A head in a box, animal remains, tyres and alcohol bottles were just some of the rubbish that left volunteers feeling ''gobsmacked'' and ''disgusted'' on Saturday.
Mrs Rotorua 2019, Kristal Pehi, says about 20 volunteers joined her at Mountain Rd to pick up rubbish with the support of the Lake Council and Smart Environmental.
They collected about 5.5 tonnes and she says there will be more clean up days and the Miss Rotorua Foundation Trust want to make it a yearly event.
Kristal was inspired to get stuck in after discovering people had been dumping rubbish all over the place on her walks during the Covid-19 lockdown.
She paid credit to those who joined her on the collection and says they were true ''earth warriors''.
''It was just so awesome, although it was back-breaking work getting 5.5 tonnes of rubbish out. We had to push through the disgusting smell that was coming from an animal's head in a box and a carcass and all the rubbish that was dumped in the native bush area.''
Now our land can breath again to grow new life.
''Look after the land and the land will look after us. Everyone felt so good knowing they had helped make the area clean again and are really keen to help do it all again.''
Kristal urged everyone to stop roadside littering.
Rotorua Lakes Council's waste manager Prashant Praveen says it spends $100,000 a year to clean up illegal dumping.
People often suggest people dump rubbish because of landfill costs.
''But the reality is that there is a substantial cost involved in disposing of the community's rubbish and if the landfill were fees-free, the burden of that cost would fall only on ratepayers.''
There are illegal dumping 'hot spots' in both urban and rural neighbourhoods, he says.
''While the majority of illegal dumping takes place in urban areas, typically larger dumping cases occur in rural areas. Council uses preventative measures such as reducing the surrounding vegetation, installing CCTV cameras, signage, public rubbish bins or working alongside the community to implement strategies to reduce the likelihood of dumping.''
Meanwhile, Prashant says, The Miss Rotorua Foundation Trust did a fantastic job and we thank them on behalf of our community.
''The trust approached council with their plan and we were happy to provide advice and resources to assist. Volunteers from our waste collection contractor Smart Environmental helped in the clean up, and provided high-visibility vests, rubbish bags, gloves and a skip bin.''
Illegal dumping consequences
* Illegal dumping and littering are governed by the Litter Act 1979 and councils can either issue an infringement or file charges. This decision would be made in accordance with the type and severity of the littering/dumping.
* An infringement can be up to $400 and a fine resulting from prosecution can be up to $5000 per individual involved. If the 'litter' could endanger someone or cause injury or sickness, for example broken bottles, the fine can be up $7500 per person involved.