Frontcountry

Raft right this summer

Boulder, Colorado: It’s another scorching summer, and that local lazy river is looking pretty nice right now. But before you head to the creek with your floats and your friends, here are a few things to keep in mind… Map the route: Plan a route and locate a few existing, durable trails that lead to the water. By knowing the area, you can find exit routes that avoid stepping on creekside plants and further eroding stream banks. Check to see if you’re passing through residential areas or past busy trails, and keep the volume down along the...

How to Camp in Hot Weather

The dog days of summer are almost upon us, and that means two things. First, IT’S STILL SUMMER CAMPING SEASON! And, second, it’s HOT. Don’t let the heat keep you from taking advantage of summer weekends – read on for Traveling Trainer tips (we are full-time campers, after all) on how to have a cool trip no matter what the mercury says. Always pumped to find block ice on the road! 1. Block ice – If there’s anything that has revolutionized our #roadlife experience, it’s been discovering block ice. Block ice is large, solid rectangles of ice, usually sold in 10-pound...

Wilderness Words: Humus

Littleton, CO: Let's talk about humus. Humus is the dark organic material in fertile soils, full of microbes that can break down human waste. It's the perfect environment if you need to dig a cathole. Hummus, on the other hand, is a Middle Eastern chickpea spread. It's not the right environment for digging a cathole. Learn more about the difference between humus and hummus in the video below. 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...

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...

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...

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...

Campfire Alternatives

Amboy, CA: We are about to blow your outdoors-loving world. Ready? You can have fun camping WITHOUT A CAMPFIRE. Yes, we mean it. And, for the record, Leave No Trace is not anti-campfire. We, too, grew up roasting s’mores and hot dogs over campfires; that is, if by roasting, you mean burning into oblivion. We’ve strummed guitars and had deep (okay,“deep”) discussions by flickering flames. So we’re not anti-campfire. What we are is pro-responsible campfire and, sometimes, that means choosing to go fire-free. Maybe there’s not enough fuel to make a fire without destroying vital habitat or food...

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