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  1. #11
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    Kurt, you bring up many good points. I tend to avoid the campsites along the trail much of the time, but I do respect the area and try to LNT as many others have commented. As far as damaging the area, I take wide hammock straps to protect the trees, and if the ground is not clear, I don't generally make a fire. Needless to say, I'd always encourage people to follow the local rules with regard to designated campsites or no. I find that some of the sites are so used that they are packed dirt, the firerings have old bits of aluminum cans, etc.... They aren't terrible, but they're very heavily used as everyone hiking thru uses them. I pick a spot that's generally pretty 'out there' and very unlikely that anyone else will use for years, so the impact is very low.

    Sounds like most of us are doing similar things.

  2. #12
    Ramblinrev's Avatar
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    There is a lot of controversy between the low impact scattered and low impact concentrated camps. I'm sure there is less awkward language. In essence, some contend that to scatter the camps into less used areas reduces the long term impact on any given wilderness environment. Others claim that any impact is too damaging and so designated campsites are preferred because at least all the impact takes place in one spot and so is not as overall destructive.

    Near as I can tell, they both have their points. I usually used previously established sites simply because they are there and often provide amenities such as lpgs or stumps to sit on. I am having to rethink some of this as I become more hammock adapted.
    I may be slow... But I sure am gimpy.

    "Bless you child, when you set out to thread a needle don't hold the thread still and fetch the needle up to it; hold the needle still and poke the thread at it; that's the way a woman most always does, but a man always does t'other way."
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  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cannibal View Post
    My mood usually dictates that decision. Sometimes I just don't want to risk the chance of having company if I'm out there to ponder the universe and such. Other times a little company is nice. Sometimes I just find a place that 'feels' good, so I make camp. If I'm with a group then the campground is a good place to meet and usually laziness kicks in if you've been waiting for someone, so I'll hang there.
    You forgot about the "Heck, this site will do, let's hang here!" (Used late in the afternoon when a surprise rain is starting up.)
    Youngblood AT2000

  4. #14
    Senior Member Cannibal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Youngblood View Post
    You forgot about the "Heck, this site will do, let's hang here!" (Used late in the afternoon when a surprise rain is starting up.)
    Oh yeah, but to be honest "Heck" isn't what usually starts that sentence.
    Trust nobody!

  5. #15
    neo's Avatar
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    i am a leave no trace stealth hanger,no fires,no trash,you cant even see me.neo
    the matrix has you

  6. #16
    Senior Member rigidpsycho's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by neo View Post
    i am a leave no trace stealth hanger,no fires,no trash,you cant even see me.neo
    Who said that? I hear someone ,but can't see them. HAHA. On a serious note thought I like to try and get away from the trail a little to avoid a mass group who is noisy, which is hard to do at Red River gorge here b/c so many partiers go to it. I will try to use an established site, but I would like to enjoy some peace and quiet.
    Chris

  7. #17
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    Youngblood, why stop because of rain? I love hiking in the rain, keeps you from overheating. Also tends to keep the bugs down. This is one of the reasons that I don't often hike in boots anymore. My wonderful Vasque boots would eventually get water in them and be uncomfortable. I switched to beatup light Vietnam combat boots, canvas with drain holes. They worked pretty well. They offer limited ankle support, and I found that was just fine even with a heavy pack. That set the stage to move to sandals, which offer just about no ankle support. I now hike in sandals almost entirely, and quite like it. (Croc Tikali sandals) Back to the subject, hiking in the rain is awesome. On heavily used trails (without much plant cover), this can be damaging to the ground and cause erosion. In these situations, if the trail isn't muddy, I'll hike it. If it is, I'll generally head off trail where the ground can support it without issue.

  8. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by bristolview View Post
    Youngblood, why stop because of rain?
    Let's see... because with a hammock and tarp you have more options of stopping when you don't want to get wet?
    Youngblood AT2000

  9. #19
    Senior Member Ashman's Avatar
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    Campsites, my hiking partners are ground dwellers, poor bastidges, so we have to find a pretty spot for them. Its always funny we are looking for a spot at the end of the day and they are asking (what about this spot? How about that?) I smile smugly and keep my opinions to myself!

  10. #20
    Senior Member photomankc's Avatar
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    If there is a nice site nearby I'll usually setup near it if I can and just use the sitting spots and fire rings and such. On sections where there is no good site near then I will just go till I find close access to water or a good view and I setup there. So far I have been about 50/50 on this. Our trails here in MO are not all that crowded so very often I have miles of territory to myself. I still like to keep a little hidden just to keep someone from pillaging my gear while I am out and about.

    If it's a park with rules then I camp where they designate, but I won't set foot in a RV parking lot campground. I hate that with a passion.

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