Education

Having The (Pooping in the Woods) Talk with Your Kids

Indianapolis, IN: As children get older, they seek out ways to assert their independence: taking responsibility for different parts of their lives, consulting friends rather than parents for advice, and, sometimes, taking the easy way instead of the right way out of situations. For outdoors-loving families, one of the ways kids assert themselves - and at a young age - is taking care of bathroom requirements on their own. While it's easy to do with the toilets they're used to, on trails and trips where there are no toilets, it can be much easier to form bad habits, especially...

Five Great Leave No Trace Educational Resources

Boulder, CO: Summer is slowly winding down and school is starting up, which means reading, writing, arithmetic…and Leave No Trace! We believe Leave No Trace should be part of every child’s educational experience. In fact, that’s the motivation behind our Leave No Trace for Every Kid initiative. While the Traveling Trainers reach thousands of kids each year with direct Leave No Trace education, we know that parents, teachers, scout leaders, camp staff, and everyone with kids in his or her life can play a pivotal role in helping them develop an outdoor ethic. While on the road...

Making the Grade: Measuring the Power of a Leave No Trace Education

Boulder, CO: Leave No Trace for Every Kid is one of the Center’s major initiatives, with the overarching goal of providing Leave No Trace education for any kid who spends time outside. The Center has developed an array of educational materials for young people, from elementary schoolers through college-aged participants. A key component is evaluation—what are kids really getting out of outdoor experiences that Leave No Trace helps provide? In 2016, the Center gained valuable and deeply encouraging insights that suggest we are on the right track. These indications came from...

Would You Invite Yourself Back? Leave No Trace at Festivals

Coeur D’Alene, ID : Love a festival? Us too! Music, dancing, food, fun and friends…what’s not to like? Well…maybe a few things. Bringing thousands of people together can have negative impacts on the land, wildlife, and on visitors and locals. But, with a bit of planning and knowledge, festival fun doesn’t have to keep you from being on your best Leave No Trace behavior! Check out this video for easy things everyone can do to Leave No Trace at festivals, then read on for even more tips and tricks. 1. An easy way to create less waste at festivals is to arrive with less waste...

Leave No Trace Skills Series: Repackaging Food

Eagle, CO: Planning what food you're going to bring on a multi-day trip outdoors can be a fraught endeavor, as you attempt to balance dietary restrictions, caloric needs for your exertions, and space considerations for your adventure. Take some of the stress out of your planning by repackaging your food according to these simple tips: Get rid of unnecessary boxes and containers to reduce both the bulk you're carrying and the amount of trash you'll have to carry out. Crackers and chips sometiems come in non-resealable bags - use rubber bands or small clips to keep the crumbs...

Too Much of a Good Thing? Outdoor "Meccas" and Leave No Trace

Cascadia, OR: We recently spent nine days in and around the lauded outdoor town of Bend, Oregon, named Outside Magazine’s “Best Multi-Sport Town” for 2017. It’s clear how Bend earned this title. In any given day in Bend, you will see people riding their bikes, paddling kayaks or sailing boats in the Cascade Lakes, paddle boarding or tubing on the Deschutes River, or testing their whitewater skills in the newly opened downtown whitewater park. Even in the 90+ degree high desert summer heat, you’ll see evidence of winter sports’ hold on Bend residents, with “skiers” in shorts...

America's Newest National Park

First State National Historical Park, DE: The Beaver Valley is home to lush foliage, wildlife, vast rolling hills, and some our country’s earliest history. Nominated as a 2017 Leave No Trace Hot Spot, this newly established national park offers endless recreational activities for all families to enjoy. “Every Monday morning we pick up about thirty bags of litter from the Smith Bridge Picnic Area.” – Ethan McKinley, Superintendent Located next to the waters of the Brandywine Creek, the Smith Bridge Picnic Area is a beautiful place for families to enjoy...

How Many Piles of Poop in a Mile?: The Forest Park Hot Spot

How Many Piles of Poop in a Mile? Forest Park Hot Spot, June 19-26, 2017 Portland, OR: “It’s a forest in my backyard.” One visitor told us this on a cool June morning during the Forest Park Hot Spot in Portland, Oregon. She wasn’t exaggerating. Forest Park is the largest urban park in the United States. Just steps away from sidewalks, paved roads and, yes, lots of backyards, Forest Park is 5,172 acres of northwest forest in the middle of Portland. (By comparison, Central Park in New York City is 843 acres.) With 80 miles of wooded trails and forest roads, it’s a haven for daily walkers,...

Riverside Picnicking

Lake of the Ozarks, MO: The thought of summer conjures up mental images of hot days, cool drinks, and as much time spent by the water as possible. We've had the pleasure of being around a lot of rivers this summer, and thought we'd share our Leave No Trace tips for riverside picnics! Things to consider: Preparation is Key. Make sure you plan ahead and prepare by picking a day where the weather looks great. Sunscreen will help save your skin from the water's glare, and insect repellent will keep away the bugs who love the water as much as you do. Stay...

Are You a Considerate Mountain Biker?

Worley, ID : Whether you travel on two feet or on two wheels, word on the trail is that mountain bikers and hikers CAN get along! Are you a considerate mountain biker? Find out if the cyclist in our video can win over the wary hiker and read on for easy things you can do to be a bike ambassador on the trail. 1. Mountain bikers yield to everyone else. Because of their speed and mechanical advantage, cyclists should pause and move off trail, if necessary, to allow hikers and horses to safely pass. For an easy way to yield the trail AND look pro, practice the...

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