By Christian Schauf
Hi there! Welcome to our little mountain town.
I understand your Californian utopia is a bit less fun these days, and that’s led you to our little paradise. We’ve got a pretty nice thing going here, and we’d like to keep it that way. So I thought I’d offer a few tips on how to not get your ass kicked.
1. Ditch the Bluetooth Speakers: I don’t care how fire the new Harry Styles song is, we don’t want to hear it out here on this trail, or anywhere. We came out here to get away from noise, and the only sounds we want to hear are our footsteps, our heartbeats and the bugling elk over the ridge. Bring your Airpods if you need music, they’re a much bigger flex on your Instagram post anyways. A word of caution though, keep the volume at a level where you can still hear a mountain biker, runner, or bear coming up behind you.
2. Train Your Damn Dog: For the most part our dogs are family members and often working assets that generally live off-leash. We’ve trained them and we trust them. They don’t chase deer, fight other dogs, and they don’t have a problem with strangers who don’t interfere with them.
What’s that? Your dog doesn’t like other dogs? You’re afraid of my dog? Don’t make your problem my problem. May I suggest you get some training, for your dog and yourself? Oh, and thanks for picking up your dog’s shit on the trail, but if you leave that bag sitting on the trail because you don’t want to carry it, I’m going to pick it up, and throw it at you, then possibly kick your ass.
3. Learn to Drive: Whether it’s parking your new Escalade in only one space, understanding stopping distances in icy conditions, or learning how to back your new Mastercraft into the reservoir on the first try, this is a big one, because your actions affect us all. It’s not cool to park your Jeep on the pile of snow in the parking lot, and nobody else thinks your limited edition Range Rover should get two spots. Don’t believe me? Check out @parkcityassholeparking
4. It’s Called Wildlife Because It’s Wild; Get Used to It: Wildlife is what makes this place special. A moose caught on your Ring doorbell camera strolling through your backyard in the middle of the night is not cause for dialing 911. You should fully expect to have coyotes in your yard, elk herds crossing the highway, and deer sampling your garden. Hell, if you’re lucky, you may cross paths with a mountain lion. Yes, cars get smashed, pets go missing, and bears find their way to the king-sized Snickers bar in your trunk. If this is in any way not ok with you, you’ve got the wrong ‘hood. Judging by your new cowboy hat and Patagonia sticker on your Tesla, you moved here for nature, right? Embrace it, but don’t try to feed it a sandwich, or it might just kick your ass.
5. Accept Hunting; It’s What We Do: Don’t like hunting? That’s fine, but don’t villainize those of us who do. Hunters donate more time and money to conservation than any other group of people. We are hyper-mindful of the animal/human balance, and we’re going to be the first ones you call when our beloved government tightens down on you even further. Hell, try it, you might even like it. But if you’re hiking in September and purposely try to scare the elk away so that we can’t legally kill one for food, you’re going to get your ass kicked.