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[at-l] Technology on the Trail

As Ron has said, ten years will change th equation. Right now, the
biggest problem with cell phones in the woods is that celluar technology
will more often than not reach into the woods.  But what will happen ten
years from now when sattelite phone technology is afforable for Joe
Shmoe?  We will literally be able to call Aunt Matilda from anywhere!
THat will also mean that people being able to communicate at all times
will be a common day occurence. And that will happen everywhere....in the
mall, in the city park, on the Applachian Trail.

So how do we deal with this technology? Do we act like  the little Dutch
Boy?  Placing fingers in dikes, hoping to keep the inevitable flood at
bay for a just a little bit longer? Do we accept it, facing the fact that
the AT (and by defintion- other experiences) will be a different
environment from what we all know? 

People will bring new innovations into the woods, there is nothing that
can be done about it. I cannot change how people act, but I can adjust
myself. When I summited the Big K almost two years ago, there was a
person using his cell phone to says who knows what. But did that detract
from the joy I felt that day? Nope. I was too happy to see my friends, to
complete something I had set out to do 5 mos before.

	In the coming years, we will see more people using their phones, their
computers, etc. while in the woods. But you know something? It is their
hike they are impacting upon, not mine.  I hike to get away from "the
real world".  I will continue to take a pen and paper for my journal,
elect to call people while in town.  If these people choose to change
their hike by bringing in the real world, then their hike will not be as
much of a wilderness experience as mine. Their. choice.   As they are
playing Doom from their laptop,  I will be enjoying a sunset from my
tent.   Maybe as the Doom players realise that nature has more to offer
than any video game, they will leave their computer at home, call Aunt
Matilda only when they reach town. But in the mean time, the choices I
make will be fulfilling for me,  and will not be affected by the choices
others choose to make. 


Eanie, Meanie. Jelly Beanie. The spirits are about to speak!
--Bullwinkle Moose
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