail,,,, well, you said it best man, good job.:clap

Buckingham
08-21-2005, 04:05
It takes a special idiot to be so fanatic about so little.Reminds of me something my father recently imparted to me, he said, "Son, arguing on an on-line thread is like running in the Special Olympics, even if you win, you're still retarded".

K-Man
12-02-2005, 16:46
I like to carry one on solo section hikes turned off, but I don't carry one if I am with a buddy. When I do my thru in 07 I plan to keep it in my bounce box.

Bjorkin
12-02-2005, 17:02
I think this is just one of those issues where others want you to feel what they are thinking in terms of their wilderness experience. Just like when you have a great time at a function and invite your friends to join you the next time, but you end up getting all bent out of shape because they aren't "fully appreciating" what you feel can be gained. Thoughts like that only end up angering yourself.

I strongly believe one's atitude is the only thing you can control in life.

saimyoji
12-02-2005, 17:38
No, more like the issue is that people who use cell phones often interfere with the enjoyment of others by being loud and obnoxious. This is not limited to cell phones on the trail. Movie theaters, elevators, buses, trains...you name it. Cell phones are annoying as hell.

I always keep mine on vibrate :datz

Bjorkin
12-02-2005, 17:51
I agree 100% that they are annoying, but you can do one of two things about it. Let it roll of your back when it happens or hit yourself over the head with a bat. Let me know which one works out better.

RWBlue
12-02-2005, 18:41
First I will state that I haven’t read the entire thread. After 5 or 6 pages it all sounds the same.

For those that don’t want Cell phones, I have some bad news. Satellite phones will be very common in 5 years. Hike it up while you only have Cell phone users to worry about.

BTW
I don’t car if people smoke as long as they are down wind.

PDAs, I want one. I want one that is loaded with all my plant, animal, animal tracks, rocks, snakes, birds information. I hate finding something interesting and not knowing what it is. It could also hold maps, and phone numbers, and all the trail books…. Remember it is just a tool.

PETA = People Eat Tasty Animals

Husko
12-02-2005, 19:10
i'll record my dogs bark for the ring too.

Dances with Mice
12-02-2005, 19:31
This flame war has been going on for several weeks and probably still continues at "backcountry.net". RnR has done his or her best to ... I've been wondering where the old boy is at! He must have a schedule of internet sites to pester. It's not an easy job being the only living "Wilderness Advocate" in the world today. Has he proclaimed that all of you HATE the wilderness yet? That's a good sign, really. Soon after that he'll flounce off the stage to his next self-appointed assignment. It's all he's got left to do in the world, it's the only thing that gives him pleasure, so do humor the old feller while he's there.

But serioulsy, I really do miss his patented dismissive style of writing: "Some poster has written.." "Someone wrote..." It'd kill him to address someone directly.

Nean
12-03-2005, 03:11
What if it's a camera phone? That MUST be cool; like Jack asks, no?

bfitz
12-03-2005, 05:39
I can't wait for my "communications implant"... wireless broadband in my head...