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      Is it just the numbers or has attitude changed in the outdoor crowd?     
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Pinetree
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07/07/2020 09:59AM
 
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Pinetree
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07/07/2020 10:01AM
For those who could not access the above:
Some campers wanted a better view of the lake from their public campground in the Superior National Forest. So they cut down some trees.
“You think something as basic as that wouldn’t happen,” said Trent Wickman of the U.S. Forest Service, but many travelers are forgetting to pack their wilderness etiquette.
North Shore locals are losing patience with careless visitors trashing trails and campsites, with one resident saying: “We and Cook County are not here for you to beat us up.”
Tourism-dependent communities like Grand Marais were already torn between encouraging visitors or keeping them — and the spread of COVID-19 — at bay. In the height of the pandemic, it has been busier than ever.
“We’ve seen holiday weekend levels nearly every day,” Wickman said.

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Ely outfitter Steve Piragis said it’s a “paradox.”
“It’s the only pandemic of our lifetime and we’re having the busiest summer of our lifetime,” he said, and while that’s great for business, some visitors are showing “a lack of regard for authority and for regulation.”
It could be more first-time campers who would normally be playing baseball over the summer, he hypothesized, or maybe those heading into the Boundary Waters aren’t watching the required videos.
Whatever the cause, some of those heading north are not packing out what they pack in.
“There’s a different psychology this year — the world is in a disruptive mode, people are maybe caring less,” Piragis said. “?‘The world is coming to an end so we’ll do whatever the hell we want to do.’?”
The majority of visitors have been following the rules, but those taking axes to pines or leaving food tins in latrines are more numerous than in recent years.
“Ultimately we need to manage use so we have a sustainable situation here,” Wickman said. “We’d like to put an end to this.”
The carelessness hasn’t been contained to the woods.
On a residential road outside Grand Marais on a recent June morning, local residents came upon a sight most foul: An RV septic tank had been emptied off the side of the road rather than disposed of properly less than 3 miles away.
Nina Simonowicz, who runs the popular North Shore Visitor site and Facebook page, decided to speak out after the dump discovery.
“It’s a little bit like parenting a toddler,” she said. “If you don’t say something chances are they’re going to keep acting this way.”
Simonowicz has for decades been urging visitors to come up the North Shore. For the first time, because of the stresses of the pandemic and continued business closures and restrictions, she’s telling folks to think twice, or at least think harder, before driving up.
“People are leaving trash, even in the Boundary Waters, not digging trenches to go to the bathroom, going into closed campgrounds, and in my mind, you just didn’t plan,” she said.
Grand Marais photographer Bryan Hansel said bad apples need to be called out, turned in and educated.
“This year there has been an abnormally high level of disrespect shown to the land and people who live here,” he wrote in a Facebook post last week that has been shared more than 1,600 times. “With so much pain, anger and hate out there right now because of this pandemic, everyone needs to find a piece of joy. And if people continue to show a lack of respect, destroy the land here and act terribly, the little piece of joy that can be found here might disappear.”
On Monday he said by phone that he’s heard from friends in tourist-heavy areas around the country that it’s much the same — visitors are showing up without knowing what to expect or what is expected of them.
Visit Cook County, the area’s tourism bureau, said “there is no janitor in the wilderness” and that folks need to follow the principles of Leave No Trace more than ever.
“This philosophy is not just for backcountry campers,” the group said. “It is critical that we do what we can to mitigate damage to our environment.”


Brooks Johnson writes about the Duluth/Superior region. He joined the Star Tribune in 2019. Sign up to receive the new North Report newsletter.
 
Pinetree
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07/07/2020 10:03AM
Its interesting also businesses at least some are having best year ever. Much is due to no summer activities to youth and social distancing etc.

There always has been that crowd who disrespect wild areas and people maybe it is just the number of people present and maybe some that usually don't go outdoors.

Maybe even resources outside of the BWCA overwhelmed?

 
Pinetree
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07/07/2020 10:16AM
 
jhb8426
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07/07/2020 04:11PM
I think it's a lot of inexperienced people, some who don't know any better and some who just don't give a damn.
 
Portage99
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07/07/2020 06:58PM
As silly as it sounds, I’m not sure some people grasp that it’s Protected wilderness and not like a local campground. The real question is what’s the solution? Education, higher fines, more rangers...

I noticed this at our local parks also. The last five years there has been a definite increase in visitors and jaw-dropping behavior. Three times now I have seen personal parties under a local state park waterfall. I’ve never seen that before. I don’t know how they even get their coolers back there.

I have a personal pet peeve trend. The latest thing seems to be to carry a personal music device and play your music out loud while you hike. I don’t understand this. I would never do this. First, I don’t listen to music when I hike. But, if I did I would wear headphones. It would be obvious to me that people don’t want to hear my music and probably don’t have the same taste in music as me. They obviously have no idea it’s bad etiquette. Very friendly and smiling as they pass me. It’s becoming more common and it’s depressing.

Formal groups to introduce people to the outdoors have declined. Where do we learn good behavior in wilderness/ natural area’s?
 
justpaddlin
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07/07/2020 07:25PM
I think it's both attitudes and numbers that are driving selfish/disrespectful behavior.

Just a few days ago I passed some kayakers on a local river that were listening to music. Disappointing.

Just yesterday I was paddling from my favorite local put-in, a farm where the local farmer lets me launch since we're friends and I help him watch his property. When I came back to the put-in/take-out there were two kayakers wandering around. I told them they were on private property. They told me they were just taking a break to check their phones. One was anxious to leave and the other seemed almost belligerent; he said "you must see a lot of people doing weird stuff here". He apparently thought that they were GOOD trespassers. If it was my property I'd prosecute since I think everyone would understand the $500 first offense fine and personally given their attitude it seems clear they'll continue their behavior unless there is a penalty. I think it makes sense to get the first offense documented since I imagine the second offense would have bigger, well-earned penalties that might alter their behavior. It just seems so selfish and disrespectful to me; these two guys were not kids.
 
Pinetree
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07/07/2020 07:55PM
justpaddlin: "I think it's both attitudes and numbers that are driving selfish/disrespectful behavior.


Just a few days ago I passed some kayakers on a local river that were listening to music. Disappointing.


Just yesterday I was paddling from my favorite local put-in, a farm where the local farmer lets me launch since we're friends and I help him watch his property. When I came back to the put-in/take-out there were two kayakers wandering around. I told them they were on private property. They told me they were just taking a break to check their phones. One was anxious to leave and the other seemed almost belligerent; he said "you must see a lot of people doing weird stuff here". He apparently thought that they were GOOD trespassers. If it was my property I'd prosecute since I think everyone would understand the $500 first offense fine and personally given their attitude it seems clear they'll continue their behavior unless there is a penalty. I think it makes sense to get the first offense documented since I imagine the second offense would have bigger, well-earned penalties that might alter their behavior. It just seems so selfish and disrespectful to me; these two guys were not kids."


Remember a incident about 30 years ago. We went in a day before season opener for trout and walleye. We got checked by the game Warden -which was great and had a good talk. A few days later coming out we heard they pinched a couple of people for fishing early.
What amazed me and impressed me was only a couple of people got pinched, but it spread like wild fire and every canoe or camp we passed out new about it and mentioned it. The point is a few people getting pinched or just a ranger or game warden present spreads and many people shape up.
 
jhb8426
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07/07/2020 08:56PM
Portage99: "I have a personal pet peeve trend. The latest thing seems to be to carry a personal music device and play your music out loud while you hike. I don’t understand this. I would never do this. First, I don’t listen to music when I hike. But, if I did I would wear headphones. It would be obvious to me that people don’t want to hear my music and probably don’t have the same taste in music as me..."

Totally agree. Never understood why people feel they have to share their music with everyone. There was some yahoo with a big ski boat with the megaphone speakers mounted on the overhead tow bar. Could hear it all over the lake, much louder when the speakers were pointed at us. Same loving feelings for the boombox cars up and down the road.
 
07/08/2020 04:38AM
jhb8426: "Portage99: "I have a personal pet peeve trend. The latest thing seems to be to carry a personal music device and play your music out loud while you hike. I don’t understand this. I would never do this. First, I don’t listen to music when I hike. But, if I did I would wear headphones. It would be obvious to me that people don’t want to hear my music and probably don’t have the same taste in music as me..."
Totally agree. Never understood why people feel they have to share their music with everyone. There was some yahoo with a big ski boat with the megaphone speakers mounted on the overhead tow bar. Could hear it all over the lake, much louder when the speakers were pointed at us. Same loving feelings for the boombox cars up and down the road."

Yeah, I live next to our town beach. It’s amazing how many people come and crank their car stereos while they take a quick swim. And also how busy it is compared to any other year. It’s been packed lots of times. They service the porta pots on Mondays, and by the weekend - whew they stink! Lots of garbage... every other day, there is a blowup swimming device in a garbage can. Heavy, and boy, those can add up in a landfill.
 
KarlBAndersen1
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07/08/2020 06:50AM
We stayed at Sawbill Campground the night before an early entry at Kawishiwi. It was like staying at an outdoor concert campground. Parties and laughter until the wee hours. No respect for others.
 
mschi772
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07/08/2020 07:25AM
KarlBAndersen1: "We stayed at Sawwbill Campground the night before an early entry at Kawishiwi. It was like staying at an outdoor concert campground. Parties and laughter until the wee hours.
No respect for others."


This kind of stuff is why I'm always so hesitant to camp at any of my WI state parks. I wish I could enjoy them more, but almost every time I try, it is spoiled by others.
 
ZaraSp00k
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07/08/2020 07:27AM
case in point: WI
After first making all state parks free after the virus shutdown, they closed all state parks south of the WI river due to trashing the parks.

I visited every park north of the river, and every MN park south of Duluth on the east side of the state, although busy, people were respectful of the parks and others. I suspect less city folks visited these parks.

I could not believe all the trash left in parks in Minneapolis after Saturday the 4th, I had gone for a bike ride on the Grand Rounds, the worst was spent fireworks left everywhere, but then I saw the same thing in my neighborhood in the burbs, found it on my roof, deck, and yard, let's face it, a-holes are drawn to things like that

This is why every time I see a post by someone who wonders how to increase use of the outdoors, I cringe. Why would you want to? If people are happy with a six pack and a bonfire in their back yard, why encourage them to go elsewhere? The parks are better off without them.
 
Portage99
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07/08/2020 08:15AM
I always say camping at State campgrounds it’s like playing Russian roulette. You never know what you’re going to get. I’ve had fantastic, quiet experiences. And, nightmare experiences.

I am increasingly attracted to winter camping because of the solitude. Always fearful of the dreaded generator though. I have a few hidden spots that nobody knows about in my area. I’ve never seen anybody there. So, I’m thankful for that. Can’t camp there overnight however.

Because of the population increase, I do think it’s harder to find solitude. And definitely harder to find quiet. There used to be a website that showed the decreasing lack of true quiet.

I’m wondering what the solution is. I think kids need to be taught outdoor ethics young. But with a decrease in organize camping and parents unaware...I am all for hefty fines to keep things under control. Especially in sensitive areas.

 
jfinn
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07/08/2020 08:23AM
Littering and carelessness baffles me. If you are out enjoying the peace and beauty of nature, why would you scare it? I was playing frisbee golf at a free city course that had trash cans within sight and people left beer cans and coffee drink cups at picnic tables. Why? I just can't connect the thinking there. The guys I was with mentioned it first while I was thinking about it. Is it thinking that "someone else" will clean up, not caring or just too dumb to even think and know what they are doing? I am more likely to go with too dumb.

The numbers this summer have people out that don't understand, clearly. I also belive that the education isn't there. Everyone should have to watch the video to get a permit for the B-Dub. Period. I was thinking that it is possible to have the video then a quiz prior to permit booking. We need more rangers also and as much as I enjoy my freedoms, people just can't be left unchecked. In some 30 trips I have been checked once and how many times has an outfitter in past years asked "have you watched the video?" Make me watch it and quiz me because everyone needs to know.

On a side note, I was at the portage with the pick-up boat shuttle (Prairie Portage?) and there were mabey 6 motor boats waiting at the dock area. I thought after I paddled away that they clearly weren't on the right page, I wondered if they watch the video and does the employee (ranger?) ever educate while giving them a lift over?

 
Northland
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07/08/2020 12:54PM
jhb8426: "I think it's a lot of inexperienced people, some who don't know any better and some who just don't give a damn. "

There's always the ones who don't give a damn. And I think there are a lot more of the inexperienced ilk due to the virus - i.e. nothing else to do.

Since around late March or early April I've seen a lot of people on public land doing things like cutting locks on gates and leaving huge piles of trash. This happens in normal times, but not at the current rate.

I've also seen way more ATV traffic, with more reckless/unsafe use than normally. Then there are the vehicles in remote places that have no business being there, as if the occupants were simply wandering around out of boredom and ended up driving their Kia Soul down an old railroad grade until it halted in the mud.
 
Pinetree
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07/08/2020 02:17PM
Northland: "jhb8426: "I think it's a lot of inexperienced people, some who don't know any better and some who just don't give a damn. "


There's always the ones who don't give a damn. And I think there are a lot more of the inexperienced ilk due to the virus - i.e. nothing else to do.


Since around late March or early April I've seen a lot of people on public land doing things like cutting locks on gates and leaving huge piles of trash. This happens in normal times, but not at the current rate.


I've also seen way more ATV traffic, with more reckless/unsafe use than normally. Then there are the vehicles in remote places that have no business being there, as if the occupants were simply wandering around out of boredom and ended up driving their Kia Soul down an old railroad grade until it halted in the mud."


Yes ATV traffic is up and many think they can go anywhere they please.
 
Pinetree
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07/09/2020 08:57AM
I see MN state Park use is up 50% and they say a lot of new comers in the park.
 
merlyn
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07/09/2020 11:23AM
I agree with most of the complaints heard here and could probably add a few more but that won't solve the problem. I say something only when I am sure I won't get my ass shot off and pick up and clean up after them if they won't do it on their own. Within reason!! I won't burn my trash but will someone else rather then carry it with me. Fishing line, rope, tent pegs and clean not smelly stuff goes with me. When not canoe camping I pick up shotgun shells (1000s over the years), snuff tins, beer cans, etc., and my all time favorite, chemical hand warmers and their wrappers.

I know this is not a solution, but it is all I can do except bitch. I have a broken camp chair in my boat that I picked up at the boat landing the other day. It must have gotten too heavy to carry after it broke.
 
Pinetree
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07/09/2020 11:59AM
You're trying, as a hunter's shotgun shells laying on grouse trails, etc., which few people pick up after shooting, is a pet peeve of mine. Just put it in your darn pocket.
 
mjmkjun
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07/09/2020 12:15PM
KarlBAndersen1: "We stayed at Sawwbill Campground the night before an early entry at Kawishiwi. It was like staying at an outdoor concert campground. Parties and laughter until the wee hours.
No respect for others."

I'm shocked to read this. Perhaps rules are more relaxed now that Bill Hansen has handed over the reins. Bill would never allow this kind of nonsense. I witnessed him kicking out a group like that upon their arrival. Oh, man. I'm headed there in a couple of months and now am wary of encountering obnoxious campers/noise level.
 
Pinetree
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07/09/2020 12:40PM
mjmkjun: "KarlBAndersen1: "We stayed at Sawwbill Campground the night before an early entry at Kawishiwi. It was like staying at an outdoor concert campground. Parties and laughter until the wee hours.
No respect for others."

I'm shocked to read this. Perhaps rules are more relaxed now that Bill Hansen has handed over the reins. Bill would never allow this kind of nonsense. I witnessed him kicking out a group like that upon their arrival. Oh, man. I'm headed there in a couple of months and now am wary of encountering obnoxious campers/noise level. "

It never hurts to tell the campground manager, etc. what you think and what you appreciate. I could see maybe being a bit more relaxed on July 4th, but not necessarily.

There is always a line to be drawn and you don't want the noise level to become the new norm.
 
mgraber
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07/12/2020 09:26PM
All I can say is I will NEVER return to the BWCA after this year, it is Quetico or I will find something else to do. What we saw and experienced this year was beyond what I could have imagined. Trashy, crowded, and loud. Should have brought an extra backpack to pack out all of the trash. We were NOT near entry point lakes. It is sad, but I am forever done with the BWCA. I said that a number of years ago, but felt I had no choice this year.
 
Pinetree
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07/12/2020 10:54PM
mgraber: "All I can say is I will NEVER return to the BWCA after this year, it is Quetico or I will find something else to do. What we saw and experienced this year was beyond what I could have imagined. Trashy, crowded, and loud. Should have brought an extra backpack to pack out all of the trash. We were NOT near entry point lakes. It is sad, but I am forever done with the BWCA. I said that a number of years ago, but felt I had no choice this year."
Sounds like we got a different mind set of people in the BWCA. There have always been some mindless people going there, but I thought things improved so much over the years. Time for the USFS and the MN DNR to start writing tickets and getting the word out.

I really do think in-person permit pick-ups helps and it is a very positive one for young people.

Thanks for picking up the trash.
 
scat
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07/12/2020 11:00PM
Green lives matter.
 
mjmkjun
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07/13/2020 02:58AM
scat: "Green lives matter. " :)
 
missmolly
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07/13/2020 09:11AM
mgraber: "All I can say is I will NEVER return to the BWCA after this year, it is Quetico or I will find something else to do. What we saw and experienced this year was beyond what I could have imagined. Trashy, crowded, and loud. Should have brought an extra backpack to pack out all of the trash. We were NOT near entry point lakes. It is sad, but I am forever done with the BWCA. I said that a number of years ago, but felt I had no choice this year."

It's a pity there aren't parks and wilderness areas for slobs, all pre-mutilated and pre-trashed, and pristine parks for those who serve as caretakers of the natural world.
 
Pinetree
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07/13/2020 09:18AM
missmolly: "mgraber: "All I can say is I will NEVER return to the BWCA after this year, it is Quetico or I will find something else to do. What we saw and experienced this year was beyond what I could have imagined. Trashy, crowded, and loud. Should have brought an extra backpack to pack out all of the trash. We were NOT near entry point lakes. It is sad, but I am forever done with the BWCA. I said that a number of years ago, but felt I had no choice this year."
It's a pity there aren't parks and wilderness areas for slobs, all pre-mutilated and pre-trashed, and pristine parks for those who serve as caretakers of the natural world. "

There is, there called garbage dumps, maybe they could create camping stalls and recreation right there for them.
 
Portage99
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07/13/2020 09:38AM
Well, I have another sad experience with which to commiserate with you all.

My daughter & I went camping at Devil's Lake recently. I was surprised at the amount of trash around the trails and lake. Not sure if it is the added numbers of visitors or decrease in staffing. It could use a good, group sweep.

We found a socially isolated spot just for us. One morning, we went down to "our" spot. The wind had blown some trash into the bank. The one type of item that shocked me was remnants of water balloons. Little pieces of balloons were all over. Then, we found a floating, full balloon in the weeds. I picked the balloon pieces up and did some trash pick-up. I had to ask myself where we are going wrong as a society. Clearly, we are not educating people and not teaching nature ethics/values. I thought the word had gotten out on balloons and wildlife/aquatic life....

I do agree one area to assist in cleaning up as much as possible.
 
Pinetree
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07/13/2020 09:53AM
I agree we need the USFS and DNR to crack down there, but it should not have to be their job to babysit the public. If there is a group needing babysitting duties, they should not be there.
 
schweady
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07/13/2020 09:58AM
Portage99: "I thought the word had gotten out on balloons and wildlife/aquatic life...."
Still seeing some releases for memorials, wedding celebrations, etc. I cringe.
 
Jaywalker
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07/13/2020 11:52AM
Sadly I'm just not all that surprised. In a world where everything is disposable, why wouldn't some see the wilderness that way. And with a strong need for immediate gratification, picking up trash or considering your impact on others is just too much work. Thankfully, however, I believe for most of these people going to the BWCA will be too much work when the world gets back to some semblance of normal.
 
BWPaddler
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07/13/2020 08:00PM
:(

good year to stay away I guess. Sad.
 
acanoer
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07/14/2020 08:47AM
As more people have more time, the more they get out. Now, as they cannot go/do their normal city activities, they are bringing them to the country.

Along with all their bad city habits.

I have noticed a 1000% increase in mid-week traffic on the back roads and trails. I used to see no one mid-week. Now I see many out and about, all kinds of bikers, walkers, trail runners and ATV users. It's a sign of the times.
 
Pinetree
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07/14/2020 10:15AM
acanoer: "As more people have more time, the more they get out. Now, as they cannot go/do their normal city activities, they are bringing them to the country.

Along with all their bad city habits.

I have noticed a 1000% increase in mid-week traffic on the back roads and trails. I used to see no one mid-week. Now I see many out and about, all kinds of bikers, walkers, trail runners and ATV users. It's a sign of the times."


As the saying goes, outdoor recreation is the only game in town this year. Very few youth leagues, lack of professional sports, etc.
 
AmarilloJim
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07/14/2020 10:22AM
You guys are scarring me. Planning a trip the last week of Sept. I usually go to the Q but may have to visit the BW.
 
CityFisher74
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07/14/2020 11:55AM
Seems like we are just realizing that people suck? Half of all people are below average - don't forget that.

Our country won't even wear masks and take common sense precautions to mitigate a freaking pandemic, but we want people in the wilderness to mind their Ps and Qs? Good luck.
 
marsonite
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07/14/2020 12:07PM
Reminds me of what a DNR forester once told me....”if you want to learn to hate humanity, try taking care of a campground!”
 
mgraber
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07/14/2020 12:10PM
I just wanted say that in spite of our less than great experience, I believe that the BW is still a special place, affordable to all, and it holds great memories for me. It will always be close to my heart and I will always support it and the other people who love it. Hopefully things will turn around and improve.

In spite of the vast majority of people being great (we met some neat people this year), we will be seeking more solitude and wilderness from here on out. I just didn't want to only speak about the negative. We are still lucky to have such a neat place to visit.
 
Gadfly
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07/14/2020 12:23PM
More proof the best time to be in the BWCA is winter. Solitude is easily found, you can camp right on the ice away from designated sites so you don't have to deal with the trash and zero bugs and bears!
 
Pinetree
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07/14/2020 12:36PM
Gadfly: "More proof the best time to be in the BWCA is winter. "
Being a trout fishermen, I love winter camping of having my tip ups out, a fire next to shore and the ability just to walk around. Also a cross country ski lover. Fished probably 80% of the trout water in the winter over the years. The adventure was more important than catching fish. Yes, it is usually very quiet, but coming more common.
 
Pinetree
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07/14/2020 12:41PM
mgraber: "I just wanted say that in spite of our less than great experience I believe that the BW is still a special place, affordable to all, and it holds great memories for me. It will always be close to my heart and I will always support it and the other people who love it. Hopefully things will turn around and improve, but in spite of the vast majority of people being great (we met some neat people this year) We will be seeking more solitude and wilderness from here on out. I just didn't want to only speak about the negative, we are still lucky to have such a neat place to visit."

Yes it is still very special and solitude can be found. Nothing close to it anywhere else in the water world.
 
acanoer
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07/14/2020 02:58PM
I had a great time in the 2nd week of June in the BWCA and met only good people.

As we were packing up to leave, I did talk to a couple of women who wanted to do a day fishing trip at entry point 16. Knowing that any good fishing is at least hours and several portages in, I tried passing on information having been down that entry point several times over the years.

By their gear and talking to them, I could tell they had very little true outdoor experience. Rented canoe, brand new fishing tackle, etc., etc.

They were going to enter about 2pm to fish, then come out as they had no camping gear. After advising them of a couple of fishing spots and the times involved, I wished them luck and left them to be.

I am sure they were very well educated by the time they got back out and had a new appreciation for their undertaking.

 
jillpine
distinguished member (490)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/14/2020 04:52PM
acanoer: "I had a great time in the 2nd week of June in the BWCA and met only good people.

As we were packing up to leave, I did talk to a couple of women who wanted to do a day fishing trip at entry point 16. Knowing that any good fishing is at least hours and several portages in, I tried passing on information having been down that entry point several times over the years.

By their gear and talking to them, I could tell they had very little true outdoor experience. Rented canoe, brand new fishing tackle, etc., etc.

They were going to enter about 2pm to fish, then come out as they had no camping gear. After advising them of a couple of fishing spots and the times involved, I wished them luck and left them to be.

I am sure they were very well educated by the time they got back out and had a new appreciation for their undertaking.

"


This is so great. Thank you for doing that. Thank you for taking time to help someone who's in a place where all of us have been - new. Many folks didn't have a loving, patient parent, relative, guardian or spouse to help them learn. Some of us couldn't access or weren't allowed to be a boy scout or eagle scout. A lot of us had only a singular, positive encounter with a ranger, an outfitter, a fishing guide or a friendly person like acanoer, who took a moment to educate and help a new person understand the situation a lot better.

It is so disheartening to see bush-crafted fresh-cut greens, fish guts on the prime basking rock in camp, and human / dog feces by the tent pad. I saw it a LOT last year (2019), not just this year. Like many others, I, too, thought, "Forget it. It's Canada and only Canada next year." Well, that plan didn't work out too well for me, did it? And so now I'm "stuck" with the BWCA. What a shi**y attitude on my part. Thanks for the wake-up call, acanoer. I needed that.



 
acanoer
member (35)member
 
07/14/2020 08:21PM
My first trip to the BWCA was over 4 decades ago.

I was raised in the country in a outdoor family. I most likely had more camping trips under me by the time I was 16 then most people will have in a life time.

I love helping people learn the outdoors.

Has it come back to bite me a couple of times yes.

But over all it has resulted in friendly encounters.
 
arm2008
distinguished member (177)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/14/2020 08:40PM
acanoer: "As more people have more time, the more they get out. Now, as they cannot go/do their normal city activities, they are bringing them to the country.

Along with all their bad city habits.
"


I live in the country, and there are plenty of slobs here, too. Got a couple hundred dollars to buy a new TV but not $5 to take the old one to the transfer station? Just dump it along the road. Toss those tires in the ravine when nobody is looking. Burn that household trash in the burn barrel, plastic and all. Leave gobs of fishing line and piles of shells and casings wherever you are done with them. It's not city vs country, unfortunately.
 
Soledad
distinguished member(1706)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/14/2020 09:56PM
Gadfly: "More proof the best time to be in the BWCA is winter. Solitude is easily found, you can camp right on the ice away from designated sites so you don't have to deal with the trash and zero bugs and bears!"

This is pure fact.
 
giddyup
distinguished member(601)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/14/2020 09:57PM
Thank you, acanoer for the posiTive twist on this thread. I understand what others are saying and it does sound like bad behavior, however, I loved it that you were able to interject some positive vibe. Also, thank you arm2008 for not lumping everyone together. I’m not offended by the other post but I AM from the city and I’m NOT a slob. ;))
 
mjmkjun
distinguished member(2654)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/15/2020 07:17AM
marsonite: "Reminds me of what a DNR forester once told me....”if you want to learn to hate humanity, try taking care of a campground!”"
LOL
 
missmolly
distinguished member(6814)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberpower member
 
07/15/2020 07:41AM
arm2008: "acanoer: "As more people have more time, the more they get out. Now, as they cannot go/do their normal city activities, they are bringing them to the country.

Along with all their bad city habits. "

I live in the country, and there are plenty of slobs here, too. Got a couple hundred dollars to buy a new TV but not $5 to take the old one to the transfer station? Just dump it along the road. Toss those tires in the ravine when nobody is looking. Burn that household trash in the burn barrel, plastic and all. Leave gobs of fishing line and piles of shells and casings wherever you are done with them. It's not city vs country, unfortunately."

Bruce Springsteen, when asked about if it was easier living in Beverly Hills than Asbury Park, NJ, said that there were jerks and good guys in Asbury Park and jerks and good guys in Beverly Hills.

Having lived in big cities, small towns, and medium-sized towns, on farms and in the woods, in flats and houses, in ghettos and enclaves of the rich, on the West Coast and the East Coast, in the South and in the upper Midwest, I can confirm that there are jerks and good guys everywhere.
 
Northland
distinguished member (188)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/15/2020 09:53AM
arm2008: "acanoer: "As more people have more time, the more they get out. Now, as they cannot go/do their normal city activities, they are bringing them to the country.

Along with all their bad city habits. "

I live in the country, and there are plenty of slobs here, too. Got a couple hundred dollars to buy a new TV but not $5 to take the old one to the transfer station? Just dump it along the road. Toss those tires in the ravine when nobody is looking. Burn that household trash in the burn barrel, plastic and all. Leave gobs of fishing line and piles of shells and casings wherever you are done with them. It's not city vs country, unfortunately."

Exactly this. TVs, tires, computers and monitors, refrigerators, piles of half-full paint cans and insulation - anything one can imagine that would normally go to the dump, but which someone thought would be a better fit on public land somewhere.

One recourse to some of this: if you see someone dumping and can snap a photo and get a plate number, or if you see something in a pile of trash that has a name on it, report it to the DNR. They can write tickets and require the responsible party to clean it up.
 
Northland
distinguished member (188)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/15/2020 10:01AM
CityFisher74: "Seems like we are just realizing that people suck? Half of all people are below average - don't forget that.

Our country won't even wear masks and take common sense precautions to mitigate a freaking pandemic, but we want people in the wilderness to mind their Ps and Qs? Good luck."

Well said.
 
justpaddlin
distinguished member (322)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/15/2020 01:54PM
Northland: "arm2008: "acanoer: "As more people have more time, the more they get out. Now, as they cannot go/do their normal city activities, they are bringing them to the country.

Along with all their bad city habits. "

I live in the country, and there are plenty of slobs here, too. Got a couple hundred dollars to buy a new TV but not $5 to take the old one to the transfer station? Just dump it along the road. Toss those tires in the ravine when nobody is looking. Burn that household trash in the burn barrel, plastic and all. Leave gobs of fishing line and piles of shells and casings wherever you are done with them. It's not city vs country, unfortunately."

Exactly this. TVs, tires, computers and monitors, refrigerators, piles of half-full paint cans and insulation - anything one can imagine that would normally go to the dump, but which someone thought would be a better fit on public land somewhere.

One recourse to some of this: if you see someone dumping and can snap a photo and get a plate number, or if you see something in a pile of trash that has a name on it, report it to the DNR. They can write tickets and require the responsible party to clean it up. "


I agree that smart phones are one tool that can help hold people accountable. Take a movie of people trespassing or littering or whatever and it might help...maybe because they may be fined, or get posted on social media, or just because they know they've been caught red handed doing something irresponsible. It definitely surprises and disorients people.

Couple of years ago, I confronted a young man driving golf balls into a local river. I took a movie of him doing it and included his license plate and then told him the fine is $500. He said he didn't even realize he was doing anything wrong and I think that was true. I told him golf balls release microplastic for 25 years and he was destroying his own drinking water. He promised never to do it again and we ended up shaking hands. I think (hope) that powerboats and jet skis may harass canoes less than in the past because it's so easy to take a movie. I also have to believe that younger generations will eventually take the lead to respect and protect natural resources.
 
scat
distinguished member(867)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/15/2020 06:13PM
Glad to know it’s confirmed that there are jerks and good guys everywhere. I was starting to feel lonely.
 
Pinetree
distinguished member(12621)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished membermaster membermaster member
 
07/17/2020 11:11AM
 
okinaw55
distinguished member(657)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/17/2020 03:10PM
I think the increased traffic is partly because of lack of other activities as has been said. But the larger reason may be tied to the fact that so many people were/are out of work and viewed the free time as an opportunity for a vacation. Hopefully this will all be over soon.

On a side note: I'm that grumpy old man that yells at kids playing their music through all these bluetooth speakers. "HEY, what makes you think I want to hear your music?"
 
Pinetree
distinguished member(12621)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished membermaster membermaster member
 
07/20/2020 06:06PM


U.S. Forest Service-Superior National Forest
Here's the next post in our series of what not to do in the BWCAW. This picture was taken recently on West Pike Lake and is under investigation. The deviations include:

LNT Principle 4: Leave What You Find

BWCAW Rule 3. Never cut, peel or deface a tree, shrub or pick flowers. It is illegal to damage any living plant.

BWCAW Rule 4. It is illegal to cut live trees/plants for firewood. Collect dead wood no longer standing and gather it out of sight from camp.





What nitwick would do this:

My opinion-ban them for life from going to the BWCA-well at least 10 years.
 
x2jmorris
distinguished member(1249)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/20/2020 07:18PM
I think it has just become too popular and being outdoors has become trendy again. This brings lots of terrible people up there and it is sad.
 
missmolly
distinguished member(6814)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberpower member
 
07/21/2020 06:10AM
Mr. Tree, what do you think cut that pine? It looks like a chainsaw to me. And did they cut it to improve their view?
 
07/21/2020 06:39AM
missmolly: "Mr. Tree, what do you think cut that pine? It looks like chainsaw to me. And did they cut it to improve their view?"

It looks to me like brainless idiots just wanted something to cut down. And maybe make a big splash in the lake. Incomprehensible and infuriating.
 
OldTripper
distinguished member (127)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/21/2020 07:17AM
I didn't get to go on my annual trip this year because of the pandemic so I've been spending a little more time on the computer reading trip reports and watching YouTube videos that folks are posting from their BWCA trip. While watching the videos I've noticed folks have been taking cans and bottles with them, washing dishes and bathing in the lake, and not following LNT practices. I've always followed the rules and I find it depressing when I see these violations. As someone once said, "We are loving the Boundary Waters to death".
I agree with Pinetree that if the violators are caught they should all be ban for a period of time and the individual(s) responsible for the actual cutting of the tree charged with the violation. It's getting depressing seeing and hearing of all the negative stuff happening up there right now.
Sometimes I wonder what I will find when I go up for my 2021 trip....
 
mschi772
distinguished member (434)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/21/2020 08:42AM
Had someone on this site's Facebook group actually trying to tell me that non-phosphate soap is fine in the lake and that you can just scoop the foam off the water. It isn't just an absence of knowledge for a lot of people, it is also the holding of "mis-knowledge" like that. Honestly, someone who just doesn't know something is so much easier and less dangerous than someone who thinks they know while being completely false.
 
missmolly
distinguished member(6814)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberpower member
 
07/21/2020 08:47AM
OldTripper, if were THE judge of the World, I wouldn't be a hanging judge, but they'd wish I'd were. For example, for the person/people who cut the tree, there'd be no fine or jail time or banning from the BWCA. They'd simply have to grow another and remain with it, watering it and nurturing it and protecting it, until it was as big as the one they dropped. Pines grow fast, so they'd only have to be there for less than two decades.
 
ZaraSp00k
distinguished member(1483)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/21/2020 09:20AM
several of you have been bemoaning the fact that less people are interested in the outdoors, and what can be done to reverse the trend

hope you are happy,
careful for what you wish for
 
Pinetree
distinguished member(12621)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished membermaster membermaster member
 
07/21/2020 09:55AM
missmolly: "Mr. Tree, what do you think cut that pine? It looks like a chainsaw to me. And did they cut it to improve their view?"

That is a handsaw, chainsaw would of had bigger chips. probably someone had to try out his saw, he couldn't cut his tree in his yard.
That is a White pine tree tho, their numbers are dwindling in the BWCA and everywhere. Hope recent fires we get a rebound. They talked about air dropping White pine seeds after the fires they decided not to.
 
Pinetree
distinguished member(12621)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished membermaster membermaster member
 
07/21/2020 10:00AM
It shows some people have to have someone to hold there hand on what they can and can not do.
Reminds me of a Minnesota DNR wildlife employee. At entrances to wildlife land people would shoot all the signs and they cost like $15.00 a piece to replace or more. In disgust he put up a sign that said don't shoot this sign, they never did shoot that sign.
 
AmarilloJim
distinguished member(2178)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/21/2020 10:20AM
missmolly: "OldTripper, if were THE judge of the World, I wouldn't be a hanging judge, but they'd wish I'd were. For example, for the person/people who cut the tree, there'd be no fine or jail time or banning from the BWCA. They'd simply have to grow another and remain with it, watering it and nurturing it and protecting it, until it was as big as the one they dropped. Pines grow fast, so they'd only have to be there for less than two decades. "
I bet that tree was 50-60 years old
 
Gaidin53
member (47)member
 
07/21/2020 10:47AM
I really think they should publicly announce who they are fining and charging on these infractions. The public embarrassment would hopefully make people think a little harder about the infractions as much as the fines.

I’ve been watching a lot of YouTube videos and recently noted a younger group of guys video in the BWCA. They had cans of beer, and cans of Coke. I’m sure they had other infractions I just didn’t see in the video. I emailed the link to the Forest service and did got a response that they were forwarding to the enforcement arm. If you see something like that let the Forest service know. I hope the idiot that cut that tree down posts a video. If he or she was dumb enough to cut a tree down they are probably dumb enough to post a picture or video of it somewhere.

The really irritating part was it wasn’t even done in the sense for firewood. It was clearly just cut to cut it for fun, or the view. Lord knows why they cut that tree since I would think based on the picture it might provide a little shade and was a benefit to the campsite. Argh! What an idiot!
 
missmolly
distinguished member(6814)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberpower member
 
07/21/2020 10:55AM
ZaraSp00k: "several of you have been bemoaning the fact that less people are interested in the outdoors, and what can be done to reverse the trend


hope you are happy,
careful for what you wish for"


No one wished for vandals.
 
missmolly
distinguished member(6814)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberpower member
 
07/21/2020 10:57AM
AmarilloJim: "missmolly: "OldTripper, if were THE judge of the World, I wouldn't be a hanging judge, but they'd wish I'd were. For example, for the person/people who cut the tree, there'd be no fine or jail time or banning from the BWCA. They'd simply have to grow another and remain with it, watering it and nurturing it and protecting it, until it was as big as the one they dropped. Pines grow fast, so they'd only have to be there for less than two decades. "
I bet that tree was 50-60 years old"


White pines grow two to three feet per year. I live under them and they are like teenage boys in puberty. A tree that close to water and with that much sunshine would grow at the high end of the growth rate.

Surprisingly, they're not the climax species in an old growth forest. Here in Maine, the climax species are the slow growers like sugar maples, spruces, and chestnuts. The fast growers like red maples and white pines are the grow fast/die young trees.
 
missmolly
distinguished member(6814)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberpower member
 
07/21/2020 11:01AM
Pinetree: "missmolly: "Mr. Tree, what do you think cut that pine? It looks like a chainsaw to me. And did they cut it to improve their view?"


That is a handsaw, chainsaw would of had bigger chips. probably someone had to try out his saw, he couldn't cut his tree in his yard.
That is a White pine tree tho, their numbers are dwindling in the BWCA and everywhere. Hope recent fires we get a rebound. They talked about air dropping White pine seeds after the fires they decided not to."


Mr. Tree, you're going to hate me for this, but I have yanked thousands of white pines out of the ground. If I didn't, my woods would become a cool jungle for they procreate like rabbits on the coast of Maine. However, I treasure my towering white pines as the cathedral they are.
 
LindenTree
distinguished member(2506)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/21/2020 12:11PM
missmolly: "
Surprisingly, they're not the climax species in an old growth forest. Here in Maine, the climax species are the slow growers like sugar maples, spruces, and chestnuts. The fast growers like red maples and white pines are the grow fast/die young trees. "


In the Arrowhead and BWCA the climax species is a Spruce, Balsem forest, with the absense of fire.
When fire is a tool in forest sucession, White, Red Pine and a Jackpine forest can be maintained.
I would also guess that the tree could be 50-60 years old. I've seen Black Spruce up there that were 3 inches in diameter and were around 100 years old. Try counting growth rings on those trees.
 
mc2mens
distinguished member(3333)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/21/2020 12:56PM
Pinetree - I've noticed a lot more use of hiking trails and campgrounds this year - probably due to Covid. Much of it includes people that seem new to the outdoors and have not learned how to respect the idea of LNT.
 
Pinetree
distinguished member(12621)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished membermaster membermaster member
 
07/21/2020 02:29PM
LindenTree: "missmolly: "
Surprisingly, they're not the climax species in an old growth forest. Here in Maine, the climax species are the slow growers like sugar maples, spruces, and chestnuts. The fast growers like red maples and white pines are the grow fast/die young trees. "



In the Arrowhead and BWCA the climax species is a Spruce, Balsem forest, with the absense of fire.
When fire is a tool in forest sucession, White, Red Pine and a Jackpine forest can be maintained.
I would also guess that the tree could be 50-60 years old. I've seen Black Spruce up there that were 3 inches in diameter and were around 100 years old. Try counting growth rings on those trees."

I agree Linden-some of those White Pine that are in that sterile soil or maybe growing in a crack grow very slow. Now in my yard I have a 60 year old White pine I planted and it is now big enough I don't know if I could reach around it. It is is full sunshine and sandy soil, but in a area ideal for pines. Those pines in the BWCA I think grow so slow vs maybe some place more ideal growth.
Yes the old White-Red pine once dominated much of northern Minnesota-yes probably with fires spreading than reseeding.
My brother has a black spruce swamp and those trees grow so slow.
 
Pinetree
distinguished member(12621)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished membermaster membermaster member
 
07/21/2020 02:37PM
missmolly: "Pinetree: "missmolly: "Mr. Tree, what do you think cut that pine? It looks like a chainsaw to me. And did they cut it to improve their view?"



That is a handsaw, chainsaw would of had bigger chips. probably someone had to try out his saw, he couldn't cut his tree in his yard.
That is a White pine tree tho, their numbers are dwindling in the BWCA and everywhere. Hope recent fires we get a rebound. They talked about air dropping White pine seeds after the fires they decided not to."



Mr. Tree, you're going to hate me for this, but I have yanked thousands of white pines out of the ground. If I didn't, my woods would become a cool jungle for they procreate like rabbits on the coast of Maine. However, I treasure my towering white pines as the cathedral they are."


Many areas around here deer would nibble them off. Yes we have a place east of us the white pines grow like that and he lets people for free come and dig them up. Most of the old white pine forests are gone and I just don't see them coming back without fires and seed trees or aerial seeding.
 
nofish
distinguished member(2744)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/21/2020 03:41PM
The one thing that Covid has made crystal clear is the differences between the ME and WE members of society. Far too many people are only concerned with ME ME ME. Very easy to spot them these days as they are generally the ones not wearing masks because they don't think it protects THEM. They don't stop to think that it protects others.

You see this attitude play out in all kinds of different ways. Like the person who cut the tree down because HE couldn't see, the hell with the rest of us looking for shade.

Its getting really sad and frustrating to see and by all accounts its only getting worse. I'm afraid the attitude is doing nothing but driving us right back into a prolonged lock down thats going to be even more damaging to the economy.
 
thistlekicker
distinguished member (379)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/21/2020 07:54PM
I think a lot of people were struggling before the pandemic started, and covid has exacerbated things.
 
airmorse
distinguished member(2658)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/21/2020 08:29PM
nofish: "The one thing that Covid has made crystal clear is the differences between the ME and WE members of society. Far too many people are only concerned with ME ME ME. Very easy to spot them these days as they are generally the ones not wearing masks because they don't think it protects THEM. They don't stop to think that it protects others.


You see this attitude play out in all kinds of different ways. Like the person who cut the tree down because HE couldn't see, the hell with the rest of us looking for shade.


Its getting really sad and frustrating to see and by all accounts its only getting worse. I'm afraid the attitude is doing nothing but driving us right back into a prolonged lock down thats going to be even more damaging to the economy. "


Bingo!!! You hit the nail on the head with this post.
 
acanoer
member (35)member
 
07/22/2020 06:00AM

That is a White pine tree tho, their numbers are dwindling in the BWCA and everywhere. Hope recent fires we get a rebound. They talked about air dropping White pine seeds after the fires they decided not to."

As a wood land owner that not my experience with white pine give them a little opening they pop up like weeds.

I mow hundreds of seedling off every year to keep my logging roads open. Leave a field set for a couple of years and one will see them popping up all over the place.
 
flaxman
senior member (65)senior membersenior member
 
07/22/2020 05:04PM
Disgusting and heartbreaking.

I find it difficult to imagine Canadians ever treating Quetico like that.

After 20+ Quetico trips over 17 years, doing my first BWCA trip next month. This photo makes me worry about what I'm going to find there.

Those of you who have mentioned seeing bad behavior on YouTube videos, maybe think about posting the links here. I think that some public shaming is in order. Plus, let's make it clear to the newbies seeking info on this site what standard of behavior we expect of them.
 
mschi772
distinguished member (434)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/23/2020 08:09AM
acanoer: "As a wood land owner that not my experience with white pine give them a little opening they pop up like weeds.

I mow hundreds of seedling off every year to keep my logging roads open. Leave a field set for a couple of years and one will see them popping up all over the place. "


Thousands of sea turtles are born every year, but how are they doing as a population? How many reach maturity? Rhetorical questions. There is a lot more to ecology than whether or not a bunch of seeds on your property germinate.
 
07/23/2020 06:08PM
flaxman: "Disgusting and heartbreaking.

I find it difficult to imagine Canadians ever treating Quetico like that.

After 20+ Quetico trips over 17 years, doing my first BWCA trip next month. This photo makes me worry about what I'm going to find there.

Those of you who have mentioned seeing bad behavior on YouTube videos, maybe think about posting the links here. I think that some public shaming is in order. Plus, let's make it clear to the newbies seeking info on this site what standard of behavior we expect of them."


We did Quetico trips when we were younger. And one reason I decided that I preferred the BWCA was that our campsites in the Q were often littered with human excrement and piles of toilet paper. I don't know if they came from Canadians or those of us south of the border. . .but it was enough to make me thankful for a trail leading to the latrine, no matter how inconvenient it sometimes was.

It has been a few years now since our last canoe trip, so I don't know if the BWCA environment has changed markedly. Certainly this is an unusual year. But we had many beautiful trips in the BWCA and we still miss it every summer.
 
Pinetree
distinguished member(12621)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished membermaster membermaster member
 
07/23/2020 07:15PM
Were not alone in vandalism:
July 23,2020
Update on incident in Grand Teton National Park where dirt bikers and gathering of 50 people caused damage to meadows in scenic Mormon Row area of park. Left behind was a path of torn up ground 1,000 feet long (three football fields) and between two and 10 feet wide. Spokeswoman Denise Germann says information has been flowing into tipline and investigators are following leads. Authorities welcome any help in identifying people involved. Contact the National Park Service Investigative Services Branch Tip Line at 888-653-0009 or email nps_isb@nps.gov. Information can be provided anonymously.


They knew what they were doing. Crowd mentality here.
 
mutz
distinguished member(1225)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/23/2020 09:07PM
flaxman: "Disgusting and heartbreaking.

I find it difficult to imagine Canadians ever treating Quetico like that.

After 20+ Quetico trips over 17 years, doing my first BWCA trip next month. This photo makes me worry about what I'm going to find there.

Those of you who have mentioned seeing bad behavior on YouTube videos, maybe think about posting the links here. I think that some public shaming is in order. Plus, let's make it clear to the newbies seeking info on this site what standard of behavior we expect of them."




We have done many boat in trips in the Chapleau and Wawa area of Ontario and I can assure you there are just as many slobs from north of the border as south. Personally I find it insulting that you would infer that they care more than most of us do.
 
smoke
member (24)member
 
07/23/2020 10:37PM
LindenTree: "missmolly: "Surprisingly, they're not the climax species in an old growth forest. Here in Maine, the climax species are the slow growers like sugar maples, spruces, and chestnuts. The fast growers like red maples and white pines are the grow fast/die young trees. "
In the Arrowhead and BWCA, the climax species is a Spruce, Balsam forest, with the absense of fire. When fire is a tool in forest sucession, White, Red Pine and a Jackpine forest can be maintained.

I would also guess that the tree could be 50-60 years old. I've seen Black Spruce up there that were three inches in diameter and were around 100 years old. Try counting growth rings on those trees!"

You can estimate the age of either red or white pine by counting between the branches. You don't need to cut down or increment bore a pine to establish the age in most cases.
 
Zwater
distinguished member(537)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/23/2020 10:49PM
mutz: "flaxman: "Disgusting and heartbreaking. I find it difficult to imagine Canadians ever treating Quetico like that.

After 20+ Quetico trips over 17 years, I'm doing my first BWCA trip next month. This photo makes me worry about what I'm going to find there.

Those of you who have mentioned seeing bad behavior on YouTube videos, maybe think about posting the links here. I think that some public shaming is in order. Plus, let's make it clear to the newbies seeking info on this site what standard of behavior we expect of them."

We have done many boat in trips in the Chapleau and Wawa area of Ontario and I can assure you there are just as many slobs from north of the border as south. Personally I find it insulting that you would infer that they care more than most of us do."

+1

Go north from the BWCA up by Sioux Lookout. See how the locals and guides sustain their "pristine" wilderness.
 
missmolly
distinguished member(6814)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberpower member
 
07/24/2020 06:18AM


It's a matter of usage. Linda wrote about the toilet paper fields in the Quetico and whereas I paddle just outside Quetico, I'VE made those toilet paper fields in a mere week. Then I might return to that campsite a year or three later and my toilet paper field is gone, but if others had used that campsite in-between, it would still be there, forever "refreshed."

I've found many boats abandoned, both wooden ones down to their ribs and leaky aluminum ones. LNB (Leave no boats) is not practiced up north. I've also found various bits of wood and metal, some identifiable, like fish cleaning stations nailed to trees, and some that leave me wondering, like the tubes in the attached photo. You can also see a grill in that photo and it's weird that they left the pot, for those aren't cheap.

If you were on a Canadian lake regularly used by a lodge, the abuse would scar the lake, but if you take the road less traveled, the lake you can neatly heal the cuts.
 
flaxman
senior member (65)senior membersenior member
 
07/24/2020 10:20AM
It was not my intention to insult anyone, other than maybe those who chop down trees in the BWCA, whom I can't imagine being on this site. I'm confident that everyone here shares this disgust with the photos and stories coming out of the BWCA this year. I am only speaking of what I imagine, informed by my own experiences, and based largely on Quetico vs the BWCA. And I think that those who raised the sanitation/latrine issue make a good point; Quetico might have to reconsider latrines if visitation increases.


mutz: "flaxman: "Disgusting and heartbreaking.


I find it difficult to imagine Canadians ever treating Quetico like that.


After 20+ Quetico trips over 17 years, doing my first BWCA trip next month. This photo makes me worry about what I'm going to find there.


Those of you who have mentioned seeing bad behavior on YouTube videos, maybe think about posting the links here. I think that some public shaming is in order. Plus, let's make it clear to the newbies seeking info on this site what standard of behavior we expect of them."




We have done many boat in trips in the Chapleau and Wawa area of Ontario and I can assure you there are just as many slobs from north of the border as south. Personally I find it insulting that you would infer that they care more than most of us do."
 
ZaraSp00k
distinguished member(1483)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/24/2020 12:02PM
nofish: "The one thing that Covid has made crystal clear is the differences between the ME and WE members of society. Far too many people are only concerned with ME ME ME. Very easy to spot them these days as they are generally the ones not wearing masks because they don't think it protects THEM. They don't stop to think that it protects others.

"


you have to blame it on somebody I guess

I wear a mask where I am required to, where I am not required, I do not

Me wearing a mask does NOTHING to stop the spread, I do not have it.
I have my temperature checked almost every day, sometimes twice.
I social distance 100% of the time, except when some jerk makes it impossible by approaching me when there is no alternative. Like the kid who started crossing the swinging bridge at Jay Cooke when I was 90% across, he couldn't wait 10 seconds I guess. Shoulda tossed him over into the river.
 
mschi772
distinguished member (434)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/24/2020 02:22PM
ZaraSp00k: "Me wearing a mask does NOTHING to stop the spread, I do not have it.
I have my temperature checked almost every day, sometimes twice."


So exactly how many more times do you need to be told about how people can be asymptomatic and presymptomatic spreaders of the virus?
 
scat
distinguished member(867)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/24/2020 03:52PM
Shoulda tossed him over into the river. That would make a much better story. Ah, maybe next time.
 
Unas10
distinguished member(1371)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/24/2020 06:21PM
mschi772: "ZaraSp00k: "Me wearing a mask does NOTHING to stop the spread, I do not have it.
I have my temperature checked almost every day, sometimes twice."



So exactly how many more times do you need to be told about how people can be asymptomatic and presymptomatic spreaders of the virus?"


I've got it!! Masks don't keep me from getting the virus, they stop me from spreading the virus. Everyone take off their mask, turn it inside out and put it back on. Voila! We are now safe. :)
 
missmolly
distinguished member(6814)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberpower member
 
07/25/2020 05:49AM
Unas10: "mschi772: "ZaraSp00k: "Me wearing a mask does NOTHING to stop the spread, I do not have it.
I have my temperature checked almost every day, sometimes twice."




So exactly how many more times do you need to be told about how people can be asymptomatic and presymptomatic spreaders of the virus?"



I've got it!! Masks don't keep me from getting the virus, they stop me from spreading the virus. Everyone take off their mask, turn it inside out and put it back on. Voila! We are now safe. :)"


Wouldn't wearing the mask on the back of my head do the same thing? Asking for a friend, as always.
 
07/25/2020 06:46AM
How did this get turned into a mask discussion? I see enough of that on facebook. I like to forget about all of that when I come to this site.

Lately the world has changed in a very big way but you wanna know something? The canoe area hasn't changed much at all in the last 50 years. To keep it that way I really believe their needs to be some rethinking of the quota system and educating people before they go on a trip.

I'd go so far as having all people answer questions in writing about LNT etc. before they get their permit. More rangers checking on parties wouldn't hurt either.
 
schweady
distinguished member(6955)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberpower member
 
07/25/2020 09:18AM
Last year at this time, we were on Gabbro site 1715. Nice, spacious spot with a kitchen area up on a rise above the water. Apparently, not a nice enough view from the fire for some folks as they cut down a row of 6-8 young trees between the grate and the shore, leaving just the two on the ends. 3-4" diameter trunks. Appeared to have been done that year. I usually take LNT violation pictures, but nothing that trip.

Alas, although the novice numbers are obviously up, not all of this abuse is entirely COVID related. Stupidity walks among us as a constant companion.
 
adam
Moderator
 
07/25/2020 10:03AM
ZaraSp00k: "nofish: "The one thing that Covid has made crystal clear is the differences between the ME and WE members of society. Far too many people are only concerned with ME ME ME. Very easy to spot them these days as they are generally the ones not wearing masks because they don't think it protects THEM. They don't stop to think that it protects others.


"



you have to blame it on somebody I guess


I wear a mask where I am required to, where I am not required, I do not


Me wearing a mask does NOTHING to stop the spread, I do not have it.
I have my temperature checked almost every day, sometimes twice.
I social distance 100% of the time, except when some jerk makes it impossible by approaching me when there is no alternative. Like the kid who started crossing the swinging bridge at Jay Cooke when I was 90% across, he couldn't wait 10 seconds I guess. Shoulda tossed him over into the river."


I haven't opened this thread in a while, but really it has to turn into an anti-masking manifesto. You have got your wish to socially distance 100% of the time from this site.

 
Pinetree
distinguished member(12621)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished membermaster membermaster member
 
07/25/2020 10:53AM
O'kay back to the topic at hand please.
 
schweady
distinguished member(6955)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberpower member
 
07/25/2020 12:56PM
ZaraSp00k: "I social distance 100% of the time, except when some jerk makes it impossible..."
adam: "...You have got your wish to socially distance 100% of the time from this site."
:-)

 
scat
distinguished member(867)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/25/2020 01:01PM
I just want someone to get tossed over into the river. I mean, cmon that would be cool. That’ll show em. Drown you maskless fiend! May your potentially disease ridden breath never breach the sanctity of my airspace ever again!

A year ago you would have prob given him a high 5. Just sayin.

Cheers, scat
 
Ducksndirt
member (17)member
 
07/26/2020 03:54PM
Pinetree: "I agree we need the USFS and DNR to crack down there, but it should not have to be their job to babysit the public. If there is a group needing babysitting duties, they should not be there."
I've read this entire conversation and it really sickens me to the core, as I see it does everyone else. I spend most of my recreational time thinking about, preparing for, training dogs for, and spending most of the season in the duck blind.

I see all the same things that are described in this post. What really gets me are the game violations. It HAPPENS RAMPANTLY. We need more game wardens or at least get them to do "THEIR JOBS". Tickets entail reports, reports entail facts and proof, which must be 100% rock solid for the court appearance. It's too easy to sit at the boat ramp and inspect them when they come out, but to really be able to nail them they should get out on the water. Assholes and crooks get smarter and bolder as time goes by. If enough people don't complain, or God forbid, take matters into their own hands, then nothing will get done. I like nothing better than seeing or hearing about some asshole getting busted.

Sorry about the rant, I've be wanting to do this trip for 30 years and had to cancel in July because of this virus and am planning on a mid-September reschedule trip and am afraid that it will get ruined by what's being described.
 
missmolly
distinguished member(6814)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberpower member
 
07/26/2020 05:23PM
Mr. Dirt, you rant out of love for a place worthy of our love.
 
MikeinMpls
distinguished member(643)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/26/2020 08:04PM
I got back yesterday from a short solo base camping on Fourtown. The campsite nearest me was loud, not from obnoxiousness, but because the adults just didn't realize how far sound carries, and their failure to keep a six-year-old from making gratuitous noise. (I knew they were rookies because they let two kids have paddle fights. They apparently had no idea how f*%$@ed they'd be if they broke a paddle.) Anyway, one campsite had 13 people at it, though this appeared to be several groups meeting up for the day.

The biggest LNT issue I've noticed in two trips this year is the noise. On Friday, one clown decided to yell his good wishes across the lake to the campsite near mine. I chose not to yell back, but my body language was clear.

I ran into the sheriff rescue team yesterday as I was coming out. Apparently another group on Fourtown needed assistance getting out. One rescue ranger told me they had a camper that was "tired" and was unable to come out without assistance. I don't know what that meant, aside from typical vague cop-talk.

Mike
 
Pinetree
distinguished member(12621)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished membermaster membermaster member
 
07/31/2020 09:05AM
 
Pinetree
distinguished member(12621)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished membermaster membermaster member
 
 
Cvendel
 
08/06/2020 02:19PM
I just returned from Daniels Lake, I hat to pile on to the whole negative line of thinking, but i was disappointed by some of the rudiness and seemingly disregard for the "forest" I was at least one Portage when other parties did not "hold back and wait" they just paddled right up and barged right through the portage, really irritating... but worse yet, at our site on Daniels, people had peeled the bark off of at least three birch trees to use to light their fires!! This was really shocking and sad to me...Other than that I loved Daniels Lake and we also did the "baby Grand" portage to Rose. Rose Lake was amazing!
 
airmorse
distinguished member(2658)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
08/06/2020 04:35PM
I don't think their attitude has changed one bit. What we are seeing is exactly what we see in the larger cities. They just brought their crappy I don't care it is someone else's problem attitude up north with them.

If I can get away from work next spring I would happily volunteer to help clean up as many trashed sites as possible.

This is just really sad to see the dark side of people being so prevalent.
 
Bearpath9
distinguished member (204)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
08/06/2020 05:03PM
Not all of them made it up north. I usually go for walk in a big park, and I bring a paper lunch bag or a plastic, and some mornings I can fill the paper one. Now, this is nothing on the scale of what is happening all over, but this park is fairly wild.

I like the idea of volunteering to go out and clean up next year. If I 'm not working, and it passes muster with the boss, that is.
 
Pinetree
distinguished member(12621)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished membermaster membermaster member
 
08/06/2020 05:28PM
Its not just a metro slob attitude these people are everywhere. I do know certain areas-locations where they come from are worse. Like father like son attitude.
 
08/06/2020 09:47PM
airmorse: "I don't think their attitude has changed one bit. What we are seeing is exactly what we see in the larger cities. They just brought their crappy I don't care it is someone else's problem attitude up north with them.


If I can get away from work next spring I would happily volunteer to help clean up as many trashed sites as possible.


This is just really sad to see the dark side of people being so prevalent."


Has nothing to do with cities. We live in a rural area and there is much trash thrown around in our neighborhood, too.
 
Northland
distinguished member (188)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
08/07/2020 09:36AM
Ducksndirt: "Pinetree: "I agree we need the USFS and DNR to crack down there, but it should not have to be their job to babysit the public. If there is a group needing babysitting duties, they should not be there."
I've read this entire conversation and it really sickens me to the core, as I see it does everyone else. I spend most of my recreational time thinking about, preparing for, training dogs for, and spending most of the season in the duck blind.

I see all the same things that are described in this post. What really gets me are the game violations. It HAPPENS RAMPANTLY. We need more game wardens or at least get them to do "THEIR JOBS". Tickets entail reports, reports entail facts and proof, which must be 100% rock solid for the court appearance. It's too easy to sit at the boat ramp and inspect them when they come out, but to really be able to nail them they should get out on the water. Assholes and crooks get smarter and bolder as time goes by. If enough people don't complain, or God forbid, take matters into their own hands, then nothing will get done. I like nothing better than seeing or hearing about some asshole getting busted.

Sorry about the rant, I've be wanting to do this trip for 30 years and had to cancel in July because of this virus and am planning on a mid-September reschedule trip and am afraid that it will get ruined by what's being described. "


I don't think it's an issue of game wardens not doing their jobs. I think the problem with most natural resource law enforcement agencies is the same: you have the roughly the same staffing levels that you had in the 50's and 60's. At the same time, you have a larger percentage of a much larger population using the resource. You also have a LOT more to do than to just go out into the field and check hunters and fishermen. You have ATV enforcement, aquatic invasive species violation, habitat/lakeshore manipulation, hunter safety, training, etc.
 
Pinetree
distinguished member(12621)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished membermaster membermaster member
 
08/07/2020 10:37AM
Yes the duties of the CO(game warden) has changed so much. The MN DNR right now a big share goes toward ATV violations and patrol. On the USFS -forest service side their staff is a fraction of what it use to be.

Also the ultimate control is peer pressure.
 
smoke
member (24)member
 
08/07/2020 01:02PM
It is a little over 60 years ago that I worked on the Arapaho National Forest in Colorado in which, after the fire season was over, we would have time to camp out in the wilderness in order to clean up and pack out trash left by campers. The District Ranger always said that it was his favorite time of the year. I would venture to say that the campers now are more careful than they were years ago.
 
Pinetree
distinguished member(12621)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished membermaster membermaster member
 
08/07/2020 01:38PM
smoke: "It is a little over 60 years ago that I worked on the Arapaho National Forest in Colorado in which, after the fire season was over, we would have time to camp out in the wilderness in order to clean up and pack out trash left by campers. The District Ranger always said that it was his favorite time of the year. I would venture to say that the campers now are more careful than they were years ago."

Overall I think we been much better this last decade, but the trend seems to reverting back by a segment of the population just doing as they please and treating wild areas and public land as if they just don't care.
 
Pinetree
distinguished member(12621)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished membermaster membermaster member
 
08/13/2020 10:24PM
Its just not the BWCA
Bridger-Teton National Forest: One forest volunteer, working with a seasonal dispersed recreation patroller this summer, described what he saw on Shadow Mountain as a total shit show. Over twenty tents ringed a huge beat-out dust bowl and trash lay everywhere. Two big fire rings surrounded by empty booze bottles and beer cans, coolers full of food and no one in camp: sounds like a smorgasbord for bears. This is the same neighborhood where famed Jackson Hole grizzly 399 is chaperoning her four new cubs. Fortunately the Forest Service crew was able to clean up the mess before the bears arrived.
 
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