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Thread: peakbaggers: please don't flag...it's trash

  1. #31
    Senior Member SteveHiker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by forestgnome View Post
    Here, I had to follow the path of a beginner needlessly through harsh spruce stands to clean trash from the Wilderness.
    No, you didn't. You choose to. You should have reported it to the rangers and made them do it. Then when they were done, they'd hang up "No Flagging" signs all along the route.

  2. #32
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    I dont use flagging for bushwhacking, never have and dont plan on starting.

    There is biodegradable flagging sold by surveying supply firms. I have seen it used on wetlands deliniation projects. Its usually gone after less than a year. I wish that the S&R folks would use it as I have found lots of flagging in areas that were part of a search over the years.

    The WMNF also uses it in many spots. I have encountered several plots in the woods over the years deliniated by flagging. I am not sure if they were for research or marking potential future cuts

    I inadvertently may have been party to stranding some folks on Scar Ridge once by removing a very fresh rather extensive flag line up from Little East pond once. It was definitely a peakbaggers route as it zigged and zagged. We encountered it early on and removed as much as we could until diverging off the route to take a straighter route to the summit. We were doing the ridge so we we ended up crossing the projection of the flag line. While in dense woods we encountered some folks and after saying Hi we looked back and noticed that they were flagging their route as they walked away. We didnt say anything and headed off for the next peak. I didnt see any rescue reports the next day, but unless it was coincidence, I suspect their trip down may have been "interesting".

    On the other hand I do use and plan to use flagging for AT Corridor Boundary work in places where the blazes are marginal and the growth is thick. We are not allowed to make any new blazes on trees, but in places flagging is needed in order to have a site line. If I or another party get around to clearing and remarking the boundary, I can then take the flagging down. The intent of boundary maintenance is to make the line obvious so no one inadvertently crosses the line and flagging is a temporary tool for this purpose.

  3. #33
    Senior Member MichaelJ's Avatar
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    Often "official" flagging is marked as such with permanent marker. I would like to think that putting 'AT Bound' on your flags with a Sharpie will go a long way towards preventing their removal. Much like how once in a while on a trail you'll see some flags, usually labeled, which with a little observation make it clear that they're marking worksites on the trail.

    I would hazard a guess that most of the time, it's pretty easy to tell what's there for a valid reason vs. what's just someone's trash.

    One should never feel bad about removing trash from the woods or the wilderness. Refer to the GPS vs. Map & Compass thread if you think you should be guilty if someone can't find their way back out.
    May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view. May your mountains rise into and above the clouds. - Edward Abbey

  4. #34
    Senior Member Little Rickie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brambor View Post
    Flagging should not be allowed with plastic or non recyclable materials. If you bring trash to the woods then you deserve to get lost.

    I don't like flagging at all but if it must be done for a few days then why not use crepe paper? It will dissolve quick after a few rainstorms.

    There is biodegradable flagging sold by surveying supply firms. I have seen it used on wetlands deliniation projects. Its usually gone after less than a year.
    Problem not solved but it's a good idea and would help.
    Peace

    "How one parses a question tells you as much about the person as how they answer the question."

    Oldee Won Balogeena

  5. #35
    Senior Member sierra's Avatar
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    First off I wish I found those moose antlers, secondly flagging I Learned this year has many uses. I need to confess something here, I was hiking up Monadnock and there was trailwork being done, I went past the workers and saw alot of trees flagged along the trail, some where rotten and then I saw some that where very healthy and not really in the way at all. I got pissed that some really beautifull trees where going to be cut down for what I could see was no good reason. I cut off a few of the flags to save a few trees (really my heart was in the right place). I later learned that alot of the flagging was colored and meant to direct trail workers to the task that needed to be done, the flags did not mean a tree was in jeapordy at all. I did feel bad, they where doing good work and I didnt help, but I did learn something.

  6. #36
    Senior Member forestgnome's Avatar
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    Thanks, all...this has been a good thread.

    And sure, I've seen flagging from timber harvest and surveying, and I've seen flagging intended to identify tasks for trail work. It's beyond obvious. I always leave those alone.

    I've also seen flagging that marked the boundary for WMU for the moose hunt. I didn't remove those. It's not my right.

    And if a massive SAR grid search effort was underway, well, again...obvious.

    happy respectful off-trail peakbagging

  7. #37
    Senior Member cooperhill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sierra View Post
    First off I wish I found those moose antlers, secondly flagging I Learned this year has many uses. I need to confess something here, I was hiking up Monadnock and there was trailwork being done, I went past the workers and saw alot of trees flagged along the trail, some where rotten and then I saw some that where very healthy and not really in the way at all. I got pissed that some really beautifull trees where going to be cut down for what I could see was no good reason. I cut off a few of the flags to save a few trees (really my heart was in the right place). I later learned that alot of the flagging was colored and meant to direct trail workers to the task that needed to be done, the flags did not mean a tree was in jeapordy at all. I did feel bad, they where doing good work and I didnt help, but I did learn something.
    Oops. No harm, no foul. I was one of those workers. Join us next year to learn more about it! It is run by the NH Forest Society.

    As a general comment, and as mentioned previously this flagging was marked with specific work tasks.
    Chris

    USFS Trails Volunteer / Adopter: West Side Trail (Mt. Chocorua), Sawyer River trail; USFS vol axe instructor; Chatham Trails Association (CTA), Trailwrights

    "If I had six hours to chop down a tree, I'd spend four sharpening my ax" Abraham Lincoln

  8. #38
    Senior Member swamp's Avatar
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    Several years ago I was off-trail in the woods heading into the Hitchcocks (off the Pemi East trail). I found a bunch of flagging in a dead-straight line that didn't appear to lead anywhere in particular.
    I later asked a forest service person about it and was told that wildlife surveys are done at various places in the Whites. Researchers go to each flag and record the plants and critters they observe at that location at different times of the year.
    I agree with Ranxerox !!!!

    Swampyankee

  9. #39
    Banned Kevin Rooney's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by forestgnome View Post
    And if a massive SAR grid search effort was underway, well, again...obvious.
    Nope, not so obvious if the SAR effort is recovery. Grids can be established in search areas, and search efforts can continue for weeks, sometimes months.

    Two weeks ago I ran into some friends on the local mountain rescue SAR, and they were searching a quadrant for remains of someone who died in 1986. They set flags to make the quadrants, so they won't have to search those areas again.

    Things are not always as they appear.

  10. #40
    Senior Member Brambor's Avatar
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    I would hope that a gps unit with recorded waypoints would suffice instead of bringing plastic into the woods.


    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Rooney View Post
    Nope, not so obvious if the SAR effort is recovery. Grids can be established in search areas, and search efforts can continue for weeks, sometimes months.

    Two weeks ago I ran into some friends on the local mountain rescue SAR, and they were searching a quadrant for remains of someone who died in 1986. They set flags to make the quadrants, so they won't have to search those areas again.

    Things are not always as they appear.
    Luck is where preparation meets opportunity.

  11. #41
    Senior Member NewHampshire's Avatar
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    In the hunter safety class I took years ago they once suggested using toilet paper (not used of course ) as temporary flagging. Once piece would be gone as soon as the first rain storm and be pretty much gone for good and not noticeable after that (since your using such a small piece of it).

    Brian
    Adopter: Wildcat Ridge Trail from Rt.16 to Wildcat "D". If you have any issues please contact me!

  12. #42
    Senior Member Craig's Avatar
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    It's funny, I've seen far more trash on the trail than I've seen flagging in the woods. As a matter of fact, I've seen many more balloons in the woods than flagging.

    I always pick up food rappers and such that I find on the trail but watch most folks pass right by it.
    Enjoy your best

  13. #43
    Senior Member DougPaul's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brambor View Post
    I would hope that a gps unit with recorded waypoints would suffice instead of bringing plastic into the woods.
    One could also follow a recorded track. (Recorded on the way in or from a previous visit.)

    Doug

  14. #44
    Senior Member Adk_dib's Avatar
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    Could the animals (moose and deer) try and eat this stuff and get sick?

  15. #45
    Senior Member Neil's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Craig View Post
    It's funny, I've seen far more trash on the trail than I've seen flagging in the woods.
    Is trail trash related to trailer trash?

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