That summer I buried other people's poopy toilet paper

From mid May to the end of August I worked 68 miles of the Appalachian trail in Connecticut and Massachusetts. In that time I picked up around 300 gallons of trash. The most common item was toilet paper!

Mostly the t.p. stood alone, unaccompanied. I buried human poop only a handful of times. I think most people use the privies, there are privies at every shelter and campsite. So why all the aimless t.p.?

Ladies, when you pee, consider using a bandanna or soaking it up with a leaf, smooth rock, or stick. But if you must use t.p., PACK IT OUT! The Appalachian Trail is not a septic system; the t.p. doesn’t disappear on it’s own.

I also picked up a lot of wet wipes. I’m no scientist, but I gather that wet wipes do not decompose as well as t.p. Instead of wet wipes, clean yourself with water and a small amount of biodegradable soap at least 200 feet from the water source.


11 thoughts on “That summer I buried other people's poopy toilet paper

  1. I was wondering how you were doing, its been a while. I see youve been picking up shit. Hooray! Lol. I hope there have been good times too! 🙂


  2. Could it be that the best reward for burying people’s poopy tp is the finding of the book about Everett Ruess, then going to John’s Canyon and finding him, then taking him even deeper into the wilderness, to make sure that no one would ever bother him again. The young Lion of the American desert, killed by a Palmer. The old Lion of the Zimbabwean bush, killed by a Palmer. Strange parallel horrors of time.


  3. I call the TP “AT flowers”. You know you’re within a mile of the next told when you see the flowers. I am enjoying your blog, you have a great writing style. I hiked thru Connecticut in 2015 but some how missed running into you. jimmyjam


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