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Re: [at-l] Re: Groups on the AT
> I don't know about the proper "ettiquite" of the Trail . . . but i
> think the
> idea that large groups should not hike is rather bogus.
> But, why say groups, especially the Scouts, should stay
> away!?! It is a great experience for the youngsters.
It's great for Scouts & other organized groups to hit the Trail. It's
how I got started. Large groups tend to have more impact than several
smaller groups, however. Trying to all fit into a single site, they
tend to enlarge them. They also concentrate impact in cooking areas,
helping speed the process of degradation from a "used" area to a "camped
out" area (litter & vegetation completely gone to bare earth).
Still, there's ways to break a large group into smaller ones. One
approach is to divide the group in half & have them start at opposite
ends of a point-to-point hike. Passing each other in the middle, the
leaders exchange car keys. Saves having to shuttle.
Another approach used by a lot of youth wilderness camping operations is
to send small groups out in a staggered series, one day apart. At
Philmont, the BSA splits big groups up into smaller ones & sends them
out on different itineraries.
With a little planning, there's no contradiction.
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