It’s often said there is an exception to every rule, but making yourself an exception to rules in national parks is more likely to get you called out than celebrated.
A post on the Tourons Of Yellowstone (@touronsofyellowstone) Instagram account spotlights a woman who clearly considers herself an exception. A cross between “tourist” and “moron,” the term speaks for itself, but the hashtags alongside the post add some context, with #StayOnTheBoardwalk, #YourSafetyIsYourResponsibility, #DontFallIn, and #KnowingTheParkRulesIsYourResponsibility among them.
The post shares three images of a woman off the boardwalk and standing at the edge of a thermal pool in Yellowstone National Park while a man stands on the boardwalk taking her pictures. In the third picture, the woman is bent down with her hand nearly in the pool.
“The edges of these pools are fragile, very unstable. No brains,” commented one viewer.
“Lived there when a young man broke through the crust and was burned to death in front of his sister, tragic and [because] he left the board walk ignored the signs,” stated another.
“They even extended the walkway and everything to let you get super close without being unsafe or harming the bacteria,” added a third.
These commenters make excellent points. The signs are put in place to protect the fragile ecosystems that make up the jaw-dropping beauty of the national parks and those lucky enough to visit them.
The page for Yellowstone advises: “Stay on boardwalks and trails in thermal areas. Hot springs have injured or killed more people in Yellowstone than any other natural feature. Keep your children close and don’t let them run.”
As foolish as this touron’s behavior may seem, she’s sadly not alone. Another man was shown similarly pushing the limits, this parent was blasted for blatantly ignoring the advice not to let your children run near them, and these three people walked near the hot attractions, one barefoot.
Taking in all these parks have to offer is best done with respect and a desire to learn about our natural world. Many people plan trips to these beautiful places consciously, hoping to have less impactful vacations, and the recklessness and entitlement of tourons inhibit the connection that others experience with nature.
The post’s comment section spoke to this clearly.
“The entitlement is infuriating,” said one viewer.
“I’m a tourist. I don’t have to follow the rules. Who cares if I ruin nature for everyone else! I’m entitled,” mocked another.
“People have no respect anymore,” a third stated simply. “Everyone thinks rules are crap.”
Join our free newsletter for cool news and cool tips that make it easy to help yourself while helping the planet.