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What do you do...?

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What do you do...?
October 14, 2014 12:05PM
When do you speak up?

Since many of the contributors on these forums are very experienced backpackers, I thought I’d share this survey that came out of an on-going correspondence with a couple of rangers in our wilderness areas. So here is the scene: You are a backpacker two days in from a trailhead. You find someone in the wilderness doing the following activity. Do you

A. Ignore the activity and hike away?
B. Notify them that the activity violates USFS policy?
C. Notify them that the activity violates USFS policy and ask them to stop?
D. Take a photo to document the activity?
E. Step in and stop/fix the problem?
F. Report the activity to the authorities when you hike out?
G. Other?

And the activities we identified;

1.Building a new fire ring
2.Chopping up or down a tree for fire wood
3.Hiking with a dog where it is forbidden
4.Fishing with bait in a fly-fishing only stream
5.Feeding wildlife
6.Leaving a fire or coals unattended
7.Littering
8.Hiking in a group that is larger than allowed
9.Camping in an illegal area or illegal/closed campsite
10.Mining with a pick and shovel

This is not intended to start a firestorm---it is a serious attempt to ask folks here what they would do. And since I am posing the question, it’s only fair that I provide the first set of answers:

1.Building a new fire ring—never seen someone actually doing this. Probably B
2.Chopping up or down a tree for fire wood. B, C, D, F
3.Hiking with a dog where it is forbidden. B and/or C, D and F.
4.Fishing with bait in a fly-fishing only stream. B
5.Feeding wildlife. B, C….maybe more. I haven’t seen this
6.Leaving a fire or coals unattended. E, certainly. Maybe B, C and F
7.Littering. E, usually. We always pack out trash. If I see someone doing it, then B.
8.Hiking in a group that is larger than allowed. B?
9.Camping in an illegal area or illegal/closed campsite. B or C? D and maybe F.
10.Mining with a pick and shovel. B, C, D, F

Those aren’t perfect answers, I know. But it’s what I have done over the past ten years or so. And of course it all depends on the situation—if there are more of them than us, I am less likely to try to take a more active role, for obvious reasons.



Balzaccom

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Re: What do you do...?
October 14, 2014 04:47PM
How about this one. A group of people were camping on the bank of the Tuolumne River in Lyle Canyon(aka bear central). What would you do...? Take a piece of salami out of your bear canister and leave it near their camp.
OK, I didn't actually do that, but came close to doing it.
Re: What do you do...?
October 15, 2014 08:01AM
Fires unattended left smoldering, always do E, step in and put them out. Honestly seen that one way too many times.
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