No. 1

topic posted Mon, October 30, 2006 - 4:40 PM by  Candace
I've seen a few others on the trail with a terry cloth rag hooked to the top of their pack.

Someone explained to me that they reserve the use of TP for No. 2.

For No. 1, they just use a terrycloth scrap to wipe.

Here I've been wanting to cut weight, and i still use TP for both (that I store in ziplocks until I get off the trail and back home).

What with all the discussion about other sanitary habits out on the trail, i thought I'd find out if very many people use a "pee rag" when backpacking.
posted by:
  • Re: No. 1

    Tue, October 31, 2006 - 9:38 AM
    As for backpacking there are few items we will carry that have the same value to weight ratio as TP. I've see women that will use the pee-rag. Unless the rag is used for other things as well (which is kinda gross) then it doesn't make much sense to carry a rag. One rag's worth of weight equals a comfortable amount of TP. From an environmental standpoint you can argue that you use less TP with a reusable rag, and this is true, but as long as you are packing out the TP what difference does it make?
    I have come across plenty of people that pride themselves on how little TP they carry from one resupply to the next, getting down their routine to a science and have some TP square per day formula. What's the point? Of all the things you can skimp on, why play that one so close to the edge? Really, for a few grams more you can have a WIDE margin of error (or emergency supply). If you want to cut weight, look at something heavier and less valuable.
    • Re: No. 1

      Tue, October 31, 2006 - 10:09 AM
      Well said, Feral Kid!
      • Unsu...

        Re: No. 1

        Tue, October 31, 2006 - 11:47 AM
        I agree with Feral Kid.

        One variation on the rag theme to consider -- have a friend that carries a little water spritzer bottle, spritzes herself after peeing and then drys off with a bandana (all of this after using the TP). Leaves you with a Spring fresh feeling ;)

        If the water situation is abundant sometimes I'll just take a little from my nalgene and splash myself with a little and then dry with a bandana.
        • Re: No. 1

          Tue, October 31, 2006 - 12:17 PM
          Do you have a bidet at home, Avena?
          • Unsu...

            Re: No. 1

            Tue, October 31, 2006 - 2:56 PM
            No bidet at home and I've never actually used one unless you count my make shift pour a little water in my hand from the Nalgene and then splash backwoods version!!
        • Re: No. 1

          Tue, October 31, 2006 - 2:24 PM
          Hmmm...then how common ~is~ the use of a "pee rag", then?

          I like the spritzer bottle idea.
          • Unsu...

            Re: No. 1

            Tue, October 31, 2006 - 3:01 PM
            Hey Candace - we have a night shot of those big Burning Man 2006 statues that are in your photo album on my work website - - we did an article on the BM gift culture for our November Conscious Gift Giving issue (sorry everyone for the off topic post)
            • Re: No. 1

              Tue, October 31, 2006 - 4:07 PM
              Holy Moly! I guess I'm out of it. I bring TP for #2 but have never even considered using it for when I pee. I have never even thought about needing t o use anything (on the trail) to pee-wipe. I drip dry and use the time to chill for a couple of minutes. And no I don't get pee stinky or any infections.
              • Unsu...

                Re: No. 1

                Tue, October 31, 2006 - 5:17 PM
                Let me correct myself -- my friend uses the water spray bottle and then wipes with a bandana but doesn't use TP for #1.

                OK, maybe I'm weird but I love talking about peeing, bowel movements, etc. Maybe it's a hiker thing but I have absolutely no modesty when it comes to talking about this stuff. I actually get irritated after being in the woods for a few days when I have to go into a town and to use a toilet and not just squat in the wood ;)
                • Re: No. 1

                  Wed, November 1, 2006 - 7:55 AM
                  A spray bottle seems like a lot of weight (when compared to TP). But more than that, it seems like a lot of unnecessary volume to carry.
              • Re: No. 1

                Thu, November 2, 2006 - 1:05 PM
                I have a pretty good command of what leaves are not suitable for skin and which ones are (at least, in the geographic area in which I'm usually hiking) so I'll usually do the water-in-hand routine and then wipe with a leaf. Or I'll just drip-dry after the rinse in my wicking underwear. I do bring some TP for my allergies, for #2, or if the time is wrong, for wrapping "specialty items."

                For car camping or other times when weight is not an issue, I bring my Little John (with Lady J adapter) so I can pee standing up or in my car/tent/whatever if I don't feel like going out in the cold/rain/whatever.
              • Re: No. 1

                Thu, November 2, 2006 - 4:55 PM
                You're not out of it Mango... drip dry is in! My wife and the girls I hike and pack with all drip dry. It's just pee and if you're drinking lots of water it should be relatively oderless and clear.

                Makes me think of a little poem we've all seen in the men's room (well, all the men at least):

                You can tap it,
                You can shake it,
                You can beat it against the wall
                ...but you gotta put it in your pants before the last drip will fall.
                • Re: No. 1

                  Thu, November 2, 2006 - 11:52 PM
                  YAY! for drip dryers!!! ummm...haven't seen that poen in the girlie room. hmmm...i'm going to see if i can make one up for girls. i guess too i sometimes don't take my pack off. i squat with it on or i prop it on a rock so messing around with wipe things just complicates things.
                  • This is the maximum depth. Additional responses will not be threaded.

                    Re: No. 1

                    Fri, November 3, 2006 - 9:15 AM
                    > i sometimes don't take my pack off. <

                    My best hiking buddy once made her boyfriend support her pack while she squatted to pee. I think that was taking it a little too far. And I told her so. And her boyfriend complained about splatter. Yew.

                    Nice poem, btw.
                    • Re: No. 1

                      Fri, November 3, 2006 - 11:15 AM
                      eewww...that would suck. i don't make anyone hold my pack if it's that much of an issue at the time that peeing with it own simply won't work then i take it off. but i guess it could be a way of getting back at someone who is totally annoying you on the trail. just kidding. i mean if someone ate too many beans or whatever and stunk the be-jeezus out of the tent a little pee splatter on their boots wouldn't be so bad. although it's usally me AND my husband stinking up the tent.
            • Re: No. 1

              Wed, November 1, 2006 - 12:25 AM
              (Thanks for the link)

              I didn't get a good night shot of the statues while i was there.

              • Unsu...

                Re: No. 1

                Wed, November 1, 2006 - 6:27 PM
                You're welcome, Candace.

                Hi Feralkid - I tried a mini-spray bottle at the National Rainbow Gathering this year. It ended up getting clogged up so I quickly abandoned using it. Yes, a bigger spray bottle would probably be on the bulky side to fit in a pack.

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