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dhock83
03-02-2009, 21:45
I am new to thru hiking and just wandering what are the un-written rules of a shelter??

superman
03-02-2009, 21:49
You sound like a perfect volunteer to write formal and absolute rules for behavior in and around shelters.:D

SGT Rock
03-02-2009, 21:52
I don't think there is an agreed upon set of informal rules other than first come first serve.

CrumbSnatcher
03-02-2009, 21:54
alot of people think shelters suck! but not as much if its raining?

Tennessee Viking
03-02-2009, 21:55
I believe SNP only requires a permit. No reservations like the Smokies. There are fees for some its off-AT sites. Leashed dogs. And Graysons has some rules. Thomas Knob is listed as no campfires.

As a maintainer, there is pack out your trash, don't throw trash in privies, no graffiti or vandalism of the shelters. Hang your food whenever possible. Other than that, be respectful to other hikers.

bigcranky
03-02-2009, 21:59
Your questions is sort of like throwing red meat into a pack of hungry dogs.

2 rules of shelter etiquette:

1. Don't be a jerk.

2. Never forget rule #1.

The Weasel
03-02-2009, 22:13
A newbie asks a pretty reasonable question, and we treat her/him like they did something wrong?

There are a number of unwritten rules, most of which are violated fairly often:

- There is always room for someone in a storm
- Don't move/mess with someone else's stuff
- Don't cook inside the shelter unless weather is incredibly bad
- Don't kill mice
- Kill mice
- Clean your own mess
- No wet dogs in shelters
- No sex until everyone else leaves

Those are some.

TW

Ekul
03-02-2009, 22:15
[quote=The Weasel;793019]A newbie asks a pretty reasonable question, and we treat her/him like they did something wrong?

There are a number of unwritten rules, most of which are violated fairly often:

- There is always room for someone in a storm

the only reason to be in a shelter

SGT Rock
03-02-2009, 22:18
A newbie asks a pretty reasonable question, and we treat her/him like they did something wrong?
I think it was more an attempt to get across the idea that the whole topic ain't going to be agreed on. But if you follow basic rules of a polite society you should do fine.


There are a number of unwritten rules, most of which are violated fairly often:

- There is always room for someone in a storm
Someone should tell some of the people I've stayed in shelters with this. Of course I quit sleeping in them.


- Don't move/mess with someone else's stuff
- Don't cook inside the shelter unless weather is incredibly bad
I violate this all the time. It's a nice flat spot.


- Don't kill mice
- Kill mice
Go for option #2


- Clean your own mess
- No wet dogs in shelters
- No sex until everyone else leaves

Those are some.

TW

Panzer1
03-02-2009, 22:39
Don't move/mess with someone else's stuffWhats wrong with moving someone else stuff? What if they leave their stuff in the way.

Panzer

4eyedbuzzard
03-02-2009, 22:43
...
- No sex until everyone else leaves...

No wonder StevenSeagal says you're all a buzz kill.:D

Desert Reprobate
03-02-2009, 22:46
Just remember, you have to eat what you kill

Desert Reprobate
03-02-2009, 22:47
A nice Korean cook book would be handy

SGT Rock
03-02-2009, 22:48
When it comes to mice that ain't true. The best thing is to display the carcasses as a warning to others.

Kanati
03-02-2009, 23:10
I am new to thru hiking and just wandering what are the un-written rules of a shelter??

1. Most shelters have a broom. When you walk on the boards where people sit and sleep, be sure to sweep up after yourself/companions before you leave, or in some cases when you arrive. Most everyone will thank you for it.

2. Never, never leave the shelter log book outside on the table, even if the day is sunny.

Enjoy your hike. :sun

Ekul
03-02-2009, 23:16
When it comes to mice that ain't true. The best thing is to display the carcasses as a warning to others.

when the critter crosses my face the game is on and the trap is set. Dont sleep next to the walls. give yourself a few inches. No smoking unless its cool with the rest

Lilred
03-02-2009, 23:27
1. Most shelters have a broom. When you walk on the boards where people sit and sleep, be sure to sweep up after yourself/companions before you leave, or in some cases when you arrive. Most everyone will thank you for it.

2. Never, never leave the shelter log book outside on the table, even if the day is sunny.

Enjoy your hike. :sun

I'd be careful about sweeping. It kicks up a lot of dust, mice dropping dust. I wouldn't be sweeping if I was going to be in the shelter right afterwards

rickb
03-02-2009, 23:36
If I understood Sgt Rock correctly his advise was:

-- Cook in them all the time, since its a flat spot
-- Don't sleep in them.
-- Encourage others to kill mice that live in them.

Not sure about the mice killing part, but he may be on to something with the first two suggestions.

Other thoughts that come to mind is that if weekenders or such have laid claim to a shelter and sort of made it thier home, no real need to ask permission to share the space. You can simply introduce your self and start spreading out your stuff.

Pitching a tent in a shelter is considered to be very poor form, no matter how buggy.

Hanging food in a shelter is fine, even if your shelter mates are bear paranoid. Except if there is a bear pole or metal box, then that's the way to go.

Walking quitely up to a shelter from the back and poking your head around with a big smile to the great suprise of the people already inside is not as funny in practice as in theory.

Where there are signs "suggesting" no fires at the shelter, best to keep yours on the smaller side.

When you wash the junk out of your pot, best not to fling the dirty water nearby, especially when others are waching. If there is a grey water dump area, use it.

Try to avoid all talk about the best stove, greatest pack, etc. Especially with weekenders. Keep ear plugs handy for gear talk as well as snoring.

When Southbounders and Nobos share a shelter, the tradition is for the Nobos to offer the Sobos a candy bar and or nip of whiskey, without expecting anything in return.

The Weasel
03-03-2009, 00:17
A newbie asks a pretty reasonable question, and we treat her/him like they did something wrong?

There are a number of unwritten rules, most of which are violated fairly often:


TW

Note what I said before listing some "rules".

TW

Panzer1
03-03-2009, 00:28
The real reason that people kill shelter mice is because some people just have a cruel streak that is somehow satisfied by killing small animals.

Panzer

Sly
03-03-2009, 00:36
I'd be careful about sweeping. It kicks up a lot of dust, mice dropping dust. I wouldn't be sweeping if I was going to be in the shelter right afterwards

Although there's been no known case of hantavirus specifically attributed to an AT shelter, that I'm aware of, it's suggested to wait an hour before entering after sweeping.

Tin Man
03-03-2009, 00:41
The real reason that people kill shelter mice is because some people just have a cruel streak that is somehow satisfied by killing small animals.

Panzer

bring 'em on! i like an unfair fight... but sometimes i win in spite of that. :o

--------

rules: there ain't no rules. behave your best and the other guy won't even come close...

nice guy: you guys don't mind if i share the shelter

us: no, come right in

nice guy: grabs broom, sweeps up a s**t storm, before he lays out his stuff, covering us in dust and dirt

us: (coughing) thanks, that's much better. uh, you missed a spot over there. (cough some more)

nice guy: huh? oh, no problem

morning...

nice guy: you guys kept me up all night with that snoring

us: no problem. you didn't do too bad yourself

nice guy: huh? i don't snore

us: must have been the mice sleeping in that hole by your head then

nice guy: huh?

Wheeler
03-03-2009, 03:42
don't kill anything, but get a system to protect your stuff. Bear's are giant mice.Bear's are also great mice. If you don't want to deal with them, then don't.Hide/stash your stuff Where they can screw with you wh-what, you never had parent's? Sibling's? be creative.... put it in D-Wreck's pack.

zoidfu
03-03-2009, 03:47
Don't go to bed at 4:30pm and expect everyone else to remain silent so you can get your beauty sleep.

Wheeler
03-03-2009, 04:13
#1 OTHER PEOPLE ARE COMING-ASSUME THAT
#2 Don't make it they're problem
# NUFF SAID

OldStormcrow
03-03-2009, 10:20
One winter at a shelter in the Smokies some drunk college kids came in 'way after dark, made a huge amount of racket, stunk up the shelter frying something in straight sesame oil, and then I caught one of them peeing out through the front gate (right where you have to walk in it) because he didn't want to go outside. Needless to say, I got up and took a few moments to rant and educate them to some common sense shelter "rules". This isn't rocket science.....

Nearly Normal
03-04-2009, 05:59
I am new to thru hiking and just wandering what are the un-written rules of a shelter??

Shun them

Marta
03-04-2009, 07:58
As in other areas of life, it's best to be direct, but polite, when dealing with clueless people in shelters.

For instance, you want to cook on the picnic table (it's raining), and a couple of people have got their stuff spread all over the place. Don't just fume silently. Don't ask a question whose answer you won't accept. ("May I have a spot?") Be direct, but polite: "I need a little corner of the table to cook on. I'm going to move this backpack." If the pack-owner has a brain, they will come take it away. If they don't, go ahead and move the pack into the shelter, or wherever.

A practice that will make your own life in a shelter easier it to keep all your own stuff together. You're asking to lose something if you spread your gear and clothing all over the place, and it gets mixed up with other people's stuff. I usually start by spreading out my ground cloth or tent footprint where I'm going to sleep. My gear and clothing stay on that groundcloth or in my pack. Take something out of the pack; use it; put it back in the pack. If I have hung up the pack on mouse hangers or bear cables, I keep a stuff sack or two near my sleeping bag. Take something out of the stuff sack; use it; put it back in the stuff sack. If the shelter is crowded, I fold under the edges of the ground cloth until it is just barely larger than my sleeping bag. The stuff sacks go under my head. Be especially attentive to small, easily-lost items like headlamps and spoons, and to common gear and clothing that other people might mistakenly swap on you, like a Pocket Rocket.

Shelters can be lively places, with all the good and bad baggage that carries. Every hiker has their own set of pet peeves. I've sat there in the shelter in the Smokies and listened to a hiker lecture another hiker about not burning plastic in a fire; then the lecturer proceeded to sautee chicken in oil in the shelter, and when a piece of chicken flipped out on the ground, he just tossed it out beyond the shelter fence. (Way to attract animals, man!)

Shelters can be wonderful in heavy rain and in windy weather. They're a good place to meet other hikers. But you have to be fairly accepting of other people's foibles to enjoy them.

Tin Man
03-04-2009, 08:14
marta shares a good, practical approach to shelters, if you feel the need

nearly normal, tagged it with 'shun them'

SHELTERS SUCK

Marta
03-04-2009, 08:32
Another example of being direct:

The wrong approach is the say, with a exasperation/desperation, "Could you call your dog?" Chances are good the clueless owner will call the dog, and the dog will completely ignore him. But the owner has done what you asked, so he feels as if he can stop paying attention to the dog.

The right approach: "Please tie up your dog NOW. He is about to knock over my stove and set the place on fire."

People have told me it helps to use the Mommy voice.

mrc237
03-04-2009, 08:45
I hate it when folks put their boots/ass/pack on the table.

SGT Rock
03-04-2009, 09:27
The real reason that people kill shelter mice is because some people just have a cruel streak that is somehow satisfied by killing small animals.

Panzer
Or because it makes me giggle.:rolleyes:

SGT Rock
03-04-2009, 09:33
Although there's been no known case of hantavirus specifically attributed to an AT shelter, that I'm aware of, it's suggested to wait an hour before entering after sweeping.I could have sworn there was 1 about 15 years ago.

Desert Reprobate
03-04-2009, 09:36
Just ear tag the idiots so the folks at the next shelter will know who they are dealing with

sheepdog
03-04-2009, 09:45
The real reason that people kill shelter mice is because some people just have a cruel streak that is somehow satisfied by killing small animals.

Panzer
I kill mice because they are disease carrying vermin, and there are too many of them.
And they taste just like chicken :D

SGT Rock
03-04-2009, 09:45
I kill mice because they are disease carrying vermin, and there are too many of them.
Not like they are about to go extinct anytime soon either.:p

sheepdog
03-04-2009, 09:51
not endangered or even threatend

SGT Rock
03-04-2009, 09:53
I know how to threaten them. But they don't seem to care ;)

Turtlehiker
03-04-2009, 10:00
One case has been identified in Virginia. In 1993, a hiker on the Appalachian trail developed HPS. He was hospitalized and recovered. His exact location of exposure could never be established

Found this on Google.

Shelter rules are simple!

1. Don't be an A$$hole
2. See rule #1


If anything be more considerate than you would in the real world since it is tougher to walk away from an inconsiderate person if you are staying in a LT especially if it raining.

Rain Man
03-04-2009, 12:13
I hate it when folks put their boots/ass/pack on the table.

Uh, what about their DOGS?! And of course, those are the dog owners who later claim "no one ever had a problem with my dog."

I was sitting at the table eating lunch at Little Laurel Shelter in NC, the one before Jerry Cabin Shelter, I think.

Couple of hikers come up with unleashed dog that jumped right up from the muddy ground onto the table (as I sat there with my food) and walked all around, exploring, as dogs do. As always, the dog was not the problem. It was the dog owner who was the problem.

I didn't say a word, just packed up and hit the trail, as I suspect 99% of us do. Too many dog owners are CLUELESS and,-- since this thread is about rules,-- don't give a @#%! about leash laws either.

Anyway, be particularly careful with a dog at a shelter, especially a wet muddy dog. Use some common sense. I think Turtlehiker stated it well, in his/her post immediately preceding mine here.

Rain Man

.

phishpapond
03-04-2009, 13:25
The one rule I always try to follow is.
Only use TNT to kill the mice and for the bear just walk up and kick them in the rear.

Ekul
03-04-2009, 14:05
Or because it makes me giggle.:rolleyes:


Simple fact get infested with mice or rats in your home and your view changes. I stopped giggling when I saw how fast the little ***ts reproduce. And its not likely killing the ones ate a hole thru your pack is reducing the population. If you see 1 there is 30 hiding elsewhere like roaches.

Plodderman
03-04-2009, 15:18
Clean up after yourself.

Do not eat in the shelter.

Make room went it is raining.

nufsaid
03-04-2009, 15:30
A newbie asks a pretty reasonable question, and we treat her/him like they did something wrong?

There are a number of unwritten rules, most of which are violated fairly often:

- There is always room for someone in a storm
- Don't move/mess with someone else's stuff
- Don't cook inside the shelter unless weather is incredibly bad
- Don't kill mice
- Kill mice
- Clean your own mess
- No wet dogs in shelters
- No sex until everyone else leaves

Those are some.

TW

Don't forget your lotion.

Manwich
03-04-2009, 15:54
- First come, First Served.
- "Came to a full shelter tentless? That Sucks."
- Kill all mice. If the shelter is near a lake, a Nordic burial (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ICcoQUo8WLo&feature=related) (to ascend into Valhalla) is obligatory. The mouse must be given an heroic name and his epic journey (and ultimate demise) must be passed on... and he may never be forgotten.
- Don't pee behind the shelter. Women sometimes change their clothes back there.
- Don't complain about snoring. Some people can't stop snoring. Some people could've brought earplugs.
- Bears aren't allowed at the shelter (http://www.sportsmansblog.com/BearPicnicTable.jpg).

Lilred
03-04-2009, 15:57
- - Don't pee behind the shelter. Women sometimes change their clothes back there.

- Bears aren't allowed at the shelter (http://www.sportsmansblog.com/BearPicnicTable.jpg).


THANK-YOU!!! Wish more guys would get this through their heads.

The Weasel
03-04-2009, 16:13
As in other areas of life, it's best to be direct, but polite, when dealing with clueless people in shelters.

For instance, you want to cook on the picnic table (it's raining), and a couple of people have got their stuff spread all over the place. Don't just fume silently. Don't ask a question whose answer you won't accept. ("May I have a spot?") Be direct, but polite: "I need a little corner of the table to cook on. I'm going to move this backpack." If the pack-owner has a brain, they will come take it away. If they don't, go ahead and move the pack into the shelter, or wherever.

A practice that will make your own life in a shelter easier it to keep all your own stuff together. You're asking to lose something if you spread your gear and clothing all over the place, and it gets mixed up with other people's stuff. I usually start by spreading out my ground cloth or tent footprint where I'm going to sleep. My gear and clothing stay on that groundcloth or in my pack. Take something out of the pack; use it; put it back in the pack. If I have hung up the pack on mouse hangers or bear cables, I keep a stuff sack or two near my sleeping bag. Take something out of the stuff sack; use it; put it back in the stuff sack. If the shelter is crowded, I fold under the edges of the ground cloth until it is just barely larger than my sleeping bag. The stuff sacks go under my head. Be especially attentive to small, easily-lost items like headlamps and spoons, and to common gear and clothing that other people might mistakenly swap on you, like a Pocket Rocket.

Shelters can be lively places, with all the good and bad baggage that carries. Every hiker has their own set of pet peeves. I've sat there in the shelter in the Smokies and listened to a hiker lecture another hiker about not burning plastic in a fire; then the lecturer proceeded to sautee chicken in oil in the shelter, and when a piece of chicken flipped out on the ground, he just tossed it out beyond the shelter fence. (Way to attract animals, man!)

Shelters can be wonderful in heavy rain and in windy weather. They're a good place to meet other hikers. But you have to be fairly accepting of other people's foibles to enjoy them.


Another example of being direct:

The wrong approach is the say, with a exasperation/desperation, "Could you call your dog?" Chances are good the clueless owner will call the dog, and the dog will completely ignore him. But the owner has done what you asked, so he feels as if he can stop paying attention to the dog.

The right approach: "Please tie up your dog NOW. He is about to knock over my stove and set the place on fire."

People have told me it helps to use the Mommy voice.


Marta, i'll mildly differ. It may work for you, and possibly because you're a woman. But I have seen 'direct' from one man to another turn into very nasty confrontations. "I need a corner to cook on and I am moving your pack" can very easily become "Get your freakin' hands off my gear, mofo," and go downhill from there. Telling people what to do ("Tie your dog up now!") can, and not infrequently has, generate a response of "You don't tell me what to do, asshat."

Asking nicely first and then avoiding the situation is generally wise at shelters, which may have very thoughtful people or podpeople with concealed assault weapons. One doesn't always know which.

TW

JAK
03-04-2009, 16:17
Obviously men and women handle such situations differently,
which is why we should probably listen to women more often. ;)

Ekul
03-04-2009, 16:17
Ive never met a mean nasty hiker(unless you ask a question on here bout a gun or dog)..been mainly in GA tho. Most of the guys, never met a female at a shelter yet and im sure they are just as nice as the fellas, are considerate and polite. Snoring on the other hand just reinforced me getting out of shelters.

Monkeywrench
03-04-2009, 18:50
People have told me it helps to use the Mommy voice.

That probably doesn't work as well for guys.

Jack Tarlin
03-04-2009, 19:08
Shelter rule #412:

If you consider yourself something of a musician, and are actually hiking on the Trail carrying an instrument, and you arrive at a shelter and assume that everyone there really wants to hear you try out your guitar, mandolin, banjo, drums, jaw harp, or harmonica, or, in addition, wants to hear you sing......if you're ever tempted to to do this, in hopes that it will improve everyone's camping experience, I have one word to say:

Don't. Don't even think about it. Ever.

superman
03-04-2009, 19:26
The real reason that people kill shelter mice is because some people just have a cruel streak that is somehow satisfied by killing small animals.

Panzer

:D:D:D and bigger ones.

http://by126w.bay126.mail.live.com/att/GetAttachment.aspx?tnail=0&messageId=de2f8d23-4637-468d-b997-35fea1f94ac7&Aux=14|0|8CB6B367F197EF0| :D

Lumberjack2003
03-04-2009, 19:34
Clean up after yourself.

Don't leave your cooking stuff and entire pack on the table when you are done eating and others need the room.

Most important - no one wants to hear someone else do nothing but complain from the moment they arrive. We know it's raining and the trail is a stream.. we just hiked the same stretch as you.

Blue Jay
03-05-2009, 10:16
:D:D:D and bigger ones.

http://by126w.bay126.mail.live.com/att/GetAttachment.aspx?tnail=0&messageId=de2f8d23-4637-468d-b997-35fea1f94ac7&Aux=14|0|8CB6B367F197EF0| :D

Another good rule might be if you see this individual in a shelter, move on if you can.

Gumbi
03-05-2009, 11:20
Another good rule might be if you see this individual in a shelter, move on if you can.

What's next? Are you going to tell us that swatting flies and mosquitos is wrong too?:D

Skyline
03-05-2009, 11:40
If you are an ultralighter and refuse to carry your own tent/tarp/hammockódon't cop an attitude when inhabitants of a full shelter refuse to vacate and set up the tent they've been lugging up and down mountains in order to make room for you in the shelter. Especially if you just bragged about the back-to-back 30-mile days you just did.

High Life
03-05-2009, 12:09
RULE #1 : don't use shelters , if you can help it

Manwich
03-05-2009, 12:26
RULE #1 : don't use shelters , if you can help it


yawn.

why don't you go into the hammock forums and tell them to not use hammocks or something?

superman
03-05-2009, 12:33
Another good rule might be if you see this individual in a shelter, move on if you can.

Steady there BJ...I think you're warming to me too much.:D

fehchet
03-05-2009, 12:37
I like Rule #1 and #412. #1 makes #412 moot, I suppose.

fiddlehead
03-05-2009, 15:12
The firepit is not a trashcan.
"No matter how hard you try, tin foil will not burn"

Follow the Golden Rule

High Life
03-05-2009, 15:22
yawn.

why don't you go into the hammock forums and tell them to not use hammocks or something?

hahaha, nah i like hammocks ..

High Life
03-05-2009, 15:37
thank you .. :sun
i stayed at crap load of shelters in 2007
and the only time i was truely happy and if no one else showed up
then there was the time in VT it was pouring and there was a lot of people
with their gear up for sale in the shelter and i was like can you make some room .. and he fell !@#$ silent .. and they all gave me the blank stare
i gave them one finger parallel to the sky and left ...
sorry im not going through that this time around
i realize i go to the woods to be in the woods if i really wanted to be around people , i'll hang out in copley sq.

Manwich
03-05-2009, 15:42
i gave them one finger parallel to the sky and left ...

dontcha mean perpendicular?

High Life
03-05-2009, 15:48
dontcha mean perpendicular?

yes i do .. i was actually quoting lyrics from a song ..

sheepdog
03-05-2009, 15:48
sideways like tha gangstas do

wrongway_08
03-05-2009, 17:18
If you are an ultralighter and refuse to carry your own tent/tarp/hammockódon't cop an attitude when inhabitants of a full shelter refuse to vacate and set up the tent they've been lugging up and down mountains in order to make room for you in the shelter. Especially if you just bragged about the back-to-back 30-mile days you just did.

Yea, I pissed a few of these rejects off.... nothing wrong going ultra light hiking but I'm not getting out of my warm shelter space to put up my tent in the rain so that some tool bag that didnt want to carry and extra 2 pounds can be warm and dry.... not going to happen.

And no, you cant borrow my tent either..... if your too lazy to carry a tent.... you too lazy to be trusted with mine.

Anumber1
03-05-2009, 17:37
Shelter rule #412:

If you consider yourself something of a musician, and are actually hiking on the Trail carrying an instrument, and you arrive at a shelter and assume that everyone there really wants to hear you try out your guitar, mandolin, banjo, drums, jaw harp, or harmonica, or, in addition, wants to hear you sing......if you're ever tempted to to do this, in hopes that it will improve everyone's camping experience, I have one word to say:

Don't. Don't even think about it. Ever.

I'm out the door right now to have a tattoo of this rule on my fist

High Life
03-05-2009, 17:46
I'm out the door right now to have a tattoo of this rule on my fist

there goes my plan of follows jack up the trail playing the pan flute , dressed in green tight and farting a beat .. :confused:

maxpatch67
03-05-2009, 18:17
Leave the mice alone....their just trying to survive. :) I've found a common rule is be quiet when coming in late at night. My bunch has always tried to be quiet, because we will often show up at a shelter about 1 or 2am Eastern. Also, sweep off the bunks when you have a chance.

dhock83
03-09-2009, 15:44
I just wanted to say thank you to everyone who posted. I have never stayed in a shelter and didn't want to do something that was not cool with others due to the fact that I am new to this and didnt know.