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Thread: More trail closings?

  1. #61
    Senior Member Mike P.'s Avatar
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    Waiting for the heavy stuff here so I can get wet by water destined for both the Thames and the Connecticut Rivers.
    Have fun & be safe
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  2. #62
    Senior Member Salty's Avatar
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    So after being alternately bemused and then shaking my head at some discussions over on Facebook, with comments to the effect of "they shut down the White Mtn. National Park," "they won't let us go into the woods now!" etc., a cursory tally of the normally open trailheads excluding the northern, Mahoosuc and Speckled regions of the WMG told me that 65% of the trailheads are open. Tons of hiking out there, but as mentioned, everyone just goes to the same !@&^%#$ trailheads instead.

    Quote Originally Posted by DougBates View Post
    Sure, there are a few day trippers willing to drive 8 hours to do a hike. There always have been. But North Conway is nearly a ghost town compared to what it is usually like at this time of year. Traffic is light, even on blue bird Saturdays.

    On the other hand, the vacation homes near me are unusually well occupied now, and with a lot of out-of-state plates.
    I respectfully disagree, there are way more than a few day trippers. My observation about traffic going north was clearly not just people going to their vacation homes. Even if it were, they should not be shuttling back and forth. That would be no different than day hiking. I can say on that same day coming back from work, there was plenty of traffic with red and white plates heading south. There are people with out of state plates validly here as NHClimber points out, but that is absolutely a minority, because there couldn't possibly be enough reasons to justify that many cars. And FWIW, I'd be upset seeing folks from Hillsborough and Rockingham counties, maybe even Merrimack co. heading to the mountains, they're just not as easy to spot, though given the traffic Saturday, I'm sure they were a-plenty as well.

    IMNSHO, there's ***zero*** reason to head to the Whites now. There are woods, parks and road walks everywhere locally (not necessarily all 3). It's not a necessity, it's not a God-given right, it's a "want." Regardless of what you think about the virus, it won't kill you to spend a few weeks locally. I've only left the county three times to go to work, and the furthest hike I've done was 2 towns over. It's not exactly tough to do.

  3. #63
    Senior Member hikerbrian's Avatar
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    Many people are willing to live in the city/MA because they know they can get out of the city when they need some fresh air. By and large, I think this is a good system and benefits everyone. So if you're wondering WHY IN THE WORLD WOULD ANYONE THINK IT'S OK TO LEAVE MA AND COME TO NH TO RECREATE??!!1!11!1, it's because of this expectation. Stay at home orders impact this population (myself included) considerably. Respectfully, folks suggesting 'it's not that hard to stay home for a few weeks' either don't recognize that we're talking about a lot longer than a few weeks, or they don't understand the impact in an urban/suburban environment. I live in a quiet section of town, within walking distance of Borderlands state park, which is a lovely spot for a mountain bike or trail run. Unfortunately, my road and the state park are absolutely mobbed right now - I don't feel safe going for a hike/run on nice days. Consequently, I have left my yard exactly 5 times in the past 6 weeks, and I expect this trend to continue for some time. But believe me, the need and desire to get out is growing. I understand the perspective of folks fighting 'stay at home' in one way or another. I'm not encouraging or even condoning, and I'm certainly not participating, but I do understand some fraction of this mindset. Maybe we could all practice a little bit of empathy and understanding? It's also worth recognizing that a treatment and/or vaccine is unlikely to come from a NH institute. Yet NH residents will rightfully expect to partake in the fruits of that labor. Again, by and large I think this is a good and fair system. It's not as simple as, 'You made your choice, now live with the consequences.' The rules of the game are evolving in real time, and COVID-19 may very well impact life decisions in the future. In this period of rapid evolution, maybe we can all practice a little bit of empathy.
    Sure. Why not.

  4. #64
    Junior Member DougBates's Avatar
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    The trailheads that are open are typically ones not controlled by the Forest Service. Lots of them are in our state parks. These trailhead closures are just going to make those trails more crowded. It's making the situation worse, not better. The state parks in the Whites are not gated like many of the other ones. There's no mechanism for crowd control like that which has been enacted in other state parks, such as Pawtuckaway, where day passes are sold online.

    NH's Covid orders specifically allow and encourage outdoor exercise. Interstate travel is a right. These people are acting within their rights.

  5. #65
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    The only thing making the situation worse is people failing to be considerate of physical distancing and travelling unnecessarily. These closures wouldn't need to happen if that were being done. Rights or not, common sense needs to prevail if we want to get to the other side of this thing safely.

  6. #66
    Senior Member dug's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hikerbrian View Post
    Many people are willing to live in the city/MA because they know they can get out of the city when they need some fresh air. By and large, I think this is a good system and benefits everyone. So if you're wondering WHY IN THE WORLD WOULD ANYONE THINK IT'S OK TO LEAVE MA AND COME TO NH TO RECREATE??!!1!11!1, it's because of this expectation. Stay at home orders impact this population (myself included) considerably. Respectfully, folks suggesting 'it's not that hard to stay home for a few weeks' either don't recognize that we're talking about a lot longer than a few weeks, or they don't understand the impact in an urban/suburban environment. I live in a quiet section of town, within walking distance of Borderlands state park, which is a lovely spot for a mountain bike or trail run. Unfortunately, my road and the state park are absolutely mobbed right now - I don't feel safe going for a hike/run on nice days. Consequently, I have left my yard exactly 5 times in the past 6 weeks, and I expect this trend to continue for some time. But believe me, the need and desire to get out is growing. I understand the perspective of folks fighting 'stay at home' in one way or another. I'm not encouraging or even condoning, and I'm certainly not participating, but I do understand some fraction of this mindset. Maybe we could all practice a little bit of empathy and understanding? It's also worth recognizing that a treatment and/or vaccine is unlikely to come from a NH institute. Yet NH residents will rightfully expect to partake in the fruits of that labor. Again, by and large I think this is a good and fair system. It's not as simple as, 'You made your choice, now live with the consequences.' The rules of the game are evolving in real time, and COVID-19 may very well impact life decisions in the future. In this period of rapid evolution, maybe we can all practice a little bit of empathy.
    Empathy is all fine, but an expectation that because people make life choices to live in an area, we should be empathetic to their plight because they can't get to the mountains? It's no more deserving of empathy than if they couldn't get to a hike because there was a storm that would've made the travel too dangerous; but those who lived in the mountains wouldn't have to deal with the dangerous travel.

    I like to visit Boston in the spring, but couldn't. Why? I chose to live in an area where getting to Boston isn't as easy for me. That's a choice I made, to live next door to basically nothing but within an hour's drive to everything. Now, I can't visit any of them. I'm not asking, nor deserving, of anyone's empathy. It's a choice I made.

    I'm not sure how relevant where the treatment is coming from? Are you saying NH should open their borders and access to facilities and the support staff because NH likely won't develop a vaccine and someone will hold it over their heads as retribution? My goodness, I hope we never get to that place in society.

  7. #67
    Senior Member TJsName's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DougBates View Post
    The trailheads that are open are typically ones not controlled by the Forest Service. Lots of them are in our state parks. These trailhead closures are just going to make those trails more crowded. It's making the situation worse, not better. The state parks in the Whites are not gated like many of the other ones. There's no mechanism for crowd control like that which has been enacted in other state parks, such as Pawtuckaway, where day passes are sold online.

    NH's Covid orders specifically allow and encourage outdoor exercise. Interstate travel is a right. These people are acting within their rights.
    Legally, there is the constant tension between private rights and a compelling public interest, so the right itself is not absolute. Someone who does something just because they 'the right' is pretty much the definition of an a**hole, IMO. Arguably, it's that type of person that "ruins it" for the rest of us.
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  8. #68
    Senior Member DayTrip's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dailey7779 View Post
    All it takes is one person to lets say need roadside assistance and maybe that person is asymatic and passes it to a local who is then also asymatic who then passes it unknowingly to others at the grocery store or gas station and then the ball goes rolling down hill from there where our hospitals capacity/equipment are the equivalent of stale corn flakes to your filet and lobster of southern New England. That's why it's been disheartening to see people still coming up from far away, it's playing Russian roulette.

    P.S. I lived in RI for 28 years and CT for 6 before moving up here. I always enjoyed my stale cornflakes
    Hah! Corn Flakes suck! Curious what your favorite "haunts" were here in CT and RI when you were down here.

    I get what you're saying 100%. I'm merely saying I get why people are going up, despite the obvious health concerns. All those WMNF trail heads aren't packed every weekend with out of state plates because the hiking where they live is just as awesome as the Whites. And I haven't seen many NH Tourism ads with slogans like "Hike NH. It's not Cumberland, RI but it ain't bad".
    NH 48 4k: 48/48; NH W48k: 48/48; ME 4k: 2/14; VT 4k: 1/5; ADK 46: 6/46; Cat 3.5k 10/35

  9. #69
    Senior Member skiguy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TJsName View Post
    Legally, there is the constant tension between private rights and a compelling public interest, so the right itself is not absolute. Someone who does something just because they 'the right' is pretty much the definition of an a**hole, IMO. Arguably, it's that type of person that "ruins it" for the rest of us.
    Well said and I totally agree. Unfortunately much of the time “the right” and “the right thing to do” are not congruent.
    "I'm getting up and going to work everyday and I am stoked. That does not suck!"__Shane McConkey

  10. #70
    Senior Member DayTrip's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DougBates View Post
    From what I can see from my neighborhood in Glen NH is that the out-of-state cars are from people who either have vacation homes here or are people who are doing extended stays here to escape large cities.

    It's a 3 hour drive to the Whites from Boston. The hotels and vacation rentals are all closed. These out-of-state people aren't here for day trips like they are in southern NH. They've relocated here.
    As someone who drives 3-4 hours each way to NH, hikes all day and drives home another 3-4 hours that same day 25-35 times a year I would beg to differ with you. And if you think I'm an outlier I am not. I know and have met tons of people who do that very same thing. I'm sure some of those people have places up there but a great many do not.
    NH 48 4k: 48/48; NH W48k: 48/48; ME 4k: 2/14; VT 4k: 1/5; ADK 46: 6/46; Cat 3.5k 10/35

  11. #71
    Senior Member DayTrip's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DougBates View Post
    Sure, there are a few day trippers willing to drive 8 hours to do a hike. There always have been. But North Conway is nearly a ghost town compared to what it is usually like at this time of year. Traffic is light, even on blue bird Saturdays.

    On the other hand, the vacation homes near me are unusually well occupied now, and with a lot of out-of-state plates.
    I don't think I'd be using the capacity of North Conway as a barometer of hiking volume in the Whites. As a Glen resident you know this is one of the slowest, if not the slowest time of the year up there. And the area offers quite a bit more than just hiking - shopping, restaurants, bars just to name a few - all of which are closed right now. I know tons of people who go to Conway that would cut off their right arm rather than walk around in the woods.
    Last edited by DayTrip; 04-27-2020 at 02:14 PM.
    NH 48 4k: 48/48; NH W48k: 48/48; ME 4k: 2/14; VT 4k: 1/5; ADK 46: 6/46; Cat 3.5k 10/35

  12. #72
    Senior Member CaptCaper's Avatar
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    My 2 cents. I belive a good part of the reason they closed those areas is because many of the hikers are from Massachusetts and there is a huge spike there. I saw they are in the top 4 states for this.

    On a side note I had to go to Cape Cod Saturday and the parking areas at the Herring Run and West end train bridge was packed. Hundreds of cars and cars waiting for someone to leave. Not to mention busy as heck in Hyannis and surrounding beach towns. Biker gangs out hanging and talking together. On and on. No wonder there is a huge problem.

  13. #73
    Senior Member hikerbrian's Avatar
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    dug, the life choices people make are based on current rules and regulations and reasonable foresight into how things might change in the future. Travel challenges due to snow are predictable and frequent, and it is reasonable to expect people to bake those challenges into their life choices. The WMNF has never closed due to pandemic. Challenges due to a snow storm vs COVID-19 are not the same thing. At all.
    Sure. Why not.

  14. #74
    Senior Member DayTrip's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hikerbrian View Post
    dug, the life choices people make are based on current rules and regulations and reasonable foresight into how things might change in the future. Travel challenges due to snow are predictable and frequent, and it is reasonable to expect people to bake those challenges into their life choices. The WMNF has never closed due to pandemic. Challenges due to a snow storm vs COVID-19 are not the same thing. At all.
    You chose to choose to limit your choices to those parameters, which was a bad choice. You could have chosen to make other choices. So choose wisely... (KIDDING! I get your point - which is also my viewpoint - as well as his point of view. I think we're all just getting a little too tightly wrapped at this point)
    NH 48 4k: 48/48; NH W48k: 48/48; ME 4k: 2/14; VT 4k: 1/5; ADK 46: 6/46; Cat 3.5k 10/35

  15. #75
    Senior Member hikerbrian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DayTrip View Post
    I think we're all just getting a little too tightly wrapped at this point)
    Amen brother!!
    Sure. Why not.

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