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Trail Trash Fun

Posted: Fri Apr 13, 2012 10:31 am
by mattherrington
To not revive a dead thread I went a few pages deep here around the campfire but if I have, apologies. Anyways...

As we approach the season I was longingly looking at pictures last night and began to notice how many pictures I have of myself or friends (always smiling) with trail trash. I don't begrudge the original owners of most trail trash. I think we're are very conscious group and do what we can. I just chalk it up as a wrapper that fell out of a pocket and gladly accept the opportunity to give something back. Some type of holy gratitude to everything within eyeshot if you will.

Of course there are those one night areas where you can find all 30 Coors Light cans crushed in the box they came in and to those people I say you're an ass, don't let me catch you, but once they're already gone I'll still pack it out. What I noticed in my pictures though is that I have an affinity (I'm like a magnet) for a particular kind of trail trash that really gets my goat because it's not from anyone you'd ever meet on a trail.

Maybe you know it; it happens like this:

It's usually mid-day when I'm walking along and in the not so far distance (<100 yds) I get a flash of light and unnatural color usually off the ground. My brain says WTF is that? I'm in the middle of nowhere. I of course leave the trail and approach the object. En route it "flashes" again and seems to be moving. The hair on the back of my neck stands up and I suddenly have memories of massive alien themed parties in rural Colorado in the 90’s. Then, at about the 20 yd mark I realize its shape, size, and material. You bastards. It’s 15 in. wide, round, and made of reflective Mylar. Thank you once again 3M for making a (super UV, weather and decomposition resilient) party decoration which retails for $1.99 that everyone buys that’ll practically fly to space before landing itself hopefully in some urban area.

I find 5+ a year now. It’s kind of a game for me. I found one last month on what’s commonly presumed to be one of the least travelled and least attractive stretch of the PCT, San Felipe Hills. If I’ve been to a park I’ve probably found one there and I find them in the weirdest spots. So much so that I carry 75 ft. of 550 cord even when I day hike as I use that and a Nalgene bottle as a bit of a snag. Not terribly effective but I tried a hook/leader type of snag on the same line and had to climb a big tree to get my own trash out of it. Well, I went looking around the internet and found all kinds of awesome trail trash that people have packed out. I even saw the equivalent of a cast iron bear can that was like two paint cans stacked atop one another. The photo was at Trail Crest on the MWWT. Awesome!

So my question to the forum is this:
What the deepest you’ve ever found a Mylar balloon?

Re: Trail Trash Fun

Posted: Fri Apr 13, 2012 10:44 am
by maverick
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Re: Trail Trash Fun

Posted: Fri Apr 13, 2012 10:59 am
by mattherrington
Thanks Mav,

Knew it was there somewhere. Appropriate edit to isolate my fun to Mylar only!


Re: Trail Trash Fun

Posted: Fri Apr 13, 2012 12:36 pm
by Carne_DelMuerto
Last summer in Emgrant Wilderness we found a few mylar birthday balloons in the area between Rosasco Lake, Big Lake, and Pingree Lake. We found about one a day hiking between these points. They appeared to all be from the same batch and had settled within a 5 mile radius. It happened to also be the birthday of one of our group, so he packed them out.

Re: Trail Trash Fun

Posted: Fri Apr 13, 2012 3:26 pm
by RoguePhotonic
Baloons are probably the most common items of trash I find in the Sierra. I have seen them every where. Even the typical rubber ones make it onto the highest talus fields.

Re: Trail Trash Fun

Posted: Fri Apr 13, 2012 6:18 pm
by paul
Red Mountain Basin