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When is a dead tree “natural” or “an usightly nuisance?”

I should have taken a picture of it… but it wasn’t worth the electrons… even to illustrate my point.

So picture this. Yellowstone National Park, Old Faithful Geyser. Between TWO SIDEWALKS, dead trees lying among other trees.

I asked the ranger what’s with the dead trees. I suspected he’d reply and indeed he did when he said, “It’s ‘natural’ and we now don’t remove dead trees because it’s not NATURAL. ”

This is certainly true. But DEAD TREES between man-made concrete sidewalks for crowd control of tourists seeing Old Faithful?

Who’s he kidding? A PARK is a park… a wilderness area is… well, a WILDERNESS AREA. For all the vast area of Yellowstone, in a HIGH TRAFFIC TOURIST AREA, is the intent to please the squirrels or the paying tourists? Besides, having sidewalks, buildings, restaurants, lodgings, and huge parking lots isn’t “natural.” But I guess they draw the line at removing dead-fall.

I think we should all pay attention to the principle of “natural” in appropriate settings. But when something is obviously not “natural” anymore, who are we kidding? It’s like the little signs I see in hotels that plead with water conservation by allowing patrons to choose to reuse towels, and leave on linens on beds. “TO SAVE WATER,” when the same hotels sprinkle the property to keep the grass green. And they charge patrons the same if they use fresh towels or not. Want to conserve water? Offer me two bucks off the room for every day I use the same towel and bed linen. That way the hotel is conserving both water, (for the good of the environment), and money, (for the good of my wallet.)

Figure out who your buyer is… and meet their expectations without excuses that appear to be transparent to save labor on the part of the seller.

In the WILDERNESS, cater to the wildlife. But in a PARK, cater to the paying tourists. Squirrels don’t pay entrance fees at Yellowstone. Besides, They don’t want to hang out between sidewalks in dead trees with thousands of tourists. They’ve got the whole Yellowstone to visit that’s not overrun with tourists.

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