Just Sayin’… get outta the arch!

Stargap Arch IV - Parham P Baker Photography
Stargap Arch IV
The rules say, NO CAMPING IN ROCK HOUSES OR UNDER THE ARCHES.  Yet, there they were.  About eight college aged kids with tents and mats strewn underneath Stargap Arch in the Red River Gorge.

Stargap Arch II - Parham P Baker Photography
Stargap Arch II
It was the traditional New Years Day hike for the group of friends I hike with as much as I can, the “Posse.”   We had all met in Lexington and carpooled down to the trailhead, snagged our cameras and gear and made the hike to the arch.   Now, here we were, wanting to take pictures of this great arch, but it’s littered with gear from folks that seem to have a problem following the rules.

So we set up our tripods, and waited.

And waited

And waited…

It was obvious what we were there to do, but they felt no need to move very fast.   They slowly stuffed stuff into stuff bags.  Smoked a cigarette.  Sat on a rock.

It’s folks like these that ruin it for those who do the right things.  So many of our Nature Preserves now have so many restrictions, mostly due to folks like these, that those of us who appreciate the woods and streams no longer can visit them.  They’ve dumbed them down to accommodate the lowest and most thoughtless, or is it to compensate for them?

Stargap Arch - Parham P Baker Photography
Stargap Arch

Years ago, I frequently hiked a local preserve, Raven Run, and you could meander where ever your boots wanted to go.  But folks did things they weren’t suppose to do, and got hurt, or worse. Now, it’s really not as pleasurable to go there as they have sanitized it to the point it’s just ridiculous.   Overlooks, bridges, rigid hours, stairs and “Stay on Marked Trails.”

Most of the Red River Gorge area you can go off trail, stay all night, camp anywhere in the hundreds of acres, except… except in the very  small reserved areas that these folks felt entitled to camp in.   I guess you can’t fix stupid, or indifference.

It makes you want to yell…



As a photographer and a hiker, I love making images of the natural world. I'm also and avid scuba diver and wannabe chef.

Related posts

Leave a Comment