Synopses & Reviews
WHEN NATURE CALLS. . .
After rowing hundreds of urban North Americans down whitewater rivers, Kathleen Meyer discovered that defecating in the wild without a commode is hardly an innate skill, but a complex procedure desperately in need of a protocol! This sobering revelation, and her subsequent mastery of the artform, has made How to Shit in the Woods the backcountry bible of eco-friendly outdoor elimination options since 1989.
Long-embraced by the outdoor community, How to Shit in the Woods is still the go-to primer for backpackers and hikers, campers and climbers, skiers, sea kayakers, river runners, and all off-the-grid sojourners. The third edition presents the latest innovations, high-tech to low-tech, for responsible human waste disposal. Also featured: reflections on the increasing adoption of “packing-it-out,” a practice designed to help protect sensitive environments; the most current safeguards against health risks associated with drinking straight from wilderness waterways; suggestions for purists who plan to leave the t.p. at home; and a wealth of recommendations for ladies who must make do without a loo.
Meyer’s delightfully shameless discussion of a once-shameful activity, her erudite examination of its associated vocabulary, and her unapologetic promotion of its colorful vernacular, make How to Shit in the Woods essential--and vastly entertaining--reading for anyone who has ever paused at the edge of the wilderness and pondered, “Where do I go to go?”
The third edition of this bestselling and groundbreaking book on eco-friendly outdoor elimination options is fully revised and includes a new preface by the author.
Beloved by hikers, campers, backpackers, and outdoor enthusiasts, How to Shit in the Woods is the backcountry bible for ecofriendly defecation techniques and environmentally sound waste management. A by-product (if you will) is Meyer’s delightfully shameless discussion of a once-secretive activity and the promotion of its colorful vocabulary. The third edition examines the impact of too much crap (organic and otherwise) on our evershrinking wide-open spaces and offers the latest innovative technology (some low-tech, some very high-tech) designed to help our wild places survive.
About the Author
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
Table of Contents
Third Edition Preface xii
Original Preface xvi
Author’s Note xviii
Chapter 1 Anatomy of a Crap 1
T. J. Crapper • Our Inhibitions • Learning Technique • Style • Getting Comfortable • Cautions • Preserving Dignity
Chapter 2 Digging the Hole 13
Why an Environmentally Sound Hole? • Transmission of Enteric Pathogens (Intestinal Diseases) • Giardia: Symptoms, Spreading, and Roaring Debate • Cryptosporidium • Actual Digging: Trowels, Soil Types, Security vs. Decomposition, Locating the High-Water Line, and Stirring • Peeing Is Different • T.P. • A Latrine • Ocean Disposal, or Not?
Chapter 3 When You Can’t Dig a Hole 33
Misery Loves Company • The “Soggies” • Extreme Adventure • Sensitive Ecosystems • High-Use Corridors • Packing-It-Out: History and Regulation • Enema Man • Group Shitarees: Discussion of Design Features • Washable-Reusable Carry-Out Toilets • Porta Potti • Do-It-Yourself Soil Can • Rentals
Chapter 4 Plight of the Solo Poop Packer 57
Higher Inspiration: Junko and Jim • Becoming a Poop Packer • Discussion of Solo Containers • Solo Poop Packer Systems • Do-It-Yourself Poop Tubes • Frosting a Rock/Smearing Curtailed
Chapter 5 Trekker’s Trots 73
Diarrhea and Prevention • “Disinfection,” “Sterilization,” and “Purification” • Waterborne Enteric Pathogens: Protozoa, Bacteria, and Viruses • Mechanical Field Water Filtration Systems • Ultraviolet Light • MIOX Purifier • First Need Matrix • The Halogens: Chlorine and Iodine • Rehydration Formula
Chapter 6 For Women Only:H ow Not to Pee in Your Boots 83
Penis Envy! • Women’s Stand-up Peeing • Pants vs. Skirts • Crotch-Accessible Clothing • Secrets of Avoiding Splatters and Showers • Born a Frontierswoman • Pee Rags • Managing Menstruation in the Wilds • Feminine Funnels or FUDs: Washable-Reusable and Disposable
Chapter 7 What? No T.P.? or Doing Without 97
Pinwheel, Prune Conserve, and Cowboy Schottische • My Mr. Neanderthal • Wilderness T.P. Alternatives: Various Cautions • Leaves (sticky, scabrous, prickly, hispidulous) • Snowballs, Sticks, Stones, and Pinecones • The Water Wipe • Road Apples/Eating Like a Horse
Definition of Shit 105
About the Author 113