Ripley LaCross is here to save the day with this great comic on periods in the wilderness.

Erika and I fell a little bit behind so you’re getting this amazing comic a smidge early. I hope you like it as much as I do – Ripley’s the bee’s knees and worked their arse off on it – I think it’s fab. Next week we should be back on track – I think we’re doing a comic on period products for Drawn to Sex- I guess this year’s June has become our unofficial menstruation month =D.

Let Ripley know they are amazing!

↓ Comic Transcript
Quick Transcription and Alt-text of today's comic, Periods in the Wilderness by Ripley LaCross

Header: Oh Joy Sex 2019
A cartoony-drawing style with a light green and brown color palette shows two small tents in the woods. Ripley sits on a rock with a hot mug.
Friend (from inside tent): YAAWWN... Oh. Crap.
Ripley: What's up? Mouse get your Pop-tarts?
Friend (exiting tent): NO, thank goodness, those are safe... Uhg. I started my period. But I'm not due for, what, another week? I didn't even bring anything...
Ripley: Don't worry, I got you.
Friend: Plus, uh, this is my first period while backpacking... There are some things bugging me. Like... how do I keep clean down there? My hands are filthy, could I give myself an infection with these grubby fingers in my delicate bits? What do I even do with blood soaked pads? WHAT ABOUT BEARS? Maybe we should go home...
Ripley: Woah okay. One thing at a time. I can walk you through this.
Friend: You're the best.

Ripley: So, it's totally normal for your cycle to change while backpacking. Intense exercise can make it early or late, your flow could increase or decrease, and on really long adventures it could even stop until you get home. Everyone's different. Between the two of us, if you have absolutely nothing, a clean sock works just fine. Just swap and wash them throughout the day.
Friend: Copy that.
IMAGE: Ripley lays out menstrual aids onto a towel on the ground.
Ripley: So, anyway, I carry a kit! I call it my "Moon Bag"
Friend: Nice!
Ripley: There's the tried and true tampon. Small, lightweight, and easy to use. But they create a lot of waste you'll have to carry out. And the menstrual cup, my favorite. Also small and lightweight, but virtually waste-free! But only carry one vs a dozen or more tampons. It's so worth the learning curve.
Friend: What about my grimy claws?
Ripley: Hand sanitizer! Or biodegradable soap and water. Medical gloves are awesome!

Friend: Right, cool! What about pads?
Ripley: Personally, I don't recommend using pads while backpacking. It's so easy for rashes to develop; you're basically wearing a sponge between your legs. But hike your own hike, y'know? If it works for you, use it!
Friend {taking menstrual cup from the towel]: BRB!
Ripley (as friend returns): Better?
Friend: Much! Thank you.Hey, I still have a few questions. What should I be doing to keep... clean down there? And what do you do when it's time to empty the cup?
Ripley: Baby-wipes are my go-to for cleanup, despite being non-biodegradable. But for the cup you can bury the contents in a cathole! Menstrual blood is safe to bury just like any other human waste.
CAPTION: Man-made products like tampons, pads, wipes, toilet paper, etc shouldn't be buried; they take forever to decompose, if at all. Animals also associate the smel of human waste with nesting material and will dig it up. Pack out your trash. (200 feet away from water, trails, and camps)

Friend: Dange this has been super helpful.
Ripley: No problem, my dude. That's what friends are for! The wilderness can be a frightening place at first. But once you become more familiar with it, and yourself, it's not so bad.
Friend: Wait- What about BEARS?
Ripley: Bears?
Friend: You know, Bears! I've heard how they'll sniff out a period a million miles away. Land Sharks for fresh meat! What's your answer for them?
Ripley: You'll be happy to learn bears don't actually care about your period! There's been studies, and they'd rather eat your food than your used tampons.
Friend: Oh, well that's good.
Ripley: So as long as you store all your food and smellies appropriately you'll be fine. Whether you use a conister, a locker, or hang it from a tree.

Friend (out of breath from hiking): HUFF-PUFF. Hopefully my cramps don't ruin the rest of this trip.
Ripley: Well, exercise is a known remedy for menstrual cramps, so they may not be as bad as usual? You'll just be super sore from hiking. Despite the mess and cramps, you wouldn't let your period stain your experience! Everyone's a beginner at some point in their lives, and this is no different. After a period or two out here, you'll be a pro, trust me.
IMAGE: The two overlook the view of a valley.
Friend: What about Mountain Lions?
Ripley: ...