How to Recreate Responsibly When Hiking, Camping and More
Spending time outdoors can be a wonderful opportunity for some peace and quiet… if only those campers at the site next to yours would turn their music down and dispose of their trash properly!
The truth is, plenty of people aren’t aware of the footprint they leave behind on a hiking trail or at a campsite. Here are five ways to recreate responsibly the next time you go on an outdoor adventure.
1. Practice Leave No Trace (LNT)
Leave No Trace principles are more important than ever. These important guidelines teach people how to appreciate the outdoors without making a lasting impact on the environment.
This includes using existing campsites, rather than making your own, and staying on marked hiking trails. You can click the link above to learn more because the rules aren’t always obvious: Did you know that you’re supposed to dig a cat hole when going #2? It should be approximately 8 inches deep and 6 inches. Be sure to pack out your TP, too.
If you aren’t sure how to minimize your impact on the environment, be sure to familiarize yourself with LNT.
2. Share the Trail
When you’re hiking in a group, it’s important to remember that you probably aren’t the only people on the trail.
Don’t spread out and claim the whole trail for your group, for starters. Depending on the trail’s width and how busy it is, you may need to stick to a single file line. You can still have a great hike and share that experience with your friends, but try to do so in a respectful wayl.
3. Plan Ahead
Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, many campsites and hiking trails are currently closed. Do your research before you head out on your trip. You may also want to pack your food rather than stopping at local restaurants or a grocery store.
You can also select a wider trail or campsite that is a little further away from neighbors, which will help keep you (and others) safe while you’re enjoying nature.
4. Keep the Noise Down
Be mindful of the noise you make on your next outdoor adventure.
You can absolutely chat with your hiking buddies and listen to music at your campsite, but remember that there are others around, too. Calling loudly, blaring your music, singing at the top of your lungs and talking on the phone are all distractions that may keep other people from enjoying the serenity of nature.
5. Know Your Recycling Options
Many campsites provide designated garbage areas, but recycling is just as important as proper waste disposal. You can investigate local companies that may have options the next time you go camping or take advantage of the Backpacker’s Pantry Recycling Envelope Program.
Backpacker's Pantry provides ready-to-eat, lightweight camping food for short hikes, extreme adventures and everything in between. Browse our nutritious, gourmet food for the trail.