Old dumping ground discovered among Idaho 21 vegetation

It’s a little like finding a historic dumpsite while hunting in the wilderness. Except most of the items left behind can’t be traced to an early settlement.

Litter recently discovered along Idaho 21, just before the Sourdough Lodge and about 10 miles south of Grandjean Junction and 10 miles east of Garden Valley, probably had been dumped there four or moredecades ago, and were hidden from sight by vegetation.

Cleaning the site involved more than a traditional Adopt-A-Highway effort. The AAH group assigned to that section of Idaho 21 received help from ITD crews and local citizens of the Lowman area. The clean-up effort resulted in 35 bags and two trailers of trash picked up by six volunteers over four hours on Thursday (April 28).

“We believe someone dumped this trash long ago, and I recently noticed it because the grass has not grown yet and the sun was shining on the old stove,” said AAH volunteer Gretchen Sherlin, who discovered the dumped items.

Said Sherlin, “This is about 50 feet south of the highway, between the road and the river. The trenchthat has hidden this mess is about six feet deep.” Sherlin expressed concern that “a spooked deer/elk/fox would run across it and break a leg and get entangled. “

Mike Harkins, who found the dumpsite along with his wife, added “We are estimating the trash is 40+ years old because there are some Fresca cans in there that I can remember from 1970s.” Harkin provided these photos, which also show a hot water heater, stove and tires.

Published 4-29-2011