I feel there’s not enough easily accessible information about being in the outdoors and women’s periods/moons/cycles. A recent exchange made me realise that instead of expecting male writers to include words detailing it, outdoor women could write more openly about it all. I was inspired to write this after reading an article ‘How To Shit in the Woods’ on the Gather Outdoors website, which I highly recommend for its practical, environmental approach to, well, shitting in the woods.
If you spend any length of time in the outdoors, there’s going to come a moment when you’re miles from anywhere and need a shit. This is ok. What really isn’t ok is leaving tissue paper or worse, wetwipes, in bushes, sometimes next to an open pile of crap. It’s quite frankly disgusting and gives all the sensible hikers, vanlifers, and outdoors people a really bad name. Just stop it. It’s so simple to leave no trace. We dig a scat hole with a small pointed shovel, poop in the hole, then bury it. All tissue paper goes in a biodegradable dog poop bag (tip – you don’t need a dog to buy the bags) which is pocketed until we find a bin. If this isn’t for you then don’t go outdoors for longer than a few hours. Don’t leave tissues behind after peeing either.
In addition to this, for women, a silicone moon cup is brilliant. One will last for years. You just pull it out and empty it into the hole then either reinsert straight away or rinse with water from a bottle (also good for washing hands afterwards). There’s absolutely no waste, and they can stay in for 10hrs if needed. If you prefer to empty it indoors, just tip it into the toilet, or pee bottle, or down the shower drain, reinsert, and carry on as normal. There’s no shame in any of this, only ignorance, so I reckon talking about it all is the best way to rectify that. In the meantime ladies, have a great life in the outdoors any day of the month. I do. Would love to know any other methods used for managing your moon when outdoors if you’d be up for sharing? 📷 @andyrgarside 💙💦🌊