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Eastern Sierra Dispersed Camping Summit: Dealing with The Hordes


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#1 MarkBC

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Posted 17 February 2021 - 05:54 AM

Good stuff to consider, in one of my favorite areas:

Eastern Sierra Dispersed Camping Summit: Dealing with The Hordes 

 

Intro from the article:

"The Eastern Sierra was ill prepared for the waves of Southern Californians literally heading for the hills during last summer’s COVID-19 restrictions and fears..."

 


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#2 craig333

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Posted 17 February 2021 - 05:54 PM

Maybe if we taught tread lightly in Elementary School some of it would stick for the next pandemic. I'm just glad there are still some dispersed spots out there if you know where to go.


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#3 ski3pin

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Posted 17 February 2021 - 11:21 PM

Leave No Trace covers it all.

 

 

As much as education and reinforcement of good behaviors helps, the impact of the extreme number of visitors has to be addressed.


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#4 LuckyDan

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Posted 18 February 2021 - 05:25 AM

An interesting read to me for a number of reasons. I personally like and think it’s important to read/get informed about issues and opinions concerning recreation and people’s use of the public domain. Including those places I don’t frequent or haven’t frequented in a long time. Thanks for sharing.
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#5 teledork

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Posted 20 February 2021 - 09:46 PM

I read a comment on a news article this past summer. The commenter stated that he was not going to visit the Eastern Sierra anymore because we stress the importance of "tread lightly" principles. So yeah - that is the kind of person we dealt with last summer.

Yeah - I live here in Mono County and I filled my camper with Hefty bags full of garbage at least once a week from June - August. It was horribly sad and disgusting (picking up used toilet paper and diapers - I had a dedicated pair of work gloves since I could not get any disposables) I began communicating with various county offices in an attempt to get some assistance such as a dump waiver and more receptacles and/or more frequent pick-up. I got a lot of words. Worthless words. IMO the office of tourism needs to use the money they spend exclusively on advertising and use it to clean up after their guests (they need to take a lesson from All Terrain Campers - who needs advertising when you have a stellar product?) Yeah - I am not very popular with county government but of what use is getting old if you still have to care what other people think? And before anyone else starts in on "tourism pays for county services" they need to be prepared to answer some questions (they never have and probably never will but I won't stop asking)

In comparison to property taxes what amount of money do tourists put in the county coffers?

Why has the county (on behalf of business owners and possibly to provide services to residents - see question above) chosen to externalize many of the costs of tourism by forcing residents to either live with the horrifying amounts of garbage (and additional fire danger) clean it up and pay to dispose of it* or just stay home and watch television making pretend the land we love is not being trashed by people who don't seem to give a **** about anything but taking selfies and monetizing their youtube schtick?

It becomes abundantly clear that the quality of life of the residents of this county is not valued as highly as the money from the people who come and trash the place.

It was not just the garbage. They closed the beach at June Lake one Saturday because people were parking all over, getting in fist fights and driving ATVs on the crowded beach. That was at the exact same time I was being threatened by some "local"punks near Mono Lake - I probably could not have received any LEO assistance even if I had called and I believe the punks, who insisted I was a not a "local" had every intention of doing me harm if I dared to look at them the "wrong" way (another externalized cost of a tourist economy) Add to the problem that most of the land being used is Forest Service and their enforcement is spread real thin in Inyo. And then it came to light that Humboldt/Toiyabe NF had not budgeted for and hired any law enforcement personal in the Bridgeport district for going on two years now.

I wonder what the homes of these trashy people look like. I wonder if they ever intend to return to the location they have trashed (I think not) and if so do they give any thought to what happened to the **** they left behind? I wonder if we should stop picking up after them but that would mean loss of use of much of the county unless you don't mind sitting amongst used diapers and empty malt liquor cans. Some people insist that trashed places attract more trash and clean places inspire decency. Bull****. I have photos and dump receipts that say otherwise. I cleaned up the same places over and over and over again.

We need enforcement. We need money to fund it. We need to get those funds from those who benefit from tourism - including the tourists.. If someone can prove to me that I receive more services than are covered by my property tax and use fees I will happily pay my share but until then it pisses me off that I have to pick up after other people's guests (the county, on behalf of business owners, invites them) and pay to dispose of it* at the same time that I am unable to enjoy my home county because I am sick of picking up dirty toilet paper and can't find a place to park anyway. Thank goodness I am still physically able to backpack and there is still a "shoulder" season but really - what the hell has happened to basic human decency?

* Most of the trash was much greater in volume than weight so my loads rarely cost more than then minimum $5 tipping fee (250 pounds) But the scale at the nearby dump/transfer station was damaged by fire and we are now paying by the can/bag. Some of the loads I hauled last summer would now cost me $20-$30, likely more than $100/month. If the scale is not repaired I'll have to stop picking up trash or pay the cost or drive 60 miles round trip to the nearest dump with a scale, or see what happens when I deposit the bags of tourist trash on the doorstep of the county officer of tourism - but that would also be a long drive. To dispose of other people's ****y toilet paper.

Is this a rant? Sorry - not sorry. Calling the trash people pigs is an insult to pigs.

signed - Mono County Misanthrope

Edited by teledork, 20 February 2021 - 10:03 PM.

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#6 craig333

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Posted 21 February 2021 - 04:18 AM

I can only hope the new administration funds the forest service at a level where they can fund law enforcement. Why people trash the environment in the first place? I don't know. My dad would have me pick up anything I tossed out the window. I took a work friend camping one time, he tossed a beer can out the window. I stopped the truck and made him pick it up. Did it make an impression? I hope so. 

 

If I see an otherwise clean camp but it has some trash in the campfire I cut people some slack for that. 


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#7 teledork

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Posted 21 February 2021 - 03:25 PM


 

 


 

 

 



 

If I see an otherwise clean camp but it has some trash in the campfire I cut people some slack for that. 

I often break up fire rings. They attract garbage and allow idiots to think a campfire is okay regardless of anything else. When my house is right over the ridge from the smoldering coals left behind I kinda take that a little personally.

 

But I have seen little flags that the FS (or someone) places in the middle of a ring to indicate a fire ban. I do leave fire rings alone when they are in a safe and reasonable location.  

 

This is not a safe and reasonable location.

IMG_3500.JPG


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#8 Vic Harder

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Posted 21 February 2021 - 08:21 PM

 

 

This is not a safe and reasonable location.

attachicon.gifIMG_3500.JPG

 

That's nuts!


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#9 craig333

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Posted 22 February 2021 - 12:24 AM

Yeah, I'd ask what were they thinking but obviously they weren't thinking at all :(


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#10 goinoregon

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Posted 22 February 2021 - 12:32 AM

i think the forest service should start charging annual recreation fees.  and use this $ for maintenance, etc.

many of the major rivers in the west already follow this model, requiring passes, and charge fees (they also reduce entry at times). and this model works, and in my opinion has not reduced usage

i have used the deschutes river in oregon for years, and all boaters require a permit, and charge fees.  they use the $ to fund boat ramp maintence, outhouses, garbage removal, etc.  it works.  my only complaint is they dont charge the hikers and bikers - but that may change.

go


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