Leave Only Footprints…

linda robert rock

A couple named Linda and Robert seem to be causing quite a stir on island this week. Apparently they thought it was a good idea to write their names on a rock in the National Park. Well it caught the eye of the National Park Service, who posted this on their Facebook page earlier this week:

“Why do some leave their mark? One can argue the artistic value of images seen on human-made structures, but many believe that you can’t improve nature. What caused Linda and Robert to think that signing a rock on a beach in a National Park is a good thing? Did they believe that others would want to know they had been there?

“Did they stop to think that the mark that they left, besides being unlawful, intrudes on others’ natural experience? Whether it is names written on a stone or initials carved into a tree, many parks struggle with finding an effective way to let people know that it’s not OK. Parks are special places where we strive to leave the landscape free of evidence of our passage. We try to leave no trace-to take only pictures and leave only footprints. We think leaving your mark is overrated. What do you think?

“Oh, if anyone knows how to reach Linda and Robert, we’d like to talk with them.”

I have to agree with the National Park Service. It’s pretty frustrating to see names carved into trees throughout the island. In my opinion, it’s simply not cool to deface nature. What do you all think?





18 thoughts on “Leave Only Footprints…”

  1. It kills me when theses people who “are so into nature” do stuff like this. i don’t think all of the “rock stacking” is any different than carving your name into a tree, or etching the leaves at the petroglyphs, or … Painting your name on a rock.

  2. If you want to leave your mark on St. John put a sticker on the designated area at the beach bar, don’t deface nature.

  3. We have been coming to St. John for years, and I too get very irritated at this behavior. I understand the idea of preserving your presence in this beautiful place, but there are indeed ways to do it without negative impact. The sticker at the beach bar is a great example.

    We like to write our family name, the year and the beach in the wet sand and then take a picture. It’s a perfect way to “tag” yourself in these surroundings, preserve the memory and then watch the next waves wash it away. It looks great in a photo book too!

    Linda and Robert – Any chance you guys work at Summer’s End? Seems like you have shared interests of defacing the natural beauty of St. John.

  4. I agree HOWEVER the abundance of trash found on St John’s streets, sides of roads, in national park, on beaches, in bird sanctuaries, hiking trails, and around town is about 1,000,000 X more of a problem than this and an effort should be made to make locals and visitors more aware and hold people accountable for their actions.

  5. “Foolish names like foolish faces are often found in public places.”—-a very old saying which certainly should apply to beautiful St. John. Shame on you Robert and Beth—hope you’re embarrassed for a long time.

  6. Hopefully the NPS removed the rock, although it appears to have been cemented on(?) .

    If it was, please tell me where it is. I’m lucky enough to be there in 2 weeks. I’ll take care of it.

  7. Although I agree with the majority. But just think. What if the East Indians had the same view point and laws then the Reef Bay Trail may not have the same mystique. Just sayin.

  8. We like to pose with our sand writing under the St. John Spice web cam, so friends can take a snapshot of the online image.

  9. Go to Drunk Bay and build your own personal statement with the white coral and it will then be there for that moment in time for your memories.

    [Taking a picture of your personal statement might help you remember]

  10. One dive shop has the perfect expression on their web site. “Take only photos. Leave only bubbles. Kill only time.”

    Are the petroglphs actually graffiti, or are they something more important like signs. Perhaps they are no more graffiti than a metal sign that says, “KEEP LEFT.”

  11. It was a dumb thing to do, but not malevolent. they just need educating, not full on panties in a wad indignation.

  12. Geez folks, it’s only a rock with a couple dopes names on it. You’ve already given it way more attention then it deserves. Someone please pick the damn rock up, put it in your pocket until you get to the water’s edge and toss it as far out in the deep as possible. Crisis solved.

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