How to Shit in the Woods, 3rd Edition: An Environmentally Sound Approach to a Lost Art Paperback – Mar 15 2011
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“Kathleen Meyer has contributed to environmental awareness while lending a grand old English word the respectability it hasn’t had since Chaucer’s day.”
--FRANK GRAHAM, Audubon magazine
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A longtime outdoorswoman, KATHLEEN MEYER is the founding editor of Headwaters, published by Friends of the River. Her travel essays have been included in the Travelers’ Tales anthologies A Woman’s Passion for Travel: More True Stories from a Woman’s World and Sand in My Bra and Other Misadventures: Funny Women Write from the Road. Her adventure memoir Barefoot Hearted: A Wild Life Among Wildlife was released by Villard in 2001. Whitewater rafter and canoeist, sea-kayaker and sailor, she is also a draft horse teamster, having traversed three Rocky Mountain states by horse-drawn wagon. Ever the nontraditional spirit, Meyer resides in an old, rather unrestored, dairy barn in Montana’s Bitterroot Valley and is available for interviews. Visit her Website www.KathleenintheWoods.net and hop onto her blog Shooting the Shit
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To sum up the entire book:
Chapter 1. Why we poo, and the history of the toilet along with some amusing stories. Not practical.
Chapter 2. Dig your hole 6-8 inches deep because that's where bacteria that will help decompose your poo reside. Don't poo below the waterline or even the flood waterline, and do not do it close to any water source, and be mindful that It runs down hill.
Chapter 3. When you just can't dig a hole, figure it out. Lean back or spread wide then pack your poo out.
Chapter 4. Be sure to filter your water so you don't get the runs. If you do get the runs then be sure to clean up properly and leave no trace.
Chapter 5. For women, so admittedly I skimmed, but not much there that isn't common sense.
Chapter 6. When you have no T.P., try not to use plants. If you do, try to use dead plants and brush. If you have to use a live plant then do not massacre an entire plant or branch to satisfy your needs. Be selective and gather from multiple sources and use your common sense when using plants because some are sticky or pointy etc. As far as non-living T.P. goes, well, anything that works will work.
There are two main schools of thought about human waste in the wild. Bury it or pack it out. The author gives several good suggested methods for both. She clearly favors packing it out, and makes a compelling case for it.
Whichever mindset you favor, the author gives several good, specific examples of ways to implement it.
A random excerpt for example:
"Before we can hope to fathom how great is the importance of properly digging our own small one-sit hole (also termed a cat hole) in the bush, it’s necessary to try to envision our sh*t in the global sense. Try is the trick here. Exactly where does the world’s collective excrement go? Not a pleasant question. How often do any of us ponder where it goes after it’s sucked down the hole in the bottom of the bowl? Possibly never. Such reflections tend to detour our consciousness, barring those rare occasions when we have to call Roto-Rooter."
Every paragraph in the book is written in this irritating, wordy, nothing-was-even-said-in-those-seven-sentences, style.
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