Research

fANTastic!

Beaux Bridge, LA--A slight tickle frisks my exhausted thigh: Over two mountains and down again we finally find ourselves wearily reclining on a Lay-Z-Boy-Rock: content and starving. The pesky tickling is vying for my attention but nothing can top the need for lunch, for canned tuna and a block of sharp cheddar. Spoon in hand, I dig into the tuna, now repackaged in my twice-before used Ziploc, and take a bite off the “block oh-cheddah”. I get that watery mouth feeling of pure enjoyment and as my spoon crescendos for another chomp, the hair on my legs begin to stand and the tickling becomes...

Critical Issues - How to Poop in the Woods

Phoenix, AZ: This past Wednesday we, the Subaru/Leave No Trace Traveling Trainers Team West, taught an awareness workshop for a graduate level Critical Issues class at Arizona State University . The class focuses on both environmental and social critical issues. Once we learned this, we immediately knew one way to relate Leave No Trace to their focus – poop. That’s right! Improper disposal of human waste is one of the most critical issues that recreationalist, agency personal and wildlife face today. Evidence from our field observations, conversations with land managers and personal...

Does a bear poop in the woods? Of course! But if you do, bury it or pack it out.

Guadalupe Mountains National Park, TX: This week we camped in the remote and gorgeous backcountry of the Guadalupe Mountains; fall was in the air, the leaves were vibrant colors, and we had starry nights. Unfortunately, we found human waste near our backcountry campsite in the park. We have seen far too many improper human waste disposal impacts as we travel around the country as Subaru/Leave No Trace Traveling Trainers; from toilet paper flowers, poop with simply with a rock placed on top of it, to poop just off the side on the trail. The negative aesthetic issue alone is often too much, but...

Trash Timeline Activity

San Antonio, TX: As we travel through Texas this Fall we have noticed the Don’t Mess With Texas signs all over the highway and in parks. Don’t Mess with Texas is a well known saying, but most people outside of Texas don’t realize that it is actually a anti-littering campaign featured throughout the state. Teaching Texas youth the importance of their home state’s famous saying is simplified using the trash timeline. The trash timeline teaches people of all ages how long litter lasts for if it is left on the ground out in park. The research behind this activity comes from a USDA Forest Service...

Hi-Cone: Taking it to the trails to see what you think

Little Rock, AR-- Hi-Cone , leading manufacturer of 6-pack ring holders, has been driving the market with environmentally sustainable practices since 1975. As a partner with Leave No Trace and supporter of our Subaru/Leave No Trace Traveling Trainer program, we wanted to highlight Hi-Cone 's efforts in hope to spring other companies into action and the realization of what they, too, could be doing to lessen our impact on the environment. Leaving your mark is overrated. Katelyn and Blake Leave No Trace’s Katelyn Stutterheim and Blake Jackson are part of the 2015 Subaru/Leave No Trace Traveling...

Laredo Environmental Summit

Laredo, TX – Over 350 students from 12 different high schools in Laredo, Texas gathered at the 6 th Annual Laredo Environmental Summit. The summit focused on bringing the community together to identify and find sustainable solutions to Laredo’s environmental challenges. This year the theme was focused on litter and reducing the amount of waste in Laredo. There were a variety of organizations in attendance from local environmental groups, Texas State Parks, and large companies. The presentations ranged from ground water contamination, weather patterns, a state wide environmental advocacy group...

Minimize Waste to Maximize Space

Minneapolis, MN--Dastardly trash flitters across the parking lot as its potential captor follows in hot pursuit. Every gust of wind helps the debris slink between cars and roll around light posts as it takes aim for a precise exit by way of the storm drain. Once within the dark passages of the drain, the trash will forever be on the run, freely able to wreak havoc on the earth: baiting marine life, contaminating our water, and littering our shorelines. These trash escapees are ever slipping from our overloaded hands, shopping bags, and car doors--they must be better confined, barred within...

Rock Climbing and Group Use

Maple Canyon, UT: Climbing is a popular sport in the US with over 9 million people participating in it each year, according to Climbing Magazine. With millions of people getting out to climb on public and private land, rock climbers can significantly degrade the areas that they love. Impacts at climbing areas range from braided trails around crags, litter, improper disposal of human and pet waste, disturbed raptor nests, and poor crag etiquette. Climbing in large groups can be more fun and safer, but also leads to a greater impact and more care should be taken to minimize impacts at the crags...

Where Have All The Hemlocks Gone?

New River Gorge National River, WV: A hike along the rim of the New River Gorge offers spectacular vistas of steep walls, rushing water, and lush green trees. This environment hosts large groves of Hemlock trees, which have stood for centuries. Since early 2005 these groves have been under attack from an unassuming visitor, the deadly Hemlock Woolly Adelgid. Native to Asia, the Hemlock Woolly Adelgid has found sanctuary in the abundance of hemlock groves found on the eastern coast of North America. Without a native predator the Woolly Adelgid has the ability to reproduce quickly. So quickly...

Rice and Fall of a Trail Legend

Catskill Mountains, NY: Starfail, Pro-tip, Buckeye, Catnap, Smiley, Jethro, Gilgamesh, Giggles…what is the story behind all these “trail names”. Where do they come from? Why do they exist? This week we, the Subaru/Leave No Trace Traveling Trainers East Central Team, accepted a challenge to hike one of the toughest trails east of the continental divide: Devil’s Path in the Catskills. Testing our endurance, the grueling hike led us over five peaks that reached above 3,500 feet, through boulder fields, and up rock faces. As we marched forward, ready to defeat the army of obstacles on Devil’s...

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