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Some things should stay secret

Andy Stewart, Vail

Wilderness areas do not need advertisement!

Vail Daily writer Sarah Mausolf must have just recently moved to Colorado. Maybe her editors, too. Otherwise, any real local would know better than to talk about C******** Hot Springs! Let me repeat, in my best Brad Pitt; “YOU DO NOT TALK ABOUT C******** HOT SPRINGS!” You can show it to your closest friends in person, but only if they have proven themselves worthy and can keep a secret. I learned this myself my first time there 15 years ago, when it was drilled into my head by (naked) Aspen locals and several Vail guide services that I have worked for over the years. Used to be you would nearly be tarred and feathered for bringing up the “C” word in a bar. You certainly didn’t write about it, and put it on the front page and the front of the High Life section!

Can’t we just leave a few special places alone, where one might make a personal discovery? Not that this place is a huge secret, but try camping up there on a weekend, or around a full moon in summer. How would you like to hike up nine miles to what you thought would be a special spot, only to find out you have to turn around and hike two miles back down the trail to camp because the ranger does not allow any additional camping beyond the dozen or so designated spots near the springs. It happens! Often! And thoughtless articles like this only will add to the overcrowding. This area is in a designated wilderness, but good luck finding a wilderness experience there.



I’m not even going to go into how lewd statements like “periodically thrusting her nipples above water” are only going to invite more creeps out of the woodwork. What’s more newsworthy would be “Newbie hiker needlessly lugs bathing suit nine miles into wilderness ” shocked at nudity.” Nudity in a place like this should be expected and accepted, not written about with shock and smarty-pants commentary.

I’m disappointed (but not surprised) that the Vail Daily would choose to run an article like this, adding to the overcrowding of our wilderness areas. Designated “wilderness areas” are supposed to be different than the rest of the national forest; there are no trail signs or vault toilets, and solitude is supposed to be expected. What’s next from the Vail Daily: a four-page spread on how easy it is to get to Booth Falls? How about a winter pull-out on Vail’s best secret powder stashes? How would that go over?



Some things are best left to be discovered by the individual. Wilderness areas do not need any advertisement, only an open mind for adventure and discovery.

“The idea of wilderness needs no defense. It only needs more defenders.” “Edward Abbey


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