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  1. #21
    John B's Avatar
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    I don't know how you guys do trail maintenance, but my years of volunteering with the Red River Gorge Trail Crew (http://rrgtc.com/) , I can't think of a single time that tape was used. If standing trees are to be taken down, they are marked with yellow paint on the trunk; if a section is to be rerouted, the US Forest Ranger for that distric knows where it is and takes us to it; if a section is to be 'maintained' (cutting back brush, clearing dead-falls and blow-downs), we are always told where to begin and end on maps. The only time that I can think of seeing tape was when it was used by a group doing a trail run (their version of white blazes since many trails in the Boone National Forest aren't uniquely marked) and we had to cut it off the branches and haul out the bits of tape. But maybe things are done differently in the trail maintenance groups you're with.

  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by John B View Post
    I don't know how you guys do trail maintenance, but my years of volunteering with the Red River Gorge Trail Crew (http://rrgtc.com/) , I can't think of a single time that tape was used. If standing trees are to be taken down, they are marked with yellow paint on the trunk; if a section is to be rerouted, the US Forest Ranger for that distric knows where it is and takes us to it; if a section is to be 'maintained' (cutting back brush, clearing dead-falls and blow-downs), we are always told where to begin and end on maps. The only time that I can think of seeing tape was when it was used by a group doing a trail run (their version of white blazes since many trails in the Boone National Forest aren't uniquely marked) and we had to cut it off the branches and haul out the bits of tape. But maybe things are done differently in the trail maintenance groups you're with.
    I can assure you they are different. Not that your way is wrong (it is better in some cases), but we use flagging tape. As an active trail maintainer and responsible for marking areas for work by large crews, these flags are very important to our work. This is in Georgia. Practices may differ where you are.

    For the minority that are calling these trash, maybe it's different wherever they are, but please do your friendly volunteers a favor and leave the flags alone. The maintainer will be by, and he or she will know if it is trash or not. The good you could potentially do is dwarfed by the potential negative impact on the trail crew. If you'll pick up the obvious trash, I promise we'll handle the flags.

  3. #23

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    Surveyors (flagging) tape is commonly used for trail maintenance, when I was more involved in this kind of work it was the marking mechanism of choice. Typically it is used to bracket a section of trail needing water management, trail reroutes, or treadway maintenance, mark specific trees/shrubs/bushes for removal. I have also seen it used occasionally for large groups like scouts to mark their direction of travel at intersections or waypoints, however the tape is usually removed by the hiker walking drag.

    Tape was a preferred marking system over paint that remains for a very long time. Unlike paint, tape moves in wind and can be seen more easily, it can last as long as needed and be quickly removed or restored when those who are not familiar with trail maintenance processes mistake it for "litter". Sometimes there will be writing on the tape identifying it as being there for a reason if not the reason itself. Bracketing tape can sometimes be identified by the knot in the tape, which will point to the next tape marker up or down trail that may be a distance away.

  4. #24

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    I use tape on my AT boundary section. 25 year old painted blazes are difficult to see under a full canopy especially when coming in perpendicular to the line. We are not allowed to add permanent markings only repaint old ones with any trace of paint so flagging is good short term marking. I have some orange and white stripped flagging that is far easier to see when scanning the woods. We are discouraged from making the boundary a path so following it can be challenge. There are lot of commercial timber lots butted up to the AT boundary in Maine and it real important that the line be well marked. There was a large timber trespass on the AT in Maine several years ago where the State of Maine logged an adjacent lot and cut into the NPS AT corridor. The boundary was not marked as the assumption was that state preserved land would not be cut.

    The bummer is that the original NPS boundary from the big relocation in the seventies and eighties in Maine was ax blazed and painted where the bark was cut on the tree. In the intervening years the trees have either died due to the wound from the blaze or has substantially healed up the ax blaze. Paint lasts a heck of lot longer on an ax blaze then it does on bark.

  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by ocourse View Post
    Any thing unnatural is trash and can be removed. The nay-sayers are usually the leave no trace folks.
    We are all Leave No Trace folks. Leave the tape alone and move on. It's there for a reason.

  6. #26
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    It's never occurred to me to take any of those kinds of things down. I wondered what's that about? But that's about it. Keep walking

  7. #27
    Registered User Tennessee Viking's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by V Eight View Post
    It's never occurred to me to take any of those kinds of things down. I wondered what's that about? But that's about it. Keep walking
    I flagged a number of re-routes and worked a lot trail at Falls Lake.
    ''Tennessee Viking'
    Mountains to Sea Trail Maintainer
    Former TEHCC (AT) Maintainer
    Falls Lake Trail: 2011

  8. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by ocourse View Post
    Any thing unnatural is trash and can be removed. The nay-sayers are usually the leave no trace folks.
    so also remove survey markers? (in violation of federal law)

  9. #29
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    Just move it to somewhere it doesn't look so bad.

    Sent from my VS995 using Tapatalk

  10. #30
    4eyedbuzzard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ocourse View Post
    It's litter. Remove it if you like. I do it often.
    Quote Originally Posted by ocourse View Post
    Any thing unnatural is trash and can be removed. The nay-sayers are usually the leave no trace folks.
    Quote Originally Posted by Stikbow View Post
    It really doesn't matter who put it out there. It's litter. If you want to remove it, go ahead. The odds that whomever put it out there coming back to retrieve it are quite low.
    Yeah, just do as you please without having a clue as to why or by who the ribbons were placed. So if I find your tent unoccupied while you're off getting water its okay if I haul it off as trash? Because it's unnatural litter at that point, right? /sarc

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