Education

Authority of the Resource

How do you approach someone that is doing something that is, “Less than Leave No Trace”, maybe they are littering, feeding wildlife, carving their name into a tree, or taking an antler shed out of the environment. Whatever the issue is, there is a technique that you can use called the Authority of the Resource (AR) developed by Dr. George N. Wallace. Using AR can help a person confront and influence people that are doing something that damages the environment or other people’s recreational experiences. According to Webster’s, “authority” means “the power to influence or command thought,...

Hunting Ethics

Hunting is a great American pastime and helped shape many of our first public lands. Hunting has the potential to be very impactful on the environment if individuals are careless with their actions. The Leave No Trace Principles for Hunting cover how we can minimize our impact while hunting. The Center views hunting as a legitimate, traditional and acceptable outdoor recreational pursuit. The Center respects the long-standing tradition of hunting on public lands, expects all hunters to abide by all applicable state game and hunting laws, and encourages all hunters to adhere to the Leave No...

Leave No Trace Fishing

Roaring River State Park, Missouri: This past weekend we spent time fishing and hiking at a trout stocked, spring fed river in Missouri. Missouri State Parks stocks the Roaring River with up to 1,400 rainbow and brown trout on busy weekends for the 600 plus anglers that visit and attempt to either catch their first fish or a lunker. There are over 50 million anglers in United States, making it one of the most popular and oldest sports. With such a large amount of people getting out to use the nation’s waterways, utilizing Leave No Trace skills and ideas can alleviate the impacts that anglers...

Caves

Carlsbad Caverns, Arizona: Caves are one of nature’s most amazing environments to explore and challenge oneself in. Unfortunately, visitors to caves can have an impact on the fragile features and wildlife that exists under our feet. If people use good judgment and travel through caves with knowledgeable people, then cave related impacts can be minimized. In order to find knowledgeable cavers, check your local chapter of the National Speleological Society (NSS). In order to plan ahead and prepare for your cave travels, educate yourself on a variety of topics. Ask for permission before entering...

Coastal Environments

Charleston, South Carolina: Over the past few weeks we have traveled through the Southeast along the coastlines of Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina. The wildlife, sandy beaches, and recreational activities have been a treat for two people that are not from a coastal area. Thanks to the Dry Tortugas and Biscayne Bay National Parks and our partner The Charleston County Parks and Recreation Commission we learned a lot about how to Leave No Trace when you are snorkeling, playing on the beach, or sea kayaking. There is a lot of important information about traveling and camping on durable...

Del-Mar-Va Council Cub Scout Camp

The Leave No Trace e-tour team will be joining the Cub Scouts, staff, and volunteers at Lum's Pond camp for the Del-Mar-Va Council of the Boy Scouts of America for an afternoon of Leave No Trace learning and activities!

Mount Rainier Hot Spot Success

The Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics recently completed work at Mount Rainier National Park’s Paradise Area, a 2011 Leave No Trace-designated “Hot Spot.” Located in Washington, Mount Rainier National Park receives up to two-million visitors a year. At Paradise, the most heavily visited area of the park containing 26 miles of trails, recreation-related impacts have been severe. Miles of additional social trails and damage to subalpine meadows caused by off-trail travel have resulted. In partnership with the National Park Service, the Center implemented a multifaceted education program...

Leave No Trace in Practice on the Appalachian Trail

Earlier this year, we met Buckeye Flash, who was planning on hiking the Appalachian Trail. He completed his journey earlier this month and we asked him to explain how he used Leave No Trace while on the trail: On March 22, 2011, I began my attempt to thru-hike the 2,181-mile Appalachian Trail (AT). I started at Springer Mountain, Georgia (southern terminus) and hoped to reach Mt. Katahdin (northern terminus) in Baxter State Park in Maine before it closed in mid-October. To say that I was inexperienced would be a huge understatement. My previous hiking was basically limited to a dozen or so...

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