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Everyday, people seek the outdoors for adventure, kinship, exercise, solitude and all forms of enjoyment. Yet the places we have explored and adored for years are impacted by recreational use, some more severely than others. We call these areas Hot Spots –sites that are damaged but that can recover and become healthy again after specific Leave No Trace applications. By identifying and working with Hot Spots across the nation, we rapidly move toward recovering and protecting the places we cherish for future generations.
In 2015, the Center received 67 nominations for Hot Spots, and has selected 16 geographically and ecologically diverse sites, nationwide. Volunteers participated in community based projects in their parks, and the Center engaged with partners and friends’ groups around the nation to begin activating Leave No Trace in communities far and wide.
2016 Leave No Trace Hot Spot Locations
This program supports community-driven projects on public lands that work to improve the condition of a designated Hot Spot using Leave No Trace education, resources, volunteers and training.
2016 Hot Spots will receive the following:
Now in its sixth year, the Leave No Trace Hot Spot program and events are designed to raise awareness about natural areas around the country facing the threat of irreversible environmental damage. With more than 1.6 billion people visiting public lands each year, many outdoor areas across our nation are negatively impacted by recreational use. We are literally loving our land to death. The reason is usually not malicious or intent to harm nature and wildlife; rather it’s simply lack of knowledge or skills. The end result however is usually the same: litter, invasive species, habituated wildlife, dog waste, trail and campsite erosion, water sources polluted with human waste and more.
The specific week-long Leave No Trace training, conducted by expert Subaru/Leave No Trace Traveling Trainers, includes special events and programs for local officials, land managers, volunteers and the general public.
High-use weekend at the San Gabriel River, just an hour from Los Angeles, CA.
In 2015 Leave No Trace selected twelve Hot Spots across the country and conducted special Leave No Trace events and community trainings including:
2015 Hot Spot Locations
To read the comprehensive, 2015 Hot Spot Report click here.
Hot Spot Testimonials
McAfee Knob is known as the most photographed place on the Appalachian Trail. The trail leading up to the Knob is facing the harm of detrimental impacts including campsite creation, campsite widening, trail widening, litter, human waster issues and crowding. Watch the video below to see Andrew Downs, the Regional Director for the Virginia Regional office of the Appalachian Trail Conservancy, discuss the work done and the benefits of the Hot Spot week.