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5/03/2018 6:05 am  #1

To lash or not to lash?

A couple years ago we came across a couple sites where someone had lashed some campground furniture. At Luckless Lake, they made a bench between two trees that was actually very comfortable and at Shangrila Island they made a picnic table that seated four with a hanging rack. We had an argument about whether we liked this or not. The twine was sisal twine, so all natural and biodegradable. Some in the group thought it was negative, others thought it was positive. Thoughts? 


5/03/2018 8:28 am  #2

Re: To lash or not to lash?

If they're not damaging live trees or leaving behind 'garbage', then more power to them! 


5/03/2018 10:07 am  #3

Re: To lash or not to lash?

I've always enjoyed campsite furniture. I know some people much prefer a more "wilderness" experience but I  do love a good high backed stump chair or a rock "kitchen table".

 If no live trees were damaged, I generally find the innovation and handiwork impressive. 


5/03/2018 10:19 am  #4

Re: To lash or not to lash?

I'd nominate the "Fred Flintstone" campsite on Opalescent for the title of Algonquin campsite with the best campcraft.  Someone managed to move a considerable amount of heavy rock to form two sofas around a large, raised fire pit.   The rock slabs that form the seats and backs of the sofas must weigh many hundreds of pounds.


5/03/2018 11:43 am  #5

Re: To lash or not to lash?

While I do enjoy some innovative re-purposed natural materials, it ultimately goes against the "leave no trace" principles. 

That said, all campsites in Algonquin are not "natural"; stones moved for firepits, pits dug for thunderboxes, trees/brush removed for tent sites, etc. so it isn't like a lashed creation diminishes the natural feel in an unnatural small area.  In the end, I don't mind seeing it with the caveat of no damage to live trees, etc.


5/03/2018 12:52 pm  #6

Re: To lash or not to lash?

I personally love it if there is no garbage and no damage no living trees or shrubs.
My friends and I usually try to make some kind of furniture piece. A small table between trees or a few shelves, backrests on benches, firewood shelters, things like that.


5/03/2018 3:58 pm  #7

Re: To lash or not to lash?

I absolutely hate it when I find a site with "'improvements". It's not for me.


5/07/2018 1:49 pm  #8

Re: To lash or not to lash?

I'm not that big on lashings, but probably because my most recent experiences have jaded me.  

On Islet last year, where somebody left a lean to (the survival variety) just off the campsite, and lashed it with paracord.  I cut and removed as much of the paracord as I could see, but there wasn't going to be any dismantling that hurricane-proof structure. 

On Booth last Fall, there was a giant thing on an island site that (folks here helped me figure out) was for use as a chair, where you lay in a tarp or blanket on it.  It was very evident that live cut trees had been used in part.  Also lashed with paracord.  I dismantled it, added to the firewood pile that was there.

To me, those kinds of things are eyesores at a minimum, and of course nobody would promote the use of live trees.  That said, I have never complained about finding a little table at a site.  In similar fashion, I've never seen a nail in a tree and decided on principle not to use it for a clothesline.

For some folks I guess lashings is part of the fun, but for others it is probably a function of boredom at the site, and we've probably all seen the hatchety results of boredom exercised on large live trees at campsites.   I'll take the lashings.          


5/08/2018 10:38 pm  #9

Re: To lash or not to lash?

I like to see the most minimal possible human influence.  Safety and hygiene and environmental protection mean it can't be as minimal as i would like.  But I like a portage trail. It makes sense to have maintained campsites and thunder boxes. A small fire-ring is common-sense. In a big park with lots of new campers, campsite and portage signs make sense. Beyond that, I don't want to see any shelves or chairs or couches of stone.  Just my two cents.

But as was said above by don'tgroandaddy, if there is already a nail on a tree, I'll use it, and I have cooked on one of those shelves. But I will never make one.



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