PIKE NATIONAL FOREST - Bear-proof dumpsters are a lot less effective when you stack trash on top of them, or on the ground next to them.
“We spend, I can’t even tell you how much time coming in here and picking up after people,” said Scott Dollus, a forest service ranger who works in the area.
In the Rampart Range recreation area alone, the Forest Service installed eight bear-proof dumpsters, which Dollus says are overflowing after every weekend.
“We’ve had to euthanize bears…we’ve had horror stories,” he said.
The dumpsters specifically instruct folks to take their trash elsewhere if they are full, but people don’t.
Some Next viewers asked why the park doesn't add more trash cans, but officials are actually getting rid of the ones they already have, which were provided as an extra service.
The idea is to hike it in, and hike it out, instead of relying on the park to clean up garbage.
Rangers have also had a huge problem with illegal dumping since installing the extra bear-proof cans. More dumpsters means more dumping.
“You always have that 5 percent that doesn’t care or doesn’t know. With the increase in population that number of people is just going to increase,” Dollus said.
When we walked around the area with Dollus Tuesday, we also walked up to an empty campsite where a squatter had left trash along with what appeared to be a manmade latrine.
The most disturbing part of the site was a piece of fishing line strung between two trees across a popular motorcycle and ATV trail.
“Obviously to do harm to someone,” Dollus said.
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