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Thread: keeping to the paths

  1. #1 keeping to the paths 
    Forum Sophomore
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    Nov 2013
    Would anyone please help me, so that I can find what keeping to the paths means?

    Please help us prevent damage to the forest by keeping to the paths.

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  3. #2  
    Moderator Moderator
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    Nov 2011
    city of wine and roses
    Exactly what it says. It's a forest with pathways - either deliberately cleared or just the result of constant use.

    It's necessary to manage the forest by preventing disturbance or trampling by people walking on the general forest floor. Sometimes these instructions are seasonal - when certain plants or animals or insects or birds are particularly vulnerable. In most areas, the instruction is year round.

    "Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak; courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen." Winston Churchill
    "nature is like a game of Jenga; you never know which brick you pull out will cause the whole stack to collapse" Lucy Cooke
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  4. #3  
    Universal Mind John Galt's Avatar
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    Jul 2005
    What may not be clear is that keeping to the paths means "remain on the paths". "Do not go off of the paths", "Walk only on the paths".
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  5. #4  
    Forum Professor jrmonroe's Avatar
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    Mar 2010

    This is an uncommon but known use of the verb keep. What's missing is the word yourself ... "keep yourself to the paths" or more logically "keep yourself on the paths", even though people actually don't use these phrases, but you might hear or see "keep to the paths" or "keep on the paths", etc. I think movement is typically involved or implied. You will hear people say things like ...

    Keep to the middle of the road as much as possible because of the potholes and debris along the sides.

    After taking the exit ramp, keep to the left because you need to turn left at the next lights.

    Keep going straight at the lights.

    Another funny (odd, although common) use of a verb showing movement, this time it's stay (which typically means no movement) ...

    After taking the exit ramp, stay on the left because you will need to turn left at the next lights.

    Unless there's differences among countries speaking English, I would say that stay is used in these ways much more commonly than keep ... stay on the paths, etc.


    Again, another funny (odd, although common) use of a verb showing movement, this time it's take, even though the person doing the taking does not acquire or possess anything. People take right turns, take left turns, take the highway to save time, take the local roads to avoid the congestion on the highways, take the elevator to the 19th floor, take their time saying or doing something, take their seats after standing and applauding, etc.
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