Cleaning up glass/trash in woods

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by Abouttime, Jun 25, 2006.

  1. Abouttime

    Abouttime Well-Known Member

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    Other than the obvious, is there a better, safer way to clean up LOTS of broken glass/metal, etc in a very wooded area (downhill)?
     
  2. marvella

    marvella Well-Known Member

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    you can call a local keep america beautiful. some of them have programs to clean those places up. most of the time however, it is up to the owner to keep it neat.
     

  3. Dink

    Dink Well-Known Member

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    A magnet on a stick helps with nails etc.Id try to rake up the glass in a pile for pick up.
     
  4. Abouttime

    Abouttime Well-Known Member

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    Marvella-don't want you to think I'm a slob-just bought the place in Jan and as I'm clearing and fencing for the critters, it's amazing what I'm finding-how could some previous owner throw glass down a mountainside? I don't think I could find an organization in this mountainside area to help and candidly I'd be afraid somebody would get cut/hurt-heck I'm afraid I'm going to get hurt, hence the question! Thanks, Dink-I was thinking of a large galvanized trash can!
     
  5. Dink

    Dink Well-Known Member

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    Dont feel bad were still cleaning this place up when we first moved here we hauled 1400 lbs of trash off and that was just in the front yard.Just remember one step at a time.
     
  6. Ravenlost

    Ravenlost Well-Known Member Supporter

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    One way to make it safer would be to wait until Wintertime. Around here we can't do stuff like that due to the snakes, ticks, etc. Too many mocassins here.
     
  7. Abouttime

    Abouttime Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the reminder! LOL! I was picking up stones for the gardens this w/e and saw my 3rd snake-pigs keep bringing the ticks to the barn-can't wait though-pigs are bored where they are!
     
  8. marvella

    marvella Well-Known Member

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    didn't think it was you that made the mess. it's a common problem is appalachia. as the people slowly became more affluent, they bought more stuff. when the stuff wore out or broke, there wasn't anywhere to dispose of it. so... out of sight, out of mind. we have the same problem here. if it were mine, i think the easiest thing to do is winch out the biggest stuff, and let the rest of it go back into the earth. even glass eventually breaks down when covered with dirt.

    we have a local guy who bought land that had a whole bunch of old computers dumped in a ravine. we (local KAB)still haven't figured out how to take care of that.

     
  9. Abouttime

    Abouttime Well-Known Member

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    I wish I could, but I'm putting my 4 pigs in there and with the way they root, I'm afraid they really get hurt!
     
  10. katlupe

    katlupe Off-The-Grid Homesteader Supporter

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    That's an on going project around here. Picking up glass & beer cans in the woods. Have been here 7 years now, and it just keeps showing up. In our horse's paddock too. That used to be woods and dh cleared it for the horses. But we never imagined it would be full of garbage. Every morning when they are eating, I just pick rock and glass, to stay on top of it.

    I know they had to do something with their garbage back then.

    katlupe
     
  11. Abouttime

    Abouttime Well-Known Member

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  12. Mountaineer

    Mountaineer Well-Known Member

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    I'd say a rake (those cheap black plastic tined ones ideally), and big buckets or the bed of a pickup truck. Rake the glass etc into piles. Then use a square shovel (flat bottomed) and scoop it all up and wing it in the truck.
    A few hours a week and I'm sure yu'll be done before you know it.
    And get some guineas!
    They are terribly annoying but they'll supposedly clean up the ticks. We have no ticks here so they eat the grasshopers.
    There is no magic solution for cleaning up that crap, just labour. Having experimented, I find my way pretty efficient.
     
  13. Quint

    Quint Well-Known Member

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    What sorts of difficulties are you having with it exactly? Cutting you hands? Access?

    For getting lots of small pieces of debris like can lids and such scoop shovels fine tined rakes and manure forks can be great. If you need to pick stuff up by hand make sure you wear very heavy leather or kevlar gloves. If the debris are light weight enough the old standby stick with a nail in it might be of use too. For doing some work on steep hill sides I've had good luck with very long poles rigged with a sharpened hook with a barb on the end. Once jabbed through the trash it can be dragged up the hillside.

    My place was without my knowledge or approval was used for some dumping for several years while I was gone. I've got several tons of trash to clean up. Nothing dangerous just scrap metal and glass scattered here and there. Most of the time it is just a matter of hauling around a trailer behind an ATV and picking stuff up by hand. If it is a ditch of ravine, rappelling down with a winch cable and rope from the ATV or truck mounted winch and winching the old appliance or whatever up for disposal. It's a slow process and most of the time it's a matter of using your grubby little paws and picking it up by hand while cursing the very soul of the SOB who dumped it there.
     
  14. Abouttime

    Abouttime Well-Known Member

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    Quint-you described it exactly-access and cuts-it's the glass that's most annoying-lots and lots of it and mostly broken-

    Joe-wish I could get my truck down there-that would eliminate the lugging it up the mountain after I pick it up.

    As you both said and others, it's just a matter of carefully working on it-

    Thanks to all for the suggestions-they have all helped.
     
  15. RockyRooster

    RockyRooster Well-Known Member

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    Oh my gosh I am so glad that I am not the only one with this problem. We moved to our property in 1996. The place had been vacant for 5 years. The owners who were contractors used the place as a trash dump. They hid the trash in the backyard behind a privacy fence. There were over 12 piles of trash at least 8' high. Shingles, tiles, wood, hinges, sinks, formica you name it, it was there. In the front yard I had 6 heaping piles of yard trash. When you walk to the back that has not been cleared, there are old washing machines, oil drums, wrecked cars, motorcycles. These people were absolute slobs with no care at all for the environment. To this day we are still picking up glass on the property. They would target practice with glass bottles. Arrggggh :grump:

    The inside of the house was just as bad. Molding, wood, sheets upon sheets of formica, sheet rock, insulation, interior doors, sinks (all of which we used).

    We are still cleaning up 10 years later. :viking:
     
  16. buspete

    buspete Well-Known Member

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    We're dealing with the same problem here too.

    With steel prices up, the local scrap guys were all too happy to come winch the wrecked cars/turcks out of the woods, but there is still a bunch of non-metal stuff to pick up out there. I'm working in the front part of the property now, but when it comes time to start on the the old junkyard spot, I suspect I'll pick it up with work gloves, grass rake and shovel and haul it out one wheelbarrow at a time.

    There's an assortment of old furniture that will have to be dragged out and hauled to the dump as well. The crown jewel is the frame to an upside-down pickup camper that the scrap guys already stripped the aluminum off of. It will be the guest of honor at a bonfire this winter.

    What get me is that this stuff is quite a ways out a logging road. It seems to me that it would have easier to haul it to the dump than to drag it out there :shrug:
     
  17. Abouttime

    Abouttime Well-Known Member

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    It's hard to understand some people, huh?
     
  18. JAK

    JAK Well-Known Member

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    I suppose if some people weren't like that archeologists would be in trouble.

    Perhaps you could do a controlled burn, and then clean it up. ???
     
  19. Quint

    Quint Well-Known Member

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    Early spring, fall and winter are the best times for sure. You're not fighting that vegetation which hides stuff and grows up through things and even worse you're dealing with the heat. The only bad thing about winter is that sometimes things are frozen to the ground.
     
  20. Abouttime

    Abouttime Well-Known Member

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    Jak-burn-great idea and it would have helped, but I have a fear of not controlling it well enough-this is a thick forest of trees, vines etc-I used a sling and clippers to clear a path for the fence. My fires come after the goats and pigs have cleared.

    Quint-you didn't mention the snakes-I've seen too many to count, but they have all been small, black ones-perhaps I'm so seeing the larger ones?