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Terlingua vandalism

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Offline Jimbow

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Re: Terlingua vandalism
« Reply #30 on: February 24, 2017, 07:07:46 PM »
Move the trailhead. I'm only partly joking.

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Offline rocketman

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Re: Terlingua vandalism
« Reply #31 on: February 24, 2017, 11:24:46 PM »
Move the trailhead. I'm only partly joking.
Which part?

Making ice cubes FROM THE SUN!!!

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Offline presidio

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Re: Terlingua vandalism
« Reply #32 on: February 25, 2017, 12:24:30 AM »
Imagine if the NPS had control of the ghost town,  better or worse?

Considering that the NPS early-on destroyed many of the historic ranch buildings in the park (and likely some mining ones), their preservation record is sketchy at best. The agency removed those things that did not fit their definition of worth, or their image of what should be preserved.

Would they do it differently today? Maybe, maybe not.
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Offline Jimbow

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Re: Terlingua vandalism
« Reply #33 on: February 25, 2017, 02:37:07 AM »
People preserve what they think is worth preserving,  or what they are forced to.

My first thought is private preservation with an economic benefit to the owner is probably best,  but the public may not have access.

Public ownership offer access but possibly not the budget.

I'm not an expert by any means,  who does have the best track record in preserving something like the ghost town?

The views expressed may not be mine in five minutes.

Everything is in walking distance if you have enough time.

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Offline dprather

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Re: Terlingua vandalism
« Reply #34 on: February 25, 2017, 08:05:36 AM »
Leave "quit" at the car.  Embrace the trail as your friend.  Expect to enjoy yourself, and to be amazed.

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Offline marufo

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Re: Terlingua vandalism
« Reply #35 on: February 25, 2017, 11:05:34 AM »
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Considering that the NPS early-on destroyed many of the historic ranch buildings in the park (and likely some mining ones), their preservation record is sketchy at best. The agency removed those things that did not fit their definition of worth, or their image of what should be preserved.

Would they do it differently today? Maybe, maybe not.

I'm sure they would. The National Park idea is only 100 years old and there has definitely been a learning curve. Fifty years ago it was not realized that suppressing all fires would only lead to more destructive ones. Fifty years ago the NPS was still pushing flaming logs off the waterfalls in Yosemite for the spectacle and putting up bleachers in Yellowstone so visitors could watch the bears raid the garbage cans. But what I think people who are inclined to think of the NPS as "them" don't adequately realize is the degree to which NPS policies have always reflected what the public wanted from their National Parks at the time.

If you're not familiar with this, it is a great introduction to how NPS management has tried to meet the varied and changing expectations of what Big Bend National Park "should be." You're welcome to disagree with some NPS decisions (I certainly do) but if you think those decisions are capricious or not taken seriously, you should read this: https://www.nps.gov/bibe/learn/historyculture/adhi.htm

Quotes from that administrative history re the destruction of historical structures:

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Superintendents and their staffs from Ross Maxwell
in the 1940s to Jose Cisneros in the 1990s had to reconcile visitor expectations, park needs,
budget constraints, changes in scientific research, and NPS policy directives that shifted from the
promotion of scenery to the championing of ecology to the rehabilitation of cultural landscapes.

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Recreation, especially for a war-weary nation just embarking upon
the “baby boom” of the 1950s and early 1960s, dictated strategies for recreation rather than
science, and the removal of “eyesores” and “hazards” from parks like Big Bend.

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Curtis Schaafsma remembered in particular
the time that the famed nature photographer Ansel Adams visited Big Bend (1947), with Harold
Schaafsma serving as his personal guide. “Harold shared that late 1940s romantic vision of
protecting pristine nature,” said his son five decades later; a perspective that Adams promoted in
books, calendars, and brochures about the wonders of the national parks.
In order to fulfill this vision, the park service and superintendent Maxwell could not
devote much attention to scientific research. Instead, they would remove old structures from the
landscape that marred the beauty and/or starkness that evoked such a vision of serenity and
escape. In 1951, architect Kenneth Saunders advised NPS director Conrad Wirth that the park
service could not afford the cost of rehabilitation of the many facilities at parks like Big Bend that
the NPS had inherited. Reductions in the budget for park maintenance during the Korean conflict
further convinced Saunders of the merits of this policy. Thus Maxwell set out to remove such
historic sites as Glenn Springs, and the famed bathhouses at Hot Springs. The park’s roads and
trails crew, recalled longtime maintenance worker Francisco Grano, would be sent out to remove
these buildings. “Waddy Burnham’s house [at Government Spring] was very nice,” said Grano,
“but it was torn down.” Local ranchers like Hallie Stillwell long remembered with bitterness this
destruction of their memories. Yet Reece Sholley McNatt, widow of chief ranger George
Sholley, would recall in 1996 that “the Hot Springs bath house had terrible sanitation.” Its
proprietor, Maggie Smith, “didn’t have a permit,” said McNatt, “and didn’t keep the tubs clean.”
Thus “the old buildings had to be destroyed, and Maggie was crosswise with the NPS over this
and other issues.”
« Last Edit: February 25, 2017, 11:18:31 AM by marufo »

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Offline Flash

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Re: Terlingua vandalism
« Reply #36 on: February 25, 2017, 09:26:19 PM »
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Considering that the NPS early-on destroyed many of the historic ranch buildings in the park (and likely some mining ones), their preservation record is sketchy at best. The agency removed those things that did not fit their definition of worth, or their image of what should be preserved.

Would they do it differently today? Maybe, maybe not.

<snipped>

Blue Creek Ranch could have made a splendid "living history" exhibit (and still could). Why they could have a real pumping windmill (which would solve some of the bear box water wars).  I could probably do without the dinosaur exhibit, but to each his own...  Oh, and what I would give to see a section of Homer Wilson's panther-proof fence... This park is really not wilderness land, just about all of it saw use of some kind...
« Last Edit: February 25, 2017, 09:40:36 PM by Flash »

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Offline iCe

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Re: Terlingua vandalism
« Reply #37 on: February 25, 2017, 09:32:38 PM »
Quote
Considering that the NPS early-on destroyed many of the historic ranch buildings in the park (and likely some mining ones), their preservation record is sketchy at best. The agency removed those things that did not fit their definition of worth, or their image of what should be preserved.

Would they do it differently today? Maybe, maybe not.

<snipped>

Blue Creek Ranch could have made a splendid "living history" exhibit (and still could). Why they could have a real pimping windmill (which would solve some of the  bear box water wars).  I could probably do without the dinosaur exhibit, but to each his own...  Oh, and what I would give to see the section of Homer Wilson's panther-proof fence... This park is really not wilderness land, just about all of it saw use of some kind...


 :pissed: But... but... dinosaurs are sexy (and my grandson will be impressed until he sees the Denver Museum of Natural History) rawr... snarl... snappity snap :dance:




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Offline Flash

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Re: Terlingua vandalism
« Reply #38 on: February 25, 2017, 09:43:11 PM »
Oh, and I saw a balancing rock at Indian Head sitting on a pedestal of crumbly-looking shale, just waiting for a couple drunken billy-bob's to come by and tumble it over.  :icon_eek:

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Offline iCe

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Re: Terlingua vandalism
« Reply #39 on: February 25, 2017, 09:46:31 PM »
Oh, and I saw a balancing rock at Indian Head sitting on a pedestal of crumbly-looking shale, just waiting for a couple drunken billy-bob's to come by and tumble it over.  :shock:


 :icon_smile:  Maybe in Texas they have to be drunk to increase the safety of the public (the scout leaders claim) but in Utah they only have to be scout leaders :shock:

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Offline presidio

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Re: Terlingua vandalism
« Reply #40 on: February 25, 2017, 11:23:32 PM »
I could probably do without the dinosaur exhibit, but to each his own...  Oh, and what I would give to see a section of Homer Wilson's panther-proof fence... This park is really not wilderness land, just about all of it saw use of some kind...

It's all about entertaining tourists (the dinosaur exhibit) which is the true core mission of the NPS.

Anything farther than a quarter-mile (and frequently less) from pavement is of little interest to the crowd seeking that entertainment. Despite the fact that only a miniscule number of NPS tourists get very far beyond the entertainment zone, the NPS regulates the hell out of anyone wanting to go out there.

Working windmills, panther-proof fencing, falling-down historical structures and wild land do not draw the crowds the way entrance signs, passport stamps and curio shops do.

Therefore, you get an expensive exhibit that a lot of folks still won't drive out to see once the news splash and dash ended.

The exhibit was projected to cost $350,000 to $400,000 in a 2013 article. The actual cost was reported to be $1.4 million in a January 2017 article. Just a 300% to 400% overrun. Don't be shocked when yet another entrance fee hike is thrust upon the public.

Imagine what only a couple thousand dollars of that money could have done to substantially increase the number (or size) of those damned bear boxes you are required to use. But NOoooo, it was better to build an attraction to entertain folks who won't be hanging around very long as they zip through, rather than enabling visitors who want an in-depth experience to actually have a chance to use the park.

A few more of those dollars could also have been used to increase the number of primitive roadside campsites so that more folks could be accommodated in a huge landscape containing a paucity of places to camp.

A person might get the idea that the NPS makes it hard to use the backcountry because they don't really want you out there.
_____________
<  presidio  >
_____________
Wendell (Garret Dillahunt): It's a mess, ain't it, sheriff?
Ed Tom Bell (Tommy Lee Jones): If it ain't, it'll do till the mess gets here.
--No Country for Old Men (2007)

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Offline Jimbow

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Re: Terlingua vandalism
« Reply #41 on: February 26, 2017, 06:36:45 AM »
Yet those passport stamping, museum visiting, tourists have the same claim to their natural parks. I've run and gunned through many a natural park. I know I'm hitting highlights. But I'm curious and enjoy learning. I'm going to Acadia for two weeks,  but will be visiting parks along the way. Some for hours,  some for a day. I'm not certain why that should be viewed as a bad thing.

As noted this park was made of working ranches and mines,  it wasn't wilderness. It's only a small reach to say you could have drawn a circle anywhere in west Texas and had the same man made stuff to preserve.

Clearly based on the past two years more camping opportunities need to be created. Road sites, well spaced. Another developed campground, probably located to the north. With so many people renting hotels in Study Butte maybe even adding rooms.

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Offline iCe

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Re: Terlingua vandalism
« Reply #42 on: February 26, 2017, 09:17:12 AM »

Yet those passport stamping, museum visiting, tourists have the same claim to their natural parks. I've run and gunned through many a natural park. I know I'm hitting highlights. But I'm curious and enjoy learning. I'm going to Acadia for two weeks,  but will be visiting parks along the way. Some for hours,  some for a day. I'm not certain why that should be viewed as a bad thing.

Acadia is on my list. I stayed, a good bit south of Acadia, in Friendship, ME for two weeks a few years ago. One week of printing class and one week of rambling. I drove there from Weimar, TX. It took 3 days to get there and 2.5 to get home. Once I got off of the interstate in Maine I noticeably relaxed. Maine has a feel about it that is hard to describe. I stayed at a little place called Maine Old Comfortable, and it was.


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As noted this park was made of working ranches and mines,  it wasn't wilderness. It's only a small reach to say you could have drawn a circle anywhere in west Texas and had the same man made stuff to preserve.

But the rest of West TX isn't a National Park. That "man made stuff" was no less important than Ruggles cannon or the peach orchard at Shiloh Battlefield (replanted a few years ago). If the park service were to follow your line of thought then every building, including theirs, should have been leveled long ago. The buildings are in ruin because the park service either caused their destruction directly or indirectly by not working to preserve some of the history of the park. When you get to Acadia you'll see buildings that are historic and preserved. Same thing with the Grand Canyon.

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Clearly based on the past two years more camping opportunities need to be created. Road sites, well spaced. Another developed campground, probably located to the north. With so many people renting hotels in Study Butte maybe even adding rooms.

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This goes against your paragraph #2. In that you appear to say... good riddance to those old structures and then later lets build some new crap to get more tourists to come. Clearly all that traffic has resulted in negative things like the restriction of access to Cattail Falls and other "regulatory" action like ions and tigers and bears that never hurt anyone, oh my. I'll tell you what else all that traffic has resulted in- trash... people that "swing by for a visit" have no sense of ownership. They "crap" all over the places that we all respect and love. I drove out to Dodson Trailhead last year just to see what it looked like. I looked in the bear box. Wanna know what was in there? Empty gallon water jugs. Enough to clog the box up. Some had a name on them. Some just a date. Mixed in with that were Ziploc bags of used TP and other camp waste. Pack it in / Pack it out does not mean clog up a bear box with your shit. It means take your shit with you. Friggen pigs...

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Offline Jimbow

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Re: Terlingua vandalism
« Reply #43 on: February 26, 2017, 09:50:25 AM »
I really dislike this format. Face to face we would agree. I didn't mean to suggest these things are not worth preserving. They should be preserved somewhere. Is Costolon preserved or repurposed? Does it make sense to preserve these man made things then not promote them and encourage visitors?

I do not think visitors swinging by to view displays and curio shops are responsible for used tp and empty water jugs in the bear boxes. Those people want soap and sanitizer. Optimistically the pigs are backcountry visitors on their journey to better ethics. Hopefully somewhere, and sometime soon, they develop better habits. Sadly I'm not that optimistic and will ruefully raise a glass to your fricking pigs comment.

The last of these thoughts,  the best chance of the mines and ranches to be preserved was for their economic usefulness to have survived. They sold their souls to the NPS.



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Offline Jimbow

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Re: Terlingua vandalism
« Reply #44 on: February 26, 2017, 09:55:10 AM »
This is our second trip to Maine. My first was when I had just spent three months living on South Padre. The rugged beaches and cold Atlantic waters really hit a spot. I guess I just don't like refined.

I'm studying the maps and looking to fit a couple backcountry nights in while my wife has our oldest and grandson to hang with.

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