Thursday, December 31, 2009

Commentary on WNBR Indecent Exposure Citation

(Note: I am not a lawyer and I am not giving legal advice . . . the following is merely my take and understanding of the dynamics of the law as I understand it. If you find yourself in similar circumstances, please find yourself competent legal representation.)

"... Public nudity, for example, causes offense to some people, but most of us find it at most a bit embarrassing, and it is avoided by a simple turn of the head. ..." 
van Mill, David, "
Freedom of Speech", The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (Winter 2009 Edition), Edward N. Zalta (ed.), 


Nude bicycle riding has become a "well-established tradition" in Seattle and many other cities around the U.S. and the world. It is understood and interpreted as a form of "symbolic protest." The Seattle Municipal Code (SMC) does not have a specific prohibition against public nudity. Portland does and judges there have ruled in favor of defendents in dismissing indecent exposure charges based on the above traditions and First Amendment Rights.

The Seattle WNBR has been going on for years. Occassionally, riders get threatened, sometimes they get cited . . . usually for not dressing when ordered to do so by police officers, a Disorderly Conduct charge. Riders are generally left alone and often given a police escort to safely control the ride route. Those who do get cited have the charges quitely dropped after-the-fact . . . an acknowledgement of the difficulty of prosecuting Indecent Exposure charges when there has been no lewd of obscene conduct.
(Image from Seattle's 2004 World Naked Bike Ride)

Another example of tradition and acceptance within Seattle has been the participation for years of the body-painted nude bicycle riders in the annual Fremont Solstice Parade. Riding nude in the parade has become a fact 'accompli. In 1998, SPD officers arrested two naked cyclists in the Fremont Solstice Parade. The city attorney at that time declined to prosecute the pair because they hadn’t violated the indecent exposure law. Police since have not bothered to attempt to stop the tradition of nude cyclists in the parade . . . the thousands of families and children lining the parade route love them and applaud when they go by. (Personal experience and participation, 2002-2009; image from the 2008 Fremont Solstice Naked Bicyclists)

The former Seattle Superintendent of Parks had this to say to naysayers and critics of permission to ride through Seattle Parks by WNBR participants: "While public nudity is objectionable to many citizens, under Washington state’s Indecent Exposure Law, public nudity in itself is not illegal. The law specifies that ..." Kenneth R. Bounds, (former) Superintendent, Seattle Parks and Recreation, responding to a complaint, dated 12 July 2006, about World Naked Bike Ride Seattle.

Former Police Chief Kerlikowske had this to say to his subordinates about circulating rumors and allegations that police would arrest nude participants in the 2008 Gay Pride Parade:
"Washington's indecent exposure law makes it a misdemeanor to 'make an open and obscene exposure of his or her person or the person of another knowing that such conduct is likely to cause reasonable affront or alarm.' In other words, there must be lewd or obscene behavior for an officer to take action." [emphasis mine]

Chief Kerlikowshe goes on in the same communique to say,
"In order for the police to make an arrest, we must have witnesses currently in the public place where the nudity is occurring [sic] who must make a complaint. These witnesses must be willing to appear in court. Also in order to prosecute, the burden is on the government to prove the the offender was knowingly aware that their conduct created alarm and offense of others."

The Law

Since Seattle has no public nudity prohibition on the books of the Municipal Code (nor does King County have an anti-nudity ordinance), Daniel was cited under the state Indecent Exposure statute . . . RCW 9A.88.010 which I quote below:

RCW 9A.88.010
Indecent exposure.
(1) A person is guilty of indecent exposure if he or she intentionally makes any open and obscene exposure of his or her person or the person of another knowing that such conduct is likely to cause reasonable affront or alarm. The act of breastfeeding or expressing breast milk is not indecent exposure.

In order to successfully prosecute, all the elements of the statute must be met. There has to be intention to expose with the knowledge of likely affront, the exposure has to be open AND obscene, and there has to be someone who was affronted or alarmed at the exposure.  Four required elements to sustain the charge.

Element #1: Someone Must Complain
As Chief Kerlikowske has stated, and the King County Sheriff's Department spokesperson has reinteratted in email exchanges, there must be someone complaining and that someone must be willing to appear in court to testify to the complaint. It is not sufficient for a law enforcement officer to be the one affronted or alarmed to sustain a complaint. I've been told by the King County Sheriff's department that a complaint must be made by someone alleging affront and alarm; a deputy [or police officer] cannot be a victim of indecent exposure (aka nudity in their eyes). As the spokesman states, "I guess the courts have figured we've seen it all."

Element #2: Intention and Knowledge
Intention is always difficult to prove in court; the prosecutor must assess and prove the defendant's alleged state of mind. In my reading of the statute, the bar is raised even higher because I read the statute to say the cited 'had the intention to obscenely expose him or herself, knowing it might cause reasonable affront or alarm'. It's not just the intention . . . it's intention with knowledge.

Element #3: Nude? Or Nude and Obscene?

"Public nudity in itself is not illegal." Former Seattle Parks Superintendent Ken Bounds
"... there must be lewd or obscene behavior for an officer to take action." Former SPD Chief R. Gil Kerlikowske

Arrests and citations for indecent exposure rarely hold for simple nudity. Why? Because of that one required charging element . . . the exposure must also be obscene.

The current test for obscenity rests with the Miller Test (Miller v. California, 413 U.S. 15, 24-25 (1973). The Miller Test requires a three-pronged approach for courts to determine whether an act or expression is obscene:
"(a) whether "the average person, applying contemporary community standards" would find that the work, taken as a whole, appeals to the prurient interest, [Roth, supra, at 489,]
(b) whether the work depicts or describes, in a patently offensive way, sexual conduct specifically defined by the applicable state law, and
(c) whether the work, taken as a whole, lacks serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value.
If a state obscenity law is thus limited, First Amendment values are adequately protected by ultimate independent appellate review of constitutional claims when necessary. [Pp. 24-25.]"

The precedence of the Miller test holds in our state courts (see last para above). Lacking any patently offensive sexual conduct, simple nudity cannot be considered 'obscene'.  Without obscene exposure, as defined and clarified by the Supreme Court, how can a charge of Indecent Exposure be sustained?

Where Constitutional First Amendment Rights to Free Speech (and Expression) are involved, prosecutors and the courts must step very carefully to avoid infringing on those rights.  Though there are those who may feel affronted . . . or alarmed . . . or in some way offended by someone's exercise of their Constitutional Rights, the Supreme Court has affirmed that those Rights are paramount and important to protect over mere offense or harm.

[For an excellent discussion of John Stuart Mill's Harm Principle and Joel Feinberg's Offense Principle as they relate to free speech read the treatment here.]

...there is no evidence of harm that is more than grossly speculative. All that the trial judge had before him was some evidence indicating specific individuals' lack of acceptance of the appellant's choice of clothing. There was nothing degrading or dehumanizing in what the appellant did. The scope of her activity was limited and was entirely non-commercial. No one who was offended was forced to continue looking at her ...  there was no harm in what was done ..." Criminal law study papers: A REVIEW OF THE LAW OF INDECENCY AND NUDITY IN CANADA; A lengthy discussion on the Harm Principle and Nudity in Canada; a good read to understand how Canadians approach public nudity. [emphasis added]

There is no doubt that the World Naked Bike Ride was promoted as an exercise of Free Speech and Expression and that many forms of simple, nonsexual public nudity are expressions of our desires to see the lifestyle accepted and venues allowed.  Much of public nudity is made to express one's beliefs in a more natural existence on this planet . . . surely forms of First Amendment Rights to Free Speech and Expression!

Element #4: Was Someone Offended?

What is missing from the notice that Daniel received? Who was offended? When and where were they offened? Why was Daniel cited and not the others? I suppose those questions will come out in court but I find it awfully disingenious of the city and inconvenient for the charged to prepare a defense in advance (or even decide a plea) without the knowledge of the essential charging elements of the citation (including the identity of the complainant who may have another agenda to pursue . . . or may not have even seen Daniel but an different rider near the back of the pack).

Why Daniel? Was it perhaps because he was leading the ride . . . the only person identifiable? There must be a complainant and that person must be able to testify that he or she was affronted and alarmed at a specific open and obscene exposure . . . the who, what, when, and where.

Are they alledging Daniel broke the law specifically. Or are they complaining because they saw someone naked . . . perhaps not Daniel at all. According to the recollection I received, the police did not confront the riders until some time later at an entirely different location. In my mind, I have to wonder if Daniel was cited because he identified himself as the leader of the group. The specifics of the complaint are missing and that makes this charge suspect in my mind.

I would hope that Daniel fights this charge all the way. I disagree with much of the activism of this type of nudity but we cannot let precedent be set to reinterpret what the state's indecent exposure law was meant to cover . . . and simple, innocent nudity is not one of them.

WNBR Seattle 2009 organizer headed to court (recap)

This just in from Daniel:

Looks like Thomas Carr , who just got voted out of office by a landslide, is trying to scare at least one of the World Naked Bike Ride West Seattle cyclists.
My intake hearing is Tues, 12 Jan 2010 at The Muncipal Court of Seattle at 9:05 AM. I am being charged with "indecent exposure" RCW9A. 88.010(1) for my role in the 13 Sept 2009 WNBR West Seattle event.
Here is the link to both the WSB and KOMO stories if you wish to help out with a supportive comment
Get this, the order was made on Christmas, 25 Dec 2009. We must all be in the holiday mood because I just gave Parks a Public Disclosure Request on Mon, 28 Dec 2009.
Due to court date approaching quickly and legal prep, other urgent issues with City and family medical issues I may need to move next Jan indoor swim to February. Hope you understand.
Any legal help would be appreciated.
Peace be with you this Holiday season. :)
Daniel Johnson
Follow me at for updates

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Help Save Remington Hot Springs

Hot Spring lovers know how rare and precious Natural Hot Springs are.

Unfortunately the Forest Service is considering demolishing the Remington Hot Springs, which have been beautifully maintained by Friends of the Remington Hot Spring volunteers for over 10 years.

Local residents and others are ready willing and able to address any valid concerns the Forest Service may have, but right now we need your help.

In just TWO MINUTES you can help by submitting a letter using pre-drafted comments or your own comments, which will be hand delivered to the Sequoia National Forest voicing your support for keeping the Historic Natural Remington Hot Springs open to the public.

Click the link below to submit your comment letter and thank you for taking action to help keep the Remington Hot Springs from possibly being destroyed.

Your Friends at Save The Trails

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Rooster Rock & Sauvies Polar Bare Dash & Splash 5K Run

From Mark with the Rooster-Sauvie Volunteers, as posted in the AANR-NW eNews

The Rooster-Sauvie Volunteers invite you to welcome the Nude Year by running, screaming and jumping into the Columbia river with us!
Polar Bare Dash & Splash 5K Run 
Friday, January 1, 2010
Collins Beach, Sauvie Island at Noon
On Friday, January 1st, the Rooster Sauvie Volunteers will meet at Collins Beach on Sauvie Island. There will be a 5K run at noon, followed by a Bare Buns jump into the river.
Not a runner? No worries! You can choose to just to the skinny dip, or the run, or both!
Go to for more details.

Rooster Rock Polar Bare 5K Run & Plunge
Saturday, January 2, 2010
Rooster Rock Park at Noon
Sign-in starts at 10:30. As with the Collins event, you can choose to run, polar dip, or both! For full details, go to
These events help us promote a safe, family-friendly environment at both of Portland's nude beaches.

Collins Beach on Sauvie Island
A parking slip must be purchased and displayed in your vehicle. The perits can be had at the Cracker Barrel Store on Sauvie Island or the 7-11 just before you cross over to the island.

Rooster Rock State Park Clothing Optional Area
Purchase a parking permit as you enter the park, and then proceed right to the end of the parking area where the clothing optional area begins.

View Collins & Rooster Rock routes in a larger map

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Against nudity ban, Ore. gallery takes it all off

(AP) Online retrieval Dec 19th, 2009
ASHLAND, Ore. — A city council member in an Oregon town noted for its Shakespeare festival and its occasional dustups over public nudity plans a showing in his art gallery of nude portraits and conceptual art involving naked people.
For gallery-goers as well, clothing will be optional — even though it's winter in Ashland, a small college town on the California border
Council member Eric Navickas is opposed to a possible ban on public nudity in the town. Nudity is legal in Ashland, except in the city center and public parks, where people are required to cover their genitals.
"We feel that the nude ban is not only an attack on freedom of expression but also an attack on the human body itself," Navickas said. "We wanted to have a show to celebrate the nude body and differentiate the nude body from anything indecent."
The ban was proposed after two men were spotted walking naked near schools. The council is to vote next month on the issue.
Navickas said he is willing to compromise and ban nudity within 200 feet of school zones. His partner, Amy Godard, said the two are interested in dialogue not controversy.
"It's not like we're trying to polarize anything," she said. "We're trying to pay homage to the nude, which is a strong tradition in the arts."
Open about a year, the gallery made news early on with an exhibit that allowed patrons to pitch paint-covered shoes at a large portrait of former President George W. Bush. The gallery owners called it a "statement of solidarity" with an Iraqi journalist arrested after throwing shoes at him.
The nudity exhibit is scheduled Jan. 29 to Feb. 5, Godard said, and patrons may participate by baring themselves.
"We'll have heaters going," she said. "I know it's at the end of January, but it will be warm in there."
Information from: The Ashland Daily Tidings,

The current Ashland Nudity Ordinance
"10.44.012 Public Nudity

It is unlawful for any person to expose his or her genitalia while in the C-1-D (Downtown Commercial) zone or in a public park. This provision is not intended to apply to a person who is prepubescent or who has taken steps to create an envelope of privacy upon their own property and the nudity occurs within that envelope. (ORD 2908 2004)"

Google Map of Ashland Plaza MAda Shell Gallery is located on the Plaza in Ashland Oregon, between Hong Kong Bar and Alex's.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Is Posting of Full-Frontal Nudity Exhibitionism?

I received the following comment to my Canyon Creek post this morning:

arent you being a exhibitonist by posting pics of yourself? Showing everything is not good for nudists.
Anonymous | 12.15.09 - 8:48 am

Normally I respond to comments with a follow up comment, keeping the thread together. However, this is a topic I wrestled with for a long time as I tried to figure out how my chosen lifestyle fit in with an honest depiction of myself. And I've come to the conclusion that we, as nudists, need to quit hiding that which we profess doesn't matter being seen . . . our nudity. And that includes our genitals. My blog is written for nudists and naturists . . . and for anyone curious or interested in just what this lifestyle is all about. It is meant to debunk the popularist misconceptions about body shame . . . it's meant to show that we can have fun being nude without any sexual overtones. It is meant to encourage all nudists to set aside fears and misapprehensions and live what they preach. In my humble opinion, showing everything IS good for nudism. I practice what I preach.

Am I an exhibitionist? Depending on how you interpret the word, yes, I am. I'm damn well proud of my body and I try the best to keep myself in shape. So yes . . . I feel good inside when people I unexpectantly encounter on the trail comment positively on my nudity, or viewers of the images I freely post to this blog and my photo albums give a thumbs up. There is nothing sexual in the images . . . they are not meant to elicit a sexual response from anyone, nor provide me with a sexual thrill from knowing someone is looking "at everything" . . . my genitals. Those genitals are simply one more part of my body. I don't hide them. Does that make me an exhibitionist? Again, it depends on interpretation and context.

I'm fully aware that some visitors to this site are coming here seeking nude images for their own perverse pleasures . . . voyeurs. So what? there is little, if anything, I can do about that short of retreating and burying my head in the sand. I give fair-enough warning on my site before a visitor sees any frontal nudity. That's the limit of my obligation to the easily-offended visitor. Beyond the opening screen the images I post are not strategically-posed nor censored. I'm a big-enough man . . . I can deal with you taking me anyway you wish. Hopefully, that's following along and enjoying the mental imagery of my nude hikes in nature . . . nothing hidden because it is time for nudists and naturists to be honest with their beliefs.


Have you ever noticed that coy, strategically-posed nude images often convey a sexual undercurrent not matter the context? Nude calendars . . . Calvin Klein full-color, glossy ads . . . Victoria's Secret mannikin's on full front window display in our supposedly family-friendly malls ...

Compare the two images below. One . . . the one from the post you object to . . . shows everything. The other . . . well, I got playful with the pose and placed a large leaf to obscure my genitals. Which one is more provocative? Which one has the sexual undercurrent just waiting to be elicited out of the image . . . has the viewer wondering what lays hidden behind the leaf?

Hannibal Lecter: First principles, Clarice. Simplicity. Read Marcus Aurelius. Of each particular thing ask: what is it in itself? What is its nature? What does he do, this man you seek?


Hannibal Lecter: He covets. That is his nature. And how do we begin to covet, Clarice? Do we seek out things to covet? Make an effort to answer now.

Clarice Starling: No. We just...

Hannibal Lecter: No. We begin by coveting what we see every day. Don't you feel eyes moving over your body, Clarice? And don't your eyes seek out the things you want?

Those lines from Silence of the Lambs have always intrigued me . . . the nature of desire and wanting. What are your eyes seeking out? I think the short discourse is appropriate in our context. We covet what we don't have, and in the case of coy, strategically-placed poses we covet what we can't see, what is not given to us and is just beyond our grasp. We sexualize the image. When we are open and honest about our nudity what is there to want that we aren't seeing already? You can't read anything extra into the image.

So, to answer your question, Mr. Anonymous, I truly believe full frontal nudity in appropriate settings is very good for nudism. It can only serve to prove to to curious, the almost-convinced, the fully-covered textile that we have nothing to be ashamed of and we will not be cowed into feeling shame for ourselves. Every body is a wondrous Creation . . . the nude body is especially beautiful. Why hide any part of that beauty?

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Canyon Creek Falls Nude Hike

At the frozen cascades of Canyon Creek

Another one of those impromptu hikes after being cooped up in Seattle all week dealing with the Arctic cold snap (biting cold that the body never quites adapt to between dashes from warm cars into buildings and back . . . one frozen outside faucet that I forgot to bib, etc.) This early-winter cold snap is over. Next week is promising 'warmer' cold air of a more typical Western Washington nature . . . full of moisture and maybe the snow we've been waiting for (at least in the mountains). Heck, they were even calling for a high of 48F in Seattle on Saturday. I can deal with nude at 48F all day without breaking a sweat . . . literally. :-)

Of course it's not 48F yet (10:00am) and it's probably a good ten to fifteen degrees colder in the mountains but I've got a sudden case of cabin fever and the knowledge that next week I ain't going to be feeling like doing much of anything for a few days after my monthly treatment. So it's off to the Cascades while I do have this slim window of opportunity.

Canyon Creek is another one of those innumerable creeks cascading down to the North Fork of the Skykomish River from the Wild Sky Wilderness near Index, WA. A closed and gated decaying dirt road wends its' way through numerous switchbacks to an idyllic broad high alpine valley with magnificent views of the enclosing craggy mountains. The road had been carved out to serve as access to a planned community for the super-rich . . . an exclusive paradise away, yet not too far from the city. Protests, the financial difficulties of construction in wilderness and lack of permits led to the abandonment of the project . . . and the road, which is beyond redemption with the lack of maintenance. The Forest Service bought up all the individual pieces of land and this area is now part of the Wild Sky Wilderness . . . no motorized vehicles allowed. No trailhead, either. Just an unassuming rusted Forest Service gate blocking an overgrown roadbed surface.

Few people stop at this spot on the Index-Galena Road. There is room to get one, maybe two cars off to the side by the gate. A quarter mile in on the initial leg of the road is a large clearing where people sometimes go to shoot their guns. Judging by the tread, few ever bother to go further . . . head uphill. That suits me just fine as I know I'll have the area all to myself . . . my car parked by the gate serves such notice. Northwest hikers are a courteous bunch, if anything. They will not intrude and will, instead, find another spot . . . perhaps the more popular Lewis Creek pullout that I hiked (nude) last week.

I strip and load my pack while still in the warmth of the car. It is a different backpack this time. I'm experimenting with ultralight . . . a smaller pack for the shorter excursions; clothing for emergencies, essential survival gear, cell phone, camera . . . the thermos of coffee. The old pack was becoming tacky, unwieldy for the shorter nude hikes. A smaller one would be easier to sling, lighter and give me more of the sensation of being nude to the environment . . . the whole point.

The outside temperature is 28F degrees. Colder than I expected so I'm not sure how far in or how long the hike will go. We will just see. I've got three hours free of commitments . . . three hours to test the body's responses and limits to cold. Perhaps I'm being a little foolhardy. I know it's extremely cold outside of the warmth of the car; but there is a challenge out there . . . the testing of just how much cold can I take before I back down and pull clothing out of the pack. I want to see how far I can go before it becomes uncomfortable.

I rarely hike nude in subfreezing weather for any length of time. Fortunately, even in the middle of winter here in the Pacific Northwest, air temperatures are often above freezing when the sun reflects bright off the snowfields. That is when I love to hike nude in winter the most . . . drinking in the heat and blinding light of sunlight on virgin snowfields . . . getting my vitamin D.

There is no snow at these lower elevations yet. There is also little sunlight . . . certainly none reflected off the wilted olive-drab and rusty brown flora of the forest canopy. It is, however, bitingly cold when I step out of the car and quickly get beyond the 'road closed' sign before an unexpected vehicle passes by on the main road. Out of sight, it's sling the pack and off at a brisk pace inward on the slight incline of the lower roadbed.

The air is calm. No breeze, which is fortunate. The skin tightens . . . body hairs standing on end, a reflex response to the cold to trap insulating air close to the skin. Invigorating . . . as long as I keep moving. Within five minutes I reach the large clearing with the shot up targets and blasted computer monitors. The sight of these illegal shooting pits always disgusts me. In the bleak light of winter the mess is even more saddening. I turn away, heading upslope on the overgrown road and the denuded foliage up ahead.

This hike had started simply as a chance to get outside and enjoy the caress of nature on my skin. As I hike the steeper portions . . . take shortcuts through the canopy to cut distance off the switchbacks . . . I feel the heat tingling the entire surface of my body . . . those parts that are exposed. While I was assembling the photos of the hike afterwards, one struck me . . . the one to the left (cropped). My skin is absolutely flushed red from the dilation of blood vessels beneath, warming the outer layers. No immediate threat of hypothermia at the moment. My metabolism was working overtime.

When I get back from these types of hikes I'm always famished and in need of refueling. On the trail, it's Runner's Gels for energy and hot coffee from the thermos to add heat to the core.

Red, flushed skin is a good sign. It means there is sufficient core heat to spare the outer layers with heated blood. White, chalky cold skin would be a concern. There is none. I feel warm. I feel energetic. And the falls are not far off now. One last switchback.

These falls are constantly rearranging themselves. Last spring a pretty large slide took out a fifty foot section of the old roadbed and a large chunk of the creek chute above. Clambering over the rubble you can now approach the falls almost directly for a closer view. In summer a welcome dousing under cool water . . . in winter . . . well pretty but stay dry and watch your step.

I hung around the waterfalls for some time taking pictures . . . trying to get just a little closer. A mistake, in a way. The air was a lot cooler this close to the falls . . . which though mostly frozen still churned up moisture. And the geological chute that confined the creek on its' downhill rush was a natural conduit to funnel colder air from above . . . stirring currents. Hanging around the falls also meant I wasn't moving that much. I was beginning to feel the effects of the cold with tiny shivers down the center of my back. I recognized it for what it was worth. I could dress now and start the warm up . . . or head back and see how long before I knew I needed to give in. BTW, did I ever let ya'all know I'm a very stubborn type? Nude it was . . . at least I knew I was headed in the direction of warmth. I made the car without incident and without really getting beyond the occasional shiver. Kind of proud of myself.

Warming up is another thing . . . more complicated that it should seem. One thing I have learned is that to rewarm yourself efficiently you should resist dressing yourself up in thick, insulating clothes and instead, stay naked (assuming you've gotten yourself into a warm enviroment, of course). Counterintuitive? Well, think about it this way and try the options if you ever do a cold weather nude hike. You've got the car heater blowing hot air at full bore out of the vents and it feels great on cold, chilled skin. Cover that cold flesh up with cloth and what happens? Well, the heat can't reach your skin to rewarm it. You've just insulated it from the heat. Think about it the next time you need to warm yourself. Nude is warmer! How's that for twisted logic? LOL

Images from this "cool" little hike are in my JAlbum here.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Update: Diamond Fork HS Citations

An Important Distinction as you read these articles: In Utah the state constitution ceded National Forest lands to the Federal government under proprietary jurisdiction. Under such an arrangement, state and county laws 'trump' Federal code. Here, in Washington State (and Oregon), National Forest lands were ceded with concurrent jurisdiction . . . which allows state law to be enforced, but not county ordnances. Rick

"The U.S. Forest Service may not care about nude soakers, but the sheriff's office will enforce anti-lewdness laws." Utah County Sherriff's Lt. Yvette Rice quoted in a news article on the citations in the Deseret News

Nude bathers cited at Utah County hot springs
December 10th, 2009 @ 8:11am, Online Article Retrieved Dec 10th, 2009

UTAH COUNTY -- A confusing sign is coming down after a group of people were cited for skinny dipping at a hot springs in Utah County.

The Deseret News reports Utah County sheriff's deputies cited eight adults for lewdness at Diamond Fork Springs in the Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Forest on an October evening just before midnight.

A spokeswoman with the Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Forest, Lorraine Januzelli, says a sign posted near the springs warns bathers to be mindful of families and implies nudity at the springs is not illegal. Januzelli tells the Deseret News the forest service will take down the sign because it is causing confusion.

Some naturists are angry about the incident and tell the newspaper they tentatively plan a "soak-in" to protest.

The sheriff's office says it has repeatedly received reports of criminal activity, including sexual assaults, underage consumption of alcohol, and drug use at the hot springs.

The Comments Page has a large number of lively comments.

Also . . .

At Diamond Fork hot springs, get naked -- get cited

Spanish Fork » State and local laws hold sway when it comes to doffing the duds.

... The Utah County site apparently had become an unofficial haven for skinny dipping, until eight nude bathers were detained by sheriff's deputies in October. The group of men and women were issued class B misdemeanor citations for lewdness.
The eight complained that a Forest Service sign near the site just east of Spanish Fork made it sound like bathing in the buff was allowed, but the citations were issued anyway, because state and county statutes are clear about public nudity being a no-no.

Lorraine Januzelli, spokeswoman for the Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Forest, said both the deputies and the skinny dippers were right -- and the forest plans to remove the sign and, eventually, replace it with another one making clear the naked truth.
"The sign does say 'while nudity is not prohibited on forest trails,'" Januzelli said. "It also advises discretion, though, noting that the area is used by families and scouting troops."

The Code of Federal Regulations governing the forest does not prohibit nudity except where it can easily be observed by another person who may be offended.
In some states, that is that. But in other states classified as "proprietary" under their constitutions, such as Utah, state and county laws regarding nudity trump the federal code, Junuzelli explained.

"The sign will be coming down in the next couple days, as soon as the snow allows the rangers to remove it," she said Thursday. Sometime later, a new sign -- referencing state and county statutes banning public nudity -- will replace the marker.
Nudity has been banned for some time on the Wasatch-Cache portion of the forest, but it had not specifically been prohibited on the Uinta part. The two forests were merged in 2008, and apparently no one noticed the discrepancy until the eight citations were issued Oct. 11. ...

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

How Adaptable the Human Body is ...

A couple of days ago I took a nude hike in the Cascade Mountains in what many would consider rather cold weather. The temperatures started out around 31F degrees and were dropping through 28F degrees by the time I returned to my car from my hike of several hours. During that whole time I wore nothing more than a knit cap, fleece gloves and hiking boots. The skies were clear with little to no breeze and although much of the hike was in shade away from the sunlight, I felt absolutely okay and not feeling the gross effects of the cold until some minor arm cramping near the end. A four and a half hour hike in below freezing weather and my nude body adapted perfectly to keep me comfortable. I could viscerally feel deeper body heat being produced and effused under the skin as needed . . . a direct stimulus response to the cold on bare skin.

Today I took my dog to the Magnusen Park off-leash area. Again, a clear sunny day with an air temperature of 32F degrees and a slight breeze . . . no shade. I was dressed in full insulating layers from head to toes yet as I walked my dog the cold bit into me bitterly, the exposed skin of my face stinging from the cold . . . fingers numbing through thick gloves . . . warmth seeping out of the very core through heavy clothing. What gives? I was absolutely freezing fully clothed at 32F degrees after less than fifteen minutes; yet, in appreciably colder weather and shade, my nude body withstood the cold very well and, in fact, I felt comfortable with no cold-numbed fingers or other parts.

There were other factors involved . . . such as the level of exertion, the higher humidity at Magnusen (which is on the shores of Lake Washington) and, of course, those layers of clothing giving a false assessment of the environmental conditions.

Still . . . it amazes me at the in-built adaptability of the human body to adjust in it's natural state to extremes of hot and cold. I understand many of the processes going on when I hike nude in cold weather yet to feel the rapid adaption taking place fills me with wonder. We have become too reliant on clothing for protection, a crutch . . . probably overdoing it most of the time.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Cold Weather Nude HikeLewis Creek to Heybrook Ridge, Dec 5th, 2009

In the clearcut atop Heybrook Ridge

Off of the Index-Galena is a gated FSD road winding along Lewis Creek and eventually ending up on Heybrook Ridge from which you can get to the Heybrook Lookout Tower to the west, or follow FSD 6022 east and down to the Skykomish valley and the town of Baring below. The entrance to this back primitive road is gated and makes a great opportunity to hike nude even on weekends.

In winter, of course, there are even fewer visitors and I enjoy challenging myself to the experience of hiking this road in the nude . . . feeling my skin tightening and responding to the cold. When I started around noontime the temperatures where hovering right around 31F degs. Below freezing but surprisingly, I don't really feel the cold though I'm careful to watch for signs of hypothermia or skin damage. As long as I'm moving I feel great. It's been a long time since I've had a chance to get out and hike nude.

A hour into the hike I can definitely feel the temperatures dropping . . . usually a chill down the back. Often that's because I'm dropping into a shallow dip or passing a creek chute . . . but the cool stays. The sun is dropping and clouds are beginning to cover the sky.

Close to coming onto the ridge, what the heck. Let's do it freehike style without the pack. Always a challenge to do it that way, especially since I don't know if anyone has come up onto the ridge from the more popular side for Heybrook Lookout . . . that I might need to put some clothes on or risk explaining myself. There are few people that will ever understand the pleasure I get out of hiking nude in the most inhospitable conditions. It's not much further to the ridge so the worries about survival gear are lessened. I spend the better part of an hour wandering around the ridge just enjoying the sensation and freedom . . . noting the response of my body to cold . . . very, very aware.

Then I notice the hunter's orange . . . that color that is unique and never found in nature. I stop and peer. Yes, there is someone else up here and moving about near the Lookout Tower. Whomever, they haven't seen me. I head back. Upper triceps are tightening . . . flexing doesn't loosen. The first warning signs that my core is beginning to drop. Time to head back.

I stayed nude all the way back down, interested to see how I reacted to cooling. By the time I reached the car and checked the temperature in the falling light it was 28F degs. Start up, heater on full . . . and the next half hour rewarming myself. That hike was everything I wanted . . . and needed to feel better.

Later that night I attend my first SLUGS Nude Swim . . . and spend most of my time in either the hot tub or the glorious sauna.

Images of my latest hike are in my Jalbum here.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

4th Annual Naked Bungy Jump for Schizophrenia

February 27 and 28, 2010

This annual two-day event raises funds for the BC Schizophrenia Society. Event details will be posted as they are confirmed and on-line registration will be available starting January 4, 2010.
Participant statistics in 2009 were as follows:
  • 59 from Vancouver Island
  • 45 from the BC Lower Mainland
  • 2 from Ontario
  • 1 from Newfoundland
United States:
  • 47 from Washington State
  • 3 from California
  • 1 from Alaska
  • 1 from Wisconsin
The Society is using the funds raised to support: the delivery programs to youth; raise awareness of mental illness; and, provide family support services to those coping with mental illness.
In 2010, the event will be held during the Olympics, February 27 and 28, giving sports enthusiasts an opportunity to watch or participate in the only event of its kind in North America!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Nude Performance: White Bird 'Uncaged': Daniel Leveille Danse

Thanks to a reader who alerted me to this performance - Rick

By Special to The Oregonian

November 27, 2009, 1:00AM
DanielLeveille.jpgDaniel Leveille DanseDance has always contained an undercurrent of voyeurism, of beautiful bodies on display. Yet Daniel Léveillé, a contemporary choreographer from the dance hotbed of Montreal, strips away the erotic with a simple, naked truth: Bodies are just bodies, and that is both extremely important and hardly important at all.

Léveillé creates a lean and rigorous beauty in his dance "Crépuscules des Océans" ("Twilight of the Oceans"), in which his company's eight dancers are naked much of the time. Daniel Léveillé Danse will perform the hourlong piece six times starting Wednesday at Portland's new Leftbank Annex, kicking off White Bird's "Uncaged" season of dances.

"Crépuscules" is abrupt, muscular, almost calisthenic. No come-hithers: The dance is strenuous, spare, ascetic, from its flat-footed jumps and tae kwon do kicks to its splat of bare feet flopping on the floor. Long stretches of silence alternate with the rich, Romantic sound of Beethoven piano sonatas, creating a disjunctive, speculative time warp: What if we try this?

Human beings are the only animals that clothe themselves. Naked, Léveillé's dancers approach not innocence, exactly, but simple being: existing, surviving, but with an added element of aesthetic purpose and shape. And that creates a stern, stimulating and somehow refreshing elegance worth seeing.

Opens 8 p.m. Wednesday, continues 8 p.m. nightly through Saturday, Dec. 5, plus 2 and 8 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 6. Leftbank Annex, 101 N. Weidler St.; $16-$26;, Ticketmaster outlets, 800-745-3000,

-- Bob Hicks, Special to The Oregonian

Article: Diamond Fork Hot Springs-A Warning to Nude Soakers

Katherine Pioli, Catalyst Magazine

Online content retrieved Dec 2, 2009

My weekend began as innocently as it should have ended: Eight young friends, six of whom were fire fighters for the US Forest Service celebrating the end of another fire season, spending a weekend camping in Utah.

Our destination was Diamond Fork hot springs, just east of Spanish Fork, Utah, toward Price. Diamond Fork is a popular destination for people from all over the state, and even the country. The pools, although usually "family friendly," are well-known for attracting more than the occasional group of nude bathers. Even those unfamiliar with the locale's reputation for bathing sans suits can get a good hint of its potential on the two-mile hike leading up to the springs. At the trailhead itself the Forest Service has posted a sign: "Although nudity is not prohibited on Forest Service land, discretion is advised." A mile up the trail, a bridge crosses a fork of the canyon's main creek. Scratched into the red paint on one railing is a message: "Warning, nude bathers." At one pool, pranksterish vandals have scrawled on the stones in faint red paint "Nude Only."pioli_nuditysign

On this particular Saturday evening in October, my seven friends and I arrived at the trailhead well after dusk in order to avoid the usual crowd. We hiked the two miles in, only to find the lower pools still occupied. As the sole veteran Diamond Fork hot spring-goer of the group, I knew how to find more privacy. I led us on to a more hidden series of pools. To our delight we found them unoccupied.

For two hours we enjoyed ourselves in the hot water. We shared cheese and chocolate. We opened more than one bottle of wine. We set little red tea candles around the rim of the pool—just enough light to see each other's faces as we shared stories and talked.

Then, shortly before midnight, a middle-aged man walked out of the darkness and up to the edge of the pool. He sat down nonchalantly and started making small talk. He did not seem like the soaker type. He wore a red sweatshirt with Utah written across the chest and had a big brown mustache. I remember thinking offhandedly that he looked like a local hunter drawn in by curiosity. Although we were all naked, he did not at all appear alarmed or offended by our presence. So, warmed with wine and companionship, we gave him little attention until he asked us for marijuana.

That's when I felt something was wrong. We told him we did not have any. Almost immediately, four other similarly dressed men walked in from the trail. They circled the pool.

Suddenly, the light from our candles was drowned by bright flashlights. "This is the Utah County Sheriffs. You are all being charged with misdemeanors for lewdness. We need you to all cooperate. Get out, get dressed and present your identification or we will arrest you."

I thought for sure it must be a joke. I demanded to see one of the badges up close for verification. Couldn't this be, after all, just a strange group of men looking for an excuse to embarrass some naked bathers (especially myself and the three other women in the group)? But the badge seemed real enough.

I had to decide how to get out of my watery haven safely and somewhat modestly. I addressed the men in front of—and behind—me. Could you turn around, I asked them. Or turn off your flashlights so I can get out and put a towel around me? I won't run, I promised. To his credit, whichever of the five he was, one flashlight blinked off. The other four remained pointed at our group.

I realized that I wouldn't win this battle. So I lifted myself in all my womanly splendor out of the water and into the light and dashed for my nearby clothes. With enough on to cover and keep me warm in the chilly October night, I turned to address our intruders. That is when I noticed that one of my girlfriends still had not exited the pool. She was too embarrassed to leave the water. She only consented to climb out once I brought a towel over to shield her and wrap around her body as she stood up.

The rest of the event occurred with curt politeness from our side, businesslike impartiality from the other. We were well informed that if we did not comply we would be promptly led down the trail and booked.

And so eight citations were written that night by the Utah County Sheriffs. Eight misdemeanors were given for lewdness. Eight court dates have now been set and a group of bathers will soon be defending themselves or pleading guilty in a court of law in Provo.

We still don't know the harshness of the punishment. Theoretically, it could include jail time. It might be a $50 ticket. I have since heard from other bathers with misdemeanors for "lewdness" that the fine reached $1,000. For all I know, my name will now be included on a list of sex offenders, since Utah's lewdness statute lumps me together with people who have sex and masturbate in public.

I can be consoled by one thing: That night at the hot springs was not a complete bust. After taking down all our information, the sheriffs told us to enjoy the rest of our night. As long as we kept our bathing suits on, we could soak for as long as we wished. And so we did. How kind of them. u

Katherine Pioli is a staff writer for CATALYST, except in the summer when she is a forest firefighter in Wyoming.

Utah County Sheriff's Office: 801-851-4000

Complaints (Internal Affairs): 801-851-4330

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