Letters to the Editor

Some Chehalis trail users leave lots of mess behind

We are so fortunate to have 22 plus miles of paved walking and biking paths compliments of the Chehalis Western Trail. The trail offers picnic locations, parking spots, overlooks with views of Woodard Bay, ponds, and the serenity of the Deschutes River. All of this is nicely, and professionally maintained by crews from the county. (When you use the trail and see a crew, take time to thank them!)

Looming on the horizon though are well-intended good-doers who often assault the pavement with spray paint to mark out their particular event needs. The rest of us get to see their results lay dormant for the rest of the year, a sloppy testimony to their good intentions. (One good doer – “White Spray Can Guy” – even marked the trail in half mile increments, often differing from the trail’s sturdy and nicely appointed markers by a few feet!)

I would ask event users to please consider the following: First, check with Thurston County Parks and Recreation to learn and accept trail protocols; second, if you must mark the trail, use surface friendly markers (sandwich boards, washable markers, etc.); third, clean up after your event. Adopt the backpackers’ anthem: leave your campsite better than you found it! Next on the list: what to do about taggers? But that I suppose, will detail a different kind of therapy!

Chris Cain