How to take a $#@% in the woods when it is raining sideways…

This is another little trick I learned while down in Patagonia last month covering the Patagonia Expedition Race. It rained a lot which is not that unusual – though for a desert dweller like myself that much rain and especially sideways rain is an interesting phenomenon. And at times it was pretty comical trying to stay dry. Sooner or later you just gave up and accepted it. And once accepted it wasn’t that bad.

But in an attempt at comedy I’ll give you the low down on how to keep your buns dry while going #2 during a driving rainstorm! Here goes:

1. Suit up in full rain gear. A nice Gore-Tex jacket and pants are essential to staying warm and somewhat dry in the harsh Patagonia climate. If you have pants that have zippers on both sides this will come in handy for pit stops.
2. Choose your spot and dig a hole which shouldn’t be too hard because the ground is by now well saturated.
3. Face the rain. Put your face into the driving rain, push down your long underwear and unzip those fancy Gore-Tex pants to about mid thigh. Keep the front flap tucked up into your jacket and pull the rear flaps forward a bit to keep them out of the way but not so much so that they get wet on the inside.
4. Commence the task at hand.
5. Once finished, pull out the toilet paper (if you have some – otherwise rocks and leaves are pretty good but be careful with leaf selection) and clean up.
6. (Optional) As a final rinse, pull the back Gore-Tex flap up and turn around so that your cheeks face the driving rain. It’s like a cold shower!
7. Bury your poop!
8. Zip up and run back to the tent. Or look forward to slogging through miles of jungle like peat bog and beaver infested trail-less wilderness. Enjoy.

Perhaps I had too much time to contemplate the finer details of trekking in the Cordillera Darwin at the end of the world. More to come soon….

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