Currently in its 12th year, the Subaru/Leave No Trace Traveling Trainers, 2 teams of professional outdoor educators, have reached over 10 million people in 48 states with Leave No Trace education and training.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

California University of Pennsylvania

Today we visited California University of Pennsylvania in California, PA just south of Pittsburgh. Over 70 Parks & Recreation Management, Biology, and Environmental Science Majors attended our two workshops. The first workshop was a general awareness workshop intended for students to get a sense of Leave No Trace as a concept and organization. The second workshop was more in depth focusing on using Leave No Trace as a resource tool in resource management and its role in promoting stewardship of public lands.

Special thanks to Dr. John Confer for putting this day at Cal U. together.

All the best,

Agata and Jason

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Bigfoot Sighting!

Our eyes did not deceive us! During a game of disc golf, or folf  (frisbee golf) as we heard the locals call it here in Missoula, we came upon the basket on hole 12 to find Bigfoot!  He was playing a solo game and he apparently has quite a bit of skill as he easily sunk this putt from twenty  feet away.  Bigfoot seemed a bit concerned about the trash, mostly cans and cigarette butts that littered the course.  As more and more people are getting out to recreate on our public lands, Bigfoot reminds us to Leave No Trace like he has been doing for years and to 'Pack it in, Pack it out'.  
Happy Adventuring...Kate and Tracy

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Living Archeology Weekend in the Red River Gorge

Last Friday and Saturday, we visited the Gladie Cultural-Environmental Learning Center in the Daniel Boone National Forest to participate in the Living Archeology Weekend, which saw over 1,600 visitors over the two-day event. Since 1989, this annual event has been providing quality educational experiences for school children and the general public. Primitive technology experts, professional archaeologists and Native American tribal representatives presented and demonstrated how native and historic people lived in Red River Gorge.

The Red River Gorge was the first Hot Spot selected by the Center this year. A Leave No Trace Hot Spot is an area heavily impacted by recreational use. Through the Hot Spot program the Center aims to increase awareness on how to enjoy the outdoors responsibly and to reduce impacts on lands used by the public for recreation.

We had the opportunity to work alongside our Educational Programs Manager, Sarah Folzenlogen, throughout both days of the event. On Friday, the programs were open to only 5th grade school groups. In the photo above, 5th grade students are playing the role of "archaeologists" piecing the stories of various native peoples and wildlife together as a part of our sessions focusing on the Leave No Trace principle Leave What You Find.

On Saturday we were able to offer outreach to the general public and awareness workshops for small groups who were interested in learning more about how they can enjoy the outdoors in a responsible manner and preserve the history and heritage of the Red River Gorge.

A warm Thank You to Jessica Santangelo and all the staff whose hard work and passions enjoying the history of the Red River Gorge made this event possible.

All the best,

Jason and Agata

Monday, September 27, 2010

Spokane RIver Clean Up

Saturday September 25th marked National Public Lands Day. Team West spent the day in eastern Washington and took part in the 8th annual Spokane River Clean Up. Last year 8 tons of trash were hauled out of the river and surrounding areas. We have yet to receive the total amount of trash and recyclables removed this year, but we are feeling that the 400 locals that came to participate removed at least that much this year as they did last year! The pictures below show our efforts, with the help of Annie, to remove a tire that had likely been left in the woods years earlier.

When we finally unearthed the tire, metal rim still intact, we had to roll it up to the road, where the crews could come by and dispose of it properly. Whew, this was an exciting event to take part in! We were invited to participate by Washington State Advocate John Wilmot. A special thanks to John for inviting the Traveling Trainers to keep the Spokane River clean.
Happy Adventuring...Kate and Tracy

Friday, September 24, 2010

Picture of the Week 9/24/10

Fall Foliage in Central, WA

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Beginning Backpacking at Miami University

On Wednesday September 22nd we visited with the Outdoor Pursuit Center at Miami University in Oxford, OH to talk about Leave No Trace Frontcountry practices. We met with a Beginning Backpacking class of about 20 students and program staff to discuss how considering the 7 principles of Leave No Trace promotes stewardship of public lands and responsible enjoyment of the outdoors. The students had plenty of personal experiences and opinions about outdoor ethics and were a pleasure to learn with during our time on campus.

A warm thank you to Jen Silica for hosting the Subaru Leave No Trace Traveling Trainers and we look forward visiting again in the future.

All the best,

Jason and Agata

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

School Outreach in Winthrop, WA

Happy first day of autumn! This week we visited seven classrooms, educating more than 200 students, in Winthrop, WA. Winthrop is a small town nestled in the Methow Valley in north central Washington, just outside of the Cascades Mountains. We were pleasantly surprised to see how connected these students are to their natural world. After reading "Last Child in the Woods" by Richard Louv, we learned that children, on average, spend approximately 30 hours a week in front of a screen- TV, video games, internet, cell phones etc. The students we worked with in Winthrop were not in that average by any means. They all shared with us how they rarely watch TV and spend the majority of their free time outdoors! It was such a pleasure to share our stories and experiences with this school district and to hear their stories as well! It is so critical for a child to spend time in the natural world and feel a strong connection with the nature. The Methow Valley School District does an excellent job of embracing this philosophy within their academic world. We learned about their community garden, their recycling and composting programs, and their outdoor trips that the students in this district are involved in. We were truly inspired by this visit and look forward to returning to Winthrop in the future!
Happy Adventuring...Kate & Tracy

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Hartwood Days

On September 11th, we attended Hartwood Days Festival in Fredericksburg, Virginia. This 11th annual youth and community fair offered families and youth opportunities to have fun and learn new things. Boy and Girl Scouts even had opportunities to earn many different badges. We offered several classes and in the picture above Agata is working with a group of Brownies on their Leave No Trace Try-it Badge.

All the best,

Agata and Jason

Monday, September 20, 2010

Bigfoot goes to High School

Last week we spotted Bigfoot in Gig Harbor, WA. We visited Peninsula High School and spent the day working with students during their Leadership class. Just as we were finishing our lesson, much to our surprise, Bigfoot came in to share his thoughts on leaving no trace. We heard rumors that Bigfoot enjoys spending time in the Pacific Northwest, where recreational opportunities are aplenty! The students of PHS were very excited to see Bigfoot, especially Michael. Before leaving for the day, Bigfoot was given a PHS Proud T-shirt from school principal Tim Winter. Where will Bigfoot be seen next?
Happy Adventuring...Kate and Tracy

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Whidbey Island Trainer Course

On Tuesday and Wednesday, we traveled to Whidbey Island in WA to provide a Leave No Trace Trainer Course. This is the second year in a row for us at Whidbey Island. We had participants from the US Forest Service, North Cascades Institute, Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts, as well as staff from the US Naval Recreation Program. With all of this diversity, the course was beaming with insightful and thoughtful discussions of the skills and ethics of Leave No Trace. We had perfect weather for the course and spent an afternoon hiking at Deception Pass State Park. We are excited at the prospect of having this be an annual course held at Whidbey Island Naval Air Station! A big thanks to Dave Meyers for hosting an amazing course and congratulations to our 8 new Leave No Trace Trainers! Please enjoy this slideshow of photos taken during the course.
Happy Adventuring...Kate and Tracy

Subaru/Leave No Trace Traveling Trainer Outfitter Highlight

I recently went camping in Colorado with the Traveling Trainers, which gave me a chance to feel like I was a Traveling Trainer once again. I quickly realized that our current teams have it much cushier than teams of the past thanks to all of their outfitting partners, Chaco, MSR/Thermarest, the Coleman Company as well as Smartwool. I was lucky to try out some of the current gear that our teams were using and quickly realized why our teams love what they do so much. They are camping in style all across the country thanks to the support of these outfitters. So for that I say thank you to our outfitters and to everyone else who has opened their doors, hosted one of our teams or provided a good recommendation to the Traveling Trainer teams this year!

Would you like have a Traveling Trainer team come to work with you next year? We are currently working on the 2011 schedule so now is a good time to let us know your event dates. Please request a visit online, Team East or Team West.

We look forward to working with you soon!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Glen Cove Elementary School

On Friday of last week, Glen Cove Elementary School in Roanoke, Virginia invited us to tell them what Leave No Trace was all about. We started the morning off by visiting all four of the 2nd grade classes and introducing them to the concepts of Leave No Trace through activities from the PEAK pack such as What Principle Am I? and Step On It.

In the afternoon, we presented to the entire school. They enjoyed the new Leave No Trace video by Michael Ramsey and over 450 students were involved in figuring out how long common trash item take to decompose during How Long Does it Last?

Thanks to Chip Donahue for organizing the visit!

All the best,

Agata and Jason

Monday, September 13, 2010

Teaching in Treehouse Paradise

Last week we held a five hour workshop at one of the more unique and magical venues we have had the opportunity to train at. Vertical Horizons Treehouse Paradise is a bed and breakfast located in southern Oregon near the Redwoods, Oregon Caves National Monument, and the beautiful coastline. This oasis is a retreat worth checking out. Each guest stays in a private treehouse (we stayed in the one pictured below) and is treated to a gourmet breakfast each morning! Guests can come and relax by the campfire, climb trees, play disc golf, play with Cosmo and Sadie (the friendly "guard" dogs), go fishing, and enjoy the beautiful scenery, all without leaving the property. We highly recommend getting "High Up In The Trees" at Vertical Horizons! A SUPER HUGE thank you to Jodie Cowan and her family for their hospitality during our stay.
Community is very important to Vertical Horizons Treehouse Paradise and the surrounding area. Staff from the Siskiyou Field Institute and the Oregon Caves National Monument joined us at the treehouses for a day of Leave No Trace training. The morning session was devoted to our PEAK Program, while the afternoon session focused on educating adults about Leave No Trace skills and ethics. Tracy leads a lesson on Minimizing Campfire Impacts, pictured below.
We look forward to future training in the Klamath Siskiyou Mountain area! See you all soon!
Happy Adventuring...Kate and Tracy

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Picture of the Week 9/10/10

From the Science Works Hands-On Museum in Ashland, OR

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Need Leave No Trace Education Materials?

With the start of school upon us this is the perfect time to consider applying for one of our four grant-giving programs:

Packing with PEAK
Tools for Teaching
Connect Grants for Culturally Diverse Communities
Master Educator Scholarships*

October 1 marks the final grant deadline for the remainder of 2010 for most of these programs, with the exception of Master Educator Scholarships. These grants are a great opportunity to offset educational/training costs of fall programs.

For more information on how to apply, visit:

Please email with any questions!

Happy Adventuring...Kate & Tracy

Monday, September 6, 2010

Art or Impact at Quincy Quarries

Over the Labor Day weekend we headed out to enjoy one of our favorite urban climbing areas at the ever popular Quincy Quarries just south of downtown Boston, MA. The area is known for challenging routes and the endlessly changing inspirations and hues of the local graffiti community.

We asked some local climbers "Is all this graffiti art or an unacceptable impact?" The climbing community was definitely divided on this question.

Some climbers feel the images and colors on the granite walls make Quincy Quarries unique and represent multiple user groups who come to enjoy various forms of outdoor recreation. While others feel that the damage done to the granite surfaces is irreparable and should be banned as the graffiti can make the purchase on granite slippery and the green space loses some of its luster.

With so many of us enjoying the outdoors in different ways, we welcome your thoughts on the matter. . .

All the best,

Agata and Jason

Friday, September 3, 2010

Picture of the Week 9/3/2010

A view of the New River Gorge Bridge from Long Point.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Yo Bigfoot!


I am attaching a photo of our group of ten guys that spent the weekend backpacking, fishing and exploring near Three Finger Jack peak in Oregon. Three of the guys had never been backpacking before and shared that they liked it when it was all over. They experienced setting up a campsite on a durable surface, disposal of waste properly, and cleaning up the site when it was time to trek out. They even got a taste of camping in a summer rainstorm Saturday afternoon. A great weekend overall.

Kevin Penner
Portland, Oregon

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Outdoor Action Program at Princeton University

On Wednesday this week we presented to student leaders of Princeton University's Outdoor Action Program as they gear up for one of the country's largest freshman outdoor orientation programs. In small groups of 12, these leaders will be venturing out on week-long backpacking, canoeing, rock climbing, bike touring, community service, and sustainable farming trips with over 800 new students on campus. We were excited to attend a pre-trip planning day to share with the leaders various methods for teaching Leave No Trace to the trip participants. Our goal was to inspire the 230 leaders to approach their opportunity with the perspective of William Butler Yeats: "Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire."

The group leaders asked thoughtful questions and were very appreciative of the opportunity to develop their leadership skills around all things Leave No Trace for their upcoming adventures!

All the best,

Agata and Jason

FAQs from the road

Interacting with people from all over the country is one of the definite perks of our job as Subaru/Leave No Trace Traveling Trainers. Two questions we commonly hear on the road is "How can I get you guys to come do a FREE training?" and "Where can I find out if there are other training opportunities if you aren't in the area?" Here are the answer to those two frequently asked questions:

The Subaru/Leave No Trace Traveling Trainers provide unique hands-on educational workshops and trainings. They work with a wide range of audiences such as youth serving organizations, college students, outdoor guides, clubs, land management agency personnel and outdoor companies. Our teams of educators are split into East and West Coast teams. Please request all Subaru/Leave No Trace Traveling Trainer visits online. If you live in the West, click here,if you live in the East click here. You will generally hear back from us in 4-6 weeks to discuss a possible visit from one of our teams.

Each year the Center juggles the challenge (and opportunity) of increased requests for Traveling Trainer visits. As more organizations and individuals learn about the Traveling Trainer program, the demand for training continues to escalate. Due to this ever-increasing demand there is no guarantee that we will be able to attend your event. Thank you for your understanding.

1. Visit the community page for your state (and nearby states) to see if there are any Trainer Courses/Workshops listed.

2. Contact the State Advocate and Master Educators listed in your area and work to set-up a Trainer Course/Workshop by clicking here to reach the Community Page.

3. Check the Subaru/Leave No Trace Traveling Trainer schedule and request an event (3+ months in advance).

4. Contact the Center with questions or for more information?

You can find the answer to over 60 other Leave No Trace FAQ's regarding Leave No Trace and the Center for Outdoor Ethics, membership and partnership, education and training materials, training education and outreach, and techniques and practices. Click here to reach the FAQ page.

Pictured above are Leave No Trace Trainers from a course last season at
Government Canyon State Natural Area.