Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Fido?s ?calling cards? collected

Two-hour effort results in 10 garbage bags full of dog-do


By JASON KAUFFMAN
Express Staff Writer

Photo courtesy of Kate Rosso, The Elephant?s Perch. In a two-hour cleaning effort April 12, employees and owners of the Elephant?s Perch outdoor store in Ketchum picked up about 10 large garbage bags full of dog poop at the Adams Gulch Trailhead, northwest of downtown Ketchum. The folks at the Elephant?s Perch sponsor a number of trails in the area as part of their work with the Big Wood Backcountry Trails, a local Wood River Valley trails advocacy group. From left to right are Taina Raff, Liza Wilson, Maria Beattie, Nappy Neaman, Mike Payne, Bob Rosso, and Kate Rosso.

If you're heading to the Adams Gulch trailhead for an afternoon of fun anytime soon, you may want to watch your step.

The popular recreational destination—located just northwest of downtown Ketchum and a favorite for those with dogs in tow—has become ground zero for an issue of a smelly sort.

Just ask Maria Beattie, an employee at The Elephant's Perch outdoor store in Ketchum.

Beattie, five of her co-workers and Elephant's Perch owners Bob and Kate Rosso took part in a two-hour long cleanup effort on April 12 in the 200-yard area surrounding the Adams Gulch Trailhead, "just in the parking area," Beattie said.

And what dog-related leavings did they find? Their haul amounted to about 10 large garbage bags full of dog feces.

"That's all poop," Beattie said in reference to a photo of the cleanup team.

Of course, the valiant cleanup effort likely won't spell the end of dog dung problems or discarded trash at Adams Gulch.

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A visit by Beattie to the spot just a few days later made that pretty clear.

"There were beer bottles everywhere," she said.

The lack of concern for the area leaves Beattie just a bit upset.

"Pack it in, pack it out. That's what you should do," she said.

Joe Miczulski, recreation program manager for the Ketchum Ranger District, said dog feces is an ongoing problem at trailheads and some campgrounds.

"People need to be responsible pet owners," he said. "People need to be responsible pet owners if they're going to be using the public lands. They need to be responsible. We expect folks to not litter, and it's not a stretch to say that dog poop is litter out there, or worse in many people's eyes."

The Elephant's Perch sponsors a number of trails in the Adams Gulch area as part of community work they do in association with Big Wood Backcountry Trails, a volunteer Wood River Valley trails organization.




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