Trail Trash

Saga of a hike

The bane of a hiker

Alone I stroll through the glorious park,
wondering if life is but a lark,

pondering mysteries within and without,
this trail, the place where I shed all doubt.

When upon said  trail I sadly see,
Someone’s garbage left for me…

Yeah. A lot of us nature loving solo hikers get that. The glory of being alone with our thoughts and with nature. The feeling of being connected to all that is, then suddenly, there it is. right at our feet, or better yet down there in the rocks at the river’s edge. Yay. The refuse of some human who came to the woods and threw their {Insert stupid bullshit here}. They were either:

  1. to wrapped up in the glory of the all and all that they forgot their empty water bottle.
  2. In a deep philosophical discussion on {insert fascinating topic here} that they unknowingly drop that snickers bar wrapper.
  3. They just don’t give a shit so they toss their crap wherever when they are done.

I am going to roll with numero uno, because I like thinking kindly of people. Never have found myself wanting to choke someone I am thinking kindly of.

But it is ever there as any of my trail bound brethren and sethren know… trail trash. Many of us carry bags with us, understanding that we will leave the woods with a collection. It is everywhere. I have picked up trail trash in Texas. I have picked up trail trash in New England.

One thing I have observed, In New England, at least, the trail side beer can does not have bullet holes in it. Which is somehow comforting.

Anyway, as a self appointed custodian of the earth I pick up shit every time I am out in the woods. Just what I do. But not without reward.

Reward? You ask? Yes gentle reader, rewards a plenty. Sometimes, I get the most delicious WTF moments because of the bullshit I find beside the trail, often in the middle of freaking nowhere. Last Sunday, a gloomy overcast one in the September of 2016, was one such. Along this quasi remote trail I find the ketchup squeeze bottle in the title image. Now, firstly, I wondered why the hell someone would take the ketchup out of the plastic squeeze bottle it as sold in into another plastic squeeze bottle. But whatever, people do stupid bullshit that makes no sense all the time. No biggie. Then I wonder what in the hell this particular one is doing out here off the beaten. Doesn’t really matter. I pick it up and march on.

100 yards or so down the same trail I find the sleeveless tee of the type affectionately know as a wife beater. Now, I am really intrigued, there is a STORY here. Yes folks, trail trash can have a story. So here is the one I came up with.

This couple, wandering far back in the woods with their picnic, sit under a tree to enjoy the waning days of summer. One thing leads to another and well, clothing gets removed, other things transpire… you know. And those other things were so mind blowing the dude forgot his shirt and afterwards on they walked, when she, still quivering from the experience, drops and forgets the ketchup. Yup. Exactly what happened.

Or maybe it was leftover props from the filming of Blair Witch… could be that.

That’s the story. And I found that story while on my ongoing mission, to walk miles a many, and leave the place behind me a little bit better. It also left me feeling that there was a sound reason for those items being there. Not angry at some ignorant asshole who doesn’t give a shit.

Moral of the story, When you go to a park or place where the only sound is the wind blowing through leaves, water running over rocks and insects and animals. Pick up what you find, Don’t just leave it. If you take stuff, make sure all the leftover stuff leaves that place with you. That includes the bullshit your kids bring. They don’t know better, use the opportunity to teach them.

Happy Hiking…