Restrictions urged on use of trailI have always thought that the snake oil remedy for our economic woes that is touted by Congressman Boucher and half the elected officials in Southwest Virginia - tourism - is cynical but benign pie in the sky. Based on this bit of news about the Virginia Creeper Trail attracting criminals, coupled with yesterday's story, I'm now thinking that in economic terms, tourism is a net negative for Southwest Virginia and is causing more harm than good.
Crime problem cited in effort to shut down part of Creeper Trail at night
By Rex Bowman, Richmond Times-Dispatch Staff Writer
ABINGDON - Efforts are under way to shut down part of the scenic and popular Virginia Creeper Trail at night after landowners along the trail complained about crime.
At a hearing late last month in Abingdon, landowners said they are tired of the occasional vandalism, littering and theft from their property.
Most of the crime associated with the trail involves auto theft and vehicle break-ins at the parking lots along the trail, said Maj. Blake Andis of the Washington County Sheriff's Department. (link)
We would do better to close all the trails and tell the criminals and lice-infested hikers... er, tourists to go back up north where they came from.