Leave No Trace

Derrick Knowles

During last summer’s huge increase in use of public lands, many of our favorite places took a beating from inconsiderate outdoor recreationists. Let’s do better this summer by doubling down on our own Leave No Trace practices and politely reminding others to do the same. And we should all carry extra garbage bags with us wherever we go to pick up the inevitable trash that’s left behind.

  1. Pack out all your trash and any left by others.
  2. Respect wildlife and don’t feed them.
  3. Don’t harsh on the mellow vibe of other nature lovers.
  4. Never leave human waste or toilet paper on the ground. Learn how to burry your waste properly (away from water), pack it all out, or find a restroom.
  5. Don’t collect or disturb native plants or other interesting bits of the natural world.
  6. Limit campfires to conserve downed wood and lower chances of burning the place up.
  7. Plan ahead to avoid emergency violation of Leave No Trace principles. This could happen, for instance, if you forget your stove fuel, forcing you to cook over a campfire where it’s not allowed.
  8. Camp and travel on designated paths and campsites to avoid hacking and tromping your own way through virgin forest or desert.

To learn more about Leave No Trace from the Center for Outdoor Ethics.

[Feature photo by Shallan Knowles.]

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