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  1. #121
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    Quote Originally Posted by bamboo bob View Post
    If they ATC would stop the endless and relentless promotion of the AT this problem would solve itself.
    that and the endless youtube vids showing the parties on the AT

  2. #122
    CDT - 2013, PCT - 2009, AT - 1300 miles done burger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FreeGoldRush View Post
    The problem is that people who have the power to deny access very often use that power for selfish reasons. And there simply is not a thing you can do about it. These situations where that power is abused go on for decades.

    Here is an example. At Mammoth Cave they fixed this by taking all the land and then denying cave access for the public to 97% of the cave. You can only see 3% of the cave. Back when it was privately owned you could see it all if you had the ability and a guide. There are certainly people in the other 97% today but you cannot become one of them. They call them "researchers" and you are told they are there for your own good and keeping you out is for the good of "your" cave.

    This sort of attitude is not limited to Mammoth Cave. There are other examples that hit closer to home (we own land adjacent to public land) but I won't air those disagreements here. In my opinion a permit fee or permit auction process solves this problem. I realize that gets people's feathers ruffled because they'd like to pretend all demand on limited resources is created equal, but the hard truth is that you need a way to separate different levels of demand. If the permit fee supports the park then you essentially prioritize access to those who are most contributing to park resources. I really don't think the fee would be punitive and I can't imagine it would have to be high enough to be a budgeting concern on a thru hike.
    A cave is a perfect example of why you are wrong. Preserving a wonder like Mammoth Cave is exactly the opposite of selfishness--it was thinking about the future of the cave and the ability of future generations to enjoy it. Large numbers of people allowed to wander wherever in a cave would inevitably lead to the destruction of delicate cave features. There are rare animals that would not tolerate people tramping through. Limiting access is the only way to ensure that future generations can enjoy it in the same way we can today. Ever heard of the tragedy of the commons?

    As for your fee idea, any permit fee that was large enough to reduce demand will be large enough to mean that only the wealthy can afford a thru hike. And that would be sad because long-distance trails are a place that should be open to anyone who can afford the time off and the gear (yeah, that excludes a lot of poor people, but adding a big fee would only make things worse). A fee would not distinguish between levels of demand--many of the hikers I've met who were the most devoted to the idea of doing a thru-hike were young and not well-off--it would just mean that rich folks get first access. If there are permits, they should be given out at random or first-come, first-serve. Rich people have enough advantages already--let the trail be the one place where having more money doesn't get you ahead of everyone else.

  3. #123

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    Quote Originally Posted by burger View Post
    As for your fee idea, any permit fee that was large enough to reduce demand will be large enough to mean that only the wealthy can afford a thru hike.
    In my experience most people on the trail today are not wealthy. A fee will not bring the wealthy off their couches and into the woods. What nonsense.

  4. #124
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    Not saying I would agree with a fee, but I doubt the cost would be prohibitive to anyone considering a hike. A thru hike already has a cost involved: gear, food, hostel/hotels. Never mind wages not earned while hiking for 4-6 months. Hikers on a tight budget would just have to prioritize their permit over booze, town stays, etc.

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  5. #125
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    Quote Originally Posted by bamboo bob View Post
    If they ATC would stop the endless and relentless promotion of the AT this problem would solve itself.
    How are the ATC "relentless promot"ing the AT?

  6. #126
    CDT - 2013, PCT - 2009, AT - 1300 miles done burger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FreeGoldRush View Post
    In my experience most people on the trail today are not wealthy. A fee will not bring the wealthy off their couches and into the woods. What nonsense.
    You said that we need a fee or an auction to reduce demand. A small fee, like $5 or even $50 will not reduce demand because people would just factor it into their thru-hike budget. If you're spending a few thousand $, that's no big deal. So, you can only reduce demand with a big fee, like hundreds of dollars or more, that would basically make a thru unaffordable for some. And that would mean that only the relatively well-off hiker will be able to afford the fee.

    I'm just showing that your proposed solution will not work.

  7. #127
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    Even a fee of a few hundred dollars should not be prohibitive to anyone. Save the money over a few years if necessary. If someone truly wants to hike they'll do it.

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  8. #128
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    i think as more people complete thru-hikes the social media that is created from that will inspire more to take on the attempt themselves.

    a lot of "Hell, if THAT guy can do it. so can I!" mentalities

    Even if everyone is good natured and didnt mess anything up just the impact of thousands of people marching through the woods takes it toll. given enough time i honestly think the AT will not be the same in coming years. Even with heavy regulation people will still sneak on and do what they want to do.

  9. #129

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    Quote Originally Posted by burger View Post
    You said that we need a fee or an auction to reduce demand. A small fee, like $5 or even $50 will not reduce demand because people would just factor it into their thru-hike budget. If you're spending a few thousand $, that's no big deal. So, you can only reduce demand with a big fee, like hundreds of dollars or more, that would basically make a thru unaffordable for some. And that would mean that only the relatively well-off hiker will be able to afford the fee.

    I'm just showing that your proposed solution will not work.
    Why are people opposed to asking the heaviest users to support the resource that is apparently being damaged by their use? (I suppose people could donate their time doing maintenance instead of paying a fee.)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Starchild View Post
    How are the ATC "relentless promot"ing the AT?
    The ATCs goal is to reach as many people as possible.
    they have educational outreach programs
    They teach schoolkids about the AT, etc
    they openly endorse thru-hiking by taking photos, sending certificates, printing names in magazine, getting special benefits for thruhikers.
    ie.. Making them feel....special

    The goal is clearly to maximize trail awareness, users, and hence their own FUNDING.

    Now whether that works out best for the trail long term, is a matter of debate. You can love something to death.

    It do take money and awareness to protect the trail from threats. By the nature of population expansion , threats are always increasing.
    But that should be coming automatically from the govmt, if people really cared about a national scenic trail, youd think. Of course youd be wrong too.
    Last edited by MuddyWaters; 02-03-2017 at 20:22.

  11. #131
    ME => GA 19AT3 rickb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by burger View Post
    A cave is a perfect example of why you are wrong. Preserving a wonder like Mammoth Cave is exactly the opposite of selfishness--it was thinking about the future of the cave and the ability of future generations to enjoy it. Large numbers of people allowed to wander wherever in a cave would inevitably lead to the destruction of delicate cave features. There are rare animals that would not tolerate people tramping through. Limiting access is the only way to ensure that future generations can enjoy it in the same way we can today. Ever heard of the tragedy of the commons?
    There is a difference between preserving a resource from irreparable harm, and preserving an aesthetic for the beautiful people to enjoy.

    In the case of BSP the quaint cabins are seen as a thing of beauty, and just 1500 thru hikers (perhaps 7 or 8% of the total) on Katahdin seen as a cause for grave concern.

    Cazy. The moose and bear and raven could care less.

    As for he AT, proper facilities -- well sited facilities -- could address most every issue. We should rejoice in and he Trail's popularity and evolve with it -- just as many of us have learned to embrace the crazy popularity of our local rail trrails.

    When the natural ecosystems are threatened, then there is cause for concern. That is not the case on the AT.

  12. #132
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oventoasted View Post
    iEven if everyone is good natured and didnt mess anything up just the impact of thousands of people marching through the woods takes it toll. given enough time i honestly think the AT will not be the same in coming years. Even with heavy regulation people will still sneak on and do what they want to do.
    I got news for you, the AT is not the same as it was years ago.
    More walking, less talking.

  13. #133

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    Quote Originally Posted by MuddyWaters View Post
    The ATCs goal is to reach as many people as possible.
    they have educational outreach programs
    They teach schoolkids about the AT, etc
    they openly endorse thru-hiking by taking photos, sending certificates, printing names in magazine, getting special benefits for thruhikers.
    ie.. Making them feel....special

    The goal is clearly to maximize trail awareness, users, and hence their own FUNDING.

    Now whether that works out best for the trail long term, is a matter of debate. You can love something to death.

    It do take money and awareness to protect the trail from threats. By the nature of population expansion , threats are always increasing.
    But that should be coming automatically from the govmt, if people really cared about a national scenic trail, youd think. Of course youd be wrong too.
    you forgot the bobble heads.

  14. #134

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    Baxter Numbers.pdfThese are the numbers the Authority has included in their AT hiker planning document. The levels were pretty flat during 2000-2011. It's not constant growth as they have indicated. Numbers rose after 2011.
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  15. #135
    •Completed A.T. Section Hike GA to ME 1996 thru 2003 •Donating Member Skyline's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by imscotty View Post
    My interpretation is that once the NOBO permits are all taken, a hiker who hikes to the park border on the AT will have to turn around, find a way to hike and hitch into Millinocket, get a 'Day Use Parking Reservation' for Katahdin(if any are available), rent a car, drive in and park, hike to the southern park boundary and back, then climb Katahdin and back, exit the park.

    Am I missing something?
    Some NOBO hikers have done this each year anyway, to give themselves a chance at a good (or better) weather day to summit. They enter BSP via the gate in a vehicle (often friends or relatives who they rendezvoused with in Millinocket), park, hike the AT to Baxter Peak, return, exit via the gate. A few go into Millinocket, wait until the weather is better, and get a shuttle or cab to the gate. Either way, it requires getting up VERY early to be in line at the gate at 5am or so during peak season.

  16. #136
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    And we can thank the jerk with the champagne bottle that we get hit with the fallout from his misbehavior.

  17. #137

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    Any conjecture about why the numbers from BSP's AT hiker planning document in the post above are so much higher than the numbers reported by the ATC here: http://www.appalachiantrail.org/home...ty/2000-milers
    (comparing the 2015 numbers, not 2016 since ATC doesn't have them up yet)
    Last edited by shivelight; 02-04-2017 at 03:44.

  18. #138
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    Quote Originally Posted by rickb View Post
    ...When the natural ecosystems are threatened, then there is cause for concern. That is not the case on the AT.
    The sea of toilet paper laying around, which is indicative of the considerable amount of human waste being deposited in a concentrated area, is possibly a threat to the immediate trail corridor. I would be curious to know what soil and water samples in the camping areas as well as the watershed downstream would tell us. Farther north it may not be such an issue, but the first few hundred miles of the trail see a lot of concentrated use every year.
    “He is richest who is content with the least, for content is the wealth of nature.” –Socrates

  19. #139
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    Quote Originally Posted by squeezebox View Post
    And we can thank the jerk with the champagne bottle that we get hit with the fallout from his misbehavior.
    That's ridiculous...BSP didn't do this because ONE idiot behaved poorly. They did this for a whole slew of reasons related to many examples of poor behavior, a relative explosion in hiker numbers, and the sense they get that the ATC is turning a blind eye. But, if some things don't change, who knows what the future holds.
    Last edited by Engine; 02-04-2017 at 05:41.
    “He is richest who is content with the least, for content is the wealth of nature.” –Socrates

  20. #140

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    Quote Originally Posted by squeezebox View Post
    And we can thank the jerk with the champagne bottle that we get hit with the fallout from his misbehavior.
    Nope. That is just one example of people thinking that they are more important than the mountain and that since it is just them it won't really matter. Now multiply that by all of the folks who take that attitude, each thinking we'll it is just me and one person can't create a problem. That is the problem. You can see it in this thread and any other you'd care to read about the subject. You can see it along the trail in piles of dog crap and drifts of TP, in campsites along the way in shelter graffiti and abandoned trash, and on top of Katahdin in the launching of debris into the rocks and boorish behavior on what should be hallowed ground.

    Some folks have no interest in anything but their own self interest and that is what we all have to pay the price for. Blaming one person for it wouldn't be fair or accurate.
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