Replace Packing It Out: Work

Work



Well y'all, we've officially been on the trail for over 90 days now and are still kickin. Currently, we are just outside of Palmerton, PA and are staying with the very hospitable Rothermel family. Starcrunch's mother and father drove all the way from Atlanta, GA just to spend a few days with their daughter and extended the invitation to us as well. They are such a wonderful family, and couldn't have picked a better time to offer us a few days rest. 


Every day is filled with familiar and new challenges alike but both are always met with the freshest perspectives possible. In recent posts we've mentioned a lot of the positive aspects of our trip thus far. As enjoyable as our hike has been and continues to be I wanted to have an update which outlines the work we put in on a daily basis as we clean up the trail. 


First and foremost I'd like to give a shout out to all the hikers and trail workers who help keep America's trails clean. We've met so many people who practice 'leave no trace' ethics while enjoying the outdoors. These encounters provide encouragement when challenged with packing out large amounts of trash. 


It's not every day that we're faced with packing out over 50 pounds of litter, but when we are it helps that there are three of us to share the load. 
Recently we've been finding large loads which require planning to make sure it gets packed out, and that we don't injure ourselves in the process. 


One specific example occurred 3 days ago when we stumbled upon two twin size mattresses 3 feet off the side of the trail. Typically, when we come across large amounts of trash we remove our packs, get out a snack, and sit down to think of the best way to handle it. Upon seeing the mattresses we did just that, and began examining the scale of litter we were about to carry out of the woods. These beds had been sitting for some time (as determined by the amount of black mold on them) and had definitely doubled in weight thanks to the spring rains. There was no way we could safely transport anything else on our backs, and we knew attempting to carry them by hand would only add to our already unpleasant scent-not to mention increase our risk of getting unknown bacteria all over ourselves. Therefor, after about 5 minutes of discussing our options we decided to build a rickshaw out of long branches and carry them 'stretcher style' up the mountain. Luckily, we were only 1.2 miles from the road and had the promise of lunch waiting for us so our spirits were high. Smiles on and stretcher in tow we began our journey up the trail. 


Little did we know that the 1.2 mile stretch ahead of us would entail some very technical scrambles as well as a host of smaller trash at our feet. Cap and I communicated very well and maneuvered our way along the precarious trail while Spice picked up over 10 pounds of smaller trash at our feet. After 30 minutes of very careful foot placement and heavy lifting we reached the road. We caught our breath and chugged some water as we marveled at the heap of garbage at our feet. We found a day hiker willing to dispose of the trash we had just collected, and got right back to hiking. 


We're aware that picking up large amounts of garbage along the trail would be unfeasible for a single individual. We only hope that by putting in the work and doing what we can to maintain our trails that we can inspire others to do so as well. 


Once again, I can't thank the trail workers enough for frequently volunteering to keep nature beautiful for others to enjoy. We understand and appreciate the hard work and dedication which goes into a beautiful trail. Also, we want to express again and again our gratitude for the support we receive from people who believe in what we are doing. We simply would not be able to do this without you. Keep following our updates here and checking our social media posts on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram as we continue to make our way north. As always, stay positive and keep packing it out.

Until next time, 
Goose.

2 comments:

  1. Good to hear u guys doing good. Rock out, dudes.
    -The Baron

    ReplyDelete
  2. Great pictures, again! Thanks for sharing the details ... they are always interesting.

    Stay strong and keep cleaning!

    ReplyDelete

 

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