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Thread: LF hikers, do you remove plastic tree ribbons?

  1. #11
    Drew Bedo's Avatar
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    Re: LF hikers, do you remove plastic tree ribbons?

    Plastic ribbons?

    Isn't that what PHOTOSHOP is for?
    Drew Bedo
    www.quietlightphoto.com
    http://www.artsyhome.com/author/drew-bedo




    There are only three types of mounting flanges; too big, too small and wrong thread!

  2. #12

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    Re: LF hikers, do you remove plastic tree ribbons?

    Heroique,

    I wonder if some of these flags are left by well-meaning hikers trying to mark trails that were snow covered at the time. But I learned not to trust flags long ago, especially near climbing routes. My friend and I followed a series a flags in the mysteriously named Valley of the Silent Men that seemed to just keep going and going up the valley even as the brush closed in around us. So we ended up missing the rather obvious turn-off to where we should have gone (up to The Brothers high camp). Learned to ignore cairns and flags after that trip.

  3. #13
    Drew Wiley
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    Re: LF hikers, do you remove plastic tree ribbons?

    If those plastic flags are in fact employed by hikers, hopefully they'll also guide wolves, cougars, and wolverines to their next meal as it slowly plods through the snow while tying those flags onto things. That should inherently limit some of the problem.

  4. #14
    Vaughn's Avatar
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    Re: LF hikers, do you remove plastic tree ribbons?

    Painting outside of caves is not as archival...any critic of the time knew that.

    Ribbons -- in the US Forest Service of the 80s, each color/pattern had its meaning. Piles of rock -- over they go, unless it is obvious that natural processes will ensure it anyway.

    Along our creeks, the flags mark salmon and steelhead redds for study.
    "Landscapes exist in the material world yet soar in the realms of the spirit..." Tsung Ping, 5th Century China

  5. #15
    Tin Can's Avatar
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    Re: LF hikers, do you remove plastic tree ribbons?

    I went to HS with Mr Marker Tree

    Bend a tree to grow and point to trail and waters

    https://www.outdoorrevival.com/news/...l-markers.html
    Images vastly preferred

    not game trying to


    focus


    In Time

  6. #16
    Drew Wiley
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    Re: LF hikers, do you remove plastic tree ribbons?

    Nah! That tree had a spinal deformation growing up due to a deficiency in Vitamin D. It happens to quite a few carnivorous cedars in the desert.

  7. #17

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    Re: LF hikers, do you remove plastic tree ribbons?

    When it snows in the northwest hills and mountains you often can't find the trail. These could be a very needed winter marking system. Markings like these are used for cross country trail skiing. When I was young I participated in search and rescue work. We supported the King County Police Department in finding lost: hikers, hunters, evidence searches, and planes that went down in the cascades. I now work as an architect and survey tape is used often to mark properties, and potential construction -such as roads, trails etc.

  8. #18
    Drew Wiley
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    Re: LF hikers, do you remove plastic tree ribbons?

    In the high Sierra, tree blazes relatively high up were used. Then on official routes back to snow survey stations, metal markers high up the trees would be used. Now these stations operate remotely via solar panels, and are maintained by horseback or helicopters in summer. In the old days, stream gaugers with measurement sticks would actually wade out into the icewater numerous times over the winter and spring to measure runoff depth with a long stick. Log huts were built for them, some of which still survive and have been converted into patrol cabins for backcountry summer rangers. The "last of mountain men" in that region was a trapper and stream gauger in his younger years; and just a year after the original Muir Trail was completed (with a somewhat different route than the current version), he covered the entire distance using homemade skis and a real buffalo hide as both shelter and sleeping bag. It was fifty years until anyone did it again, using modern gear. My sister was a classmate with his kids; I was younger. He eventually joined the Forest Service, but had his lungs wrecked trying to heroically put out a forest fire. There was no compensation for that back then; if you got hurt, no job, tough luck; put your wife to work. Same thing happened if logger got hurt or killed. His name was Orland Bartholomew, and a friend of my father's named Gene Rose published his biography.

  9. #19
    Vaughn's Avatar
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    Re: LF hikers, do you remove plastic tree ribbons?

    Flagging would be a terrible way to mark trails for winter -- a great way to get people lost. Candle blazes, tops of tin cans nailed to trees, most winter trails have some type of markers on trees or posts. Flagging would not be permanent enough for the job all winter. I spent most of the summer of 1981 hunting down and surveying old abandoned trails in my Ranger District...working off the old topos and pre-topo maps. Most of them had not seen much traffic or work in the last 40 or 50 years. Heck of a lot of fun. Losing the trail and trying to guess where someone could/would/should have put the trail...using my city-boy tracking skills. The experience helped a lot over the next decade when I was designing my own trail sections.

    Now as I hike those trails, fire has taken out many of the trees with the candle blazes, a lack of maintenance and foot traffic has 'disappeared' long sections of trails -- I should have built more rock cairns back then instead of tearing down the 'extras'. Having worked the trails for a decade, I know where to go. With the massive fires last summer in those mountains, access is even tougher...many of the trails will sort of disappear all together and we'll have a real wilderness back there.
    "Landscapes exist in the material world yet soar in the realms of the spirit..." Tsung Ping, 5th Century China

  10. #20
    Land-Scapegrace Heroique's Avatar
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    Re: LF hikers, do you remove plastic tree ribbons?

    Quote Originally Posted by Vaughn View Post
    Ribbons – in the US Forest Service of the 80s, each color/pattern had its meaning.
    Would love to know more about USFS color codes from the 1980s.

    Maybe they’re the same today.

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