trampers not paying their way
following on from Mosley's post about trampers not paying their way they sound like the same sort of crowd as a lot of the freedom campers. ban freedom campers and you may find you get less of this. theres a whole grapevine and viral media thats feeding the do NZ for cheap, its public knowledge you can dodge hut fees in a lot of huts and the information on where you can do that gets circulated amongst the budget tourists in person and online… the situation is only going to get worse unless nz makes a policy to clamp down on budget tourist numbers. they circle the globe looking for ways to freeload and congregate in known locations where they can freeload.. they camp in the shelters on the great walks, i saw one group want to dump their massive rubbish bag at a hut and expect doc to pay to remove it, ranger wasnt there so i told them they had to carry it out, they dumped it at the road end… doc needs roaming rangers to implement large enforceable fines as they have in the states, that have to be paid before people can leave the country and let the word get around. its the milenial me generation of self entitlement, someone noted to me that young europeans are now a lot more likely to crap absolutely anywhere they want.. on tracks, next to roads and carparks, leave loo paper blowing in the wind. and its the young ones, not hte old ones…. you get your share of americans too. people who havent been brought up with the outdoors etiquette who are here because they are lord or the rings movie fans, not because they are real outdoors people with proper etiquette. its the age of instant gratification, where you dont think about your responsibility to give back, whre you use all the firewood and don't replace it.. where is about what you can get away with… they dont have any issues doing illegal things if they dont think they will get caught…
you cant use a permit system for the TA the permit system excludes everyone else from those trails. you're talking about excluding the masses or having massive administration to control access to very popular tramping areas, the PCT is generally more remote in its path or going through less popular areas you're then going to exclude locals to the vast majority of the TA walks who are foreigners essentially they are excluding locals who know how overcrowded its becoming and dont like the overcrowding. you'd have to have permits for various DOC parks, most of the TA is on public land actually are you going to permit for the parts where it goes through PUreora? the tararuas? richmond ranges? nelson lakes? lewis pass? arthurs pass? hakatere? etc etc. marketing the TA needs to be stopped altogether, it will never be administered properly. and is just going to become a mess. to complete the TA you have to have your own shelter, the whole trail isnt all covered by roofed accommodation,, so you could route the trail anywhere as long as there are sufficient places to camp that dont require alpine shelters because they are mainly carrying lightweight shelters not rated for severe weather conditions... but no the trail goes in a lot of places which are either already popular or where its hard to camp and there are only small huts... the trail is a compromise, in the tararuas they wanted to create a new track through the otaki wilderness area but there was opposition becauase it was a wildnersss area, so they compromised and sent it along high exposed ridglines that are difficult to camp on and where there are only small huts, and the same with the richmond ranges no one thought through what happens if the numbers going through exceed the available shelter options... a tent is no use in severe weather if its not rated to be pitched in exposed places... so you cramp into a small hut because its your only option
Te Araroa is a good thing. The problem is not with its existence. The problem is with how it piggy backs on other infrastructure. One issue is that there is no cost to do the TA except maybe a hut pass. The options are to go to somewhere that sells passes and buy them as you go or go to doc to but a annual hut pass for a 3 month walk. Maybe a TA pass should be considered which can be bought online and printed out which gives access to the TA huts only and only for a reasonable period to do the walk. Straight away there is money in the pot for doc to upgrade these huts etc. Make the pass a little more expensive and add a certificate of completion and even some memorabilia of the trip (say $50 for a straight pass and add another $50 for the t shirt mug and certificate.) For those people running resupply trips a concession should be held if its doc land but maybe a fee for each resupply run could be extracted (even more money for doc) Yes some tourists might go somewhere else but those that do make the trip will have a better experience. It will still be easy for a ranger to check for a hut ticket hut pass or ta pass. Just a thought
too late to sort the TA on the existing track, they are overloading existing huts and theres not going to be a solution for years to come if at all. neither the TA trust or DOC have a plan to cope with the increasing no's of walkers
@geeves: > add a certificate of completion and even some memorabilia of the trip (say $50 for a straight pass and add another $50 for the t shirt mug and certificate.) I think the Invercargill City Council already gives out finishers' medals, apparently either from the Bluff Service Centre or the Invercargill i-Site. The circumstance of it being given away for free might compromise that idea of trying to sell finishing memorabilia. I've heard that the TAT is consulting with DOC and whoever else about some way to create some kind of Te Araroa Pass, but I'm really struggling to imagine how it might work in a way that'd usefully address most of the apparent issues. Hopefully others have a better imagination than me.
If you can fleece the tourists for more money then you will have more to spend on their holiday. The truth is NZ needs those tourists but it cant be at the expense of the locals. If a 6 man hut that used to average 4 on a Saturday night but now is averaging 30 then a 30 bunk hut needs to be built either by rebuilding what is there or putting in a nearby TA only hut. In both cases the biggest issue is money and the rule of the day is still user pays. It just has to be fair
What New Zealand can learn from Duterte's tourism crackdown Machu Picchu in Peru is reducing trekking numbers from next year and Cinque Terre on the Italian Riviera caps arrivals at 1.5 million. https://www.nzherald.co.nz/travel/news/article.cfm?c_id=7&objectid=12068976
I've done the inca trail, and the three day trek seemed pretty well sorted. It felt like there was very few tourists along the way because of the way they run it. I had many times where I had an entire ruin to myself. Though I did have to smash past the porters and other trekking groups. But it was a great experience. Macchu Picchu itself was another story. Thousands of tourists who bus up from aquas caliente. I'm not sure how they will put a limit on that. World tourism is pretty nuts these days. You have to get up early to get places to yourself. Which is why I think that our great walks are not expensive. They are cheap. Tourists will pay through the teeth to experience these things. To tick the list. We need to cash in and make a good profit. We are ripping no one off. It's simple economics. Price reflects demand.
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