Trash Free Trails - Committed to Reducing Litter

Sep 7, 2018
by cotic-bikes  
Sawtooth Struggle by Gabriel Amadeus Tiller

PRESS RELEASE: Cotic Bikes

We get a load of "sponsor me - I'm gonna be the next big thing" emails at Cotic HQ but when Dom Ferris got in touch with his proposal it was one we couldn't ignore. Dom is taking a sabbatical from his work at the charity Surfers Against Sewage, to ride the Oregon Timber Trail so he can raise awareness for his new venture Trash Free Trails.

After organising teams who have removed over 250,000KG of rubbish from UK beaches and growing the number of beach cleaning volunteers from 1000 to 30,000, Dom's commitment to reducing litter in other areas spread to the MTB trails he loves. Plastic bottles, sweet wrappers, gel sachets, cable ties, inner tubes & tear offs are becoming all too common on every trail, in every country.

Photo Ian Lean

You might think that doing great work for a charity, living in idyllic Cornwall and helping rid the world of single-use plastics would be all you need for job satisfaction, but as we see so often, working so hard can often come at the detriment of your own mental health. Personal reasons have led him to ride for CALM (Campaign Against Living Miserably) alongside Trash Free Trails. The 670-mile pedal will hopefully help him find space & time to rest his busy mind.

Photo Daniel Clifford
Sawtooth Struggle by Gabriel Amadeus Tiller

We supplied Dom with a Solaris MAX frame - our 29er, go anywhere, mile muncher. Burgtec provided the cockpit & Wilderness Trail Bikes helped with the rubber. Restrap provided the bags and Finisterre & Patagonia helped with clothes. This build was put together with reliability & longevity in mind as when you're in the middle of the Oregon wilderness, worrying about your bike is the last thing you want to be doing. Steel is real people!

Photo Daniel Clifford

So what can you do to help? Well following @Trashfreetrails on Instagram is a solid start. There you can see his stories and read up on the journey as it unfolds. He's on facebook here too but the main, best and most useful thing you can do is PICK UP YOUR TRASH! Easy huh?

All changes start with you; awareness of where you are riding, how important it is and what you can do to better that environment, can only be a good thing. In the meantime follow his adventures and see how you can help with your local trail clean-up efforts.


Photos by: Gabriel Amadeus Tiller, Ian Lean & Dan Clifford.

Posted In:
Press Releases



38 Comments

  • 14 0
 Still crazy to see how many people don't think about their stuff when they are out in the nature...
on bike races ist usual to see the course littered with wrappers, CO2 cartridges etc... all racers must have a pocket somewhere on their body, right?

So big thumbs up for trash free trails!

By the way: Backpack maker Deuter supplied yellow waterproof bags calles "dirtbag" for the members of the german alpine Club for around 2€ a Piece to collect litter on the hiking trails they come along. Wonder if they still make them...
  • 5 0
 At least at our races we have someone who goes after the race is done and picks all the litter up.I don't understand why this is not a common sense practice.
  • 2 0
 Also Roadies! Since you're always flatting that tube doesn't clean it self up!? The side of the roads in CA. look like Nascar pit stop for bike tubes.
  • 1 0
 @nug12182: Some races around here don't even completely clean up their marking tape, let alone the trash from the racers.
  • 1 1
 @Canadmos: Why?As a rider I would take it upon myself to just take it down if I lived near by.If someone said suttin I would give them my opinion on how I feel about the situation.
  • 2 0
 @Canadmos: Im also not embarrassed to pick up other peoples nasty trash in front of other people.I try to lead by example.
  • 9 1
 Trash is the least of my worries in the UK (There's not much at all), however the local trails I ride in Staffordshire/ Cheshire are littered with Dog $h!t or bags of Dog $h!t left by owners at entrances/ gates/ trail heads etc

Trash on my tyres (Tires) frame and body I can deal with.....I'll leave the other to your imagination
  • 7 0
 I think there is more than enough litter on trails and out in the countryside. Gel wrappers at trail centres abandoned inner tubes on occasion, tear offs.
  • 1 0
 @joshdodd: I agree, it seems a particularly noticeable problem where ever any jumps get built. Seems the kids like nothing better to watch their mates do jumps while munching sweets and energy drinks which they then deposit on the ground. Open trails in the countryside it’s always gels which make me think runners are the culprits. It’s that single gel wrapper that stands out though when there is no other rubbish to be seen.
  • 1 0
 @StevieJB: Some local kids built some jumps etc. in private woodland, along with a tarp shelter full of garbage. I was riding on a bridleway through there and saw signs the owner had put up saying the jumps could stay as long as the rubbish was removed, otherwise he would tear it all down. I went through a month or so later and everything was gone.
  • 3 0
 I usually pick up any trash I see on trails, and it's not much more than can fit in a pocket or two. Little effort, big reward.

But I agree with SX, dog shit and shit bags are the real issue. And f*ck putting that in my pack or pocket.
  • 4 1
 First step - stop eating junk food. Most of the trash around here is from the corporate junk eateries. Their drive-and-trash-the-countryside-clients are the worst by a long shot...
  • 2 0
 It's amazing how deep in the bush you sometimes find trash. Around here its usually Tim Hortons cups littering the ground or stuffed into trees. Water bottles are always found, too.

Let's not get started on the people who pick up their dog shit in a bag and then leave the shit filled bag on the side of the trail. Even worse is when those asshats hang their dog shut bags from the trees at helmet level. Wtf?

From what I see, generally (except for races), it's the dog walkers and city slicker hikers that litter. Most bikers and hikers who carry trash usually have a backpack or something to haul their own crap out in, but the weekend warriors carrying their coffee cups and water bottles into the forest, dont usually return with them...
  • 2 0
 Nice. Biking might be good for our health, but it's clearly not good for our planet. Hopefuly this (ad)venture will start a movement and encourage folk to think twice about dropping rubbish on the trails we all use.
  • 2 0
 How frikken hard is it to stash your trash in your backpack..? Wrappers can easily be stashed in your pockets..You have to wonder, what these peoples homes look like, if they are so care free to toss trash anywhere..?
  • 3 0
 exactly. if you have space on you for your items wrapped in plastic then you certainly have space on you for that plastic wrap.
  • 1 0
 In my town there’s a lady that goes round chatting to kids in particular asking them to not drop litter in the 1st place as it’s almost always kids on the walk home from school and she also speaks to people to try and encouraging everyone if they are out walking to the shops or whatever if they see litter just pick one piece up and put in a bin. If everyone each time they went out just did that one piece at a time it’s no hassle and would make a big difference.
  • 2 0
 Good on him, and all the people who try to clean up after the world's wasters. Its just a shame the type of people who drop litter are also the type least likely to give a shit about any campaign.
  • 1 0
 Awesome to see thisninitiqyive and cotic getting behind it too. The most trash i see at trails is iaed tp left behind. Theres no excuse for that. If you have to take a dump in the woods, fine. Bury it 6-9" and take a dog poop bag to pack out your used tp. Its a little bit gross, but how can anyone justify leavibg their tp behind?
  • 2 0
 How about crap before you leave your house!? If you have to crap in the woods, you're either homeless or need to change your diet!!

Dog walkers! Pick up your shit, or at least don't let your dog shit in the middle of the trail asswipe!
  • 2 0
 @Beez177: Sometimes you just have to go...
  • 1 0
 Awesome program and good on Cotic for supporting it!

I always try to grab as much litter as I can on rides, my local trails get a lot of weekend hikers just trying to get a good Instagram shot, and kids/bums drinking in the bushes. Neither group cleans up after themselves, so my Camelbak constantly stinks like Frapachinos and stale beer and stuffed to the brim with water bottles, it's nasty, but at least the trails are clean. Everybody talks about "No dig, no ride" but keeping existing trails clean and maintained is just as important as cutting new ones, maybe more important actually.
  • 3 0
 My wife and I hosted a trash pickup day on mt. Lemmon in Tucson. Going to do another this fall. Glad to see others caring about this,but sad that it is so necessary.
  • 1 0
 Awesome job, take it home or choose not to use it! Please also think about the rubbish and trash we leave without thinking, that isn't so visible...wash your riding kit in one of these, it will last longer!

www.sas.org.uk/shop/eco-living/guppy-friend-washing-bag
  • 1 0
 I don't ever see trash on the trails themselves, but the fire roads I ride up to access them them are always a mess. This motivates me to bring a trash bag next time and see what I can pick up.
  • 2 0
 Love the campaign. Keep pushing it and spreading the word. It should really be self-explanatory by now right?
  • 1 1
 I love this, but shouldnt any article not involving the WC be delayed until next week?? It's all kind of white noise atm and something like this should be introduced when it can get more attention.
  • 1 0
 If you see someone drop litter, you should be legally obliged to choke slam the pricks. It's my pet peeve when out for ride.
  • 1 0
 Clicked hoping to see ROCKETMAN cleaning up trash!! He's my favorite super hero!
  • 1 0
 I bet Straightline litters trails, he's that kind of guy.
  • 2 0
 Nice one Dom!
  • 1 0
 Are tearoffs biodegradable?
  • 1 0
 sure, eventually...but realistically, no.
  • 1 0
 @delawhere: Well OK then, sometimes it's nice to be proven wrong. Kudos for posting that.
  • 1 0
 If you litter at all F*#k you
  • 1 0
 Geddon Dom!





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