- Cat-hole Bookshelf
I don’t know about you, but I really wonder just how much actual data went into the Leave No Trace cathole recommendations. Are we being told to dig a hole 6” to 8” deep just to be sure we make one 4” to 5” deep? Or does the hole really need to be that deep? And, leaving aside heavily used areas, is there anything really wrong with the turn-over-a-rock latrine style (other than easy rediscovery and potentially no rock)? What about toilet paper or salt starved animals? Still looking, but I found some references:

References from the Leave No Trace website with added links where I could find the papers.

Cilimburg, A., Monz C. & Kehoe, S. 1997. Wildland recreation and human waste: A review of problems, practices and concerns. Unpublished manuscript, National Outdoor Leadership School, Lander, WY. 31pp.

Ells, Michael D., Lee, Kathryn J. 2000.
The fate of feces and fecal microorganisms in human waste deposited on snow and smeared on rocks in the alpine environment. National Outdoor Leadership School, National Park Service, Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics, Ferris State University. 54p. Have file

Searching for Toilet Paper info:

Here’s one that seems to show that toilet paper burial in dirt is very preferred (but maybe not too deeply).

Here’s a fun article about using leaves and stuff as toilet paper.

And what about coprophagic animals - ones that eat poop? (Besides eeeeeeeew!) Lots of statements like, “Since animals will often dig up cat holes and scatter the toilet paper...” with no studies cited. Yes, we all know that animals of some kind can accost cat-holes but WHAT animals and WHY? I really want to find a study or two with for-sure correctly buried poop being dug up by such-and-such an animal.
Deer and goats will sometimes go for the salt and the TP is just along for the ride. At which point the only way to help the problem would seem to be to pee somewhere other than in the cat-hole (and TP doesn’t matter per se at all). So many questions...

Some more:



Composting - The Humanure Handbook

Please email me if you have a good reference.