This post may be awkward and/or funny for some of the readers but it discusses an important aspect of climbing / mountaineering / trekking (C/M/T) holidays, especially those spent in high altitude areas. For instance, scores of climbers/mountaineers/trekkers (C/M/Ts) visit the Indian Himalayas that do not have urban lavatories after last settlement located on the selected route. Crapping in these areas requires special etiquettes and an extra effort. However, excreting on snow covered or verdant areas under brilliant blue or star-studded sky is an experience in itself. Maintaining these areas, thus, is a moral responsibility of every visitor. Next time when you are in the mountains remember to follow four steps listed below:
Try to find a flat isolated area away from campsites and water points. If possible, look for natural enclosures free of insects-a thicket or high boulders/rocks. Carry a stick / ice axe for long nature’s call.
Dig a small shallow pit and collect loose earth nearby.
Move your bowels in the pit and cover it nicely with the loose earth. Do not forget to dump used toilet papers in the pit before covering it with the earth, otherwise soiled toilet papers will fly across the area, spread infection and cause visual pollution.
All this would require some extra time so do not wait until the desire to excrete becomes uncontrollable.
There are two good reasons not to feel embarrassed while following the procedure. If you follow these steps, your grand children will also enjoy visits to these splendid remote terrains and you will fulfill your social responsibilities like a good citizen. C/M/Ts are not the only persons to follow the excretion etiquettes. Even villagers in some parts of theHimalayasfollow the same method. Only difference is village houses feature a separate room with a hole in its floor constructed on a deep trench. A heap of mud and a shovel are stored in one of the corners of the room. Mud is thrown on the crap that gathers in the trench and the hole is covered with a stone temporarily.