To be earth and trail friendly, you're supposed to avoid riding straight through muddy ruts because it erodes the trail and makes it worse. The paradox? By trying to go around it, your wheel will inevitably wash out, slide into the rut, and either make you very messy if not cause you to lose control of the bike. And you'll still make the rut deeper and erode the trail.
Fortunately, I just got really muddy and didn't eat it.