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4-Corners Moderator
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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hey everyone,

Just sharing this to spread awareness of what NOT to do while off-roading, overlanding, or enjoying the outdoors. Especially in areas that are already under threat of shutting down.

Recently the company TACOMABEAST has been on a cross country expedition exploring all over the western U.S. including here in Utah. I actually was at their big Utah Toyota meet-and-greet recently here in Salt Lake just before they headed south to the San Rafael Swell area and Moab.

Apparently while in the Moab (Kane Creek) area one of their videographers marked an abbreviated version of the the company name "TCM BST" into a rock for a photo opportunity that has now been circulating on social media and made it to local news even.

It is a big mess with all the hate messages flooding into TACOMABEAST and even death threats from some people apparently. The owner of the company has come forward with an apology video and other companies such as CBI Offroad who were associated with the overlanding trip have published formal statements about their involvement in the issue. There is even talk that they are trying to get folks from Utah to repair the vandalized rock.

It is a sober reminder of how serious the off-road community takes preservation of the trails and areas we use and explore. Defacement of public or private land is never okay but I also would like to say that death threats are never okay either. Of course we need to preserve our lands for future generations to enjoy but it is taking it too far to threaten the life of another when restitution can be made.

The whole situation reminds me of a couple years back when a similar situation arose where someone carved their Instagram name into some rocks near Moab making it easy to identity who did it and they went through the same onslaught of hate and criticism for their actions. The whole situation ended up pushing the person responsible off social media entirely and away from the off-roading community. I hope the best for TACOMABEAST as these are never good situations to be in, but let it be a reminder to all of us how important it really is to be responsible when we are out there on the trails.

Here are some links if you'd like to look into it:

https://kutv.com/news/local/instagram-photos-appear-to-show-vandalism-at-san-rafael-swell-in-south-central-utah

https://kjzz.com/news/local/instagram-photos-appear-to-show-vandalism-at-san-rafael-swell-in-south-central-utah

https://www.instagram.com/tacomabeast/

https://www.facebook.com/CBIOffroadFab/
 

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If I could be frank, you are playing into 'fake news' and fake outrage. The environmentalists love these type of stories so they can paint offroaders as bad people and get all motorized access banned.

Graffiti and actual rock carving dont belong. BUT....and this is a huge BUT. From all the pictures I saw that is NOT CARVED into any rock. It is literally barely scratched onto sandstone from a softer rock. Think using chalk on concrete. I can almost bet it would get washed of with a slight bit of rain. And everyone of those stories including the apology say CARVED into rock....hardly.

Secondly...have you seen Moab or any offroad place (rhetorical because I know you have)? Simply dragging sliders or skid plates across comparatively soft sedimentary rock will do way more damage than this. You dont see rockscraping from vehicles being used to feed clicks and internet outrage (not yet anyhow). Also, look at all the rubber and worn tire tracks that are throughout the most traveled trails in Moab and elsewhere in Utah. This is comparatively nothing. This isnt even close to the graffiti vandalism where some idiot paints something on a rock in a National Park.

So...my conclusion.....COMPLETELY BLOWN OUT OF PROPORTION...because they have an agenda. And, my honest opinion is by highlighting this bit of 'fake' (e.g. manufactured) outrage only serves their agenda. Just a different perspective.
 

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4-Corners Moderator
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Discussion Starter #4
I agree, things are blown out of proportion. And you're right, after some rain storms you probably wouldnt evnlen be able to tell. But it is still a good reminder of how seriously people take even the small things, and that folks shouldn't even scratch into rocks in the first place ya know?

Of course there are more destructive things that can be done, from pushing over rock monuments to spray painting over archeological engravings as has happened in the past. But in the end if this reminder to leave no trace can even influence a single person and keep them from a whole slew of trouble then it is worth it.

If I could be frank, you are playing into 'fake news' and fake outrage. The environmentalists love these type of stories so they can paint offroaders as bad people and get all motorized access banned.

Graffiti and actual rock carving dont belong. BUT....and this is a huge BUT. From all the pictures I saw that is NOT CARVED into any rock. It is literally barely scratched onto sandstone from a softer rock. Think using chalk on concrete. I can almost bet it would get washed of with a slight bit of rain. And everyone of those stories including the apology say CARVED into rock....hardly.

Secondly...have you seen Moab or any offroad place (rhetorical because I know you have)? Simply dragging sliders or skid plates across comparatively soft sedimentary rock will do way more damage than this. You dont see rockscraping from vehicles being used to feed clicks and internet outrage (not yet anyhow). Also, look at all the rubber and worn tire tracks that are throughout the most traveled trails in Moab and elsewhere in Utah. This is comparatively nothing. This isnt even close to the graffiti vandalism where some idiot paints something on a rock in a National Park.

So...my conclusion.....COMPLETELY BLOWN OUT OF PROPORTION...because they have an agenda. And, my honest opinion is by highlighting this bit of 'fake' (e.g. manufactured) outrage only serves their agenda. Just a different perspective.
 

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I agree with the philosophy hidden somewhere behind the idea of 'leave no trace'...but its a bit of a misnomer since 'leave no trace' only applies to things beyond the motorized/non-motorized trail. It's impossible to leave no trace on an actual trail (for example, the amount of damage that horses can create to a trail in a wilderness area is well beyond this little stunt by TacomaBeast). The biggest problem is that due to high popularity, a lot of people are expanding trails and going well beyond the original trails especially here in Colorado above treeline.

In fact, I'll just point out to all you folks that decide they want to get that pic on Imogene Pass on the rock ledge for your forum avatar (ahem)....that isn't part of the trail and you are contributing in your own small way to wearing out the rock face. Everyone thinks it is now part of the trail, because it has been used for so much picture taking there is a well worn path. I can tell you back in the 80s/90s (e.g. pre internet era before the San Juans gained so much popularity), it wasnt part of Imogene Pass trail. Neither was the now well worn trail at the top that goes down the ridge.

I can cite example after example where the top of most 4WD passes in Colorado had just a narrow trail...now they are 3-4 lanes wide with parking areas....due simply to overuse and people stopping and parking off the road and thereby expanding what people think is the trail (Taylor Pass, Webster Pass, Tincup Pass, Engineer Pass...the list goes on). Honestly, I have no idea how to stop it other than limiting access and requiring permits...which is ridiculous for public lands.

Anyhow, ill step off my soapbox and reinforce that I strongly agree with the idea of more education about preservation especially given the huge influx of newbies. I prefer to call it "Stay the Trail" as do many of the OHV groups. The 'leave no trace' phrase is something the enviros use to lock up every bit of natural land into Wilderness Areas or Wilderness Study Areas to make them inaccessible to 95% of the people.
 

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4-Corners Moderator
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Discussion Starter #6
Certainly. There are always ways we can all be more mindful of the trails and outdoors, myself included. As long as we all make sure to do our part whether it is “staying the trail” or “leaving no trace” or whatever, we can help make these areas and places last longer which is the ultimate goal I think.

I just hope others are made aware of this mistake so they don’t do the same and have to go through the same situation as others have experienced. The “Trail Use, Safety, and Education” section of the forum seems like the best place for this info, as others are hopefully educated from it.

I agree with the philosophy hidden somewhere behind the idea of 'leave no trace'...but its a bit of a misnomer since 'leave no trace' only applies to things beyond the motorized/non-motorized trail. It's impossible to leave no trace on an actual trail (for example, the amount of damage that horses can create to a trail in a wilderness area is well beyond this little stunt by TacomaBeast). The biggest problem is that due to high popularity, a lot of people are expanding trails and going well beyond the original trails especially here in Colorado above treeline.

In fact, I'll just point out to all you folks that decide they want to get that pic on Imogene Pass on the rock ledge for your forum avatar (ahem)....that isn't part of the trail and you are contributing in your own small way to wearing out the rock face. Everyone thinks it is now part of the trail, because it has been used for so much picture taking there is a well worn path. I can tell you back in the 80s/90s (e.g. pre internet era before the San Juans gained so much popularity), it wasnt part of Imogene Pass trail. Neither was the now well worn trail at the top that goes down the ridge.

I can cite example after example where the top of most 4WD passes in Colorado had just a narrow trail...now they are 3-4 lanes wide with parking areas....due simply to overuse and people stopping and parking off the road and thereby expanding what people think is the trail (Taylor Pass, Webster Pass, Tincup Pass, Engineer Pass...the list goes on). Honestly, I have no idea how to stop it other than limiting access and requiring permits...which is ridiculous for public lands.

Anyhow, ill step off my soapbox and reinforce that I strongly agree with the idea of more education about preservation especially given the huge influx of newbies. I prefer to call it "Stay the Trail" as do many of the OHV groups. The 'leave no trace' phrase is something the enviros use to lock up every bit of natural land into Wilderness Areas or Wilderness Study Areas to make them inaccessible to 95% of the people.
 

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Thank you for posting FJX. I believe the intent of this thread is to raise awareness for the "tread lightly" campaign that we should all be following carefully. If it takes social peer pressure to accomplish this I'm ok with that.

Intentional and pointless vandalism should not be confused with dragging skids on the trail where they belong.
 

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What a shame. Tacomabeast and the crew (from what I know and have met) have done more for the community than any of these keyboard warriors. From the many charitable events and educational meets, it's not even something they have to do, but they go out of their way to have free events for the people. Anyway, I'll be honest, I reported anyone without a constructive comment as harassment or bullying. There was no need to throw gasoline and threaten TB in my opinion.
 

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While I was reading trough all the ugly comet on his instagram, I was compelled to leave my own comment and it went like this.

The man has already apologized for what his employee has done, and tow words will get you through many bad times in business or life, “I am sorry” which you already have done.
It is little consolation, and no compensation, to the person who is hurt “in this case the sand stone rock” that the offender pleads he did not mean to say or do anything rude, insult or harm anyone, all we are to judge is the fact that any negative comment after his apologies is and will be considered, self pity=loser in life.


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Up from 450,000 acres, there is now 600,000 acres of San Rafael Swell designated wilderness as signed into law by President Trump today. So there you go, one of the last memories of people off roading in this area is of them defacing it.

https://www.sltrib.com/news/nation-world/2019/03/12/trump-signs-major-public/


"In Emery County, the bill increases wilderness in the area to 600,000 acres from 450,000 acres, as well as creates 248,000 more acres of recreation area instead of a more restrictive conservation area designation. It also consolidates about 100,000 acres of Utah trust lands to be more easily developed to raise money for public schools."
 

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600,000 acres from 450,000 acres, as well as creates 248,000 more acres of recreation area instead of a more restrictive conservation area designation.
The math seemed questionable. 150,000 into wilderness, somehow created 248,000. Which native tribe lost 98,000 acres ? Lol not sure if I'm on the right track here. I'm sure there's more to it
 

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The math seemed questionable. 150,000 into wilderness, somehow created 248,000. Which native tribe lost 98,000 acres ? Lol not sure if I'm on the right track here. I'm sure there's more to it


Politicians math pulled from the article


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The math seemed questionable. 150,000 into wilderness, somehow created 248,000. Which native tribe lost 98,000 acres ? Lol not sure if I'm on the right track here. I'm sure there's more to it


I think they’re opening up other land elsewhere is what they’re saying.


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This is an excellent article about leaving no trace. I was working for the US Forest Service in the 70's and part of the job was clearing wilderness trails of fallen trees and new brush. One of the things we found was the shoes people wore with tractor treds the kind everyone gets to go hiking. The back trails were be ripped apart by these shoes. Each time you take a step with 25 pounds on your back the shoe tear up soft earth and grass. The best shoe was a soft sole with no ripples. Even the Mountain Men of the early 1800's wore moccasins.
Personally I think marking the rocks with graffiti ruins the experience, Its like taking a dump in the middle of the road. After time it disappears but in the meantime it sucks for the next guy.
 

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....................
Personally I think marking the rocks with graffiti ruins the experience, Its like taking a dump in the middle of the road. After time it disappears but in the meantime it sucks for the next guy.
Great comparison!
:cheers:
 

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I think the intent of the post was to remind all of us to take care our wilderness.

Personally I think marking the rocks with graffiti ruins the experience, Its like taking a dump in the middle of the road. After time it disappears but in the meantime it sucks for the next guy.
I read that the "Powers of Be" are thinking of restricting the number of people on parts of the Appalachian Trail. The proposed restricted parts are so popular with people that they are becoming a sanitation nightmare. Not enough room in the cat box.
 

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On section 2 of the WABDR is a turnoff to a sweet little meadow called Cash Prairie that leads to one of the best lookouts on the whole route. As you drive along the well-marked trail there is a pair of 2' deep ruts heading off the trail into the otherwise pristine landscape. I wasn't there when it happened, but if you know the weather in the PacNW it's a pretty fair assumption that some knucklehead decided to go freelancing during the rainy season in a place where they shouldn't have been. Naturally, the ruts were an open invitation to anyone else with the same mindset to follow suit and so now there is a permanent new "trail" that everyone gets to look at. All it takes is one person's negligence to cause damage that can take decades, if not longer, for nature to erase.

So of course there's an overreaction when someone posts a photo on social media of themselves doing something that looks irresponsible. And then an equivalent overreaction from the opposition. And the feedback loop never ends. Fake news, liberals, conservatives, agendas, politics--it's all irrelevant. The recent trashing of our national parks by a handful of morons should be heartbreaking to anyone who enjoys nature. What message does this send to anyone other than that opening our public lands results in having to pick up tons of trash and human waste at best, and does irreversible damage to the landscape, plants and animals at worst? How should people react to this behavior, or behavior that looks like it, if not with great concern or outrage?

By the same token, scratching letters into rocks and posting it to social media might be harmless in some cases, but it represents a lack of awareness on the part of the person doing it. Social media is predicated on outrage, and doing things that look outrageous is going to get a swift reaction. Anyone with the competence to acquire sponsorships and hashtag every brand they have a deal with should also be able to do enough homework to at least look like they care about their behavior. If not for themselves or the rest of society, then for the sake of their sponsors who generally recoil from this kind of stuff for fear of negative perception.

As operators of large, heavy vehicles that can easily cause as much damage in minutes as thousands of hikers can cause in a whole season, shouldn't the onus not be on us to act responsibly, educate ourselves, and keep one another accountable for not just our behavior, but how our actions are perceived?
 

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I've seen people complaining about how it was done back then why can't I scratch my name too. What they don't realize or know is that was a way for them to communicate with others on the trips across the country. It let family members and others know you had made it to a certain spot. They didn't have phones, internet, etc.
 
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