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SemoreJugs

NPS shutdown: access to North Cascades et all

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Are they keeping people from parking cars along highway 20 during the shutdown? Are all gates closed on forest roads? Is it a federal crime to access park/natl forest boundaries? Beta please!

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because that's what the shutdown is really about?

 

Certainly not, they are two separate issues. My comment stems more from my frustration with the forest service and their public access policy and less from the government shut-down. In general I see people spending more and more money for access (forest pass, parks pass, camp-site fees, ect.) and in return getting less and less access to the land. Perhaps It's the cynic in me, but I cant help but think that the government shut down is being used to as an excuse to gate access and get the general public pissed. It has the feel of being one of those, "If we aren't getting paid than no one can use it" sort of deals. It's like getting yelled at by your boss just because he got yelled at by his boss. Wouldn't it have made more sense to just shut the offices and leave the low traffic roads un-gated? I get why they would close and gate high traffic areas (Paradise), but what about the rest of the wilderness that isn't as "popular"? I understand that there is the liability side of things but I'm getting super fed-up with being told how and when I can use our "public" lands. In the grand scheme of things this is a minor issue. There are more important programs impacted by the shut-down than access to recreation but it just so happens to be one of my sore spots. First world problem, I guess.

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So Federal Employees are not working, yet have the time to make up special signage? Just another "shove it up your ass taxpayer" message from "the park is mine" rangers. Fuck 'em!

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So Federal Employees are not working, yet have the time to make up special signage? Just another "shove it up your ass taxpayer" message from "the park is mine" rangers. Fuck 'em!

 

yeah I bet they couldn't wait to be furloughed just so they could do things on purpose to piss you off :rolleyes:

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Just another "shove it up your ass taxpayer" message from "the park is mine" rangers. Fuck 'em!

 

The rangers at NCNP seem especially prone to this mindset. Maybe its time this underutilized park was returned to the people and withdrawn from the national park system? (Not a suggestion, just a thought for now.)

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Just another "shove it up your ass taxpayer" message from "the park is mine" rangers. Fuck 'em!

 

The rangers at NCNP seem especially prone to this mindset. Maybe its time this underutilized park was returned to the people and withdrawn from the national park system? (Not a suggestion, just a thought for now.)

It should be obvious that park rangers are following orders from above. I suggest you take the time to get to know some of the NCNP rangers before you make comments like this.

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Just another "shove it up your ass taxpayer" message from "the park is mine" rangers. Fuck 'em!

 

The rangers at NCNP seem especially prone to this mindset. Maybe its time this underutilized park was returned to the people and withdrawn from the national park system? (Not a suggestion, just a thought for now.)

It should be obvious that park rangers are following orders from above. I suggest you take the time to get to know some of the NCNP rangers before you make comments like this.

 

A bit hyperbolic but you sound smart enough to get the point so...

 

JustFollowingOrders.jpg

 

I'd suggest you study a bit of human history before making comments like this.

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Just another "shove it up your ass taxpayer" message from "the park is mine" rangers. Fuck 'em!

 

The rangers at NCNP seem especially prone to this mindset. Maybe its time this underutilized park was returned to the people and withdrawn from the national park system? (Not a suggestion, just a thought for now.)

It should be obvious that park rangers are following orders from above. I suggest you take the time to get to know some of the NCNP rangers before you make comments like this.

 

You are correct, the rangers are not the problem, and are just following orders. I should have said "park management" rather then "rangers".

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Just another "shove it up your ass taxpayer" message from "the park is mine" rangers. Fuck 'em!

 

The rangers at NCNP seem especially prone to this mindset. Maybe its time this underutilized park was returned to the people and withdrawn from the national park system? (Not a suggestion, just a thought for now.)

It should be obvious that park rangers are following orders from above. I suggest you take the time to get to know some of the NCNP rangers before you make comments like this.

 

Why is it incumbent on me to establish personal relationships with NCNP rangers before I convey an informed opinion about their actions and behavior? Especially when our friends in Marblemount have a well-established (and deserved) reputation for inflexibility or outright contempt for the people they serve? I'm thinking specifically about the ranger who forced two of the posters here to march back to Marblemount to get properly permitted rather than issuing them an available permit on the spot. Or, more recently, the ranger who chopped the rappel bolts on Forbidden Peak just before a fatal accident. NPS rangers do, in fact, have a great deal of latitude when it comes to enforcement of rules. And while my suggestion that the 1968 NCNP Act be rescinded was deliberately provocative, I think it's important to look at the reasons that the proposed expansion of the park has fallen flat. Access. (Or, more accurately, shrinking access.)

 

Here are some facts:

 

Olympic NP 2011 visitation: 2,966,502

Mount Rainier NP 2011 visitation: 1,038,229

North Cascades NP 2011 visitation: 19,534

 

That's right, only nineteen thousand visitors. With numbers like this, I would think the rangers at NCNP would be going out of their way to encourage visitation to this public park by protecting the environment in a way that still facilitates its use.

 

Depending on the year, this is the seventh least-visited park in the system--and the least visited park in the lower 48. This is what makes it special, yes, but gimme a break. The rangers at NCNP need to lighten up or they're going to erode support for the very thing they strive to protect.

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FW, what is the source for your NCNP visitation numbers? As there are no gates or entrance booths for NCNP, hikers, climbers, and other day users need not register and are thus not counted. Put a car counter across the road at the hairpin below WA pass and across the road above the New Halem dam and I suspect the numbers of NCNP visitors will be much higher. If you want to make a comparison with NCNP, choose one or more National Parks where there is a highway going through them that doesn't require visitors to stop at a gate and register, as you have to do to cross Tioga Pass.

 

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Here's a good piece that got a lot of attention in the region:

 

http://www.seattlepi.com/local/connelly/article/Thanks-for-Saving-Washington-s-Wild-Places-1368131.php

 

As for my numbers: I'm using the NPS's own stats. The vast majority of motorists who drive across Wa/Rainy Pass are east<-->west commuters--not park visitors. In any event, the area they traverse is part of the Ross Lake National Rec Area, not the national park. Why would they be counted as visitors? The hikers and climbers you refer to certainly are counted in the total.

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BS. The low number is probably only overnight backcountry permits. They can't accurately count day-hikers and -climbers. Try comparing over night bc permits across all three parks and let's see what you get. Apples to apples.

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BS. The low number is probably only overnight backcountry permits. They can't accurately count day-hikers and -climbers. Try comparing over night bc permits across all three parks and let's see what you get. Apples to apples.

 

I think you're missing the point--which is total visitation and the ability of a more diverse public segment to experience the national parks they pay for. The fact that you're only interested in backcountry users is telling. I suspect that you'll find use at ONP and MORA much higher in this category too. It would be fairly easy to compare wilderness permitting levels in our three local national parks--if the NPS hadn't shut down their website in yet another display of the "we'll show them" strategy.

Edited by Fairweather

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I'm not claiming bc use is more important than day use, only that the numbers you cite are flawed because you're comparing parks with gated entrances to parks without gates. Apples to oranges. Show us apples to apples data and we can draw conclusions. Everything else is just opinion.

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I'm not claiming bc use is more important than day use, only that the numbers you cite are flawed because you're comparing parks with gated entrances to parks without gates. Apples to oranges. Show us apples to apples data and we can draw conclusions. Everything else is just opinion.

 

FW's, numbers are correct. It has been well established that the visitation of NOCA is very small compared to other parks, mainly because of a almost complete lack of visitor amenities. That is one reason for the AALP's proposal, to bring the NRA's numbers into NOCA.

 

Most people who visit the combined North Cascades Complex are driving on Highway 20, and do not use the complex at all. These people are probably not counted, as are the folks on 410 or US 101 in MRNP or ONP respectively.

 

I support FW's numbers, but not his sentiment to remove NOCA from the NP inventory. But the recent removal of bolts in the Cascade Pass area should frighten any climbers who support the expansion of NOCA to the west-side of the Washington Pass area.

 

P 11 has visitation data

http://www.americanalps.org/American%20Alps%20Legacy%20Proposal.pdf

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I support FW's numbers, but not his sentiment to remove NOCA from the NP inventory. But the recent removal of bolts in the Cascade Pass area should frighten any climbers who support the expansion of NOCA to the west-side of the Washington Pass area.

 

 

To be clear; I don't necessarily support pulling NCNP from the national park system. But I know people who do. I think that the folks who administer the park and work there should be a little more accommodating--and not feel that they are carrying out a constitutional imperative on par with the post office or the military. There are, after all, at least seven "former" national parks in the U.S. By remembering the NPS's dual mission, the folks in Marblemount may eventually regain some of the support they have lost from the outdoor recreation community--and the surrounding towns they have too-often betrayed.

 

 

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The concept that the National Parks are "services" that "cease to function" when the government shuts down is just bizarre. If anything, they should "fail open", at least when we're talking about wild resources (trails, rock climbs) and not facilities.

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