Upper Mississippi River National Wildlife and Fish Refuge Hot Spot Week - Winona, MN

Event type: 
Outreach Events
Monday, July 9, 2018 (All day) to Monday, July 16, 2018 (All day)
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The Upper Mississippi National Wildlife and Fish Refuge is experiencing severe impacts from outdoor activities and is one of twenty  Leave No Trace Hot Spots in 2018.

The refuge stretches along 261 miles of the Mississippi River and spans more than 240,000 acres. This Hot Spot focuses on the Winona District which manages about 45 miles and 40,000 acres of refuge. The majority of the 500,000 annual visits to this area occur during the summer and is comprised visitors using boats (motorized and non-motorized) to access backwaters and islands for day uses such as fishing, sunbathing, and picnicking but also for overnight camping. On a busy day, long stretches of beaches are filled with hundreds of people at one spot. This high visitation has caused numerous recreation-related impacts including litter, the erosion of shoreline and damage to trees from large boat wakes, and the transport of invasive species on boats.

As a Leave No Trace Hot Spot, the refuge will receive a week of targeted training, education programs, and service work with agency staff, key stakeholders, and members of the local community. The overall goals include long-term improvement of resource conditions, increased awareness of impacts at the refuge, elevated Leave No Trace programs within agency management plans, and increased use of Leave No Trace skills and ethics by the visiting public.

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