Monday, June 05, 2006


Mind you, I'm not complaining about the PNF (Prescott Natl. Forest). My relationship with the folks in green has always been tops.

However, I do have a question or two about their special vocabulary. Perhaps some reader out there can enlighten me:

1. Why "on the forest" rather than "in the forest"? I mean, when I go out to Granite Basin Lake or Groom Creek for a walk, I look up at the tree tops. I am in the forest; if I were on the forest, I'd be looking down at the tree tops. Maybe the idea is that all foresters think and talk as though they were up in those lookout towers, where the tree tops are really downhill from them.

2. On PNF (and other Forest Service) maps, I've spotted a mystery feature. What the hell is a "trick tank"? Is it a low place where water gathers, but there's a hole with a plug at the lowest point, so that when game or cattle herds show up, some elf pulls the plug & laughs maniacally? Or just what. This one has been worrying me for over 20 years!

By the way, if you don't have the big PNF map in your glove compartment, by all means get one at the local office (see link at right). It won't be up to the standards of a 7-1/2" topo quad, but then few people want to carry a small library of maps when out for a casual drive.


Kate said...

Google is Your Friend. From the Santa Fe National Forest Coyote Ranger District's "Best Management Practices for Water Quality and Grazing Activities" (

"Trick Tanks are structures that are naturally fed by rainwater or snow melt. Trick tanks should be located in grazing areas that have no access to water sources such as rivers, streams, or springs. Not only do trick tanks help in water containment and storage, but help alleviate grazing activities on riparian environments. By placing trick tanks in waterless grazing areas wildlife and livestock are diverted away from riparian areas, thereby reducing degradation of riparian zones and improving water quality in watersheds by reducing impacts to streambank stabilization, turbidity, and bacteria. The benefits are: 1) Less pressure of grazing activities in riparian zones. 2) Diverting of wildlife and livestock to unused forage areas, due to lack of water sources. 3) Reduction of fire danger from piled dry grass. The possibilities for trick tanks are endless for grazing activities. The trick tanks can be located virtually anywhere in any range and grazing area. Trick Tanks can and may seem expensive, but in the long run the benefits out weigh the cost."

Kate said...

Or, so you can actually cut-and-paste:

Granny J said...

No fact too arcane for Google, eh? Now, about the "on" vs. "in" usage???

Leslie said...


You are so creative.. . .I love your blog. .. actually the first one I've ever read. . .Oh, this is cousin Leslie btw, Connie's eldest daughter. I SO enjoy the Scrabble bit. .. I still treasure the time Auntie M came to visit me w/ Mom in Riverside. .. and as for Scrabble. . . .my 2 sisters and I and Mom would play often, and I may begin strong, but I ALWAYS lose, and the whole thing is quite humbling, because, you know, as the eldest I think I should at least be the smartest! :o) Thanks for the fwd/reminder of your site. I'll try to remember to check back periodically.



Photo Blog Blog Top Sites Blog Directory for Prescott, AZ

Local Blogs - Blog Top Sites