S P E C I A L    R E P O R T

trash photoOn August 10 and 11, 1996, volunteer Rangers Johnny Brown and Michael Gordon were dispatched to the Dry Lake area via the South Fork Trail for regular trail patrol and visitor contact. The photo at left (click on photo for full size) depicts the atrocious amount of refuse that was packed out by these two volunteers. This report documents the type of refuse removed from the Wilderness and its weight(s).

Generally, a weekend patrol should expect to remove no more refuse than a small trash bag. Yet, on this weekend, a total of 13.28 pounds of refused was removed requiring two bags. ENTIRELY UNACCEPTABLE! Visitors of the San Gorgonio Wilderness must act responsibly with regards to the handling of their refuse. We thank all the visitors who have acted as good stewards of the Wilderness and practice low impact techniques.

It is a violation of Federal Regulation 36 CFR 261.57(g) to dispose of debris, garbage, waste, or any other material in the Wilderness. This means anything, including toilet paper. It is your responsibility to pack out every single thing you pack in. To familiarize yourself with all regulations governing the San Gorgonio Wilderness, please click here. To learn more about low impact camping techniques, please click here.

Analysis of refuse collected from Patrol
August 10 & 11, 1996

Miscellaneous refuse:
includes toothbrush, multiple cigarette butts, aluminum foil, rubber bands, bread bag ties, cheese and crackers sticks (red), batteries, plastic hair comb, tent stakes, etc.

1.42 lbs.

Food wrappers and plastic bags:

.36 lbs.

Toilet paper: scented, unscented, colored, white, etc.

.64 lbs.

Clothing: includes dog collar, sock (1), shorts, shirt, towel.

1.02 lbs.

Rope & string: includes hemp, nylon, etc.

.28 lbs.

Food remnants: includes bananas, apple cores, and desiccated orange.

.62 lbs.

Candles & plastic objects

.16 lbs.

Metal cans: includes sardine, soda, beer, and misc.

.98 lbs.

Glass: includes Jose Cuervo Premium bottle (smashed), Goldschlager bottle, and misc. shattered pieces.

2.16 lbs.

Wire: taken from the summit of Mt. San Gorgonio. Assumed to be a relic from Raytheon microwave experiments in the 1940's.

5.64 lbs.

Total weight of all refuse collected:

13.28 pounds

Sound pretty unbelievable? Too many visitors to the San Gorgonio Wilderness are responsible for it. And the above analysis was not just a one time occurrence. Volunteers regularly remove copious amounts of refuse. Please be a caring, considerate visitor of the San Gorgonio Wilderness and all wild areas. Pack out all that you pack in, and before leaving your campsite, be sure it is picked clean and nothing is left behind. With your help, the San Gorgonio Wilderness can remain a clean, beautiful wilderness.