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How to Shit in the Woods, 3rd Edition: An Environmentally Sound Approach to a Lost Art Paperback


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 136 pages
  • Publisher: Ten Speed Press; 3 edition (March 15, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1580083633
  • ISBN-13: 978-1580083638
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 5 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #95,268 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

“Kathleen Meyer has contributed to environmental awareness while lending a grand old English word the respectability it hasn’t had since Chaucer’s day.”
--FRANK GRAHAM, Audubon magazine

About the Author


A longtime outdoorswoman, KATHLEEN MEYER is the founding editor of Headwaters, published by Friends of the River. Her travel essays have been included in the Travelers’ Tales anthologies A Woman’s Passion for Travel: More True Stories from a Woman’s World and Sand in My Bra and Other Misadventures: Funny Women Write from the Road. Her adventure memoir Barefoot Hearted: A Wild Life Among Wildlife was released by Villard in 2001. Whitewater rafter and canoeist, sea-kayaker and sailor, she is also a draft horse teamster, having traversed three Rocky Mountain states by horse-drawn wagon. Ever the nontraditional spirit, Meyer resides in an old, rather unrestored, dairy barn in Montana’s Bitterroot Valley and is available for interviews. Visit her Website www.KathleenintheWoods.net and hop onto her blog Shooting the Shit


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Customer Reviews

So I guess you could say that this book has changed our lives.
xsurfer
Meyer has updated much information since the previous edition, including new studies and products.
A. L. Vaughan
This is a very informative book that I recommend for all outdoor enthusiasts.
Jan A. Allinder

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

30 of 32 people found the following review helpful By Red on January 5, 2012
Format: Paperback
This book was more about being a book than being an informational guide. It's filled with all sorts of interesting facts that you may have never knew, and there's equally as many pleasing stories to help the book float along. However, if you took the practical information from this book you could put it all on a pamphlet of just a few pages.

To sum up the entire book:

Chapter 1. Why we poo, and the history of the toilet along with some amusing stories. Not practical.

Chapter 2. Dig your hole 6-8 inches deep because that's where bacteria that will help decompose your poo reside. Don't poo below the waterline or even the flood waterline, and do not do it close to any water source, and be mindful that It runs down hill.

Chapter 3. When you just can't dig a hole, figure it out. Lean back or spread wide then pack your poo out.

Chapter 4. Be sure to filter your water so you don't get the runs. If you do get the runs then be sure to clean up properly and leave no trace.

Chapter 5. For women, so admittedly I skimmed, but not much there that isn't common sense.

Chapter 6. When you have no T.P., try not to use plants. If you do, try to use dead plants and brush. If you have to use a live plant then do not massacre an entire plant or branch to satisfy your needs. Be selective and gather from multiple sources and use your common sense when using plants because some are sticky or pointy etc. As far as non-living T.P. goes, well, anything that works will work.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By J. C. Bullard on September 7, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition
The author gives several very good suggestions for dealing with biological necessities when you're away from civilization.

There are two main schools of thought about human waste in the wild. Bury it or pack it out. The author gives several good suggested methods for both. She clearly favors packing it out, and makes a compelling case for it.

Whichever mindset you favor, the author gives several good, specific examples of ways to implement it.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By JAMES P. on February 25, 2014
Format: Paperback
I live in Alaska. I am homeless. The biggest problem if you are homeless in Alaska is defecating. Wild bears are everywhere. Dunno HOW many times I've been dumping my ass in the woods, and alla sudden, you hear a noise, and it's a Wild Bear right next to you with the same idea. It can be unsettling to say the least. Once, I was crapping in a forest, reading the paper, and a Wild Bear came right up beside me, crouched down real low, and appeared to be looking at my paper, like he was tryna read it. I didn't even wipe. Got up real slow, left him my paper, and he seemed cool with that. Got that idea from this here book. Saved my bacon, I'll tell you that.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By jeff on September 11, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Was excited to get this book. Only been backpacking once. Last year for a seven day period so I was hopeful that this book would provide some good insight on "technique". Really, the only thing I took away is how much the author emphasizes packing it out. Oh well. Didn't cost that much. Would not recommend it to a friend.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By xsurfer on July 8, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I've been going out in the woods a long time, but my wife is all city and was having the hardest time outdoors. Worse, she never wanted to talk about it. She would say it's too private. So I got this book and read it. Then I left it laying around until it wound up on her night stand. What a relief! First- with all of my camping experience I found out I didn't know as much as I thought I did. I learned alot, especially about how the laws and common practices have changed since I grew up. Plus, I read many good ideas I'd just never thought of before. As for my wife- she no longer dreads camping and we have a much better time together outdoors. So I guess you could say that this book has changed our lives.
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10 of 14 people found the following review helpful By cjohnson596 on October 15, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
If you can wade through the wordy ramblings you might find useful content. This book could have been written with one tenth the words. Very annoying to read. It's a simple subject, but the author tries way too hard to be clever.

A random excerpt for example:
"Before we can hope to fathom how great is the importance of properly digging our own small one-sit hole (also termed a cat hole) in the bush, it’s necessary to try to envision our sh*t in the global sense. Try is the trick here. Exactly where does the world’s collective excrement go? Not a pleasant question. How often do any of us ponder where it goes after it’s sucked down the hole in the bottom of the bowl? Possibly never. Such reflections tend to detour our consciousness, barring those rare occasions when we have to call Roto-Rooter."

Every paragraph in the book is written in this irritating, wordy, nothing-was-even-said-in-those-seven-sentences, style.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The two areas of most detail in the book were least useful. No, I don't care to read the forwards to all three editions. Once you weed through that, you get an essay of the choice of the word sh-t. Then its onto no-doubt outdated references to designs, manufacturers, and prices of all sizes of field toilets. Then in the end, its nothing that a quick internet search would accomplish.

In fact, let me save you the time:
1. Carry out whenever possible
2. If not possible, choose an area well out of trail traffic and at least 200 feet from a water source,.dig a cathole 6 - 8 inches deep using your trowel (after the deed is done), mix well with soil (using a mixing stick), and try to disguise the cathole.

Yes, its that simple. I was actually looking to get some insight into field sanitation, but found nothing more that what is available for free from any number of web sites.
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