Letter: Fun on the river shouldn’t be outlawed or ticketed
Between my kids and myself, we spend quite a bit of time on Stillwater. As a high school kid in the 1970s, we blew up innertubes to float, hike and hide in the bushes next to the river (naughty). Now I mostly use the river for exercise — no cars, no bikes setting personal bests, no road rash. The other day I was paddling up the river and a young couple was floating down playing music. Cute scene. Not boom-box loud, just “we want to listen to music” loud. I asked myself, should this behavior be banned? Before I could answer my self-imposed question, some number of motorcycles went by on Highway 82 (could have been two — it sounded like hundreds). Not only could I no longer hear the music, I couldn’t here myself try and answer my own question. This is a busy corridor.
I understand the difference between being on the highway and being on the river, but it made me wonder about priorities and knee-jerk reactions. Stillwater is an amazing place for all species — yes, including humans. I love that it is protected, and I feel that I have made personal sacrifices to honor that protection.
I suppose the strategy may be to kill the fun and thereby kill the activity. Of course, in everything there are limits, but personally, I am against the notion that fun on the river should be outlawed and ticketed. Yes, some do take it too far, like the motorcycles who seem very happy to blow us away with their need to shout “look at me” as they roar by, whether they are next to the river or not.
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Thanks to a very small, but determined group of local volunteers our 6th Annual Pristine Riders Trash Crush community clean-up and environmental stewardship event on June 5 was a success.