Keepers of the Kern clean up after 4th of July

A volunteer group is tidying up what was left behind by campers this past weekend on the Kern River.

"There were probably 5,000 people here on the river," said Barbara Hinkey, co-founder of cleanup group Keepers of the Kern. "Where we are, there's not nearly as much trash as there was before," she said.

The group estimates around 60 percent less scattered trash was left behind in upper Kern River campgrounds compared to Independence Day weekend last year.

Dumpsters at one campsite 23ABC visited were overflowing with bagged trash surrounding them. The Keepers of the Kern teamed up with the the U.S. Forest Service and other organizations to help bring 11 extra dumpsters and 13 extra portable toilets to campgrounds in the area.

"Down on the beach where people camp there's less garbage, less trash, but what we have seen is an increase of toilet paper and human waste," said co-founder Rex Hinkey.

Volunteers passed out trash bags and flyers to campers over the weekend on proper waste disposal.

The Keepers expect to be cleaning up campgrounds along the river until at least Wednesday.

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