Forum Index > Trail Talk > WTA Endangered Trails Report - whatcha think?
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Newt
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PostFri May 31, 2002 5:21 pm 
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http://www.wta.org/~wta/cgi-bin/web10.pl?Advocacy+nw+nd+news68
The outdoors is big $. Time for the Gov"t too do their share? Or will they try to get their share of the pot?
NN confused.gif

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It's pretty safe to say that if we take all of man kinds accumulated knowledge, we still don't know everything. So, I hope you understand why I don't believe you know everything. But then again, maybe you do.
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REJ
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PostMon Jun 03, 2002 7:37 am 
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Link to a Seattle Times article on the top 10 list

Seattle Times
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MtnGoat
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PostMon Jun 03, 2002 8:39 am 
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They make a few good points about some of the areas listed, I have to disagree with their stance on Gallager Head lake. Having one high lake out of *hundreds* in the immediate region reachable by 4x4 or motorcycle is not the end of the world. I realize their function is to campaign for their user group no matter what, but other folks deserve access too.

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Diplomacy is the art of saying 'Nice doggie' until you can find a rock. - Will Rogers
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Stefan
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PostMon Jun 03, 2002 10:09 am 
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Interesting point Mtngoat.  Does the WTA try to work with these groups, (snowmobilers, motorcyclists, 4X4s) to share the backcountry, or do they oppose these groups no matter what the issue?

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Art is an adventure.
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REJ
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PostMon Jun 03, 2002 12:03 pm 
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I thought it was a good idea for the WTA to generate a PR blurb to highlight trails at risk.  The final list was a disappointed since most of the trails on the list don't really appear "endangered."  Four of the trails (Golden Horn, Esmeralda Basin, Boundary and Grassy Knoll) are said to be endangered by motorized vehicles. Circle Peak was relocated due to logging although the good news is that the trail is slated to be reconstructed in the future.  Mineral Creek is threatend by vine maple.  White River/Indian Creek is endangered because it difficult to maintain trails in wilderness areas.  The Necklace Valley Trail is treatened by the loss of funds generated by user fees.  Big Creek Trail is threatend by the loss of trailhead (finally an endangered trail or trailhead).  Last on the list is the Skyline Loop which doesn't get the maintenance it needs (like thread restoration!).  The list is a political document that illustrates the range of trail issues but not really a list of trail that are endangered.  What about including trails that are at risk from logging, lack of public access, washouts, lack of maintainance or have been abandoned by neglect.  Maybe next years list will include one or more of the following:  Marten Creek, Marble Gulch, Falls Creek, Finney Peak, Newhalen Creek, Swift Creek, South Fork Cascade River
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MtnGoat
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PostMon Jun 03, 2002 12:07 pm 
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IMO the WTA makes noises about sharing resources, as in their comment in the GH region blurb that "motorized use has it's place" or some such, but in their actions I've never seen them work for sharing. They consistently favor closures and exclusions.

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Diplomacy is the art of saying 'Nice doggie' until you can find a rock. - Will Rogers
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Timber Cruiser
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PostMon Jun 03, 2002 12:15 pm 
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The outdoors is big $. Time for the Gov"t too do their share? Or will they try to get their share of the pot?

NN

The government doesn't have or generate any money that doesn't come initially from us taxpayers.  To realize any value ($) from outdoor recreation on public lands there will have to be a sale or lease transaction or a use tax.  None of these type of programs can be run efficiently by the government, so expect very little of the $ generated to actually go to the intended use (in this case trail maintenance).

Why don't trail advocacy groups utilize the state initiative process and levy a tax on outdoor recreation equipment sales for trail construction and maintenence funding?  They're collecting signatures for one in Seattle currently to tax espresso drinks to generate money for early child education.  That's not even a cause and effect issue!  Apparently anything more than a plain coffee is deemed discretionary spending (a sin tax!) and you certainly couldn't deny children a better education if you have extra money to spend could you?  A poll showed that over 70% of people in the Seattle area would be in favor of such a tax.  As we know from other initiatives that have passed in recent years that involve emotional issues (ie. trapping and hunting bans) the Puget Sound area has enough votes to swing any initiative placed on the ballot.  I'm sure with a good campaign you could persuade these same people that they need to pay a little extra for that sleeping pad or trekking pole to save our trails.

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"Logging encourages the maintenance of foilage by providing economic alternatives to development."
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REJ
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PostMon Jun 03, 2002 12:37 pm 
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The WTA has been consistent in opposing motorized use on trails in National Forest lands.  As a hiker I generally avoid areas where heavy ATV use occurs.  To much noise and smell. I notice that most private forest landowners welcome nonmotorized use on their lands but vigorously enforce a ban on ATV use.  I don't think private forests are much concerned with noise and smell.
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Karen
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PostMon Jun 03, 2002 12:44 pm 
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Once again I experience the curse (or the blessing) of being able to see both sides of a controversial issue. Rather than try to figure out which side I "should" be on I'll report on what we encountered recently on the Yellow Hill trail in the Teanaway. Hiked there years ago late in the season and got to Elbow Peak -- a strenuous and enjoyable hike with good views and good trail. The trail was open to motorcycles then but we didn't see any. When we returned last week we found that things had changed.  

For starters, the access road to the "trailhead" can no longer be driven by most cars as there is a sizeable berm. It's OK for bikes and past the berm the road was in such good shape it was almost embarrassing to hike it. The last visit, you could drive part-way up this road -- it was rough but not bermed. Even my old car could make it. But that was then. There is no sign for the "lower" trailhead -- it's a track that hooks up to another track and yes, it's steep but it becomes more trail-like as you climb. Not bad. Lots of flowers, good views, long ridges, nobody else around. On our way back we followed the other track which leads to the "upper" trailhead, which is also unsigned except for a sign that says the trail was rebuilt in 2000 by a motorcycle club. Whatever our beliefs about multiple-use may be, at least this local motorcycle club appreciates this area enough to spend time there and work on the trail. Personally, I don't mind sharing some of these places with other users (notice, I said "some", not all).

There are simply too many of us. We can't have it our way all of the time. Maybe if we'd all be satisified with a little "less" there would be "enough" for us all.

Karen

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stay together, learn the flowers, go light - from Turtle Island, Gary Snyder
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Newt
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PostMon Jun 03, 2002 7:04 pm 
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It would have been nice to see the list filled with trails that were truly endangered. To include those that aren?t could be a downfall.

My thought on this was would it provide more pressure on the feds to take action on at least maintaining trails and those that are about to become extinct. You know, kick in more of their share? Or would it give them the attitude of ?Gee, look at all the big bucks being spent here. Lets raise the fees?. Or like Timber Cruiser stated a use tax on outdoor equipment & supplies whether they see the great outdoors or not. Politically it?s just another reason to make/raise/apply more fees with minimal return to those that pay them. But I also think that outdoor recreation has become too diversified to be able to please everyone. We all have to make some sacrifices. Too think that the PCT would be open to motorized vehicles is, IMO, scrilegious.

The way I see it, if it isn?t a necessity for life then it?s fair game for more taxation. A special tax on espresso? That?s low.
NN frown.gif

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It's pretty safe to say that if we take all of man kinds accumulated knowledge, we still don't know everything. So, I hope you understand why I don't believe you know everything. But then again, maybe you do.
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Forum Index > Trail Talk > WTA Endangered Trails Report - whatcha think?
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