National Mall smells like cow poop

National Mall smells like cow poop
(Image: Wikimedia Commons, Daniel Schwen)

A rank odor that visitors likened to cow deposits was borne on the breeze this week from a large mud flat left behind from Saturday’s Global Citizen 2015 Earth Day rally, just northeast of the [Washington] Monument.

“The mud flat was caused by a combination of overuse and rain at inopportune times,” National Park Service spokesman Mike Litterst said in an e-mail Wednesday.

“With the turf restoration going on along the National Mall, events that might normally take place there are being moved to the Washington Monument grounds, creating almost constant use this time of year,” he said. …

The odor was especially strong Tuesday, when passersby were seen covering their noses with scarves, but lingered into Wednesday. …

“The rain that falls and seeps under the flooring creates a perfect ecosystem of decaying organic material, so once the flooring was removed, the odor of rotting organic materials and mud was unleashed,” [Litterst] said.

“Smells like cow poop,” a youngster from a Fairfax County public school said Wednesday as she and her classmates held their noses near 15th Street and Constitution Avenue NW.

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