Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Pet Peeves

As volunteers in a number of state parks, we often find ourselves picking up litter left by others. What do we find that drives us nuts? To start with, there are the clear plastic straw covers from juice boxes and bags. I don't think anyone properly disposes them...they just drop them on the ground.

The next item is the foil seal from the top to fish powerbait. Anglers must pull that off the bottle, drop in on the ground and bait their hooks. Do you think the fish will get away if they take the time to put it in their pocket to place in the trash can later? Honestly, we think many anglers are just lazy and slobs. They leave empty fish hook packages, empty foam worm boxes, tangled fishing line, and empty snack bags wherever they happen to be fishing.

Beer bottles and cans are another pet peeve--specifically the ones crushed and left on the ground, those deposited upside down in the yucca plant right next to the trash can, broken on the rocks next to the lake, left for the next person to step on.

Two years we were in Texas state parks at Easter. There, the weather is warm enough to plan picnics. We really hated confetti-filled plastic Easter eggs! It is almost impossible to pick up the confetti with your hands or a trash grabber. And often the plastic eggs, not matter what they are filled with, are broken and we had to gather the pieces.

Many picnickers try to clean up their site, starting with tying a plastic bag to the grill or table to put their trash in. We appreciate that they then throw the bag in the trash can. But they often leave the bag ties on the grill or table and we have to untie them.

Why do people seem to think glass, aluminum, plastic and nails will burn in a campsite fire pit? Or do they just use it as the closest place to deposit trash? We (mainly John) clean those fire pits and let me tell you, they don't burn.

"Pack it in, pack it out" is the mantra for back-country camping. I wish everyone who enjoys the outdoors would follow that advice.


  1. I HEAR you and understand your frustration, we see it on daily bases in different C.G and find ourselves picking up trash .
    There are many sorts of fish in the sea and so are humans,it all starts from education.
    we can't change the world but we can make a difference.

  2. Your peeve is right on! Thank goodness most of the population is great. It is the small % of people who just do not get it..and the rest of us do their work! Love your blog so started my own, thanks to you and others.

  3. My current pet peeve other than the lazy people who litter are the parents who let their kids ride in their laps when driving. Not safe, stupid, and a very easy cite to write, without a second thought.

  4. Those plastic straw wrappers and cigarette butts are the worst. We get angry whenever we pick up litter, but we want the park to look nice. Too bad there are so many inconsiderate people out there.
    Sorry about your knee.

  5. So true. We always try to leave a place better than it was when we arrived.

  6. We just travelled through Texas and we were disgusted with how dirty the state was; the beaches especially. Not for lack of garbage cans as we saw more garbage cans in the Stare of Texas then the rest of the country put together almost...still trash on the ground, right beside the garbage can...I don't get it...have some pride in this gorgeous world we live in and put your trash in the can where it belongs. I hear ya on this pet's one of ours as well.