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Swiss heartland voters ban nude hiking in Alps
Old 04-27-2009, 10:49 AM   #1
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Swiss heartland voters ban nude hiking in Alps

APPENZELL, Switzerland – Voters in the heart of the Swiss Alps on Sunday passed legislation banning naked hiking after dozens of mostly German nudists started rambling through their picturesque region.
By a show of hands citizens of the tiny canton (state) of Appenzell Inner Rhodes voted overwhelmingly at their traditional open-air annual assembly to impose a 200 Swiss franc ($176) fine on violators.
Only a scattering of people on Sunday opposed the ban on the back-to-nature activity that took off last autumn when naked hikers — primarily Germans — started showing up in eastern Switzerland.
The cantonal government recommended the ban after citizens objected to encountering walkers wearing nothing but hiking boots and socks.
"The reactions of the population have shown that such appearances over a large area are perceived as thoroughly disturbing and irritating," the government said in a statement.
A similar legal move is expected in neighboring Appenzell Outer Rhodes with legislation being prepared against "this shameless behavior."
German Web sites promoting the activity describe it as "a special experience of nature, free and healthy" and said nude walking in the Alps has roots in antiquity.
The verdant Appenzell region has been regarded as a favorite, with trails the nudists regarded as off the beaten path.
The German sites also promote walks in France and in regions of Germany, where public nudity has roots going back to the 18th century through a movement that has come to be called "Free Body Culture." Nudism in more conservative areas of Switzerland is less common.
A similar legal move is expected in neighboring Appenzell Outer Rhodes. The nationalist Swiss People's Party has advised the cantonal parliament it is preparing legislation against "this shameless behavior."
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Old 04-27-2009, 11:06 AM   #2
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I saw a naked hiker on the Appalachian Trail last summer, a few miles south of Shenandoah Natl Park, a fairly busy section. I was running north, and as I was coming up a hill I saw someone hiking towards me with a pack and no shirt. As I got closer, I started thinking, ya know, with those tan shorts, it almost looks like he's not wearing any--AW GEEZ! Socks, boots, and a hat, that was it. He looked about 60, but I didn't look too closely.
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Old 04-27-2009, 11:30 AM   #3
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Wouldn't you know it - first answer to this post is from..... Running Bum.
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Old 04-27-2009, 12:08 PM   #4
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I'd be afraid of getting a chigger on my trigger!

Not to mention all the giggling and pointing...
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Old 04-27-2009, 12:31 PM   #5
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I've hiked the Appenzell region - it's fairly open country - not many trees - ummm, you'd be very exposed in many ways! Didn't run into any au naturel, though. :-)

Actually, it's a beautiful area of Switzerland - considered a bit more backwards, though, in terms of the people and their culture - farmers, etc, compared to chic Zurich or Geneva - it's also a bit flatter than the Berner Oberland or Valais.
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Old 04-27-2009, 12:32 PM   #6
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Do they object if passers-by post videos on youtube?
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Old 04-27-2009, 02:34 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by donheff View Post
Do they object if passers-by post videos on youtube?
I suspect that if any of the hikers are young and attractive the videos do get posted (but not on Youtube which bans nudity). I am guessing that a majority of the hikers are neither young nor attractive, hence the problem.
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