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.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Principle Blog Series: Part 2 of 7-Travel and Camp On Durable Surfaces

Travel and Camp on Durable Surfaces is the second of 7 Leave No Trace principles.  A durable surface is defined as one that is resistant and resilient to people traveling or camping upon it. Examples of durable surfaces are: rock, gravel, snow, sand, dry grass, and established trails/campsites. On the flip side, non-durable surfaces are more fragile and take longer to recover. Some examples are: wild flowers, meadows, steep slopes prone to slides (safety first!), cryptobiotic soil, and poison ivy/oak.

Consider these points when selecting terrain to hike and camp on:

  • Protect riparian areas by camping at least 200 feet from lakes and streams.
  • Good campsites are found, not made. Altering a site is not necessary.
    • In popular areas:
    • Concentrate use on existing trails and campsites.
    • Walk single file in the middle of the trail, even when wet or muddy.
    • Keep campsites small. Focus activity in areas where vegetation is absent.
    • In pristine areas:
    • Disperse use to prevent the creation of campsites and trails.
    • Avoid places where impacts are just beginning.

Pop Quiz: Is MUD a durable or non-durable surface?

For more information on Travel and Camp on Durable Surfaces, CLICK HERE.

Explore Responsibly...Kate and Tracy

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