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Thread: Packing Heat in the Park

  1. #11
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
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    Rock Hill, SC
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    992

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    Lauxier--I don't know about drawing "nearby park rangers," since in my experience they are mighty scarce on the ground in the backcountry. In fact, the Park presently has what I consider a singularly misguided proposal to start charging backcountry camping fees with the questionably justification being it will fund two rangers to cover the backcountry. Anyone who knows the backcountry intimately will instantly realize that two rangers cannot come anywhere close to patrolling the whole area, checking designated campsites, or the like.
    I suspect most people who do much fishing away from the main travel corridors will have an experience similar to mine; I've been checked exactly twice in the last quarter century (and both times it was on lower Deep Creek, just inside the Park, by a N. C. Wildlife guy--they have authority in the Park).
    Jim Casada

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
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    452

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    Strangely enough Mr. Casada, until last Fall, I had only been checked once in 34 years within the Park. Last Fall, I was checked twice in one week.

  3. #13
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    Jun 2009
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    Rock Hill, SC
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    Kytroutman--Good, because I would like more of this. However, I bet the odds are mighty good that you were somewhere in the frontcountry or close to a trailhead.
    Jim Casada

  4. #14
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Posts
    452

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    You are correct. Middle Prong and Tremont

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
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    2,516

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    They tried to check me by the road last year but I was we'll down the trail by the time they stopped the patrol car and got out.

  6. #16
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    SE Tennessee
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    Never been checked anywhere in all the years I've been fishing! Just wait- I'll accidently do something wrong and officers will come from the four points of the compass!
    The fee for two backcountry rangers- Let's see- two rangers and 500,000 acres leaves each ranger with 250,000 acres to cover. Piece of cake! Just hope they can walk fast.

  7. #17
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Knoxville, Tn
    Posts
    706

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    My wife and I hiked the Chimneys on New Years Eve and on our way down we came across a group of people where a lady had fallen on the the slick ice and apparently broken an ankle. Her situation was compounded by the fact that they laid her down in the snow and ice and so they had to wrap her in an emergency blanket and even then she was shivering badly. By the time we got back to to the trailhead we had passed (in order) 2 rangers walking solo up to the accident, a group of 5 rangers with search and rescue and a stretcher on a a giant wheel, followed by a pair of two more rangers. At the trailhead there were at least 7 park service vehicles, an ambulance, and at least 4 or more rangers manning the parking lot.

    The whole thing reminded me of the guy who broke his ankle in 2 places on deep creek (was that last spring) and walked out 5 miles with his 50 pound plus pack without any additional help...

    Anyway the whole thing seemed like a waste and overuse of resources. I mean, they didn't need all of those people there to get the one lady out. nevermind the fact that there were a ton of people hiking on the trail that day, and very few seemed prepared for the fact that about .8 miles of the 1.1 miles up from the Road Prong trail (the steepest portion) were covered in ice. Very few people were wearing footwear that would protect or at least somewhat support their ankles, many were in shorts and shortsleeves with no outerwear, and I even saw one guy walking up the icy portion with a baby in a baby carrier on his back!

    Yet it is the back country campers who need to be paying more?

  8. #18
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Knoxville, TN
    Posts
    944

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    Quote Originally Posted by NDuncan View Post
    Yet it is the back country campers who need to be paying more?
    NDuncan...my wife and I hiked the rich mtn loop on the 30th, and for the short period of time we were in cades cove, I counted 8 different rangers, most of which were dealing directly with auto-traffic.

    Once again...."Yet it is the back country campers who need to be paying more?"

    Sorry for getting off topic. I had wanted to share that for several days.

  9. #19
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    Apr 2009
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    SE Tennessee
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    NDuncan, your post reminds me of the family portrayed on a Hunter Education video. Mom, Dad, Junior, dog went hiking for a distant mountain peak. Totally unprepared! Hikers told them to watch the weather as some dark coulds were moving in. To end the story- below freezing temps, deep snow. Only the dog survived.

  10. #20
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Knoxville, Tennessee
    Posts
    1,558

    Talking Let's be reasonable

    Quote Originally Posted by Knothead View Post
    The fee for two backcountry rangers- Let's see- two rangers and 500,000 acres leaves each ranger with 250,000 acres to cover. Piece of cake! Just hope they can walk fast.
    They will most likely stick to the trails so it's really only 450 miles per ranger. With that ranger breaking that new record of doing the whole Smokies in 17 hours or something they might be breeding new super rangers

    450 miles is only 17 marathons - they should have that knocked out by noon, so should have plenty of time to stop poaching of wildlife and resources

    I really think the extra rangers are really only being staffed to help combat the dwindling numbers of people in the backcountry

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