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post #16 of (permalink) Old 04-06-2004, 10:35 PM
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Well,I tend to agree that there may be people out there who will not use the trail responsibly.After all,isn't every law designed to protect us from the same small percentage of the population who behave like morons?The best move to protect the sanctity of the trail would be never to provide remote road access,because most of those idiots are also too lazy to walk somewhere if they had the choice of driving.....What's interesting about Don,by the way,is that all of the authorities knew he was building the trail.So it was don't build the trail but go ahead and build the trail.
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post #17 of (permalink) Old 04-07-2004, 05:24 AM
 
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I don't know much of the trail details but I can't imagine that trees were hacked down to build it; to build a rough trail one just cuts back the underbrush and removes windfall obstacles, right?

The entire Indian Arm area on both sides and the islands from Belcarra to Indian River is already protected as a provincial park, isn't it (along with Mt. Seymour P.P. and the GVRD watersheds)? So why the need for a "witness" trail there to protect it from resource extraction (as in the Elaho example)?

Until reading about it on CT, I'd never heard of a trail going around Indian Arm. I don't think many know about it. So you're probably right, C wall, the number of people attempting the route would be small, and the trail would overgrow faster than people would maintain it. But all it takes is someone to publish its details in some Vancouver hiking guidebook (this may have been done already - I've no idea) and it may become the popular week-long trek version of the Buntzen hikes you mentioned. Something for Lower Mainlanders that can't afford all of the expenses of, say, a WCT trip.

About the Seymour Watershed part of it...a few years back I walked along the Coquitlam River trail upstream as far as Or Creek. On the way back (and I was now out of the prohibited area), a GVRD guy stopped me. He had gone to the trouble of fording the river from the guardhouse on Pipeline Rd. with his dog and running to catch up with me to give me hell for my trespass. How do you think the GVRD sits with the trail running through their out-of-bounds area? Do you think it's right that McPherson built the trail through it? Personally I think that hiking in the GVRD watersheds is nothing compared to the logging that has been done in them, but still I don't think McPherson had any right to build the trail there.

All human encroachment on wilderness areas has a detrimental effect on wildlife (be it minimal-impact hiking, hunting, logging, development, whatever) and I think sourdough has some valid concerns. Take the Grouse/Goat/Crown area, for example - that area once had large numbers of mountain goats, as did all of the southern mountains on the north shore. Now? None, because of relentless human presence. I for one have never let this concern stop me from hiking and it wouldn't stop me from hiking the Indian Arm trail; but my enthusiasm to explore the wilderness is tempered with some respect that my presence there is disruptive.

McPherson's apparent selfless efforts on this unimaginably immense project deserve Lower Mainlanders' thanks. But with today's topo maps and technologies, and proximity to Vancouver, you'd liken Mr. McPherson to Simon Fraser and Alexander Mackenzie? Give me a break! And Randy Stoltmann? Based on this project alone? I don't think so...
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post #18 of (permalink) Old 04-07-2004, 06:26 AM
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We must have had some pretty wimpy goats. The goats just south of the border around the Baker area don't seem to be nearly as sensitive to human presence...same with the ones I have encountered in Jasper National Park.

Perhaps Billygoat can give us some insight?

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post #19 of (permalink) Old 04-07-2004, 07:22 AM
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hi Shakey,

Thank you for your insights.

However, be careful of the following:

McPherson's apparent selfless efforts on this unimaginably immense project deserve Lower Mainlanders' thanks. But with today's topo maps and technologies, and proximity to Vancouver, you'd liken Mr. McPherson to Simon Fraser and Alexander Mackenzie? Give me a break!

Well, I didn't liken McPherson to the great explorers of yore, so break freely given

I admire Cunningham, Lunden, McPherson and others for their industriousness and perseverance, and for the legacy that they leave behind.

Also, you mention the North Shore: Grouse/Goat/Crown area, for example - that area once had large numbers of mountain goats, as did all of the southern mountains on the north shore. Now? None, because of relentless human presence

When I run or hike in Lynn Headwaters, it always strikes me that decades ago, this area was logged. Yes, logged. Yet, it all grew back. The goats you speak of were not driven away by a nature-loving trail builder, but by lack of food and shelter.

So let's keep this discussion on topic for now - and address exploration and logging in another thread...

Cheers - C Wall
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post #20 of (permalink) Old 04-07-2004, 10:15 AM
 
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Interesting thread. This is a response to Hiker Boy's comment regarding goats in the Baker area. Last summer my husband and I were hiking in the Mt Baker area and found out that a radio collar survey was going to be done on goats in the region as there was noted to be a decline in goat population. We then went on a hike along Ptarmigan Ridge and found it to be a highway of people with many of their dogs off leash roaming everywhere. Now if I were a goat (or any wildlife for that matter) I'd be hightailing it out of there so fast...
Anyway, for anyone who's interested in learning more about the goat collaring here's the site: http://www.environmental-studies.de/...ain_goats.html
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post #21 of (permalink) Old 04-07-2004, 12:09 PM Thread Starter
 
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The Hiker:

Geez, you take things so personally! First of all you've made a number of assumptions about me which have nothing to do with the argument at hand. How do you know that I don't donate money, food or time to any of those causes? How do you know I haven't lobbied against forestry practices and how do you know whether I am going to write to my MLA about this? I had no such intention and I have devoted many hours to charity services.

You are also assuming that because it is wild and rugged right now with very little PR it is going to stay like that. I'm sure even our busiest trails were once described like that. I'm not suggesting it will be a heavily travelled trail but it may have the potential to be busier than we are giving it credit for.

The reason why I brought this up here is because WE are hikers and this concerns Hikers. Really, its not too difficult a concept. If I were on a logging website perhaps I would discuss forestry practices instead. I have welcomed many of you to inform me if I have not seen the slide shows. If you have something more specific you'd like to share than great. Perhaps I should become more informed? Maybe so, but perhaps you should take a seat in a classroom as well before you start slagging me about my ignorances. Yours may be glaring as well. I may not know every detail about the trail but I do know how ecosystems work and I do know about the dyanamics of the area and what an intrusion can possibly make. I did not compare it to Buntzen Lake as well.

I did not post merely to slag this guy, but I disagree with what he did. Did you ever consider that his shows may be slightly biased? Does he really have an educated background about conservation or the environment? Maybe he does I don't know.

Isn't this forum to discuss conservation? If so, than I think I have used it quite appropriately. Don't assume you know anything about anyone just from a message board.
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post #22 of (permalink) Old 04-07-2004, 12:47 PM
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Agreed, my apologies this has nothing to do with this discussion. However I do think I have very valid concerns when a group of students sit around a classroom and condemn something before they have all the facts. Yes as I said environmental impact is a concern to us all. You and your group will be the next generation and I wonder at times where you will lead us. Closure of trails? No new trails built? Restricting times you can hike a trail due to a mating season? Animals Rights ( don't use bear bangers cause it hurts their ears ) okay I admit the last one is silly but you see where I'm going with this.
Do I take this personal … no but I am concerned about you and your group and the decisions you may make in the future.


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post #23 of (permalink) Old 04-07-2004, 12:52 PM
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Great Link Valencia but there is no mention as to why there was a decline in the area.

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post #24 of (permalink) Old 04-07-2004, 01:08 PM Thread Starter
 
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Before you jump to more conclusions about what goes on in a classroom we haven't all condemned the trail. There are many diverse opinions amongst us. I think its a little unfair to paint us all with the same brush. I have no problem with new trails, and the vast majority of us advocate eco-tourism including hiking accessability and increased camping initiatives, park creation etc but in a responsible manner. Don't exaggerate, I'm not proposing years of studies before approval but this one seemed to be a rather clear case of very little forethought. I think the majority of the time you'll see us applauding new hiking trails, park creations and other outdoor initiatives but in some cases the precautionary principle may be the best choice.
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post #25 of (permalink) Old 04-07-2004, 04:41 PM
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Time will tell the story,as many well used trails of today were built unsanctioned,and whether it was a mistake or an act of vision will be decided in the years to come.In a certain sense,I can see the Lewis and Clark comparison,but that was something very different.Shakey is right about the logging that has taken place in our watersheds ,though.Trails are far less damaging.Don't kid yourself about watersheds being protected,however,because plenty of activity is going on in the Seymour Watershed as we speak,and no,we are not consulted about all of it....
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post #26 of (permalink) Old 04-07-2004, 07:21 PM
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Hey Sourdough,
After the trail was built, Murray Comley from the group Ecospirit was the first person to attempt & finish the trail last October. You can read his account if you wish, there is also a link to the original post in the Vancouver Sun in his report. He's also done a few presentations on the subject so look out for those as well.

http://www.ecospirit.ca/adventuregallery/2003/2003-10-Hiking-Indianarmtrail.htm

Hope the link works!

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post #27 of (permalink) Old 04-13-2004, 10:11 AM
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Hey Sourdough,

There's a McPherson Indian Arm presentation tonight at the BCMC meeting. They don't check memberships at the door or anything so if you just showed up and kept to yourself, noone would be the wiser. The meeting starts at 7:30 at the ANZA club on the corner of 8th and Ontario (or is it Manitoba?). Slides probably start around 7:50 or so. Get the info firsthand.

Great discussions, by the way, from all participants.

My 2cents: Creating a trail is like writing a piece of music. Sometimes it just comes to you and you know it's the right thing to do. There are several trails that have "revealed" themselves to me and when I get the time, I will start to create them. If people want to use them, then I've done a good thing. If not, then noone is the wiser. And they don't require cutting down trees or anything like that. Just a desire to get to places I want to see and that I think others want to see. Is this a bad thing? I don't think so. But right now, it's all just ideas not reality so I'm just talking off the top of my head but as a friend of mine once said "no things but in ideas". Don had an idea and I think it was not just a good one but a great one, whose time had come. But we'll see....

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post #28 of (permalink) Old 04-13-2004, 11:21 AM
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So what happens now? Does a line get drawn? Illegal trails around Indian Arm are okay... legal gondollas up the Chief? Are they okay? What about the numerous and ever expanding mountain bike trails that are tearing up the North Shore mountains? Rock climbing routes that strip delicate lichens and mosses from rock surfaces? What if someone wants to upgrade the Indian Arm trail to a mountain bike trail? It's interesting sometimes how we overlook the potential negative impacts of something that benefits us personally (self included by the way...)

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post #29 of (permalink) Old 04-14-2004, 12:27 AM
 
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Wow I've missed a great debate
First of all I want to say we would not be where we are today without previous outdoor enthusiasts blazing a trail that we found popular enough to be put in some hiking book, that being said we all live in a much more regulated society today, like it or not.
The Indian Arm trail is really not the issue I think, it's the door it opens for other misguided people to follow. I believe the Indian Arm trail was built with more fore thought than most trails these days, but does that excuse him for opening the door for others to follow in another fashion ?
The real issue for me is MOTIVE for the builder of any trail, Don McPherson has displayed as much courage and good intentions to win me over.
Personally......anyone that puts in the time, effort, and passion to build a trail of this magnitude and to do it with all the right intentions can build a trail any day and any where in my books. The only problem is PEOPLE WILL COME !
People over populating a trail was not a real issue before, but it's a consideration now, like it or not !
Anyone been to Garibaldi Lake during the summer !!
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post #30 of (permalink) Old 04-14-2004, 09:30 AM Thread Starter
 
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You don't have any patience for "my kind?" You're hilarious Hiker! Ya we go waaaaay back. Its like you've known me my entire life! Congratulations on having me figured out in such a short time. Its a good thing you really don't take any of this personally!
Again, what does clearcut logging and charity have to do with this thread??

I agree that without such enthusiasts in the past we may not have many of our lovely trails we have now. But things have changed. We now have better understandings of our environment and we now have boards, laws and councils who include outdoor enthusiasts and scientists who can ensure that these things are done responsibly. I agree that they may not make the right decisions all the time but I still don't think we can have anyone do whatever they want. Especially in when to may compromise something larger.

A good point was brought up. Perhaps a mtn bike enthusiast will spend countless days with gruelling efforts to make some of it a bike trail. Should they be allowed? The intent is there but a much larger footprint may be laid. What if someone wants to make it more accessible? The Indian Arm may be very inticing because it is new, and it is challening and nearby. Who knows how many people may attempt it and if it is too difficult who's to say no one will make it easier? It can open a pandora's box.
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