Is It Time? Discussion point for hard shell paddlers
I’ve been thinking about this for a while...if discussion on this topic has come and gone already in between my infrequent visits here pls shoot me the link.
I suspect very few of us don’t sweep the area for trash/micro-trash after camping, lunch stop, scouting, safety meeting, etc. I also believe most kayakers pack out trash that’s made it’s way riverside whenever possible. The issue I wanted to raise for productive relevant discussion relates to those small colorful curls, shavings, & strips of kayak plastic we’ve all seen and left behind on sharp riverside rocks, seal launch areas, or portage trails. Is it time for us to see these in the same way we see any other type of trash and behave accordingly?
Although I’m posting to find out what other kayakers think, my own answer is “yes.” I started picking them up this past summer when I saw how quickly a new boat hull went from smooth to cheese graded texture and realized that plastic is being deposited right into the river environment. Of course I don’t get out of my boat and scramble back to the top of the ledge I just seal launched from or furiously backpaddle to see if I left some plastic on the rock I just unintentionally pitoned. I’ve just been picking it up when I see it and putting it in a sealable bag. It hasn’t taken long to gather a 1/16th.
Again, I think only a small fraction of us would not pick up and pack out a gum wrapper or bottle cap. Is it time to widen our view of what constitutes a LNT ethic and pack out these tidbits of kayak plastic?