Today while I was driving out of the Lavender Canyon road I noticed a peculiar stench when I hopped out to open the cattle grate...lo and behold! A surface dump, quite literally three feet from the road next to the cattle guard, complete with not one but two scraps of TP fluttering gaily in the desert wind and a small indentation in the soil left by the urination of the offending party whilst they defecated. Rest assured, the excrement is now residing in a WAG bag in a Moab dumpster.
The burning question of course, is why this person didn't use one of the outhouses at either Superbowl or Creek Pasture, both of which are literally 30 seconds (okay maybe 1 minute) down the road in either direction and provide a more pleasant defecatory experience than the pop-a-squat in the dirt. But I'm not here to point fingers at climbers and get into a "whodunnit" argument.
I like to think that most climbers who are at Indian Creek, or really any climbing area, are aware enough to not take a surface dump, let alone one so brazen as three feet off the road. But I think it does raise the point that not everybody in the world has the same understanding and respect when it comes to reducing our impact. For example, not ten minutes later I stopped into the Donnelly Canyon parking lot, and a mother and child were skidding their way down a talus slope into a mat of cryptobiotic soil about thirty feet to the side of the trail.
So my request is that we as a climbing community keep up the work of being good representatives and advocates for the places we love to climb and spend time outside. Just as a small example, there's a group from BCC, FRCS, and HMI (along with a group from Montrose High School) who have spent the sat week working on a trail restoration project in Donnelly Canyon, not to mention the work that the Access Fund has done across the country. So climbers, keep taking care of the special places in the world, and may you send all your projects to the moon.
Aw hell, I don't know. I hope that any climber in the Creek knows that there are multiple outhouses they should use instead, or at bare minimum dig a cat hole, but I honestly have no way of telling. Maybe I'm giving folks too much of the benefit of the doubt. Perhaps someone with keener eyes can ID the tread from the boots and we can go on a good old-fashioned internet witch hunt :)