Monday, May 16, 2022

Some civic duties

A couple weeks ago, Don and I volunteered to do some cleanup on a nearby rural stretch of road.

The road cleanup was actually supposed to happen the Saturday before, but got rained out. Don and I volunteered to do our stretch the following Monday. We armed ourselves with trash bags and a couple of those extended-arm grabber thingies, and took off.

Don had actually worked this same stretch the year before (as part of the civic organization he's part of), and he said it was much cleaner this year than it had been the year before.

Believe it or not, it was my first road clean-up, and I enjoyed it. There was something immensely satisfying in tidying up the landscape. Maybe it tapped into my Inner Housewife or something.

Naturally we saw a few interesting things. Several sets of bones (this one from a fawn):

Lots of feathered pieces from turkeys getting hit by cars.

Going along the road at walking speed certainly allowed us to see things we may not have otherwise noticed, such as this cow on a nearby hillside:

Or this goat who, as we watched, slipped through his fence and stood glaring at us.

Or these nattily attired Great Blue Heron statues by someone's driveway.

Every creek was full.

A couple of cars slowed down and thanked us as they drove by, which I thought was nice.

Don took one side of the road, and I took the other.

We more or less stayed even with each other until I came to a scene of a fender bender, with lots of debris to clean up. That took a while.

But Don won the contest for "Most Interesting Finds." First exhibit, a bleached-out Monopoly money bill:

Second exhibit, a syringe.

Fortunately it looked like an agricultural (livestock) syringe. Also fortunately, it had a cap, so it wouldn't poke out of the garbage bag.

After a bit, we hit the one-mile marker, which was the end of our route.

We hiked back to the vehicle and brought the trash bags to the nearest dumpster. On the way we passed these elk, casually hanging around someone's pasture.

On the dirt road to and from the cleanup stretch, we also passed this boulder that had become dislodged from the steep hillside.

Interestingly, Don had passed on this road two days before and it was clear, so the rockfall had just happened in the last 48 hours.

We'll participate in future road cleanups, but pushing boulders like this are a bit beyond the abilities of our extended-arm grabber thingies.


  1. I also do clean up but not with a group or a road. Mine is mostly the woods and logging roads. I usually see cans, bottles and debris from ATV's like empty oil cans, it drives me nuts. Why do people toss out these items from their vehicles. I get the booze part due to legalities but much is soda cans.

  2. Those rocks look like that they could ruin a drivers day in a hurry.

  3. Do you clean up feathers and bones or let nature do the cleanup? Thank you for picking up trash anywhere!

    1. We let nature take its course.

      - Patrice

  4. I just did a road cleanup 2 weeks ago with the young men from our church youth group. We did a portion of hwy 95 headed south out of Plummer. It was a great time.

  5. I am so glad to have rediscovered your blog! Been a few years, and happy to get all caught up. I'm living here in the Silver Valley (North Idaho) these last four years now, and couldn't be any happier! Take care out there.