Hello future and current campers. This spring and summer Ten Sleep has seen an unusual amount of rain fall here as well as in the mountains. Local conversation holds that this is the most water folks have seen in 45+ years. This had a serious affect on those of us in the area that use septic systems to process our waste and gray water. There are no city utilities in the canyon (ie: a sewer system), so we all rely on tanks and leech fields to clean all water that gets flushed or goes down a drain.
The short update is that we continue to offer seven portable toilets instead of our regular four flushing toilets. Three of these toilets are on the back orchard to accommodate folks there as well. They are cleaned and pumped every Monday, and our staff continues to monitor the toilet paper and hand sanitizer, as well as overall condition. All other paid amenities (including showers, wifi, drinking water, restroom hot water sinks, communal refrigerators, and trash disposal) are in working order. If you want additional information keep reading.
Our septic system was designed by an engineering firm to hold waste water beyond our max reservation threshold, and also be deep enough for a parking lot to be securely placed over it. Due to the heavy rains we have had in the area, including all the way through to the first weeks of August, the leech field remains saturated with rain water. The Ten Sleep Creek is steadily higher than usual, which raises the water table, thus the ground water level as well. Pair this with our campers who have reservations and an unusual amount of visiting guests staying elsewhere in the canyon, and you have too much water to absorb in an already full system. We can’t drain ground water by any other means than natural leeching and time. Until we are sure we can safely add additional water to our leech field the flushing toilets will remain off.
We thank those that were here in July, when our system began to show signs of stress. We did our best to create and pay for accessible solutions. We thank those that are still here, and those just arriving, for their understanding. While the portable toilets are the solution for this summer we are continually researching future actions to support the ever growing need of the tourists in the area visiting our forest. We look forward to announcing what those are as we solidify the new projects.
As always, we encourage folks to reach out if they have questions or needs. Most days we can be found on the property working, or in our home which is accessible via the back porch of the big house. You can also call us anytime, and if we don’t answer right away leave a message. The easiest way to reach Valarie is by email or by replying to a reservation confirmation.
Valarie and Louie Anderson