Dunners freedom camper confronted on cam after taking a hefty dump in the street
Freedom campers are leaving their mark on Dunners - and it's got locals in a stink.
Visitors are using the area's wilderness "as a giant toilet" with faeces and toilet paper found scattered around several reserves, Queenstown Mayor Jim Boult says.
He told NZ Newswire freedom campers were welcome in the area but needed to abide by the rules and "not abuse our country".
The northern end of Lake Hayes was hosting 74 campervans at one point and the current bylaws required each to have onboard facilities, he said.
"In my book that means there is a little loo and hand basin inside the vehicle - a lot of these vehicles say they do - but in reality they have a potty under the back seat."
Locals were becoming furious at coming across faeces in reserve areas and didn't want to take their families there anymore.
Not only was using public areas as a toilet an issue - the number of freedom campers in the area was overwhelming.
"Freedom campers are utilising our reserve areas which our population use for recreation and we're getting negative feedback from locals who can't get near picnic spots because they're taken up by campervans," Mr Boult said.
Campers checking into camping grounds or designated Department of Conservation areas was the first step to solving the problem as there were public toilets available at those sites, he said.
While Mr Boult said the area loved to welcome freedom campers, Queenstown Lakes District Council would have to come up with a solution to the problems shortly.
Part of the answer was increasing the number of public toilets - but the minority was spoiling it for the rest, he said.