Lightweight Backpacking News: Digest No. 15
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Apr 28, 2015 at 11:41 pm #1328426Ryan JordanAdmin
@ryanLocale: Central Rockies
Companion forum thread to:Apr 29, 2015 at 4:17 pm #2195651John YatesBPL Member
There is a new form of inconsiderate behavior that is catching on very quickly: playing music through loudspeakers in public parks, open spaces, and wilderness areas. Until about two years ago I never encountered this. Now it seems as though most times I go for hike or ski I encounter some inconsiderate person (usually young) blasting music from a loudspeaker. I, and many others, go to such places to experience something of the natural world, which includes peace quiet, but this will not be possible if the current trend of blasting one's music at others, whether or not they want to hear it, is not stopped.
Shame on BackpackingLight for helping to promote this new barbarism by featuring Fugoo Outdoor Bluetooth Speakers.Apr 29, 2015 at 4:40 pm #2195657Greg MihalikSpectator
The Digest "paraphrases" from a GearJunkie review.
"FUGOO OUTDOOR BLUETOOTH SPEAKER BRINGS MUSIC TO THE OUTDOORS – Gear Junkie reviews the Fugoo outdoor bluetooth speaker which has six speakers, multiple case options, and survived a drop from an overpass. Some of the configurations include the ability to clip it to a harness, and mount it to a bicycle. Forty hours of battery life make this speaker something to consider if you have to take music with you on multi-day expeditions.
The FUGOO site says –
"…these six [speakers] deliver a clean 95dB … filling large rooms and outdoor areas with rich immersive sound.
"So get out, get loud, and let your passions take you in any direction they please."
"… with a waterproof remote control that lets you control your music from afar, there’s really no reason to ever turn down the tunes."
Does this "review" imply "endorsement"? I think it does. Sadly there is not one word of "be considerate of fellow campers", just a plug for another "product", of what I would hardly consider as "gear".
BPL, you can do better, especially given your audience.Apr 29, 2015 at 7:55 pm #2195699Brian LipskiSpectator
The music in the outdoors/wilderness annoys me, certainly. I do like the peace and quiet.
However, I'm not going to sit here and act like my needs matter more than another person's needs. Everyone experiences the outdoors differently, and everyone goes into the outdoors seeking different things. For me, it's peace and quiet. For others, it may be to see beautiful scenery while blasting music they truly love. Why is my desire for peace and quiet more important than someone else's desire for music?
Yes, it annoys me, but instead of complaining about it, I problem solve instead. It's not that hard to wait a few minutes for a person to pass and move along. If they're the ones stationary, it's not that hard to move along a bit either. A few times, I have asked the person to turn their music down, but I've done it nicely. Some times the person has been kind and didn't know that I was being bothered, and obliged. A few have flat out told me no, but even then, it's never been that rude, and that's likely because I asked nicely (works wonders when you're nice rather than mean and angry).
I look at it like any other problem I encounter in the outdoors. I can complain/whine/get upset (which I rarely do), or I can just find a solution to my problem or annoyance. Sometimes the campsite I want is taken. That's annoying. So I find another. Sometimes it storms when I don't feel like dealing with rain and wind. That's annoying. So I put on my rain jacket and just keep going; nothing I can do about it.Apr 29, 2015 at 8:11 pm #2195703
Earphones exist just for that reason Brian. Listen to it as loud as YOU want. At the Henry Coe park for example amplified sound is against the rules. Goes against LNT also. Plus it is just bad manners. Weather is a poor argument, as is an already occupied camp. No need to be an enabler. No need to believe you are entitled to do what you want on public land either.Apr 29, 2015 at 8:29 pm #2195710Greg MihalikSpectator
"However, I'm not going to sit here and act like my needs matter more than another person's needs."
In any urban environment, I might agree with you. But out in the woods it is a different story, especially in our wilderness areas and our national parks. Those places are "protected" because of the aesthetic, cultural, heritage, etc. values of the landscapes, the wildlife, the soundscapes, and more. Quite is a valued resource. Just like a "dark sky". Just like a pristine meadow. Just like clean water.
We don't tolerate graffiti. We don't feed the wildlife. And we don't broadcast our music.
Many may feel the need to tag landmarks, feed the deer, and carry a ghetto blaster, because they 1) want to, 2) see others do it, and/or 3) see it encouraged by the media. But that "personal need" should not be allowed to impair the values of the land they are in, or impact those who are there to enjoy those values.
We can't do much about the weather, or the speedsters, but there is a lot we can do to preserve what little solitude we have left. The BPL Digest should not be part of the problem.Apr 29, 2015 at 8:30 pm #2195711John YatesBPL Member
You're missing the point. It isn't a question of one person's being more or less entitled than another. It's a question of whether certain behavior, regardless of whose, is OK. In a perfect world, everyone should be able to do anything he or she wants. The problem comes when you have more than one person it the world. Then it becomes necessary to limit certain behaviors. One of the chief criteria for deciding whether a behavior is acceptable or not is whether it has, and to what degree, negative impact on others. As a society we regulate and prohibit noise in many contexts: people must have mufflers on their cars, you aren't allowed to have loud parties and keep your neighbors awake, you aren't allowed to have a dog that barks all the time, the list goes on and on, and for good reason. It is very hard to avoid noise. So a person who wants to make noise must have an especially good reason for being allowed to do so, more than just because he wants to. This is especially true in places set aside for people to enjoy nature, a principal attraction of which is peace and quiet.
Looking at it from a slightly different view, it's a matter of common courtesy not to impose your noise on others.Apr 29, 2015 at 8:31 pm #2195712Nick GatelBPL Member
@ngatelLocale: Southern California
Loudspeakers on the trail, in backcountry campsites, in developed campgrounds, on beaches, on summits, or in ANY public place are an abomination and extremely inconsiderate. This fact should be self evident.
Other than that, I have no problem with them.Apr 29, 2015 at 9:24 pm #2195719
Photo of the week. Really? A photo by Hendrik is the best photo? Bet he wasn't out shooting an ULA-Z episode. What a turd.
A 5.6 oz camp stove that still needs a windscreen and fuel added for $40. Not going to be easy to pack either. Why not a ti wing stove, foil and some Esbit for less weight and money. I'll pass.Apr 29, 2015 at 10:21 pm #2195725Brian LipskiSpectator
In reality, you guys are missing the point. Again, you focus too much on the "problem", and too little on a solution. I've already listed some solutions. I'm sure, if you have a modicum of ambition, you can come up with others.
"Many may feel the need to tag landmarks, feed the deer, and carry a ghetto blaster, because they 1) want to, 2) see others do it, and/or 3) see it encouraged by the media. But that "personal need" should not be allowed to impair the values of the land they are in, or impact those who are there to enjoy those values."
This is contradictory. To many, the values of the land are the ability to be in the great outdoors and listen to music. To me, to you guys, we don't use the land for that. But don't assume that your use, and values, of the land are consistent throughout the population.
Now, there are places where such activity is against the rules/ordinances/laws. In those cases, by all means, I agree, playing music outloud should not occur. If you want to get rid of this behavior, get off your ass, and do something about it, rather than whining online.
Yes, quiet is a valued resource. So is a dark sky. A pristine meadow. Clean water. Should I then not use my headlamp at night? Should my son not go run through a meadow, all in fear of offending someone? Consideration works both ways. I can not use my headlamp to appease someone who loves a dark sky and doesn't want their night vision ruined, but they could also be considerate and sacrifice a little time of watching the stars so I can use my headlamp. Someone playing music out loud could be considerate and turn it off to appease people like you, but you could also be considerate and let them enjoy their music by simply letting them pass by, or moving along yourself.
Lastly, where are you going exactly that this is as major of a problem as you guys are making it out to be? I'm 99% sure I've put in more time in the outdoors than a lot of people here, and this has never even been close to a major concern. This is an honest question. The only time I've encountered such behavior is on highly populated trails in or near the city. It's never happened in the backcountry, which typically draws people who are indeed looking for peace and quiet. Mainly, I'm curious as to where you guys are backpacking where this music is being played and you have no option of simply moving a little distance away so it's no longer audible.Apr 29, 2015 at 11:36 pm #2195735W I S N E R !Spectator
I've had far more negative experiences with snoring partners and Boy Scout singalongs than I've ever had with people and stereo speakers.
"The other day…
I met a bear…
a great big bear…
oh way out there…."
(This song has been proven to invoke madness in innocent bystanders.)
This is funny.
If I told you guys that I liked to sing or packed an acoustic guitar or flute when backpacking I doubt anyone would think much of it. It certainly wouldn't invoke the same fury this speaker review has.
And yet those stereo speakers might play the same music just as softly…
Do we draw the line at music played through technology or are we talking about anything any human being is doing that is within the realm of our hearing?
I don't always carry a stereo and speakers in the backcountry, but when I do, I at least make sure to bring tasteful and agreeable music:
Craig's Backcountry Classics: Track One
Be warned: this song contains Bad Words.Apr 29, 2015 at 11:53 pm #2195736Inaki Diaz de EturaBPL Member
@inaki-1Locale: Iberia highlands
Don't forget that there's more than humans. There are other beings and they live there. It's fine that we go through the place, it's also ours, but we're guests in someone else's home. Being loud is highly inconsiderate.Apr 30, 2015 at 3:54 am #2195741Michael GunderloyBPL Member
IMO the problem isn't the music, it's the loudness. Last I checked pretty much any music-playing device had a volume control. I personally don't feel the need to have 95dB in the outdoors, but I've been known to backpack a small Bluetooth speaker to play in my tent at night. I doubt most people could hear it from 10 feet away.
You can light your Esbit cube for dinner with a match, or you can set the whole forest on fire with the same match. The problem isn't the match but the inconsiderate behavior.
Unfortunately inconsiderate behavior is itself pretty ultralite so anyone can pack it in, regardless of their other gear.Apr 30, 2015 at 4:26 am #2195744Terran TerranBPL Member
I can't hear their music anyway. I've got Bethoven's Fifth blasting in my head. I agree with Brian. It's not the time for conflict. The further you walk, the better it gets. To have common areas, we have to deal with the law of the commons. Robin Hood was a poacher, yet we worship him today. All we can do is get over it and walk a little further. That's why I'll never go to that cesspool named the Kern ever again. The respect needs to be learned in the cities.Apr 30, 2015 at 6:04 am #2195757
Seven miles up Twin Corral Box on the Dirty Devil. All by myself and about 35 hard miles into an 80 miler. 7am. Mine are the first tracks of the year by far. Sipping some fresh brew and tapping my toes to the Elvis Sun Sessions and the sun rises over God's Country. Marveling that Scotty Moore isn't more revered for his divine mixture of gospel and rock.
In the highly unlikely event that some persnickety fellow/gal comes wandering down and complains about the noise, of course I'll accommodate him/her. But they won't get a sip of my coffee or a nip of my Eagle Rare. And I'll turn up Scotty's licks the second they're passed. This site amazes me sometimes, in both good and bad ways. It's not a 2 stroke chain saw, people, and none of us own the wilderness.Apr 30, 2015 at 6:13 am #2195759
"and none of us own the wilderness." That's the point. Duh. What's wrong with headphones?Apr 30, 2015 at 6:28 am #2195761
No coffee or whiskey for you! Heh. You don't like Elvis? I don't like headphones.Apr 30, 2015 at 6:29 am #2195762Terran TerranBPL Member
Folks with headphones sing loudly and badly. Next you're going to ask what's wrong with clothes. Get away from southern Cal and it's much less a problem.Apr 30, 2015 at 6:38 am #2195764
That is an idiotic statement Terran. Not your first one either.
Be Considerate of Other Visitors
Respect other visitors and protect the quality of their experience.
Be courteous. Yield to other users on the trail.
Step to the downhill side of the trail when encountering pack stock.
Take breaks and camp away from trails and other visitors.
Let nature's sounds prevail. Avoid loud voices and noises.
Seems reasonable.Apr 30, 2015 at 6:59 am #2195767
I'll give up my music when you give up your dog.Apr 30, 2015 at 7:24 am #2195773
Not asking you to give up your music. Just don't make me listen to it. Dog stays home. Earphones. What's so effen hard to understand?Apr 30, 2015 at 7:44 am #2195776Nick GatelBPL Member
@ngatelLocale: Southern California
There is this concept called called courtesey. When in the wilderness, courtesey dictates that, as much as possible, we allow others to enjoy the wilderness in its natural state. There is another concept, untrammeled by man, which many would include artificial noise as something that negatively impacts wilderness.
This speaker puts out 95db. Let me put this into perspective for you. A Honda eb10000 commercial generator, which weighs 400 lbs, generates a peak of 10,000 watts, puts out 76db at its rated load of 9,000 watts. How loud is 95db? Sustained exposure to 90-95db will result in hearing loss. Would we accept listening to a commercial generator that is quieter than this speaker? This is why we should criticize BPL for including this piece of "outdoor" gear in the News Digest.
I saw the comment about Hendrick, and I know there is a lot of animosity towards him by many BPL members due to his Kickstarter project. He also publishes something similar to the BPL News Digest, called The Week In Review. TWIR, is more aligned to what many here might want to read, than things like 95db speakers in the BPL News Digest.
Brian, since you are one of the 1%ers that can get outdoors more frequently than the rest of us mere mortals, and go where there are no other people, the rest of us still should be able to walk a trail or sit on a small hill watching the sun set without hearing a 95db speaker playing music we probably don't even like.
Today there is this "me" generation that seems only concerned with their own right to do as they please, without consideration of others' right to enjoy the wilderness in its natural state.
Someday, maybe I'll try to emulate you, by hiking in a remote place without other people, to get away from artificial noises like certain music I don't even enjoy listening to at home.Apr 30, 2015 at 8:04 am #2195778d kBPL Member
"I don't like headphones."
Î'd guess you don't like wildlife much either, if you are blasting decibels into their territory. I don't understand the thinking that makes that seem ok to people, any more than using a chainsaw or setting off firecrackers. There are plenty of studies on the negative effect of noise on wildlife.
I guess some people feel their enjoyment trumps the rights of the wildlife, just as some people would rather risk habituating bears to food rather than suffer the exertion of carrying a bear canister (I don't "like" carrying one either, but I do it out of concern for the bears and my fellow hikers). Man as the ruler of creation and all that… Or they don't wish to believe that creatures with a far greater sense of hearing than ours would actually be affected.
Yes, my presence is still noticeable to them, I'm sure, but I do what I cam to minimize that presence. I love music as much as anyone – heck, I make my living from it – but I would feel it arrogant for me to force it on other people in the outdoors, let alone the wildlife who live there.
Rant over.Apr 30, 2015 at 8:20 am #2195781
I have scientific evidence that the squirrels of the world love Elvis. No really, 95db is crazy loud and I'm not advocating rocking Cannibal Corpse at concert levels. Just saying some of us like music. A lot. And we don't like people defining our experience for us on websites.Apr 30, 2015 at 8:43 am #2195786KatttBPL Member
I don't fish, packraft, climb, bike much, hunt etc, but I also don't object to people discussing related gear.
I don't like hearing people's music in the outdoors, but I imagine some vegetarians don't like smelling cooked flesh in the outdoors either.
Listening to music in speakers outdoors may well make one inconsiderate in that respect but it does not earn one all the labels given to people that ruin the outdoors.
People here discuss bringing a nice malt to enjoy at night; that does not earn them the same labels as those getting drunk and throwing their cans for others to pick up.
Instead of having a problem with a review on a tool that some may abuse, why not reserve the upset toward those that are the actual problem, when they are being a problem..
I have complained about having to hear other peoples music before…but unless there is a problem I don't have a problem .
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