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Does it make money for someone?
Sadly, a lot of good ideas to preserve our diminishing open spaces, tend to fall down to financial pressure.
However, I think areas can be sensibly and realistically fenced off for conservation. For those who are familiar with Cwm Idwal, a small area has been fenced off for some 50+ years, to allow nature to follow its natural course.
I personally don't have a problem with areas being fenced, though from what I've seen, ie Cwm Idwal, the areas arre too small.
Regarding Kinder, I don't think enough is being done. Sadly, it is very likely down to money. But perhaps clear designated footpaths might be the way to go.
> But wild camping has been restricted
Well, they have to try to encourage people to use the caravans, hotels and lodges somehow...
I agree with Cathy, the way to minimise impact on areas is to reduce access. There is a PC mentality that seems to think that EVERYONE has the right to access the wild. Even those who patently don't have the ability to gain that access unless it is handed to them on a plate.
And folk who seem to think that it is 'green' to build stuffing great windfarms all over the place get right up my nose as well!
There is nothing "PC" about making the outdoors easier to access to those who are not fortunate enough to have two working legs, too old or too frail. Nature is not the exclusive preserve of righteous hikers who can hike a few miles from the car park they left their motor vehicle in...
Granted it would be good to see some of the lazy oaf benefiting from it, despite only being incapacited by their lack of fitness being made to sweat to reach some places but the idea of easier access is not to annoy the outdoor community, it's there so that the great outdoors is not only a cliquey minority hobby but something most people can benefit from.
After all, it cost a lot of taxpayer money to run those National Parks, tax that is paid by all of us, including those who would never go anywhere near a pair of hiking boots...I find it hard to justify those places should only be there to serve my idea of fun (however much it appeals to me...)
i'm totally against the outdoors being covered in roads and car parks just to provide access for those lazy scroungers who don't deserve it. i don't want to see the hills covered in cafes/litter bins/signposts/sheep/cattle/windmills and have i mentioned anything else i may not like for no rational reason other than i can grossly exaggerate anything into the realms of ridiculousness - oops! run out of green ink...
like all things there is a balancing act to be done between what's best for nature whilst accommodating what people would like to do. should bits of nature be fenced off or should people be fenced in.
i find that education is lacking on the outdoors and no one wants to commit to providing information that joe bloggs can use. This is part of providing intellectual access so people can make there own minds up. in how many popular spots is there actually any useful information, e.g. how long is it going to take to walk up or down snowdon.
as naturalists and others quite rightly point out species being endangered (or whatever the current expression for such things are these days) is the information relating to these easily available e.g. what the feck does a lesser spotted raggedy scorpion grass bleedin' well look like and where does it grow which would give people a chance not to stamp on it.
MS, OK but where do you draw the line? I'd love to do Everest but doubt that I will ever be fit enough, perhaps a train a'la Jung Frau Joch should be put in place for my benefit.
Or I could just accept that I have limits and live within those.
If we enable access to all of the wild places for all, those places cease to be wild. There are many places I will not get to visit because of my age - I can live with that. What I couldn't live with is to find that in 20 years time SAGA are doing bus trips there because I have the 'right' to visit it. (or more likely someone has realised there is a market to exploit).
The tax payer pays for many things that the majority do not benefit from, that is the nature of things.
What wild places are we talking about here? Surely not the amiable bumps of the Lakes, modified and tamed by men for centuries?
No one is arguing to build a motorway to an Alaskan wilderness or a deep jungle so that what are deemed unworthy types can get there without suffering for days. Actual wild places ought to be kept out of bounds for conservation purposes, particularly from those muppets who can't help poking their nose in every corner of the world for "adventure"...
Easier access is for areas with a well develloped infrastructure, to which you tag on top the necessary add-ons so that people less fortunate than you can also enjoy a nice view or landscape for themselves. Nature is for everybody, not only hikers who want to fantasise the tame little hills they walk on in the UK (and indeed in many other countries) are some fearsome wilderness they are conquering....
However, here lies the problem, easier access means increased pressure on the eco-system. That's why before making it easier for more people to rightfully access their national parks, a proper study of our impact on the landscape should be conducted and then possible solutions implemented.
Probably the best step forward for our national parks would be to ban private traffic within (for non-residents) and install a network of buses from a variety of big P&R car parks at the boundaries taking people to most areas.You could even include a number of limited access areas so that only fit, righteous hikers can get to them and be spared the sight of unworthy visitors...I can only imagine this would be enthusiastically greeted by the outdoors community, imagine the fun on those buses...
Enforced closure of hills on a rotating basis would be a good idea too, one year it's Helvellyn out of bound, the next Scafell, etc. Give the landscape a chance to regenerate and maybe force people to discover other less popular hills...It would add a good thrill for the more "extreme" hikers to trespass and "wildcamp" in the banned areas. Imagine what fun it would be to blog and tweet about that from the, ahem, wilds...
Who is talking about anyone being fit and righteous, I'm neither, but I am happy to live within my limitations without feeling that it is my 'right' to experience everything handed to me on a plate.
And who mentioned 'unworthy types', folk don't do things for many many reasons, my days of extreme climbing are long past but I don't expect anyone to put a handrail up Tower Ridge for me, I can't even climb the routes I put up myself in my youth, but that is ok, they are there for others to enjoy.
I don't include the Lakes as wild, much as I love them (although there are some more remote spots if you search them out) but I would argue that there are some pretty wild places in the highlands that require a day or two's walking to access. within a few years they will be out of bounds to me, and that is just fine and as it should be.
I'll come back and skim through the 15 pages of incisive and innovative thinking on this thread when I get back after the weekend
I'll be out trashing the wild places of the UK btw
Kinley, good for you, just remember to bring your rubbish out with you!
Have a good one, I have to fix a shower, it's a bank holiday weekend over here as well
When I see someone walking past me in jeans and flip-flops whilst I'm decked out in the finest outdoors frippery, I find it a timely reminder of my own silliness and that at heart, I'm just a big kid playing at being an adventurer...
Lads/lasses, I don't want the places I go to invaded, I rather I could go for a walk in peace, only bumping into like minded people (and by large, I can manage that because I go looking for the more remote spots that exist even in busy national parks) but I'm in no position to deny or indeed am I inclined to deny others the right to visit the outdoors even if it means making it easier for them with nice paths, better roads, etc
I'm heart an elitist, people should be made to suffer in order to enjoy a stunning view from the tops, but my mind is egalitarian, so if the Parks want more couch potatoes visiting then I'll play along. Maybe enough of them will have a revelation and take up hiking...
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