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Kim Brown
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PostTue Sep 25, 2018 11:19 am 
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The Mountaineers blog

Good article about what we need to do.

But it offers no suggestions; no one has the means to do it, I guess.

What I like about this article is that it doesn’t harsh only on the new hikers today; Romano discusses the earlier wave of hikers ignorant about taking care of the land. Each generation has its negative impact, and each generation deals with how to reduce that impact.

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" I'm really happy about this! … I have very strong good and horrible memories up there."  – oldgranola, NWH’s outdoors advocate.
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Token Civilian
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PostTue Sep 25, 2018 2:17 pm 
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Great article.

I think the suggestions are pretty apparent - newer people engaged in d'bag behavior, knock it off.  You aren't some special snowflake who gets to do what you want.  You have to behave per the norms of this (hiking) society, else it'll be absolutely destroyed.  Turn the stupid speakers off.  Quit dropping the surface deuce bombs or leaving the zombie TP wads.  Pack out what you pack in.  Don't trample the heck out of sensitive terrain.  Etc, etc, etc.

And when you're called on your ill mannered behavior, it's not someone "hating"** on you - it's you "hating" on the environment.
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Kim Brown
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PostTue Sep 25, 2018 3:41 pm 
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The ideas I was looking for are something different than yelling at people who aren't reading the article.

I'm looking for ideas on how organizations can engage these people. Many new hikers don't belong to organizations in the first place, so how would they know to read this or other articles? The Mountaineers has already re-vamped their courses to match the way younger adults want to learn. Messaging for LNT ethics should also be changed in a way that captures new hikers.

Admonishing and calling them names on a blog they don't read won't work.

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" I'm really happy about this! … I have very strong good and horrible memories up there."  – oldgranola, NWH’s outdoors advocate.
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Ski
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PostTue Sep 25, 2018 7:06 pm 
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"Your Stoke Won't Save Us" discussion thread of 05/15/18

At the time the above thread was active, there was also another thread at the same time about the impact "social media" was having on outdoor recreation.

This is definitely not a new subject. We all know what the problem is, but nobody seems to have a solution.

It might be worth considering putting some pressure on outdoor gear retailers (like REI) to push the message in their marketing campaigns. They're making a lot of money peddling gear - they should step up to the plate and take a leadership role.

Just my lousy two cents, as always.

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I have heard the mermaids singing, each to each."
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Token Civilian
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PostWed Sep 26, 2018 9:01 am 
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...the way younger adults want to learn....

Note that I'm not trying to be crabby on this, but it will come across that way.

Well, I want a pony.
I want a new car.
I want a high tech job that is fulfilling.
I want this.
I want that.

That's precisely the problem.  The problem individuals want to go hither and yon and do what they want to do, free from constraints or consequences.

Out in the field at least, berating at the time of the ill mannered behavior is a very appropriate form of social pressure.  Cat gets spay bottled when it is doing something it shouldn't be doing.  Eventually it learns not to do that.  'Bout the same as a verbal rebuke, IMO.  Same with people having fires during fire bans - start dumping water on them, then call them dumb@$$es when they gripe.  Suddenly yelling "Hey!!!!" from close range at someone with stupid speakers, then pointing out that "I don't like loud noises disturbing the peace of the woods, either".  An announced strategy of "tit for tat" in a multi-stage prisoners dilemma game is one way to increase the level of cooperation (and even worked in the cold war - retaliation in kind / Mutually Assured Destruction).

The trouble is, too many people think the above is wrong.  The facts are a strategy of "only carrots" doesn't work.  "Sticks", in this context, social pressure sticks, are required as well.  If more thought the above was right, and did it or some variation of it, the behavior in question would be suppressed.  No one likes being yelled at all the time - kind of makes the activity "not fun".  If everyone knew that nearly every other person in the woods would come over and yell at them and douse their illegal campfire, far fewer illegal campfires would be lit.  To be blunt, the outdoors SHOULD be "not fun" for those that engage in behaviors that abuse it.

Old lesson from Poly Sci 101 is that there are 3 ways to get people to do things:
1)  Convince them.  In this context, LNT education, internalize proper conservation behavior, etc.  Generally produces high quality products and high levels of compliance as people are internally motivated.

2)  Pay them.  People respond to monetary or other resource incentives that are received as a result of proper behavior.  IMO, not practical to pay people to not surface deuce or not cut switchbacks, so not going to suggest it.  Quality varies with how closely tied the payment is for the desired behavior.  Can get high quality, but also can get the minimum absolutely necessary to receive the payment.

3)  Force them.  Force comes in a continuum.  In this context and what I state above, the low level of force I suggest is social pressure.  Yelling (not necessarily literally, but it could be, as yelling is up the force scale from a scolding delivered in a normal tone) as social pressure is a form of force.  Dousing the jerks illegal campfire is force (physically preventing that fire from continuing is forcing compliance).  Force typically results in only minimal compliance to avoid the force applied.  In this context this characteristic might be a feature, not a bug to achieving the goal. A d'bag not in the woods so as to avoid being yelled at for surface deucing, cutting switchbacks or playing their stupid speakers achieves the goal of eliminating surface deucing, cutting switchbacks and playing of speakers in the woods.  A jerk that stops going camping because they don't like being hassled and having their illegal campfire doused achieves the goal of stopping illegal campfires.

Of course, if this level of force, social pressure, doesn't work to tamp down the bad behavior (since, quite frankly Kim, I agree with your statement and sentiment that some people do not respond to 1, being convinced), then we get a higher level of force to protect our public lands from abuse, like it or not.  See the Enchantments permit system for an example, where Johnny and Jane LEO Rangers use the full coercive power of the state on us, and hassle even those that already are at (1) above.  I don't like this level of force applied to hiking so will use any and all means to avoid getting to this stage.  But, when nothing else works (see 1 and social pressure 3 above) I expect my public land to be protected from abuse.  So, Johnny and Jane Law it is as the last resort.
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Kim Brown
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PostFri Sep 28, 2018 10:40 am 
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Craig Romano, Guidebook Author's Facebook page shared this, a ban on amplified music on a trail in Vancouver, BC.

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" I'm really happy about this! … I have very strong good and horrible memories up there."  – oldgranola, NWH’s outdoors advocate.
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tod701
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PostSat Sep 29, 2018 7:52 am 
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While I fully support yelling at d-bags, there often seems to be significant disconnect between the d-bag noticing that they have pissed you off and the possibility that they have done anything wrong.

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Tod
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Ski
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PostSat Sep 29, 2018 9:31 pm 
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Token Civilian wrote:
Same with people having fires during fire bans - start dumping water on them, then call them dumb@$$es when they gripe.

Please be sure to shoot video (or at least take notes) the next time you do this in the real world and let us know how it works out for you.

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"I shall wear white flannel trousers, and walk upon the beach. 
I have heard the mermaids singing, each to each."
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Token Civilian
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PostSun Sep 30, 2018 7:23 pm 
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Will do Ski.

Been doing that kind of stuff for a while.  Heck, I did on the d-bag bike poachers on Tiger Mtn.  Jerks ('bout a dozen in an obviously organized ride) threatened GF and I....I didn't care.  Told them to bring it on as I filmed them.  Walked up within a few feet of each one of them to get good video of them.  Only one was mouthy.  Same the d-bag poachers on the PCT down near Sierra City back on the thru hike.
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Forum Index > Stewardship > Craig Romano and stewardship article
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