Tuolumne County Solid Waste Division's Pinecrest Transfer Station is open 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Fridays, Saturdays and Mondays this summer. The street address is 30740 Highway 108 and the phone number is (209) 965-3520.

It costs $11.15 to dump one can of garbage, $22.30 to dump two cans of garbage, and $25.40 to dump a yard of garbage equal to six garbage cans.

Pinecrest Transfer Station accepts mixed recycling and used motor oil free of charge. The facility does not accept bulk items such as mattresses or furniture, hazardous waste or fluorescent bulbs.

Buffy Bandley has been in the Pinecrest and Strawberry area since the 1950s, and she is concerned about people dumping waste on and near Highway 108.

“The big issue is trash, the trash that visitors are throwing around on the highway and in the woods,” Bandley said Tuesday. “And I believe property owners are doing the same thing.”

Bandley said she grew up in a cabin at Pinecrest, and she’s been a resident of Strawberry since 1971.

“Several times people find trash and they find mail with names and addresses on it,” Bandley said. “Some of these people have property around here.”

In the past six months, Bandley said she’s seen trash left on roads, on Highway 108 and in the town of Strawberry.

Dumped refuse included household trash, fast food containers, beer cans, soda cans and leftovers from cooking.

‘They just throw their trash out’

Bandley said she is on the Board of Directors for the Strawberry Property Owners Association, which has 150 to 200 members.

She said there used to be a dump in Pinecrest but it closed two or three years ago.

“Now if you’re a local you have to drive your garbage to Sonora or you have to get home pickup,” Bandley said.

“The problem is visitors have nowhere to dump their garbage except in designated campgrounds,” Bandley said. “If they're driving down the highway they just throw their trash out. It's gotten worse since the dump closed.”

A solid waste manager with Tuolumne County said the Pinecrest Transfer Station was closed from November 2015 to August 2016, but it’s been open since then and is currently open three days a week for summer.

Dave Tingey lives off Highway 108 in the Cold Springs area. He was going fishing at Fraser Flat when he came across a trash pile Saturday on Forest Road 4N69 off Spring Gap Road.

Some of the trash is mail with names and addresses in La Grange in Stanislaus County.

‘Household trash’

Tingey got so mad he took the mail trash to Summit Ranger Station at the Pinecrest junction on Highway 108.

“We don't appreciate them people from out of here trashing our area,” Tingey said. “This wasn’t even camping trash. This is their household trash.”

Tingey also took photos and posted them online with a message for whoever dumped the garbage: “I found your names and addresses. They have been turned into the Forest Service. I hope you enjoy the ticket and never come here again!”

Tingey said he’s been living and working about 20 years along Highway 108, from Twain Harte to Cold Springs. He said he was a volunteer firefighter at Station 55 in Pinecrest four to five years.

“I’m tired of people dumping trash up here,” Tingey said Tuesday on Forest Road 4N69. “From Little Sweden, which is always a problem, to places like this, it’s disgusting. There’s been a lot of crime recently, cabin break-ins, a lot of transients.”

Tingey said he planned to return and clean up the garbage dumped on 4N69, but he’s going to need more trash bags. He said he also plans to attend a meeting with the Friends of Pinecrest at 9:30 a.m. Saturday at Dodge Ridge.

“One subject is going to be break-ins,” Tingey said. “The Sheriff’s Office and Forest Service are supposed to be there. We don’t have deputies up here any more, not like down the hill.”

Diana Fredlund with Stanislaus National Forest public affairs said anyone caught dumping trash in the forest can face a fine of $300 per citation violation.

17911946