Education

Would You Drink It?

Ithaca, New York: Public lands are a massive source of drinking water in the United States. 180 million Americans get their drinking water from National Forest lands alone. Not only are we drinking this water, wildlife and vegetation depend on it as well. Drinking is not the only use for these water sources; they are also the places we love to hike, camp, paddle, and play on. To keep our water sources clean, we need to be mindful of what we are putting into them while we are there. There are many products that we use while recreating that can contaminate water when used too...

Lansing Isn't...

Lansing, MI: Lansing City Parks are a lot of things. They’re cool swimming pools. And favorite fishing spots. Lansing City Parks are the heart of the city. They’re playgrounds, kayak trips, and basketball courts for shooting hoops. Lansing parks are great places for a basketball game with friends. And they’re more than 20 miles of riverside trails for morning runs, long walks, wildlife watching, family bike rides, and even skateboarding with friends. More visitors are discovering that Lansing is a great place to paddle. But check out this video from the City of...

3 Tips for Protecting Sea Turtles

Hampton, VA: Going to the beach this summer? You may not know it, but the months of May through early October are prime sea turtle nesting season in North America. Right now, there may be a mama turtle laying a nest of over 100 little eggs on a beach near you. Check out our video and blog below for three easy things you can do to help protect these beautiful creatures! Tip #1: Pack up your stuff and throw away trash - It's easy for your things to get away from you on a windy day on the beach, and it might seem convenient to leave your beach chair or sun shade out on the sand...

Bigfoot, reporting live from the Girl Scout Jamboree

Flagstaff, Arizona-- Big news on Bigfoot! Our favorite furry spokes-monster turned up at the Arizona Cactus-Pine Girl Scout Jamboree last month. Here he is, reporting live for Channel 7, on the seven principles of Leave No Trace. Leave No Trace's Joe Besl and Joe Creaghead are part of the 2018 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, Eagles Nest...

10 Ways to Create Less Trash at Camp

Cape Hatteras, NC - Ever seen a ton of trash piled next to trash cans at your campsite? What about litter scattered around the campground? Maybe you pack things out, but are you doing these 10 things to create less trash in the first place? Why Does it Matter? We all produce a lot of trash while camping. From cooking, to cleaning, to hydrating, much of what we do creates waste and adds to our footprint. Camp trash can cause a lot of impacts too. If we do not Dispose of Waste Properly it can attract wildlife and lead to unintentionally feeding them. Our food and trash can...

How to Leave No Trace in City Parks

Washington, DC.: Visiting your local city park is a great way to get outdoors and connect with nature. While these parks are a little different than visiting the backcountry, humans can still have a big impact on the landscape. There are some things you will want to take into consideration when visiting to help minimize those impacts. Consider the paths you take while walking around the park. When you can, stick to trails or boardwalks to avoid damaging non-durable vegetation. Try not to cut corners or take shortcuts, as these areas can be hot spots for impacts. When you do veer off the main...

Kanarra in the Coal Mine

KANAB, UTAH-- The Joes started the year in Southern Utah, which seemed like another planet compared to our Midwestern roots. Slot canyons are wild, y’all! Immediately after hiking part of Buckskin Gulch, we stopped at a Kanab coffeeshop, picked up a copy of The Southern Utah Independent , and saw a story that caught our eyes. Local land managers had imposed fees on a similar slot canyon just 50 miles northwest. Why? Human waste! According to the SU Independent , Kanarra Falls Canyon has seen a significant uptick in users with an equivalent increase in impacts,...

Skills Series: Grey Water Disposal

Pocahontas State Park, Virginia: When camping, we produce wastewater, or “grey water,” whenever we wash ourselves or our clothing, clean our dishes or brush our teeth. Check out our video to learn more about how you can protect your favorite camping areas by properly disposing your grey water: Improper grey water disposal can pollute streams, harm wildlife and diminish other visitors’ experiences, so it’s important to learn how to deal with it properly. Even biodegradable soap can linger a long time in streams and lakes, and the food scraps from dirty dish water can attract wildlife, who...

Fees vs. Taxes: Feed the Iron Ranger

Loma Mar, California: Ever hiked right past that “Iron Ranger,” one of those tamper-resistant fee boxes found at a day-use area, trailhead, or campground, and thought, “I pay my taxes, don’t I?” It’s true that tax revenues help fund our public lands, but as a percentage of the federal budget, we’re not talking about a lot of your tax money. Let’s say your family paid $7,000 in federal taxes last year. According to our modest calculations, [1] you’ll have contributed $5.38 toward the National Parks’ budget and $8.49 toward the U.S. Forest Service budget. And, with wildfire suppression costs up...

APRIL FOOL'S! New Cathole Depth Requirement Announced [NOT REALLY!]

[APRIL FOOL'S ! THIS IS NOT A REAL THING.] Boulder, Colorado: The Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics, a leading provider of outdoor education resources, today announces new guidelines for digging catholes. While creating a cathole remains an ecologically sound technique for dealing with solid waste in outdoor settings, recent research shows that the previous recommendation for the depth of a cathole may be insufficient in some biomes. Photo: In accordance with Principle 3 , make sure that your cathole...

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