Seven Principles

Campfire Tips

For some campers, a campfire is essential for a campout. A campfire provides light, heat, smores, and can also be an inspiring sight on a campout. Leave No Trace is not against fires in the backcountry or frontcountry. Leave No Trace recommends the responsible use of campfires, so people can enjoy them and to minimize campfire impacts. Thanks to warm fabrics, headlamps, and camp stoves, fires are not as necessary as they once were. There are a lot of ways to enjoy a campfire without leaving an impact on the land. Some options for a minimum impact fire are: to not have one if you do not need...

Free Leave No Trace Lesson Plans and Information!

Outdoor educators are always looking for new and interactive ways to teach Leave No Trace. On the Leave No Trace website, educators can use the Concepts and Plans for Teaching Leave No Trace link. These links provide information on how to setup the lesson, facilitate the lesson, and the follow up discussion. These quick and easy lesson plans help educators to teach a different Leave No Trace concept. Our Natural World Plan Ahead and Prepare Travel and Camp on Durable Surfaces Pack it in, Pack it Out Leave What You Find Minimize Use and Impact of Fire Respect Wildlife Be Considerate of Other...

A Conversation on Ethics

What does the word 'ethic' mean to you?! The Leave No Trace program teaches skills to enjoy the outdoors safely and responsibly. More importantly though, Leave No Trace aims to impart an ethic - a compelling outdoor ethic that will hopefully guide those who enjoy the out of doors in making positive decisions. An ethic is defined in many ways. The dictionary lends us this definition: a theory or system of moral values. As Subaru Leave No Trace Traveling Trainers, we have heard several definitions of the word 'ethic'. Some are more suitable than others and some are completely right on. Here are...

Principle Blog Series: Part 7 of 7-Be Considerate of Other Visitors

Be Considerate of Other Visitors is the 7 th of Seven Leave No Trace Principles . It is important to regard fellow visitors and respect the quality of their experience. An easy way to do this is by following the yield triangle on a multi-use trail. The above picture illustrates this concept. Bikers yield to hikers, while both hikers and bikers yield to horses. By practicing use of the yield triangle, user conflicts could be minimized in recreational areas. Nature is a finite resource, not infinite. Be considerate so that everyone can enjoy! Here are some more pointers on ways to Be...

Principle Blog Series: Part 6 of 7-Respect Wildlife

Respect Wildlife is the 6 th of Seven Leave No Trace Principles . Humans can unknowingly cause distress to animals by exhibiting the following behaviors: cutting trail switch backs, getting too close, leaving behind food and trash, and being too loud (except in bear/mountain lion country). When entering the natural world, we are in essence entering the home of wild animals. Some ideas on ways we can respect wildlife are: Observe wildlife from a distance. Do not follow or approach them. Never feed animals. Feeding wildlife damages their health, alters natural behaviors, and exposes them to...

Principle Blog Series: Part 5 of 7-Minimize Campfire Impacts

Minimize Campfire Impacts is the 5 th of 7 Leave No Trace Principles . If you close your eyes and think about some of your earliest camping experiences, there is a good chance that a campfire is included in your reflection. It is important to note that Leave No Trace is not against campfires, but please be aware of responsible practices. Some other points to consider about Minimizing Campfire Impacts are: Campfires can cause lasting impacts to the backcountry. Use a lightweight stove for cooking and enjoy a candle lantern for light. Where fires are permitted, use established fire rings, fire...

Leave No Trace Skills: Frontcountry Kitchen Setup

Joshua Tree, CA: Who loves camping? At Leave No Trace we love camping, so much so that between all four teams of Subaru/Leave No trace Traveling Trainers, we spend over 1000 nights a year under the stars! With all of this camping experience, we have picked up some useful tricks to create the ultimate frontcountry kitchen setup. Read on to see how we Leave No Trace while camping all year long. Use a Tarp or Pop-Up Shade to beat the heat or those rainy days. We keep ours in the car at all times for those, “just in case” scenarios. We try not to let rainy days beat us down and...

Leave No Trace Seven Principles Rap

Boulder, CO: The member-driven Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics protects the outdoors by teaching people to enjoy it responsibly. It is the most widely accepted outdoor ethics program used on public lands. Through targeted education, research and outreach, the Center ensures the long-term health of our natural world. One way we reach the public is through the creative freedom of our Subaru/Leave No Trace Traveling Trainers. The Subaru/Leave No Trace Traveling Trainer program consists of four teams of two educators that travel across the country in Subarus teaching people how to...

Leave No Trace at the Buffalo National River

Jasper, AR: Have you been to America's First National River? The Buffalo National River is located in Arkansas and is one of the most beautiful rivers in the country. Established in 1972, Buffalo National River flows freely for 135 miles and is one of the few remaining undammed rivers in the lower 48 states. Once you arrive, prepare to journey from running rapids to quiet pools while surrounded by massive bluffs as you cruise through the Ozark Mountains down to the White River. Did you know that Leave No Trace has local state chapters? To get more involved in your area check out our map HERE...

Skills Video: Bear Canisters

Flagstaff, AZ: When we go over to a friend's place for a visit, it's generally polite to bring some snacks or refreshments. However, when visiting the homes of our wildlife friends, it's just the opposite. Wildlife needs to eat wild things. When they get exposed to eating people food, it's called "food conditioning," which puts both us and them at risk. Last week, we showed you how to hang your food and other " smellables " using the PCT Bear Hang . This week, we are showing you how to use a bear canister. Bear canisters have a few advantages: 1. Some places don't have adequate trees for a...

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