If you’re reading this blog, it’s probably because you love hiking, camping and nature just as much as we do. If you’re a nature lover, chances are good that you care a lot about preserving nature while hiking. If you’re a supporter in it, here are a few ways you can help support the land while hiking and camping.
Know Before You Go
Know the regulations and concerns for the area you’ll be hiking, backpacking, or camping in. Restrictions are based on any past abuse and the special conditions of an area. Camp and travel in small groups. They are quieter and do less damage.
Camp on Safe Surfaces
Stay on the trail! Even if it is muddy or wet. Hike through it. If you walk around the mud the trail will widen and become even muddier in the future. Mud is part of the backcountry challenge. Wear waterproof boots and gaiters to protect your feet from mud and water.
Proper Disposal of Waste
Think of it this way – if it was there when you got there – then don’t leave it there! Be sure to carry out all of your trash and leave nothing behind that may not belong there.
Properly Dispose of What You Can’t Take With You
One of the most important things to remember is that food scraps will attract all sorts of insects and animals. Don’t forget to filter your dishwater and carry out your food scraps with the rest of your trash before you leave site.
Leave What You Find
Resist the urge to take anything that belongs to nature. This goes for stones, feathers, artifacts, shells, petrified wood, etc. If you enjoy them, it’s best to leave them so others can enjoy them too.
Be careful Where Fires Are Built
Better yet – don’t build fires! Although you may really want to build one for camping and cooking purposes, it may be better to use a fire pit/stove. Those will have your food cooked much faster then a campfire and they don’t leave charcoal scars or blackened rocks.
Leave your saw and axe at home.
If you see a branch you like – just admire it form afar. Don’t break or cut off any branched from any trees in any form. Don’t burn any green wood or peel the bark off trees. They take years to heal and always leaves the tree looking a little less appealing.
Observe wildlife from a distance.
Try your best to not feed the animals. You will create a nuisance because the animal will develop a taste for human food, associate humans with food, and then raid our campsites to steal our food. Make your best effort to cook and eat a bit of a distance from your campsite – this will keep the bears away.
Be Considerate of Other Visitors
Keep in mind that there are other hikers around and it’s always recommended to keep their best interest in mind. Keep a solid distance between you and other visitors and avoid creating any noise or pollution.
Know Proper Hiking Etiquette
Choose clothing that is natural earth tone colors like green, brown, tan, or black. Brighter colors such as white, blue, red and yellow do not blend in with the environment and can be seen from miles away and contribute to a crowded feeling.
So if you’re a nature lover, be sure to keep these tips in mind for the next time you choose to hike, camp or walk through nature. You’ll be thankful later and your efforts will be greatly appreciate by others as well!
photo credit: Jaymantri