Be a responsible traveler
Updated: Feb 4
Yo, fellow adventure seekers! Are you ready to pack your bags and hit the road? Before you do, let's talk about something super important: Leave No Trace principles. Now, I know you're probably thinking, "But wait, isn't that just for camping and outdoorsy stuff?" Well, my friends, it is not.
These principles can be applied to any kind of travel or adventure. Think about it, as travelers and adventurers, we have a responsibility to minimize our impact on the natural environment and the communities we visit. By following these principles, not only will you have an epic adventure, but you'll also be helping to preserve the beauty of the world for others and future generations to enjoy.
The Leave No Trace principles consist of seven key guidelines and they are:
1. Plan ahead and prepare, encourages outdoor enthusiasts to research the area they plan to visit and to come prepared with the necessary gear, clothing, and knowledge to have a safe and enjoyable trip. This principle also encourages people to check weather forecasts, trail conditions, and any regulations or permits that may be required for the area.
2. Travel and camp on durable surfaces, asks outdoor enthusiasts to stay on designated trails and campsites in order to minimize damage to sensitive natural areas. This principle also encourages people to avoid shortcuts, which can erode trails and destroy vegetation.
3. Dispose of waste properly, asks outdoor enthusiasts to pack out all trash, leftover food, and litter, and to bury human waste in designated areas or “catholes”. This principle also encourages people to properly dispose of any greywater, such as dishwater or laundry water, so that it does not contaminate nearby water sources.
4. Leave what you find, asks outdoor enthusiasts to leave natural and cultural features as they were found, so that future visitors can enjoy them as well. This principle also encourages people to avoid collecting plants, rocks, or other natural items as souvenirs.
5. Minimize campfire impact, asks outdoor enthusiasts to use portable stoves for cooking instead of building a fire, as this can minimize the impact on the natural environment. This principle also encourages people to follow fire regulations and to properly extinguish any fires that are built.
6. Respect wildlife, asks outdoor enthusiasts to observe wildlife from a distance and to avoid disturbing them. This principle also encourages people to store food properly and to avoid feeding wild animals, as this can harm their natural behaviors.
7. Be considerate of other visitors, asks outdoor enthusiasts to respect the rights of others to enjoy the natural environment, and to refrain from loud or disruptive behavior. This principle also encourages people to yield the trail to other hikers, to keep dogs on a leash, and to avoid overcrowding popular areas.
So, before you book that flight, make sure to familiarize yourself with these principles. Trust me, you'll thank yourself later. Happy travels, friends!