Litter along the Root River - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

Litter along the Root River

LANESBORO (KTTC) -- Lanesboro is a big tourist spot in southeastern, Minnesota, but some of the recreation that goes on along the river is causing an eyesore.

Over the past few years the tubing industry in Lanesboro has skyrocketed.  Tubers or people using other watercraft down the river are taking drinks or food with them along their ride, but not taking them out when they are finished.

As the summer turns hot.

"Nobody wants a dirty river," said Tim Hansen

The popularity of recreation grows on the root river. With the increasing population comes the inevitable, more litter.

"About halfway down here you see some beer cans on the left side, up on the bank," said Hansen. "And most of the trash was where you got off, where people dumped their trash."

There is a state law for littering in Minnesota, but there's not enough man power to monitor it on the river and that's why some business owners in Lanesboro are doing what they can to help keep the river in good shape.

"We also send one of our own crew out on a kayak or canoe every week or two of them to patrol the river from here down to the landing which is the most heavily used," said Michael Charlebois, owner of Root River Outfitters.

But for the tubers or anyone else going down the river, there are no trash cans available to dump their trash.

"If the town people or the police department are complaining about other people complaining about other people throwing their trash," said Hansen. "I would think it would be better, a lesser of two evils. You'd rather see garbage in on the ground or in a garbage can where it belongs. I would think you'd rather have a garbage can. I'd be a lot cleanlier and sanitary."

A dumpster at the end would help a lot. The cost doesn't seem to be in the DNR's budget as to who wants to pay for it or whatever but the fact that there is no dumpster at the end is part of the problem," said Charlebois.

And without trash cans the litter along the root river could start to pile up.

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