U.S. DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIORBUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT
May 4, 2009
Volunteers Pick Up 160 Pounds of Dog Waste at Tabegauche Trailhead
GRAND JUNCTION, CO — A group of volunteers competed for the honor of top dog waste collector at a clean up at the Tabegauche Trailhead earlier this month. The trailhead is located on the Bureau of Land Management Grand Junction Field Office’s land off Monument Road.
The cleanup was organized by volunteer Lindaa McBride. Nearly 25 people were on hand on April 18 to clean up the area near the parking lot and trailhead, which is often littered with dog waste. Trail users are allowed to bring their dogs along the trail, but cleaning up after them has become a problem.
The Grand Junction REI store was also present with volunteers and refreshments, and provided prizes to the volunteers who collected the most dog waste, measured by weight. The winners were Pat Griest, Neil Jaquet and Laura Carter. In total, 160 pounds of dog waste was collected in the course of one day.
“I think it looks much better out there,” said volunteer organizer McBride. “I think some people just don’t think to pick up after their dogs out there. It isn't a park, it isn't a yard; it’s this huge beautiful desert. But when you get that many people with their dogs out there, it really does start to pile up.”
“We have at least seven people who want to begin a group that would try to steward Tabeguache;” McBride said. People are pretty passionate about that place.”
Chris Ham, Supervising Outdoor Recreation Planner for the BLM Grand Junction Field Office, said that dog waste at the trailhead is a concern for several reasons. Dog waste is considered toxic waste by the Environmental Protection Agency and it can harm the environment.
“The smell can be also an issue at the trailhead,” said Ham. “Dog waste can carry bacteria and disease, such as parvo, which can be passed to other dogs and in some cases can be fatal to the dog, especially puppies.”
“We encourage everyone who visit the Tabegauche Trail to pick up after their dogs for all of these reasons,” Ham said.
BLM provides bags and trash containers at the trailhead.