NY Times: Technology Leads More Park Visitors Into Trouble
The national parks’ history is full of examples of misguided visitors feeding bears, putting children on buffalos for photos and dipping into geysers despite signs warning of scalding temperatures.
But today, as an ever more wired and interconnected public visits the parks in rising numbers — July was a record month for visitors at Yellowstone — rangers say that technology often figures into such mishaps.
People with cellphones call rangers from mountaintops to request refreshments or a guide; in Jackson Hole, Wyo., one lost hiker even asked for hot chocolate.
Though the article doesn’t really stress this point, this has always been a problem. People that are clueless about nature, possibly because they’ve been sheltered from it in the cities or suburbs, are clueless, whether or not they have a cellphone or gps.
3 thoughts on “Maybe it has more to do with never being exposed to nature”
I think it also has a lot to do with the total lack of regard for what it really means, from a social impact pov, to rely on other people at the receiving end of a 911 call or a rescue. The lack of social etiquette allows them to think that the technology is what will save them, when it’s only the enabler to better engage the time and effort of someone at the other end. No amount of technology will make the stupid less so.
Jack Shafer does a pretty good takedown of the article on Slate here.
The slate article is pretty good. The times article had so many weasel words around quantifying things I was pretty sure it wasn’t a real trend.
I remember vividly the Buffalo goring movies on loops when we were there, though I didn’t seem to find them when Susan and I were honeymooning there.