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Leave No Trace Policy: What To Bring & What to Leave Out

Outdoor activities like camping and hiking and enjoying the scenes of nature got some responsibilities. One of these is ensuring that the environment is protected and clean for both of you and others to continue exploring and enjoying. We got, leave no trace policy to follow to do perfectly this responsibility.

What is a leave no trace policy?

In simple terms, leave no trace is a set of principles and best practices promoted by The Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics, and is generally understood and complied by campers and hikers and other outdoor-loving persons to help ensure our enjoyment of the outdoors isn’t affected by our own imprint or activities. Many of us don’t want to harm our environment intentionally but some activities we do in the outdoors actually affects it.

Principles for leave no trace policy

1)Β  Planning is caring

The first thing you should do is to keep in touch with the park or site you want to take your activities. Know the rules and the things that you can or can’t bring with you. Scheduling your trip during off-peak season is a great idea so that the capacity of the natural resources to host people will not be overloaded.

Use a map, gadget or compass for land navigation and do not use marking paint, flagging or rock cairns.

2)Β  Travel and camp on approved trails and sites

Do not make your own trails and campsites because it will disrupt vegetation and wildlife. Set your camp at least 200 feet from lakes and streams, make them small and perform your activities on areas where vegetation is not present. During hiking walk in a single file formation in the middle of the trail, even when it’s wet or muddy.

3) Dispose of Waste Properly

Pack it in, pack it out. Before you leave be sure to check your campsite and rest areas for trash or spilled foods. Pack out all trash, leftover food and litter. Always leave a place cleaner than you saw it.

Deposit solid human waste in catholes dug 6 to 8 inches deep, at least 200 feet from water, camp, and trails. Cover and disguise the cathole when finished. Some highly active areas require human waste to be packed out, too; check before leaving for your trip to be sure.

Pack out toilet paper and hygiene products you used. Never dumped them elsewhere because it might find its way to sources of water and wildlife foods.

To wash yourself or your dishes, carry water 200 feet away from streams or lakes and use small amounts of biodegradable soap. Strain your dishwater of any food scraps; scatter the strained water away from lakes and streams to avoid contaminating water sources.

4)Β  Leave what you discovered

It’s easy to get awe on things you’ll find and be tempted to bring some going home. You can look at it but do not touch artifacts, cultural or historic structures to preserve the story of the past in that place.

Leave rocks, plants, and other natural objects as you find them in the place. Check your things to avoid introducing foreign species in the site that might disrupt the ecosystem of the place.

Do not build structure, furniture, or dig trenches in the site this might confuse or trap wildlife.

5) Minimize your campfire

Where fires are permitted, use only approved fire rings, fire pans or mound fires.

Keep fires small; use only sticks from the ground that can be broken by your hands.

Burn all wood and coals to ash, put out campfires completely, then scatter cool ashes to avoid wildfire from happening.

6) Respect wildlife

Observe wildlife from a distance so that you’ll not catch attention. Do not follow or approach them they too need privacy so respect it.

Never feed wildlife animals they’re just awesome in their natural habitat. If you bring with you your pets control them well.

Check your trash and food and store them well to protect wildlife.

Avoid wildlife during sensitive times: mating, nesting, raising young, or winter. You might be attacked by them once they notice you. The park is their place you’re just sharing it with them.

7) Consideration to other visitor’s feelings and experience

Respect other visitors in the place and as much as possible stay away in a distant in their campsites. Yield to other users on the trail. Do not make loud noises, music from your device but instead let the sounds of nature be your joy in the place.

Leave no trace is a legacy for future generations

The beauty and experience that you have with nature should stay and remain the same with your kids and the rest of your generation. Complying and promoting leave no trace policy is a legacy.

Check us out for more information on enjoying your camping adventures.

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1 Comment

  • One big pet peeve for me is trash. Not just regular trash folks carelessly leave behind, but things like organic trash and micro trash. That apple core, banana peel, orange peel. Its organic, but it surely doesn’t belong there. Native animals don’t see it as food either. Cat hole your poop, if you must in the woods, pick up after your dog.
    Now to to micro trash…
    That gum wrapper, chip bag corner, and my biggest peeve… cigarette butts….
    Just be more careful, pick up and pack it out, or burn it in your camp fire….

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