Monday, October 6, 2008
Campfire debris next to the Crawford Path on Mt. Washington, July 1968
This is one of the consequences of camping in any area but in above-timberline areas a camp fire can cause immeasurable damage to fragile plant systems from the fire itself and by the process of procuring firewood. Another consequence of camping in above timberline areas is the repeated and concentrated use of favored camp sites which causes even greater impacts. As a result of the above timberline camping the USFS and the AMC, by 1973, had collaborated to create what we referred to as RUAs or Restricted Use Areas. Camping above timberline was no longer permitted, you could only camp 200 feet from any trail below timberline, and you camping near the huts was also prohibited. Along with the "Closed to Entry" sign in the photo above the RUAs were necessary safeguards protecting the overall environment of the WMNF.