Native Loo Paper

Wentworth

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I did a search but couldn't find any similar topics on the forum.

I've experimented a bit with native alternatives to toilet paper in the bush. They all left a lot to be desired. Toilet paper is a relatively recent invention and Aboriginals must have made do somehow.
Native grasses folded into a brush take off a fair bit of skin with them
Paperbark doesn't do the greatest job and I feel bad for denuding a tree for this purpose
Gum leaves are too hard/ small.

Americans seems to have success with snow (not much of that here) and with river rocks (mostly sandstone here- not happening).
Has anyone done much experimentation with this? I'm still going to carry paper, but there must be an alternative.
 

Templar

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Butt rag... kinda like a face cloth but used for the other end... Ron Hood was a big advocate of them... just wash them out after use and CLEARLY Lable them... I have used them myself and it works well... found that if you make one end wet first it makes the job easier when it's time to clean them...

Option B: Squat and pull... that is really pull them cheeks apart, with practice you can get away with no paper at all... (made friends with far too many ziplock bags on that account...)
 

darren

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I use a combination of Templars Option b then use a little water and your fingers. I have used river rocks but if im that close to water a wet hand is better. Oppertunistic leaves are good but rare and not as good as water.
Just get over the fact you fingers are in poo.
 

XT John

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Blanket leaf (Bedfordia arborescens) is by far the best thing I've found in the bush. Use the furry underside of these large leaves.
 

Templar

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darren has brought up option C: the Water Hand Technique the SOP here in Asia... there are two methods

1: Wet your hand & remove the offending matter
2: Wet your hand and then as you "Scrub" pour more water down your hand... requires a lot of water... but works very well.

Both require you to wash after... there is a good reason so many cultures find the Left hand offensive...
 

Greatbloke

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That's a good question, Wentworth. One time I finished doing my business, only to look around and see a snake almost right under me, and investigating the doings... I wasn't too concerned about paper or anything at that moment. I like the smooth stone trick, and the bum rag makes sense, but I think toilet paper is the most practical, particularly as we want to keep well away from water ways. I like to use wet wipes or baby wipes before and after sleep over my whole body, but that can add up to a bit or weight for a long trip.
 

Dusty Miller

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Wet wipes can be dehydrated (leave the bag open) then water from a canteen added just before use (squeeze out any excess gently) helps cut down weight a little. Lower usage rate (butt cleanings per sheet) over traditional tp, and waterproof nature, makes the a better choice. Wet tp isn't real user friendly.

Often the urge may come and you have to make do if using found objects, rather than getting to choose a best species. Looking for things with properties that make good tp is the only option. Testing on less sensitive areas first would be a good option. To some extent, the first steps of the plant edibility test are probably a good guide to safety if not efficacy of bush tp.
 
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darren

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darren has brought up option C: the Water Hand Technique the SOP here in Asia... there are two methods

1: Wet your hand & remove the offending matter
2: Wet your hand and then as you "Scrub" pour more water down your hand... requires a lot of water... but works very well.
If you use you other hand to squirt a little water out of you hydration pack bite valve or from your drink bottle ( from a safe distance) you can be surprisingly frugal with your water.

to those who turn up their nose at this, how much protetion do you think a 5 thou piece of tissue paper gives your hand? Both require post cleanup hygene
 
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Hairyman

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Wentworth

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Thanks all for the quick responses.
Templar, I've seen the butt rag on some of the Hood'd DVDs. A friend gave me a face washer as a birthday gift- had "Arse" on one side and "Face" written on the other. It has stayed unused since...
Do you carry it outside your pack? I'd be concerned about cleaning it well.
The water trick might be the way to go I think.
 

Bartnmax

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One time I finished doing my business, only to look around and see a snake almost right under me, and investigating the doings... I wasn't too concerned about paper or anything at that moment.
Sorta negates the need to go at all doesn't it.
I mean it's a sure trick for reversal of the process.
Ya just gotta watch the snake doesn't get caught in the updraught.

I'm kinda surprised we haven't had any comments about convenient Koalas or Pigmy Possums yet.
Sorta reminds me though of something a mate of mine has always maintained - that's what God created socks & hankies for ;-)

Seriously though, bullrushes work ok.

Bill.
 

Aussie123

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Templar, or someone else may recall, but in the old army rat packs did they include a plastic sheet as a re-usable sheet of TP ? I think they may have, but I don’t recall ever using it - perhaps I’m confused ?

I think I've used about every method already mentioned above. TP is still the best, but when in Asia we did "go native" (ie the left hand), and it did become very natural and easy. Its just that transition from a familiar activity to a new one that is hard at first.

I’ve had a snake encounter too, when I was a kid. I got a real fright when I glanced around, I assure you that I was gone very fast !
I’m not sure what type it was, but I doubt it would have produced a very satisfactory wipe.


When looking for somewhere to squat, have a check around for what materials are about, it may be worth walking a few extra meters to a nice clump of grass, rather than squatting beside a stinging nettle !
Even if you have TP, you may not have enough !
 

Benny

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The wetwipes, dehydrated or otherwise, is a winner for sure. Carrying around a butt rag doesn't sound like fun but better than your hand.

When you say clean the butt rag do you mean rinse with water & wring it out? Guna have to find to find sealed container for that one I think.

I give a little cheer every time I do a Teflon turd- non stick. Sometimes the wold is fair.
 

Templar

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@ Aussie: Hmmm... dont remember a plastic sheet, I do remember the one square trick... stick your finger through one square of TP remove offending material and then fold paper over finger and extract... not a very successful technique... lol

@Benny: Yeah just give'em a quick rinse and a scrub, let it dry... I kept mine in a HD ziplock with my cat scratch kit... hand gel helps too for the cleaning after... trail food tends to bind you up a bit and when mixed with mild dehydration most turds become non-stick, so the klingon factor is low... if you are fanatical about it, you can always do a hair removal job before bush... helps a lot with clean up...

"Ass Rag":
a dedicated cloth, used when hiking for extended periods of time, used for wiping your ass. If used properly, there is very little if any odor, and a 12" x 12" ass rag will last for weeks. It is carried hung outside of the pack. A term originally coined by Ron Hood of THE HOODLUMS fame, an outdoor and survival website .
 
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AussiePreppers

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Just wear shirts with a top pocket. My fav. is a flanno.

. o O (I kept wondering why one of my workers kept on coming back with pockets missing, ingenious)
 

Benny

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(I kept wondering why one of my workers kept on coming back with pockets missing, ingenious)
Which is why I'll never lend a friend a shirt again.
 

Bartnmax

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Just wear shirts with a top pocket. My fav. is a flanno.

. o O (I kept wondering why one of my workers kept on coming back with pockets missing, ingenious)
Which is why we should all be extremely grateful for modern fashions I reckon.
All those Faux military shirts/pants, etc with dozens of pockets everywhere.
Hmmm, maybe someone should design a shirt with replaceable pockets for just such use?
So next time yer whiping yer bum in the middle of nowhere, think for a moment, with gratitude, of Naomi Campbell & he fellow stick figures.

I also like Benny's reference to 'teflon'.
Makes one wonder about how one's diet could be changed for the better.
Maybe eating more plastic with one's rations so it comes out already packaged?
Can you drink teflon to coat the colon first?
What about a teflon cover for the fundamental orafice?
You know, put it in place at the start of yer treck?

Here's a thought - reuseable TP.
Unroll required amount, use, wash, & re-roll.
Might haveta patent that one I think ;-)
Then again you could make a larger model that you just fold away instead of re-rolling.
That would make stowage easier, oh wait a second, now we're back to Karl's bum rag idea.
Ah well, the idea was good for the micro second it lasted.

Ah, the science of crappin'.

Bill.
 

Dusty

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