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 The Trek: The Journals

•
Team: South
Jan Nesset
Friday, September 13
Precious Images
The Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument is no secret nor is it supposed to be. It is public land, and as public citizens we are free to use it as long as we abide by Monument regulations. But weeks prior to today’s hike we are informed that taking photographs would not be allowed on the hike. We are itching to know why.
Is the land so delicate or fragile that capturing an image of it will break it or take its soul? Is there sensitive information that if revealed would jeopardize its public security?
Joining us today are Larry and Tom, the BLM rangers who guided yesterday’s hike down the Escalante River. We have taken with us our cameras, but before we expose a frame we ask for clarification of what is expected of us.
We are informed that a Deputy Manager of the Monument had indeed given a directive that we do not take photographs. The directive was given in order to protect the natural resources, said our guides. A good photograph(s) published in the right places may attract an onslaught of visitors to the Monument, they said, which could result in areas of the Monument getting loved to death.
But, said our guides, in their opinions we are free to take photographs with the understanding that our photographs will not be sold for commercial use. We trekkers can live with that because our efforts are for education purposes and not personal gain, but I am doubtful of the legalities.
Furthermore, a scenario of deep concern crossed my mind. Had the directive been an inch closer to a mandate, and had a reporter accompanied us, which has occurred on two stages of our Journey, there would be a story hitting the media and it would not have been the American Frontiers visit to the Monument.
Headline: “Grand Staircase Takes Step To Ban Photography”
Nobody will begrudge the Deputy Manager her desire to protect the Monument. The Bureau of Land Management is new to managing Monuments and there will be some mistakes made. But knowing without prejudice that citizens are allowed to photograph public lands is something I wish was built into all land managers.

A third of the way into our hike, we are again at water’s edge. This time we must get our feet wet in Boulder Creek and travel downstream until we come to the confluence of Deer Creek. There we’ll turn upstream and look for a good spot to scramble up the slickrock on the north side, from where we can continue our hike on dry land.
This time Julie joins Cathy in the crocodile-infested Congo jungle. Never to miss a photo op, Julie spies me on a rock with my camera and wades through the rare deep pool ahead of Cathy, white teeth posed between a wide smile. The other hikers walk around the pool. Cathy follows Julie through the deep pool unaware of the alternatives.
On dry land we follow a sandy bench to a slickrock arroyo lined with isolated ponderosa pine stands guarding fresh pools.
Breaking onto the trailhead where our support vehicles await to take us to camp, my camera is loaded with images of this amazing hike. White slickrock canyons and sandstone massifs describe the hike which can be described again with words stolen from team leader Bob Hammond: “routinely spectacular.”

In the case of the Grand Staircase-Escalante, as it has been with so many of the lands we’ve crossed, a picture can say a thousand words but being there to take the photographs sings a million to my soul.
for Friday, September 13
North South Both




Biographical
•
Team: South
Jan Nesset
An experienced outdoorsman, Jan Nesset knows that everyone has to pitch in at camp
A native of Montana and the third of four children, Jan Nesset joins American...
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List of All Journal Entries
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Wednesday, April 28
Jan Nesset
American Frontiers: Part II: Taking Stock
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Sunday, December 1
Jan Nesset
Canyonlands in December
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Thursday, November 21
Jan Nesset
Snow Raspberry Bounty
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Sunday, November 17
Jan Nesset
The Bisti Badlands
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Friday, November 15
Jan Nesset
Public Land Flows Through It
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Thursday, November 7
Jan Nesset
A Day At Earth Analytic's Home
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Tuesday, October 29
Jan Nesset
Slot Canyon Adventure
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Monday, October 28
Jan Nesset
Some Things Never Change
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Sunday, October 27
Jan Nesset
Back To The Wave
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Monday, October 7
Jan Nesset
The Thing About Summits
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Saturday, September 28
Jan Nesset
A New Beginning: National Public Lands Day
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Thursday, September 26
Jan Nesset
Big Day of Sneak and Salvage
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Wednesday, September 25
Jan Nesset
History-Coated Strawberry
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Tuesday, September 24
Jan Nesset
The Last Of It
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Monday, September 23
Jan Nesset
Dinosaurlandia
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Sunday, September 22
Jan Nesset
Over The Edge
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Saturday, September 21
Jan Nesset
God Bless America
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Friday, September 20
Jan Nesset
Sometimes It's A Tough Life And We Get To Do It
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Thursday, September 19
Jan Nesset
The Niche Near You
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Wednesday, September 18
Jan Nesset
Snow Day
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Tuesday, September 17
Jan Nesset
A Capitol Reef Bull's Eye
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Monday, September 16
Jan Nesset
A Lucky Rift
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Sunday, September 15
Jan Nesset
Riding The Hog's Back
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Saturday, September 14
Jan Nesset
Oh Rhythm My Rhythm
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Friday, September 13
Jan Nesset
Precious Images
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Thursday, September 12
Jan Nesset
From the Hole to the Staircase
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Wednesday, September 11
Jan Nesset
Happy Days
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Tuesday, September 10
Jan Nesset
Do You Believe In Magic?
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Monday, September 9
Jan Nesset
The Bridge Over the River Why
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Sunday, September 8
Jan Nesset
Public Lands And…Not You?
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Saturday, September 7
Jan Nesset
That Place So Special
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Friday, September 6
Jan Nesset
Just Looking To Have Some Fun – Be Dammed!
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Thursday, September 5
Jan Nesset
Do The Wave
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Wednesday, September 4
Jan Nesset
The Condors Are Coming!
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Tuesday, September 3
Jan Nesset
Fires Are For The Birds
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Monday, September 2
Jan Nesset
Back On Top
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Sunday, September 1
Jan Nesset
Perfection
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Saturday, August 31
Jan Nesset
The Wheels Have Left The Tarmac
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Friday, August 30
Jan Nesset
Star Light
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Thursday, August 29
Jan Nesset
The Traditional Connection
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Wednesday, August 28
Jan Nesset
Onward and Upward On Mountain Bikes
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Tuesday, August 27
Jan Nesset
Checkerboard Kings and Queens
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Monday, August 26
Jan Nesset
Aldo Leopold As Ranch Manager
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Sunday, August 25
Jan Nesset
A Story In Everything
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Saturday, August 24
Jan Nesset
Fire In The Whole
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Friday, August 23
Jan Nesset
"Good Morning, Flagstaff!"
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Thursday, August 22
Jan Nesset
Hoping For The Best
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Wednesday, August 21
Jan Nesset
Could Get Stinky
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Tuesday, August 20
Jan Nesset
Wheels Asunder
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Monday, August 19
Jan Nesset
Hurt Me, Thank You!
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Sunday, August 18
Jan Nesset
Roads Aplenty and Rocks of Pleasure
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Saturday, August 17
Jan Nesset
Of Dragons and Fire
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Friday, August 16
Jan Nesset
Motorcycles and the Zen of Route Mechanics
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Thursday, August 15
Jan Nesset
Puzzled
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Wednesday, August 14
Jan Nesset
A Day Off, Sort Of
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Tuesday, August 13
Jan Nesset
A Delightful, Light Day
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Monday, August 12
Jan Nesset
Courage On Eagle Mountain
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Sunday, August 11
Jan Nesset
Farewell
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Saturday, August 10
Jan Nesset
My Aching Back In The Saddle
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Friday, August 9
Jan Nesset
Back In The Saddle
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Thursday, August 8
Jan Nesset
In The Saddle
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Wednesday, August 7
Jan Nesset
Shut My Mouth!
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Tuesday, August 6
Jan Nesset
Diversity and Song
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Monday, August 5
Jan Nesset
An Unraveling
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Sunday, August 4
Jan Nesset
A Bagged Peak
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Saturday, August 3
Jan Nesset
Lines On A Map
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Friday, August 2
Jan Nesset
GPS-Marriage Made In Heaven
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Thursday, August 1
Jan Nesset
Free Wheelin'
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Wednesday, July 31
Jan Nesset
An Excellent Start
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