[cdt-l] the Solitude Log - anyone?

Brett blisterfree at yahoo.com
Wed Jun 13 23:40:29 CDT 2007

> If only a very, very few of us go into the wilderness or 
> the back country; then we will have a very difficult time 
> persuading legislatures and the populace that trails, back 
> country, wilderness is important.

Good point. No one here is attempting to set trends though, 
only report them. Or rather, to propose the Solitude Log 
idea as a convenient way for folks to report their 
experiences with solitude and non-solitude, so that we can 
get a better picture of the levels of resource use occurring 
on different trails and in various regions. Also, to gain a 
sense of where development and other impacts are more or 
less intense. While not an exhaustive analysis by any 
stretch, the Log might also do some good, beyond the 
entertaining trivia factor.

Again, the S.L. is I think best matched to the long trails 
experience. We've heard from folks who've promoted their 
favorite solitude haunt. Doubtless there is plenty of 
solitude to be found out there. Certainly 99.99% of people 
never make it more than a mile or two into the backcountry. 
So to go there is probably to find some level of solitude. 
And on busy trails we can always bushwhack. Yet in the big 
picture, looking down on ourselves from above, we may not be 
all that detached from the dross of modern life. By 
contrast, the long-distance hiker tests the true nature of 
the land by traveling across a broad range of geography. If 
a road cuts through the heart of a remote forested region, 
the long-distance hiker crosses that road. If the next 
valley between undeveloped ridges is aswarm with new 
development, the l-d hiker experiences it firsthand. To try 
for a "log" analogy, the long-distance hiker assesses the 
health of the whole tree, not just one or two branches. So 
the Solitude Log lets such hiker report its condition.

I've made a few modifications to the downloadable log.


Hopefully it's a bit clearer now re: terminology standards 
for "solitude" and "encounter." A dead statistician would 
likely roll over in the ground if presented with this thing, 
but I don't care. For now it'd just be fun to see a few 
completed logs from different folks and whatever l-d trails.

- blisterfree

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