The Pit - Joshua Tree


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Dec 20, 2015 - 12:40pm PT
Actually, it requires that one A-hole AND a host of other people willing to idly sit by rather than call that person out and make them own it.

It appears The Pit was a microcosm of society attitudes in general whereby people are willing to sub-contract all the justification and enforcement of what is right rather than confront them and demand they clean up their act or push-off down the road.

We need not to let Escopeta's out of date information mislead people. The Pit was not closed down because of trash. People wanting to use the Pit back in 2012 cleaned up not only the Pit but also the adjoining 18 acres. Before and after shots:
Credit: jstan
Credit: jstan

Since 2012 Phil Bircheff did a great job as sort of a camp host and there were no problems. A local person did dump 14 tires there but they were removed within the week.

If I might I would like to address the issue of how one best handles situations. Frequently people become angry when there are transgressions. Being angry is not a helpful response. We have found that simply clearing trash away immediately as it appears, and what is more, also removing anything that reappears is quite effective. People much prefer to deposit trash where there is already trash. cf: Alice's Restaurant.

I seldom have had trash reappear. Generally when a parcel is cleared, a for sale sign is put up by the owner. Don't think for a moment no one notices. This is a powerful and growing movement. Being "in the van", as the Brits say, is really cool.

I looked up the zoning. The parcel is zoned one acre residential which is about the most restrictive. There are procedures for using the lot for other purposes but waivers and public involvement seem to be required. And the use would have to be code compliant. These all act to make free camping a challenge.

Trad climber
Dec 20, 2015 - 01:39pm PT
Glad to hear it was on the straight and narrow.

Now all that's left is the disagreement on the appropriate response.

Lynne Leichtfuss

Trad climber
Will know soon
Dec 20, 2015 - 03:30pm PT
Whoa, how sad. The pit gone..... I only stayed there once, but for me it was a safety valve. Just knowing it was there if I really, really needed a place to stay for a night or two was a terrific fallback. I'm not surprised, just saddened that another "special spot" has been laid to rest.

Social climber
So Cal
Dec 20, 2015 - 04:13pm PT

Dec 20, 2015 - 05:54pm PT
Egosweater, another ITG
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