Every time I encounter a display of graffiti in a wilderness area, two questions pop into my mind.

  • Why would someone despoil a pristine area in that fashion?

  • Who the heck carries a can of spray paint with them when they're out paddling?

It's tough enough maintaining the illusion of wilderness as we're out paddling in areas that are close to populated areas.  We know in our hearts that we're just around the corner from that lodge, and maybe only a day's paddle from that highway, but it feels like wilderness to us.


As we sit in our canoe and stare out at the morning mist, we convince ourselves that we are the first person that has ever seen that vista.


Graffiti is a visual affront that destroys that illusion.  It destroys the illusion for years and years to come.  Those that yield a can of spray paint must realize that they are destroying not just a rock face, but an entire section of scenery and landscape, and the damage they cause will remain for many years.


Particularly despicable are those that have defaced historical / spiritual native pictograph sites with modern graffiti.  These people, if caught, should be banned from travel in wilderness areas.