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Hiker causes stir after sharing photo of concerning discovery found deep in the woods: 'I don't get why people would want to do this'

"Some people suck."

"Some people suck."

Photo Credit: iStock

Numerous studies have shown that spending time in nature positively impacts physical and mental health. Unfortunately, the actions of some people can taint that experience with careless choices that harm the environment and wildlife. 

This was the case for one Redditor as they strolled through the woods along the Potomac River. 

"Romantic or trash," they captioned their post, adding two pictures from one of their favorite trails. The first picture is of a large tree in the middle of the woods with the big, obnoxious message "LE + LU" spray-painted in red. 

Photo Credit: Reddit

The second picture was a lovely view looking out over the Potomac River, presumably near the location of the graffitied tree. 

"I was quite irritated," the hiker wrote in the r/hiking subreddit.  

"Trash," one person commented, responding to the OP's caption. "I don't get why people would want to do this to an innocent tree." Other Redditors echoed the "trash" sentiment. Another wrote, "That's vandalism. Some people suck." 

Unfortunately, that last comment is true, and it happens at national parks and nature preserves across the country. Entitled tourists take advantage of what nature provides and make reckless and careless choices that negatively impact the environment, wildlife, and other tourists. 

Whether it's painting your initials on a tree, scratching your name into hydrothermal mats in Yellowstone, getting too close to wild animals, or ignoring clear warning signs to stay out of certain areas, these tourons — tourists acting like morons — are ruining the fun for everyone else and often endangering themselves and the wildlife.  

Exploring national parks provides an incredible chance to connect with nature and, hopefully, inspire us to protect our home. However, treating the parks and wildlife respectfully makes the experience more enjoyable for everyone.

It's debatable whether or not graffiti looks good in an urban environment. Some people think well-done graffiti adds art and color to drab buildings, while others strictly see it as vandalism, but nobody wants to see it on a hike through the forest. By observing and respecting the environment as it is, we foster a connection with nature that ensures the preservation of these ecosystems for future generations. 

One commenter on the post oddly summed it up perfectly: "Defamation of nature such as chopping, burning and spray panting tree and Etc. has always made my bum itch." 

As Smokey the Bear would say in this case, only you can prevent itchy bums. 

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