28 thoughts on “Shitty Hang gliders

  1. Makes me scratch my head…then again…dumbasses. Leave wherever you go better than when you got there. One of the favorite things my dad used to tell me, all us kids and employees. Sound advice. Too bad it is so hard to get people on littering charges, you have all the right info.

  2. Aren’t there laws against littering like that? $500. fine might make them think twice about violating the forest like that again.

  3. When I saw the ‘shitty’ title, I was trying to imagine what they might have done to earn the moniker. I failed to envision the literal interpretation revealed by the last picture. I like the license plate frame too … it seems that actions are speaking louder than words in this case.

  4. Gee Gosh ,,, Those Are V Bad People On This Earth ,,, Wishing for an “Exterminator Pistol” ,, but those people are on our planet, too ,,, Drats !!! and “We Don’t Like Them ”

    So Sorry That You Have Them In Your Face ,,, but ,, No One That I Know would like them there either ,,,, If I knew an instant cure , I would share that with you , right now !!!

    I am So Sorry That You Have to be confronted with them ,,,, especially since you work sooo hard to get that kind,,,, out of your life ,,, well me too ,,, if I can get there ,,, I will share my remedy with you !!

  5. Ohhhh that isn’t right..Geese..People their is a right way and a wrong way..When Nature Calls. Long ago when we were teaching our girls about the Great Outdoors I came across a book. I made sure our girls knew what the right way was and why their is a right way. Its called..LOL..How To Shit In The Woods. Written by Kathleen Meyer. Ten Speed Press, Berkely, Calif. To bad more people do not know that their is a Right Way when Nature Calls. As for finding what you found, Kate..Might be a good idea to carry a fold up shovel. Scoop up that crap along with a good amount of dirt as to not dirty your shovel and deposit it on top of their vehicle. Nice suprise when they return to load that glider. But hey that is just me. Make sure to be around with your camera to capture that look of suprise when they return..and if your feeling real angry put it on their windshild..just a nice little pile..LMAO

  6. as per Sherlock Holmes: Two men, from awesome God country (lots of places claim that, likely local-ish). Not a rented car, outfitted for hang glider. Long drive, big breakfast, ergo much, er, residue deposit. It takes two hours for food to leave the stomach. If they were driving south, probably ate north of Monterey. Maybe Davenport. Driving north, no idea. Deetjen’s is too close. Maybe there’s a glider’s code, poop prior to takeoff. Leave poop to provide DNA in case of fast drop into ocean.
    Two men between the ages of 19 and 26. Accustomed to
    being picked up after, have not had children they had to care for, likely not married unless to very indulgent women. Likely heterosexual, hate to profile but gays would’ve tidied up. Rugged outdoorsmen would’ve covered with dirt or stones. These guys have a roll of toilet paper in the car.
    Conclusion. Out of town spoiled brats, college age, unfamiliar with discomfort, nannies at home, too much work so don’t let your daughter bring them home.

  7. What an appropriately damning photodocumentary. Good work. Seeing this kind of careless and self-centered treatment of such a beautiful place, I’m reminded of a passage from Robinson Jeffers’ /The Double Axe/:
    “The human race is bound to defile, I’ve often noticed it.
    Whatever they can reach or name, they’d shit on the morning star
    If they could reach.”

  8. I am a paraglider pilot who has flown at this site for more than 15 years. You are right to call out this offender. However, I can assure you that this is an anomaly. More often than not, we will go out of our way to pick up trash when we find it at our flying sites. Our unofficial motto is “do no harm.” We usually do a good job of self-policing and I can assure you that any offenders are not welcome at any of our flying sites. We consider this lovely site to be one of the jewels of the west coast paragliding scene. An email recently went out to a paragliding email list to remind pilots be especially mindful when flying this site. I can assure you that this one bad apple doesn’t represent the paragliding community.

  9. Some people don’t know how to poop in the woods. I fly hang-gliders and also know how to poop in the woods. It is only fair to distinguish between the two activities. Hang-gliding is in itself a pretty low impact outdoor activity when compared to other forms of recreation in the area (mountain biking, moto, etc.).

    This post has made it to our clubs’ forums and if the pilots are North of Big Sur they will be publicly shamed for it. As a group we take a lot of pride in properly preserving and respecting the sites we fly.

    Ryan – Santa Cruz

  10. Hi, All,
    This pict and link has made it back to the hangglide community. As a group, we agree with everything said above! We should try to leave the place in a better state than we found it. We are going to try to police this ourselves – the photo with the license plate will go far. For our community, I apologize. As you probably know, it takes only a few bad actors to leave a very bad impression of the whole group.
    Sorry again. Scott S.

  11. Please let me apologize on behalf of these idiots. We as hang glider pilots DO NOT condone this kind of activity. Please let this be the one bad apple. As a whole the hang glide and paraglider family would never
    put up with this type of behavior. I would hope and suggest that the photographer show these pictures to the perpetrators and ask them to make amends according to the park service.

  12. As a hang glider pilot who has flown and loved Big Sur for over 25 years, I am embarrassed by the actions depicted here. This is not the kind of action that would be condoned by most pilots and I wish you luck in tracking these guys down.

  13. Yes, disgusting. However, this is not a fair representation of any of the free flight comunities. I have never and will never allow any member of any Mountain flying trip to leave any garbage or s$#t. We take pride in leaving things as we found them. I have been a member of the hang gliding and paragliding community since 1984. Please, please, do not think of these “A-holes” lack of courtesy as standard for the many considerate pilots out there. There are bad eggs in all communities.


  14. I, and I suspect most of my readers, do not judge all hang gliders by the actions of these two. We appreciate the support of the hang gliding community in policing these kinds of actions.

    Plaskett Launch was closed for similar behavior, but that Santa Barbara group left their “tokens” right next to my spring – my water source. I did find it enlightening to read comments on the hang glider site below. Some of the members were very concerned about this behavior, and others incredibly insensitive and uncaring — Indicative of the human condition, not that of hang gliders. It always amazes me to see the range of characteristics we humans are capable of.


  15. Hi Kate,

    As you can see the foot launch flying community is very concerned about the impact this individual has had. Not only will your concerns be shared among all the SF Bay Area Hang gliding Clubs but I am sure it will reach readership of most of out national organization as well.

    President of ‘Wings of Rogallo’

  16. I am a hang glider pilot, and past-president of the Sylmar Hang Gliding Association. I wish to publicly apologize for the behavior of my fellow pilot. His/Her behavior is not typical.

    Our local club visits this area, and I have flown there on-and-off for about 28 years. We strive to leave things as we found them.

    I intend to post a link to this site on our club forum so that others may be reminded of appropriate behavior. If I knew who the offending pilot was, I’d make it a point to remind him/her of more correct action and attitude.

    Again, my apologies for the shortcomings of my fellow pilot.

  17. Hello Kate,

    I’m sorry you had to deal with these knuckleheads. However, I’m glad you documented their actions because the hang gliding community is a close knit one and it won’t be long before the offenders are revealed by their peers and roundly criticized.

    Over the years we have had to go through a lot of effort to keep our sites open and as such we have found that being good stewards of the public and private land we fly from has allowed us to continue to use these resources. We are in fact the ones who typically end up picking up after the general public.

    Sorry you had to deal with this and thank you for bringing it to our attention!


    – Andy (Beginning my 38th year of hang gliding)

  18. Completely unacceptable. Kate I am so sorry this has happened.
    As a pilot I must say I am embarrassed and ashamed . I am hopeful this fool will found out and dealt with. If I find out who it was I will have some words for him !

  19. I have been a hang glider pilot for over 30 years. I am a biologist and naturalist, and I have never met a more environmentally caring and considerate group of people. We take pride in our responsible use of wild lands, and our low impact activity. It is the norm for hang glider pilots to clean up after less considerate users, and leave the places we use cleaner than we found them.

    I am disgusted by the thoughtless actions of whoever is responsible here. Good job documenting this and shaming those responsible.

    Leo Jones
    president Sonoma Wings

  20. A big deal about something so small, an indication of the mind with the obcession to make all this fuss , while pollititions send soldiers to kill Iraques and Afghans by the hundreds of thousands. Dont play this persons stupid game, it was just the call of nature in natural surroundings, people dont always carry spades to dig holes and a bit of toilet paper will soon degrade.This person has nothing better in their lives

  21. OK Kate i’ve got to say it after reading all the comments… Does a Bear shit in the woods?

    Well at least 2 people did from the looks of it. LOL

    I also own a copy of how to ‘Poop in the Wilds’. If it can’t be carried out, at least BURY it.

  22. OK, we’ve all redgisted our disapprovel so for those not versed in how to shit in the wood perhaps a mini symposium on the techiques might be helpful.
    I take a small garden trowel, dig a hole and bury the poduct. Or I take a plastic doggie bag, doing the standard Doggie-bag Poop Pickup techique.
    Any suggestions, comments?


  23. The excerpt from Big Sur Kate is not true. Overall, we had a great relationship with the USFS and the land. Ralph and Kate claimed ownership of the Plaskett launch and in the interest of being “good neighbors” the USFS gave in to them. We did not get a good shake on that one. I did a lot of work and tried to get access to this site restored, and I do not fault the locals for wanting privacy. I just think they (Kate) should tell the truth.
    Plaskett Launch was closed for similar behavior,

    bigsurkate said this on January 13, 2011 at 10:44 pm

  24. Tim, the truth is that the Santa Barbara hang gliders DID shit near my water source on January 14th, 1996, after Kathleen Jordan told the BSMAAC meeting on January 13th, 1996 that the USFS was working “with” the landowners to resolve problems, and then they showed up unexpectedly the next day. That is when I started researching easements, roads, access and the gates and with the cooperation of the USFS put them up where the USFS surveyor told me to. The Plaskett Launch was between the gates. By April, it was a done deal.

    The “Knobette” where this was taken is not a “legal” launch point. I have not complained, nor mentioned the fact that it is being used to the USFS, and not on the weekends, as the Knob is restricted to, nor have I pointed out that the permit process and 25 person limit is being exceeded, because I have no gripe with the hand gliders. EXCEPT when they shit everywhere, and leave a mess. That is the only point I was making.

    My son and I stopped at the knobette after I posted these shots so he could retrieve the wind flag left behind, and he found another five spots where someone had defecated just off the road on the launch side. In fact, the next group of hang gliders to use this spot would have had to walk through all this shit to take off.

    it is up to all of you to police yourselves. That’s all I was saying. If unsanitary and unsightly conditions are continually noted around launch points, then, yes, you stand a chance of losing them – particularly if they are not legal spots to begin with.

  25. Hi Kate,
    You know I love you and I am a hang glider pilot. I respect the Mountain and would never just shit in your back yard.This is why
    hang glider pilots have lost the privilege to fly you launch on your land at Big Sur. I get that there is always one bad apple in the barrel that ruins it for all the other apples.
    As part of the hang gliding community of California, I would like to say i am sorry that some thoughtless person in my community,loves the land less than you and I. With love and respect….Teddy Mack,your friend and hang glider pilot, The windgypsy

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