Ideas for scaling down regulation equipment? - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 05-20-2019   #1
 
Coeur d'Alene, Idaho
Join Date: Aug 2017
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Ideas for scaling down regulation equipment?

I run a 14 foot raft and most of our trips are just my wife and I. One problem we've encountered is that most regulation equipment products, like firepans, ash cans and groovers were developed with large groups in mind, and that's what rangers expect to see.

Specifically, I'd really like to avoid carrying any 20mm rocket boxes for ash cans or groovers, or anything as big as a Selway toilet (which the two of us will never come close to filling even on a long trip). I also really want to avoid carrying a big fire pan, even the pop up pit is bigger than what I want to carry.

Ironically, on most rivers (including the 4 Rivers System) if you're self- supporting out of a kayak, you can get away with no ash can, an aluminum foil roasting pan for a fire pan, and WAG bags for human waste.

But, if you show up in a raft, no matter how small your trip, or how light weight you're set to travel, many a ranger type expects to see all the traditional huge assed "regulation" equipment.

Anyone have any experience / ideas with successfully moving to smaller versions of the above equipment?

On non-regulated rivers we usually use wag bags w/ a Fat 50 ammo can for a grover, and an aluminum foil as a fire pan. It goes into the trash with any ashes. Unfortunately, it's not possible to get away with that on all rivers.

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Old 05-20-2019   #2
 
MT4Runner's Avatar
 
Kalispell, Montana
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A better question: has any small raft party ever been denied their launch due to scaled-down gear?



Maybe write to the district ranger for confirmation?
It would stink to show up and be denied on your launch date...but forearmed with a determination from the Ranger would help. If nothing else, print the pertinent regs particular to your river.



Fire Pans
Even for kayakers, the fire pan regs are 144in², but they're allowed 2" sides rather than 3" high. Go for the stamped metal oil change pan that has also been accepted for rafter use.

300in³ is quoted as the requirement for your ash can, and a Fat50 can is almost twice that inside volume (roughly 700in³).


Groover
For your groover, I'd also interpret the Fat50 can as being adequate (though my interpretation means nothing!!) If you were kayakers, an ice cream container with a snap lid is deemed acceptable. Do rafters poop more?




Checklist from the Middle Salmon USFS website:
https://www.fs.usda.gov/Internet/FSE...rdb5345681.pdf

No checklist for the Main, but it's listed on the page:
https://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/scnf/...telprdb5300640

US Dept. Interior (Labyrinth-Green):
https://www.blm.gov/download/file/fid/14487
"a washable, leak-proof, reusable toilet system that allows for the carry-out and disposal of human feces via an authorized sewer system. The toilet(s) must be of adequate size for the group size and trip length, disposable bags (ex. WagBag, Restop) may be utilized but must be contained in a washable, reusable container,
C. a durable metal fire pan at least 12-inches wide with at least a 1.5 inch lip around the outer edge and of sufficient size to contain fire and remains. Fire pans must be carried on all overnight trips."



BLM isn't specific, but does say, "It should be large enough to accommodate the entire party for the complete length of the trip (think use-days: number of people x number of days on the river)"
https://www.blm.gov/or/permit/info/portabletoiletinfo
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Old 05-20-2019   #3
 
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Hampden, Massachusetts
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I am going to start my post by wishing I could give you some real advice....I for one, thought long and hard about this in the past... but here goes

1. Bring two options with you to the put in. The “light weight” and the “standard”. Last time I was checked it was by a young summer staff ranger, and I could have easily convinced her my gear was legit. She was more interested in the fact we had a strainer versus the size of our groover.

2. If you wanna cheat a little and risk it, just leave a few things in the car after the ranger checks off your stuff......but why risk a ticket, you have hundreds of pounds of weight capacity .

I think it is bull that kayakers get away with not meeting the requirements, rubber (or PVC) discrimination I tell you!!!

3. Maybe put the required equipment you won’t use in a bag on the bottom of the gear pile, so you don’t have to load and unload it at every camp.

4. I second the metal oil pan for a fire pan. It’s not small, but at least it is light weight and meets the 4 rivers regs.

5. Shovel = paddle if you run with a paddle handy, or small army shovel. I did bring both for the MFS and the ranger gave the “ok” for the paddle . But damn if I have to fight a fire with a Carlisle...

6. Unfortunately other than like a gamma lid bucket to save some pounds on a groover, I can’t think of a better option. I like a nice stable thrown to sit on, rather than squatting and aiming for a tiny 50 cal box in the morning after a night polishing off the rest of the coors light under the stars.

7. Don’t forget a strainer.

8. Except for empty beer cans, I put all the trash and ashes in the same 20 mm rocket box.

Here is a photo of the wife and I on a one boat MFS trip 8 days 7 nights. Super puma. It’s not neat but all the required gear is there
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Old 05-21-2019   #4
 
Denver, Colorado
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Seems like a pop up pit, wag bags, backpacking stove and cookware, and careful food choices go a long way. Those super light chairs are another idea.
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Old 05-21-2019   #5
 
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Boise, Idaho
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The 20-use EcoSafe Boombox is a good alternative to the larger toilet systems.
Washable, re-useable, and has RV sewer dump fittings.


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Old 05-23-2019   #6
 
Join Date: Mar 2019
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Note that WAG bags are not authorized on the Salmon. I read this on a takeout sign near Riggins.
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Old 05-24-2019   #7
 
Salida, Colorado
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MT4Runner View Post
A better question: has any small raft party ever been denied their launch due to scaled-down gear?

Groover
For your groover, I'd also interpret the Fat50 can as being adequate (though my interpretation means nothing!!) If you were kayakers, an ice cream container with a snap lid is deemed acceptable. Do rafters poop more?

It's more of a volumetric measure issue of carrying capacity of the vessel, Rafters can carry a full size groover, where Kayakers can't, or won't LOL. Would be comical to see one of those little tiny kayaks with a full size groover strapped to the bow LOL


Where I ranger, the stipulations are, a sealed leakproof washable reusable toilet system adequate for the size of the group. Lots of interpretation to that. One launch of 20 Kayakers tried to convince me they were going to poop in Nalgene bottles.



I launched the next day and pulled into their camp at 0900, told them I wanted to see at least 15 bottles of feces. The could not produce one, so ticket time it was. I also made them clean up their feces from the trees / rocks where they didn't even make an attempt to hide it.



Photos were taken, the entire event documented, the Permit holder was banned from what I was told for the egregious conduct.



That being said, MOST of the Kayakers I've launched in the past 5 years have gone the PVC route. 4 inch Class 160 PVC, 24 inches long, with a solid cap on one end, and a screw cap on the other. Fits in the stern and costs little over 15 bucks to make, empty weighs less than a pound. I was told the 24 inches was chosen so you could actually "sorta" sit on it while you do your business
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Old 05-24-2019   #8
 
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C. Springs, Colorado
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Quote:
Originally Posted by briandburns View Post
The 20-use EcoSafe Boombox is a good alternative to the larger toilet systems.
Washable, re-useable, and has RV sewer dump fittings.
This is a great way to go with two people. We use ours all the time and pack it into an old dry bag for storage.
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Old 05-24-2019   #9
 
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Hampden, Massachusetts
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MNichols, I am confused a little...are you a ranger/someone with authority. Or just a private boater that reported these kayakers.

Also props to you for speaking up to a large ground and helping to make our camps better !
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Old 05-24-2019   #10
 
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Kalispell, Montana
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MNichols View Post
It's more of a volumetric measure issue of carrying capacity of the vessel, Rafters can carry a full size groover, where Kayakers can't, or won't LOL. Would be comical to see one of those little tiny kayaks with a full size groover strapped to the bow LOL
The hitch is that enforcement isn't always consistent or common-sense (hence the gist of this thread). The NPS and BoI regs seem to say what you just said, the USFS regs say even less, and enforcement tends to be "rocket box or big commercial groover".

2 people in a raft with a Fat50 should meet the "spirit of the law" but not always its enforcement.


I've seen 70 cubic inches per person per day as a recommendation for calculating groover volume(s). I think this is a bit on the high side and my experience is that people tend to poop more on the order of 40-50in³ per day. (I interpolated! haha )


Quote:
I was told the 24 inches was chosen so you could actually "sorta" sit on it while you do your business
Aha! That makes so much more sense.







Quote:
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MNichols, I am confused a little...are you a ranger/someone with authority.
Quote:
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...
Where I ranger, ...
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