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The big map o the Caminos de Santiago

Camino Ditch Pigs Cleanup: 2015!

Camino(s) past & future
Many, various, and continuing.
#1
And you think YOU'RE having a good time?!
Forum friends TincaTinker, PDPiguet, Sheffield James, and yours truly) are out in the bright cold ditches these days, clearing TONS of trash off parts of the camino as yet untouched by cleanup crews.
CAMINO FRANCES: Sahagun to Reliegos on the Roman road; (Druid-era Coke cans found)
enriched Felix's Blues/r&b music collection at the Elvis Bar
CAMINO de MADRID: a black spot outside Medina de Rioseco: (imploded TV, milking machine parts, a pair of pointy-toe kitten-heel pumps);
Canal de Castilla towpath Medina to Tamariz locks.
Tomorrow: Camino de Madrid Villalon to Melgar (God willing); with special appearances by APOC founder Kathy Gower and veteran Ditch Pig Keith Tyrell!
(We've gone off our usual Palencia path this year, as pilgrims tell us it's not so littered -- we're slowly being put out of business! We have to go looking for pilgrim dumping spots! YAY!)

... now about those hundreds of little white tissues you're leaving behind...
 

tyrrek

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPP-SdC (4-5/2011), Ferrol-SdC (9/2011), Pamplona-SdC (3-4/2012), Camino Finisterre (10/2012), Ourense-SdC (5/2014)
#2
...with special appearances by APOC founder Kathy Gower and veteran Ditch Pig Keith Tyrell!...
I'm on my way! I've had fallen trees blocking train lines in Manchester, aborted landings in Madrid, and am currently starving to death. In Spain!
 

KinkyOne

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
I'am not perfect, but I'm always myself!!!
#3
I really wanted to come, even kind of enlisted. Too early I guess. Got into 2 law suits for copyrights of my documentaries to get some money. In short - I have about 17€ at the moment, not enough even for the cheapest bus/train/plane ticket. Wish I could spend some time with you all and do something good.

All the best!!!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Francés ('14/'15)
St Olav/Francés ('16)
Baztanés/Francés ('17)
Ingles ('18)
#4
..imploded TV, milking machine parts, a pair of pointy-toe kitten-heel pumps...
A prize is definitely needed for this stellar find! Especially the pumps.
... now about those hundreds of little white tissues you're leaving behind...
Only hundreds?! How restrained of all of us. o_O Gyuk.

Very best wishes to you all...may you have a fun, outrageous, and companionable time together doing an incredibly good thing!
Oh to be a ditch pig.............
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances 2005,2008,2010,2015.camino Portuguese 2007 .primativo2012.camino Norte 2009.sjpdp to finisterre and muxia 2007. Le Puy to jpdp 2006. Via francigena vercelli to Lucca 2014. Lucca to Rome 2016.
#5
And you think YOU'RE having a good time?!
Forum friends TincaTinker, PDPiguet, Sheffield James, and yours truly) are out in the bright cold ditches these days, clearing TONS of trash off parts of the camino as yet untouched by cleanup crews.
CAMINO FRANCES: Sahagun to Reliegos on the Roman road; (Druid-era Coke cans found)
enriched Felix's Blues/r&b music collection at the Elvis Bar
CAMINO de MADRID: a black spot outside Medina de Rioseco: (imploded TV, milking machine parts, a pair of pointy-toe kitten-heel pumps);
Canal de Castilla towpath Medina to Tamariz locks.
Tomorrow: Camino de Madrid Villalon to Melgar (God willing); with special appearances by APOC founder Kathy Gower and veteran Ditch Pig Keith Tyrell!
(We've gone off our usual Palencia path this year, as pilgrims tell us it's not so littered -- we're slowly being put out of business! We have to go looking for pilgrim dumping spots! YAY!)

... now about those hundreds of little white tissues you're leaving behind...
You are a good pilgrim and we should all be thanking all of you . I can't understand why women and it is the female of the species do not take their tissues with them and put them in the lav of the cafes that they visit. As I have said so many times before, urine is not a toxic substance last time I heard. It's only pee for heavens sake and Ghandi it is said drank his own urine although I would not go this far!! Thank you Rebekah. Best wishes annette
 
Camino(s) past & future
2012 Dieppe, FR Bici CF.
2014 Ruta Vasco/CF/Primativo
#7
And you think YOU'RE having a good time?!
Forum friends TincaTinker, PDPiguet, Sheffield James, and yours truly) are out in the bright cold ditches these days, clearing TONS of trash off parts of the camino as yet untouched by cleanup crews.
CAMINO FRANCES: Sahagun to Reliegos on the Roman road; (Druid-era Coke cans found)
enriched Felix's Blues/r&b music collection at the Elvis Bar
CAMINO de MADRID: a black spot outside Medina de Rioseco: (imploded TV, milking machine parts, a pair of pointy-toe kitten-heel pumps);
Canal de Castilla towpath Medina to Tamariz locks.
Tomorrow: Camino de Madrid Villalon to Melgar (God willing); with special appearances by APOC founder Kathy Gower and veteran Ditch Pig Keith Tyrell!
(We've gone off our usual Palencia path this year, as pilgrims tell us it's not so littered -- we're slowly being put out of business! We have to go looking for pilgrim dumping spots! YAY!)

... now about those hundreds of little white tissues you're leaving behind...
Thanks for all the time you folks put into picking up trash along The Way.
 

wayfarer

Moderator
Staff member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPP-Santiago-Finistera-Muxia. April/May 2012
Sarria-Santiago Sept. 2013
SJPP - Almost Orrison April 2014
#9
We found things today for which there is no known name - but we cleared 'em up just the same. @tyrrek is with us now, looking most fetching in his kilt, and fed now.

Camino Madrid is looking spic & span with the home stretch to Sahagun to go tomorrow.

Oh, and 'Bill', we found your jeans & sweatshirt. Where should we post them?
Photos please...:):)
 
Camino(s) past & future
2013, 2014, 2015, 2016
#10
It's Monday evening at The Peaceable Kingdom and everyone - apart from Keith - is feeling comfortably tired with their labours along the highways and byways of the Caminos Madrid and Frances. On Saturday, Rebekah, J-D and TT cleared a mind-blowing 40kms of the Frances by themselves. On Sunday, the focus shifted to the C.Madrid and on my Day1 we were treated to glorious sunshine as we worked our way down a most delightful stretch of the Canal de Castille, somewhere between Valladolid and Moratinos.

Today was a lot cooler temperature-wise, with a heavy frost at the start of the day and the cold, misty conditions lingered well into the afternoon. This didn't dampen our spirits one little bit, not least because we've now been joined by Kathy, whose brand of Californian 'joie-de-vivre' is really quite infectious. We continued working sections of Madrid section in pairs and as a group, but finished the day on a relatively garbage-free stretch of the Frances, from Ledigos to home.

Our hosts at TPK - Rebekah and Paddy - make sure we are well looked after with respect to food, drink and home comforts. An aged aunt of mine in the West of Ireland used to try to induce my younger sisters to go live with her by promising to "feed them well and work them easy"; at the risk of undermining our collective efforts thus far, I think R+P espouse similar values, but, unlike my aunt, they know how deliver on this promise.

There's so much more I'd like to add to this summary of events, but it's getting a bit late and the number of keyboard errors I'm making suggests it's time I retired for the evening. I hope to post some photos to add visual colour to these few words tomorrow evening. For know, I'll leave you with one of Kathy, J-D, Rebekah and TincaTinker planning our next move (probably to a local restaurant, if my memory serves me well!)

IMG-20151130-WA0007.jpg
 
D

Deleted member 36903

Guest
#13
Thank you Rebekah and everyone for giving up your time to do this. Thank you tyrrek for a little bit of Scotland in Spain and for wearing the kilt at the correct length, but although I see a cat feeding bowl in that picture I see no cats - photos please! With regard to the tissues on the Camino, is this a lost cause or would a printed plea in all pilgrim's credencials prompt more thoughtful conduct?
 
Camino(s) past & future
SJPdP–Santiago (2012); SJPdP–Santiago, (2015); SJPdP–Logrono (2017); Logrono-Santiago (2018)
#15
Thank you for your clean up work. I picked up garbage for the first week while walking this fall and then I couldn't do it any more. There is so much of it and stopping so often just breaks the rhythm of walking. It is so sad to see all the tissues, and such an insult to the Spanish people. I hope to return some day and dedicate some time to picking up litter. I wonder if seeing cleanup crews on the camino during the busy seasons would cause litterbugs to think twice before leaving their trash for others to pick up.
 

fraluchi

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
One every year since 2007
#16
Reb and her crew are setting an example for what the local municipalities could promote in their communities.;) Forum members will agree upon the benefits of cleaning up Camino surroundings. Yet it is necessary, and often more difficult, to motivate locals and visitors (pilgrims) to promote ecological sense.:rolleyes:
 
Camino(s) past & future
Past? Not enough.
Future? Sure!
#17
Ditch pigs are not new: already in middle age, iron souls were brave enough to go on the way in the sun. We now have the proof:
20151201_133112_20151201_140429_20151201_141356-1.jpg

Modern pigs are even braver, they go in the fog, lost, but still filling their bag:
20151201_101117-1.jpg

Buen Camino,
Jacques-D.

PS: this morning on the Camino de Madrid and the Camino Frances
 
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Camino(s) past & future
Many, various, and continuing.
#20
Two fine cats: MoMo and Norman, working hard and doing their part. Meantime, the DitchPigs wound up a fabulous 2015 litter-picking season. Statistician Tyrrek provided total figures:
In five days:
137 total kilometers cleared,
42.3 km on Camino de Madrid, the rest on the Frances
That's that's 85 miles, or one-sixth of the average camino.
Twelve donors paid for two tanks of diesel,
24 meals, and at least 138 trash bags, and
a box of convent sweets.

Next up, a day of rest, and maybe cleaning up the very-trashed car.
 

KinkyOne

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
I'am not perfect, but I'm always myself!!!
#22
Two fine cats: MoMo and Norman, working hard and doing their part. Meantime, the DitchPigs wound up a fabulous 2015 litter-picking season. Statistician Tyrrek provided total figures:
In five days:
137 total kilometers cleared,
42.3 km on Camino de Madrid, the rest on the Frances
That's that's 85 miles, or one-sixth of the average camino.
Twelve donors paid for two tanks of diesel,
24 meals, and at least 138 trash bags, and
a box of convent sweets.

Next up, a day of rest, and maybe cleaning up the very-trashed car.
I bow my head to you!!!
And also feel a little bit envy ;)

Wish you all the very best!!!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Francés ('14/'15)
St Olav/Francés ('16)
Baztanés/Francés ('17)
Ingles ('18)
#23
Wonderful posts...once again this has made my day. Thank you Reb and Paddy...and thank you to the stellar 2015 Ditch Pigs!
Reb, after all that I hope that you can follow MoMo and Norman's example today.
 
#24
And you think YOU'RE having a good time?!
Forum friends TincaTinker, PDPiguet, Sheffield James, and yours truly) are out in the bright cold ditches these days, clearing TONS of trash off parts of the camino as yet untouched by cleanup crews.
CAMINO FRANCES: Sahagun to Reliegos on the Roman road; (Druid-era Coke cans found)
enriched Felix's Blues/r&b music collection at the Elvis Bar
CAMINO de MADRID: a black spot outside Medina de Rioseco: (imploded TV, milking machine parts, a pair of pointy-toe kitten-heel pumps);
Canal de Castilla towpath Medina to Tamariz locks.
Tomorrow: Camino de Madrid Villalon to Melgar (God willing); with special appearances by APOC founder Kathy Gower and veteran Ditch Pig Keith Tyrell!
(We've gone off our usual Palencia path this year, as pilgrims tell us it's not so littered -- we're slowly being put out of business! We have to go looking for pilgrim dumping spots! YAY!)

... now about those hundreds of little white tissues you're leaving behind...

From the look of things, this crowd could have a good time cleaning the Camino Frances with a toothbrush on their knees! What a lucky bunch of pilgrims you are. And I echo the thanks given above -- it's a great public service you are doing! Next year, if I have managed to pull the trigger on retirement, I will do my darndest to get there. Will you throw in a tour of Soria romanesque, Reb?
 

Christian Hiriart

The Camino keeps calling.
Camino(s) past & future
Frances September (2016) St. Jean to Leon
Planning for the next...
#29
Well done guys, we shoul all carry a bag and help pick up as we go... If not, the very least we can do is not to leave anything behind other than foot steps.

Thanks for making it better for all of us.
 

Stivandrer

Perambulating & Curious. Rep stravaiging offender
Camino(s) past & future
I´ve got Camino plans until 2042,
- or till I fall flat on my face, whichever comes first !!
#30
I have my own wee chore/sport of collecting cans n´bottles on my way to work, and have a pickup stick (or what´s its name) on my Xmas list. I am organising rolls of collection bags to be carried by walkers in my areas which are suitably sized for pick up jobs and marked for the roadservice collection.
If there was such a project of handing out collection bags in one end of a particular stretch and the fitting bonus/prize/acknowledgement in the other end, might one assume there would be an extra couple of hands along the route throughout the year ??
 

volleyjanice

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
08/2013 St. Jean Pied de Port-Belorado, 08/2015 Burgos- Santiago/Finisterre/Muxia, 08/18 Portugese
#31
Thank you all for both an entertaining read, and all of your hard work picking up pilgrim rubble. Most unfortunate that it is even necessary!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Many, various, and continuing.
#32
I have my own wee chore/sport of collecting cans n´bottles on my way to work, and have a pickup stick (or what´s its name) on my Xmas list. I am organising rolls of collection bags to be carried by walkers in my areas which are suitably sized for pick up jobs and marked for the roadservice collection.
If there was such a project of handing out collection bags in one end of a particular stretch and the fitting bonus/prize/acknowledgement in the other end, might one assume there would be an extra couple of hands along the route throughout the year ??
Dear Stivandrer, Thanks for the good work you are doing. Ditch Pigging is not just an annual event, it is indeed a Lifestyle, something everyone can do every day, right where they live!
Handing out collection bags at camino stops is a time-honored practice; I have bags here at Peaceable from two different campaigns in the past 5 years. Giving out rewards is beyond my remit, I believe... litter picking should not be a special event. It oughtta be Just What You Do.
 
Camino(s) past & future
2015. Levante, Avila-Toro & Sanabres, Ourense-Santiago
2017. Invierno & Oseira monastery
#33
... now about those hundreds of little white tissues you're leaving behind...
Let me add my gratitude for the Ditch Pigs to what has already been expressed. When I was preparing to walk from Avila to Santiago this summer, I was advised by acquaintances who had previously walked the caminothat I should pack some tissues, and just find a reasonably private place off the trail and drop my drawers: "Everybody does it; it's expected.." But I also read everything I could get my hands on about long distance hiking. One of the more colorful and useful titles I read was How to Shit in the Woods: An Environmentally Sound Approach to a Lost Art, by Kathleen Meyer. I dutifully carried along a light garden trowel in its own stuff sack, and used it. Because it really does wreak havoc with your pace to stop and pick up litter every other step, I simply designated one afternoon as my litter duty day, and hiked with a clear conscience the rest of the time. I was shocked at how much litter there was, and (in spite of the advance warning I had received) more shocked to find the evidence that other pilgrims did not bother to dig a cat hole for their droppings. So much beautiful countryside was spoiled -- and this along a route that could have been called The Road Less Travelled! Please, can we make it part of the pilgrim culture to never, ever leave a trace of our passing, except for the joy and thoughtfulness we share with those we meet?!
 

Stivandrer

Perambulating & Curious. Rep stravaiging offender
Camino(s) past & future
I´ve got Camino plans until 2042,
- or till I fall flat on my face, whichever comes first !!
#34
Dear Stivandrer, Thanks for the good work you are doing. Ditch Pigging is not just an annual event, it is indeed a Lifestyle, something everyone can do every day, right where they live!
Handing out collection bags at camino stops is a time-honored practice; I have bags here at Peaceable from two different campaigns in the past 5 years. Giving out rewards is beyond my remit, I believe... litter picking should not be a special event. It oughtta be Just What You Do.
- Quite so, ...some need priming, though....
 
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Camino(s) past & future
Francés ('14/'15)
St Olav/Francés ('16)
Baztanés/Francés ('17)
Ingles ('18)
#36
litter picking should not be a special event. It oughtta be Just What You Do.
And will, most happily! Does anyone out there know where to get a 'pick-up stick' (don't know what to call it...), preferably in Spain?

Ditch Pigging...is indeed a Lifestyle, something everyone can do every day, right where they live!
Oh boy. Here in Burma that could be a full time activity, and still there would be mountains of litter.
 
Camino(s) past & future
September/October 2015
#37
And will, most happily! Does anyone out there know where to get a 'pick-up stick' (don't know what to call it...), preferably in Spain?

Oh boy. Here in Burma that could be a full time activity, and still there would be mountains of litter.
I hear you Viranani....it's the same in Phuket Thailand. SO MUCH litter, I have trouble keeping up with collecting it just in my small street :(
 
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2015); Ch. d'Arles: Oloron Ste Marie to Aragones; Frances (2016); V.d.l.P.; Sanabres (2017)
#39
I took a trowel with me on my recent camino to bury my own bodily waste, as I do when I walk in the mountains in western Canada. I also picked up bits of less disgusting garbage along the route: for example, candy wrappers were my commonest pick up. I could not bring myself to touch anyone else's tissues. I found it so disgusting how most of the benches provided for rest along the camino were surrounded with such detritus, and defaced with graffiti. My camino was wonderful, but I look forward to returning to my pristine mountains, where I can generally pick up by myself whatever bits of garbage I find along the route and graffiti is almost unknown. If you love it (camino or mountains) take care of it.
 

Grininfool

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF ( 16 or 17 or 18 )
#40
And will, most happily! Does anyone out there know where to get a 'pick-up stick' (don't know what to call it...), preferably in Spain?

Oh boy. Here in Burma that could be a full time activity, and still there would be mountains of litter.
I noticed that in Burma too. And also on an "indian" Reseveration in Southwest USA.
A different perception in the boundary between man and nature?
 
Camino(s) past & future
Francés ('14/'15)
St Olav/Francés ('16)
Baztanés/Francés ('17)
Ingles ('18)
#41
I noticed that in Burma too. And also on an "indian" Reseveration in Southwest USA.
A different perception in the boundary between man and nature?
Off topic, perhaps, or perhaps not.
Maybe. But here in Burma I think it's more a lack of education about what can decompose and what cannot. In a traditional village, much is organic--snacks are wrapped in banana leaves, not plastic. If you throw banana leaves with sticky rice residue out your back window, nature takes care of it, and quickly. And larger amounts of organic trash can be burned, and not much harm's done.
Nobody seems to understand that plastic is different--an eternal scourge, and toxic if it's burned. So the old ways persist and the trash builds up everywhere until someone comes along and burns it (gaaak...).
Some friends and I support several free monastic schools, and we're distributing educational material for the kids, so they learn that there are consequences of this:

IMG_0367.JPG IMG_0368.JPG
But on the Camino? Well...who knows why people litter so much. We should know better, but obviously don't.
On the bright side it means the Ditch Pigs can get together once a year and have a useful and fun week together!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2012, 2014, 2015, 2016). Seville-Astorga (Mar 2017). Mozarabe (Apr-May 2018)
#43
I walked from SJPP to Santiago in October-November this year. Maybe my expectations are abysmally low, but I did not see many seas of disgusting litter that are talked about. Of course there was litter, and I applaud everyone's efforts to clean up regularly and annually. One beautiful afternoon I found a huge log at the side of the path - a perfect bench it was - that invited me to stop for a rest. Which I did. Behind the log was a considerable collection of sardine cans, plastic chorizo wrapping, cans, bottles, etc. So I pulled a bag out of my pack and filled it up. I left the rest stop feeling happy about leaving it clean (rather than feeling disgusted with the people who didn't seem to know better) and I went on my way until I found a place to deposit my bag of rubbish.

One time, I realized that I had lost a plastic bag!!!!! Woe is me! I had littered too.

I would love to join the Ditch Pigs one year. If I can't do that, there are many places near my home where I can help out.
 

vlebe

Walker Member
Camino(s) past & future
2001; 2004; 2009; 2013, (2016/2017)
#44
Dear all;

I wanted to bring this thread back alive just to try and constantly gather more volunteers to - even when alone and not being part of an organized cleaning party - try and help with this:

Bring bin bags with you and collect waste when you can... I've done this the last time in 2013 (I was pretty sad to the increase of filthy on the trails considering the previous time I've been on the Frances before that) and some pilgrims looked puzzled when I came with a bag full of trash and started trying to clean some of the paths (at least a bit....)

The good news is that there are still a lot of good people in the world that volunteer for this sort of initiatives (E.G. The Awesome volunteers on this thread).

Next Nov/Dec 2016, I plan to walk with litter bags with me... Try to clean as much as I can...

If 1 out of 100 pilgrims would do that...

Anyhow; If this is supposed to be "My Own camino" as some love stating, I want it to be reasonably clean...And - most important - I want to leave it clean behind me for the next pilgrims to enjoy...

:);):D:rolleyes:

Ultreia Everyone!
 
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Smallest_Sparrow

Life is rarely what you expect or believe it to be
Camino(s) past & future
2012: most of some, all of a few, a bit of others
#45
Thank you all for doing such hard (and not exactly glamorous) work...though the kilt does add a bit of glamour.

Quick question: I understand the TV and the pointy-toed kitten heeled pumps, but why were pilgrims carrying milking machine parts?o_O
 

Smallest_Sparrow

Life is rarely what you expect or believe it to be
Camino(s) past & future
2012: most of some, all of a few, a bit of others
#48
CAMINO de MADRID: a black spot outside Medina de Rioseco: (imploded TV, milking machine parts, a pair of pointy-toe kitten-heel pumps);
Canal de Castilla towpath Medina to Tamariz locks.
Part of the OP's list of items these wonderful people picked up.
I guess the joke's not funny if I have to explain it...(still picturing pilgrim in pumps, lightening pack by dumping TV)
 
Camino(s) past & future
(2016) ; 1st Camino Frances September 2016-November 2016 ; Camino Frances August 2017-October 2017
#51
I wonder if those who trash the trails would allow people to do so in their own homes.... I doubt it. Wife and I are not young, carried to heavy of backpacks but carrying our trash which consisted of EMPTY paper rappers and bags, cartons from food or beverage and plastics bottles were not heavy ...they were EMPTY and weighed virtually nothing. Those who wish to save the planet , which we probably all do and the Camino and enjoy both, then let it begin with us and take care of our own mess. Remember you are a GUEST in their country, city and village, respect the people and their country and they will respect and invite you back. Keep it clean ! :)
 

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