Leave No Trace and the Appalachian Trail

Wickes, AR : The Appalachian Trail (AT) is a 2,175 mile hike from Georgia to Maine.  It can be hiked daily, in sections or as a thru-hike.  The Appalachian Trail has seen record numbers of thru-hikers over the last few years.  The Appalachian Trail has been featured in films, books and social media by the likes of Bill Bryson, Appalachian Impressions and others. 



When we educate the public about Leave No Trace it is a common thought that the more people that get outside the more our outdoor spaces suffer.  While this can be true at Leave No Trace we teach our Seven Principles to lessen the impacts that we create in the outdoors.  Our goal at Leave No Trace is to educate the public about outdoor ethics so that our impacts will lessen, stop or even decrease.

One of our founding partners, the Appalachian Trail Conservancy (ATC) is a local champion of Leave No Trace along the Appalachian Trail.  The Appalachian Trail Conservancy’s mission is to preserve and manage the Appalachian Trail – ensuring that its vast natural beauty and priceless cultural heritage can be shared and enjoyed today, tomorrow, and for centuries to come.  The Appalachian Trail Conservancy advocates Leave No Trace by holding Master Educator courses, Trainer Courses, Awareness Workshops, and by involving local communities with the Appalachian Trail in positive ways ranging from clean-ups to festivals and everything in between.

The Appalachian Trail Conservancy has several ongoing studies about the impacts that hikers, mainly thru-hikers have on the Appalachian Trail.  This is an interesting topic since the number of thru-hikers continues to increase every year.  This year the Appalachian Trail Conservancy has reported and increase in ethical hikers along the Appalachian Trail.  They have found a shift in perception about Leave No Trace along the Appalachian Trail, namely through an increase in trowel use for disposing of human waste properly (Principle 3).  This is great news for our outdoor spaces!  If the Appalachian Trail can do it, we all can. Learn more about how to become a more ethical hiker HERE.

a teaching.jpg




Check out the positive information collected by the Appalachian Trail Conservancy click HERE

For more information on the Appalachian Trail Conservancy click HERE

Travel Well,

Amanda and Greg - Subaru/Leave No Trace Traveling Trainer Team East Central

Leave No Trace’s Amanda Neiman and Greg Smith are part of the 2016 Subaru/Leave No Trace Traveling Trainer Program that provides free, mobile education to communities across the country. Proud partners of this program include Subaru of America, REI, Fjall Raven, ENO, Deuter, Thule, Taxa Outdoors and SmartWool.