Sunday, December 7, 2008


DISPOSE OF WASTE PROPERLY! Well that is clear enough and the State of New York has been hammering this home for years with their Carry it in:Carry it out slogan. Most people who hike at Pilot Knob Ridge do just that. I have been a steward for over an year now and I have only taken a couple of small grocery bags off the preserve, and most of that was from picking up the parking lot.

So trash we are good, but what about toilet paper? Pack it out????????? Well this is an option that is the most preferred by the avid followers of the Leave no trace philosophy. But I know that this is not really an option that most of us are at this time willing to practice. The good news is that here in the moist Northeast we do not have to pack out our TP. The option here is to bury it. This means walking off the trail a bit and digging a 7 inch cat hole and burying everything when done. The most important thing is to place natural leave litter over the disturbed area so nobody knows you were there. You are supposed to do this 150' away from a steam or body of water. Yes I know that this is more of a pain for the ladies, but please remember that TP is visible for months after it is left on the ground and this is the single most garbage item that I have to take care of when I walk the trails. Have a kit with you that consists of a plastic shovel, tp and hand sanitizer. Taking a few extra moments will make the wideness experience that much better.

One little bit of advice. When traveling in the back country on trails other than the LGLC preserves, you will find privies at trailheads, lean-to's and some tent sites. Use these first! Bring a paper toilet liner with you and if it is bad, you know what I mean, throw a little leaf litter on to the mess. That may help a bit.

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