Outdoor Adventures follows the Leave No Trace ethos both in the wilderness and in our daily operations. Leave No Trace is a national and international program designed to assist outdoor enthusiasts with their decisions about how to reduce their impact when they enjoy the outdoors. The program strives to educate people about the nature of their recreational impacts as well as techniques to prevent and minimize such impacts.
Leave No Trace is best understood as an educational and ethical program, rather than a set of rules and regulations. The program includes seven essential guidelines to practice while enjoying outdoor activities. They include: plan ahead and prepare, travel and camp on durable surfaces, dispose of waste properly, leave what you find, minimize campfire impacts, respect wildlife, and be considerate of other visitors. These guidelines are described in greater detail below and can also be found on the Leave No Trace website at http://www.lnt.org/.
1.) Planning ahead and preparing for your trip is important for multiple reasons. Most importantly it will help to ensure the safety of yourself and the group, it prepares you to Leave No Trace and minimizes resource damage. Additionally it contributes to accomplishing trip goals safely and enjoyably, and it increases self-confidence and opportunities for learning more about nature.
2.) Be sure to concentrate travel on trails in high use areas. This reduces the likelihood that multiple routes will develop which could in turn scar the landscape. It is far better to have one well-designed route than many poorly chosen paths.
3.) Proper disposal of human waste is very important. This helps to avoid pollution of the water sources, ensures the negative implications of someone else finding it, minimizes the possibility of spreading disease, and maximizes the rate of decomposition.
4.) Leave what you find. This allows other travelers a sense of discovery by leaving rocks, plants, archaeological artifacts and other objects of interest as you find them. The activities for this Leave No Trace principle deal with cultural artifacts; however, leave what you find involves multiple aspects of outdoor use.
5.) Minimize campfire impact. Campfire building is an important skill for every camper, but the natural appearance of many areas has been degraded by the overuse of fires and an increasing demand for firewood. The development of light weight efficient camp stoves has encouraged a shift away from the traditional fire. Stoves have become essential equipment for minimum-impact camping. They are fast, flexible, and eliminate firewood availability as a concern in campsite selection. Stoves operate in almost any weather condition, and they Leave No Trace.
6.) Respect wildlife. Learn about wildlife through quiet observation. Do not disturb wildlife or plants just for a "better look". Observe wildlife from a distance so they are not scared or forced to flee.
7.) Lastly and one of the most important components of outdoor ethics is to maintain courtesy toward other visitors. It helps everyone enjoy their own outdoor experience.