/ Paid 4x4 trips up Cairn Gorm

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Andy Johnson 03 Jul 2019

"Last week Cairngorm Mountain Scotland Ltd launched its “ATV experience”.   £60 per person for a two hour trip up Cairn Gorm" - http://parkswatchscotland.co.uk/2019/07/02/give-hie-an-inch-at-cairn-gorm-and-they-will-take-a-mile-the-ptarmigan-and-atv-tourism

Desperate and disappointing.

Eric9Points 03 Jul 2019
In reply to Andy Johnson:

Next stop Ben MacDhui.

toad 03 Jul 2019
In reply to Eric9Points:

The Newzealandification of pur wild spaces?

Bit harsh, but I did get the impression that the only way to access most of fjordland and Queenstown was through some over priced "experience" 

profitofdoom 03 Jul 2019
In reply to Andy Johnson:

> "Last week Cairngorm Mountain Scotland Ltd launched its “ATV experience”.   £60 per person for a two hour trip up Cairn Gorm" - http://parkswatchscotland.co.uk/2019/07/02/give-hie-an-inch-at-cairn-gorm-and-they-will-take-a-mile-the-ptarmigan-and-atv-tourism

> Desperate and disappointing.

I agree, bitterly disappointing. I read through it and honestly and SERIOUSLY thought it might be an April Fools joke, until - with a sinking feeling - I realized it's July

Thanks for posting

ianstevens 03 Jul 2019
In reply to toad:

> The Newzealandification of pur wild spaces?

> Bit harsh, but I did get the impression that the only way to access most of fjordland and Queenstown was through some over priced "experience" 

Leave central Queenstown and that impression is somewhat different.

MrsBuggins 03 Jul 2019
MrsBuggins 03 Jul 2019
In reply to Andy Johnson:

Have I got this right? Part of the Cairngorms is owned by a company who want to or are turning it into a glorified funfair and they are dressing it up as "outdoor activities". Surely totally alien to enjoyment of the outdoors.

Somebody feel free to correct me if I'm wrong. Otherwise are any representations being made to stop this vandalism?

BnB 03 Jul 2019
In reply to MrsBuggins:

I’m not a fan of adventure sightseeing but for some perspective:

Cairn Gorm is a flat-topped mound covered in pylons with a road halfway up already that leads to a car park the size of a football stadium and a few grotty sheds and with nothing to see from the top except more flat-topped hills. If there’s one “mountain” (I hesitate to use the term) that isn’t much ruined by a bit of 4x4 action then this is it.

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wercat 03 Jul 2019
In reply to MrsBuggins:

is it something like a rodelbahn in Switzerland or Germany? eg Pfinstegg

Wicamoi 03 Jul 2019
In reply to BnB:

Your assessment of Cairn Gorm and the Cairngorms strikes me as negative and disrespectful. The Cairngorms are beautiful in their own particular way, and a unique and fragile montane environment. You may value pointy mountains, but others value the wild rolling plateau and the life it supports. It was similarly dismissive views to yours that led to the insensitive developments in Coire Cas in the first place, which you now use as a reason to be relaxed about further intrusive development. I ask you to reconsider your expressed opinion.

3
jess13 03 Jul 2019
In reply to BnB:

Sorry but I think you're missing the point Cairngorm might not be the most aesthetic mountain in Scotland but how far will these people go if they get away with this? Will the road get extended (access to the weather station) and then perhaps access to the plateau? They're trying to push the boundaries and if they get away with it they will push further. If they taxi people up to give them access to the top it also  weakens the argument for not letting people access the mountain from the funicular if it reopens

2
wintertree 03 Jul 2019
In reply to Andy Johnson:

If they built a wind farm up top you could have renewably powered EVs going up the sensitively built access tracks....

I’d rather see the mountain coaster built than some “adventure” 4x4 course.  It’s not the idea of people being driven up there that bothers me so much as the principle of some knackered old diesel AWD spewing filthy out into the mountain air.   If people want to experience the mountain environment without walking use existing or future electric uplift capability, and if they want to go off roading they can use an engineered course somewhere far from the mountains.  It’s interesting to keep an eye on The Booring Company - if they succeed in their plans to drastically lower tunnelling costs, you could consider one day having underground uplift all year round.

My view is that the UKs mountain environments are the most interferes with I have ever seen, yet other far more “pristine” areas have much more developed tourist infrastructure. Done sensitively a few more developed mountains in the UK would have great potential.  But I don’t think anyone has it in them to do anything but suck down government funding and cock it up in endless cycles....

1
Kevin Woods 03 Jul 2019
In reply to Andy Johnson:

I always find it strange that people claim it isn't a scenic area. The Cairngorms and the ski-centre-Cairngorms are two entirely independent entities. Though the phrase 'unparalleled depths of character' (paraphrasing) was written about Ben Nevis, it equally applies to the Cairngorms.

Strachan 04 Jul 2019
In reply to Kevin Woods:

Surely they can't both have unparalleled depths of character! ;)

pasbury 04 Jul 2019
In reply to BnB:

Are you aware of the idea of precedent?

Snowdon is a dusty pile of rocks with a bloody railway up it, a cafe on top, and various paved paths all over it, it’s clearly under-utilised as a resource for dumbass ‘adventure’ bullshit. Let’s fuck it up some more!

Post edited at 00:22
olddirtydoggy 04 Jul 2019
In reply to pasbury:

I was just about to follow with this. Development of mountains with high impact tourism is much worse in other places. Germany's Zugspitze with it's huge visitors centre on the summit, Franz Josef glacier New Zealand heli tours rattling the hell out of the valley and so on. It all needs stripping back but tourists want access to these wild places without having to put in the effort. 

I find the whole lot revolting but try telling that to grandma treating her grand kids to a trip up the summit of 'Mount Snowdon' on the train or a 4X4 full of fatties wanting to see the top of the Cairngorms. Bragging rights on social media means such tourism is popular with a part of society that focuses more on themselves rather than the impact it has on the area. I've had this debate with good friends and been accused of trying to keep these places quiet for myself, turns out we're all very selfish!

2
Dogwatch 04 Jul 2019
In reply to Wicamoi:

> It was similarly dismissive views....that led to the insensitive developments in Coire Cas in the first place

I'm not sure it was, bearing in mind there were ski developments in Glencoe in much the same period. It was a different time in terms of attitude to what was viewed as economic development and the environment. Sorry but Coire Cas has been comprehensively trashed and I can't bring myself to being outraged by this particular development, so long as it stays in one limited area. 

felt 04 Jul 2019
In reply to Dogwatch:

> so long as it stays in one limited area. 

Appropriately, it will all be kept in that place called a slippery slope.

Tringa 04 Jul 2019
In reply to Andy Johnson:

Lets make everywhere the same! No need to put a bit of effort in, just get in a ATV and you can go just about anywhere you like.

Sod the fact that you are helping to ruin a fragile environment and anyone who complains the peace of an unspoiled area is being destroyed, well they are just losers.

Why stop with vehicle tracks on the hills? How about "Doing the Munros by helicopter"?

Reminds me of the line from Jurassic Park - "Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could, they didn't stop to think if they should.”

It is very depressing.

Dave

Niceboy 07 Jul 2019
In reply to BnB:

Your ignorance is showing; usually best not to display it in public,

7
ben b 08 Jul 2019
In reply to toad:

> Bit harsh, but I did get the impression that the only way to access most of fjordland and Queenstown was through some over priced "experience" 

Catering for mass market tourism, mostly from SE Asia and China - yes, that's probably true. Much of the QT economy is about separating tourists from their cash in return for something different from their usual life.

However logistically Fiordland is a hell of a challenge for most people including even the moderately dedicated outdoor type and there is a strong history of assisted access (mostly by helicopter). Let's face it even the Hollyford (mostly flat along the valley floor) is about 50km and most people need 5 days to do it...

b

BnB 08 Jul 2019
In reply to Niceboy:

> Your ignorance is showing; usually best not to display it in public,

What's showing is my ability to take a balanced view, with a post that opened with a broad rejection of all developments of this nature while highlighting the considerable existing blots on the proposed site. The balance of likes and dislikes would suggest that many others understood the nuance, while others chose to register their disapproval without resorting to insult. I confess to not falling under the spell of the Cairngorm plateau but I'm a big fan of the charming villages, ancient woodlands, bubbling streams and picturesque waterfalls of the region.

It might have been better to respond more thoughtfully than to launch an ad hominem attack, particularly since your claiming of the eco-intellectual high ground is accompanied by a punctuation error. If there's one thing that UKC takes more seriously than the despoiling of a national park, it's poor punctuation (joke).

Edit: punctuation

Post edited at 07:53

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