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.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Picture of the Week 10/28/11: Caption Contest!

Caption Contest: How would you title this photo?

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Leave No Trace in the San Juan Islands

Lopez Island - San Juan Islands, WA

Sometimes it's not how many students are in a classroom that matters, but instead what they do with the information they have learned that counts most. Last weekend Team West was fortunate enough to share outdoor ethics educational programs with members of the Lopez Island community who directly work with the general public across a variety of environments.

In attendance were representatives from the Bureau of Land Management (Spokane District), San Juan County Land Bank, Lopez Island Conservation Corp, Washington State Parks (Spencer Spit State Park), and Whispers of Nature.

The photo above catches up with our crew on the beach talking through a few of the teachable moments that Leave No Trace speaks to with respect, science, and a little common sense.

Many thanks to our friends Nick and Susie Teague for hosting Leave No Trace and introducing us to so many fellow educators and outdoor enthusiasts!

All the best,

Jason and Agata

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Stick 'Em Up!

Bigfoot Warns: Take My Challenge!

With bubble gun in hand, Bigfoot "threatens" all outdoor enthusiasts to spend two minutes taking The Bigfoot Challenge.  The end of October is right around the corner, so time is running out to win quality product from KEEN  Here are this month's challenges:
  1. On Halloween pick up 1 stray candy wrapper for every year of your age, challenge your friends to do the same.
  2. Download a free PEAK activity from the Leave No Trace website and volunteer to teach a 15-25 minute segment to kids at a local school or youth group. Downloadable PEAK activities can be found at the bottom left of the webpage:
  3. Take back 15 minutes of your day and just go outside! Grab a friend and take the 15 minute Keen Recess Pledge! After recess, try to leave your “playground” in better condition than you found it.
  4. Score a $150 gift card toward Keen gear by becoming a Leave No Trace member at the Wanderer level ($171.60
If one of these simple tasks is jumping out at you as easily achievable, then take the challenge and become a steward of the land.  Yes, it is that easy! 

Explore Responsibly...Kate and Tracy

Monday, October 24, 2011

Le Petite Roche

Little Rock, AR.  It was a whirlwind tour through Central Arkansas.  We had many successful events in both Little Rock and North Little Rock, working with the Parks and Recreation Departments, local boy scout troops, and volunteers of the Arkansas River Trail.  We were fortunate to meet the mayor of North Little Rock, Patrick Henry Hays, who attended our Backyard Session, held at the Witt Stephens Jr. Central Arkansas Nature Center, and our awareness workshop at Burns Park in North Little Rock.
We woke before dawn to speak on Daybreak, the early morning news in Little Rock.  Click here to see our video clip of that interview.
To end the weekend, we traveled to Damascus, AR to be guest presenters at the Quapaw Area Council Leave No Trace Trainer Course held at the state of the art Donald W. Reynolds Training Center on the Blass Scout Reservation.  We want to thank all of the Leave No Trace Master Educators of the Quapaw Council for their hard work in training and educating the scouts and leaders of Central Arkansas in Leave No Trace.  You guys rock!
With so many events in the area, it was no surprise that Bigfoot joined in on the fun.  Check out some of the photos above.
One final thank you to Rob Stephens for being a stellar event host!  We look forward to returning to Central Arkansas for future events.
Explore Responsibly...Kate and Tracy

Friday, October 21, 2011

Picture(s) of the Week 10/21/11

Seattle, Washington -
EarthCorps Trainer Course in Warren G. Magnuson Park on the shores of Lake Washington.

All the best,

Jason and Agata

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Calling All Arkansas Leave No Tracers!

Rollin and Strollin on the Arkansas River Trail
Little Rock Arkansas.  The Traveling Trainers will be providing four chock-full days of outreach in Central Arkansas.  Prominent Boy Scouts of America Council Advocate and Leave No Trace Master Educator, Rob Stephens, has worked diligently on the logistics for each of the upcoming events.  We will be providing awareness workshops, facilitating a Leave No Trace Backyard Session, setting up a booth for trailhead outreach (at both Pinnacle Mountain State Park and The Big Dam Bridge) , running in A Race For the Cure 5K, and even making an appearance on the local news on Friday morning!  For more information on times and dates, click here for the specifics of Team East's schedule.  If you live in the area, we'd love to see you at one of our events!
Explore Responsibly...Kate and Tracy

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

The North Face Speaker Series Features Ingrid Backstrom

Seattle, Washington - Last week Team West was in the Pacific Northwest with local legend Ingrid Backstrom and Leave No Trace partner The North Face. Ingrid spoke in Olympia and Seattle on consecutive evenings about her inspirations and adventures as one of the top all mountain skiers in the world.

In the photo above a few members of the team from The North Face, Alpine Experience, and Leave No Trace get together before the speaker series kicks off in Olympia, Washington!

What makes events like The North Face Speaker Series unique is the opportunity for outdoor recreation enthusiasts of all ages to access and enjoy the "stoke" alongside the athletes who are members of The North Face team! Ingrid's accomplishments and accolades are only eclipsed by her humility and indefatigably positive attitude throughout all her adventures.

Stay tuned to the upcoming calendar with The North Face Speaker Series in your area to connect with an event that will make your year and get you stoked to get into the mountains!

All the best,

Jason and Agata

Monday, October 17, 2011

The North Face Cares

Pine Mountain, GA. This weekend over 1200 runners challenged their strength and endurance at The North Face Endurance Challenge outside of Atlanta, GA. The FD Roosevelt State Park trail system provided a technical course for the athletes that competed in either the 5k, 10k, Half Marathon, Marathon, 50k, or the 50 mile race. Once again, these athletes showed an unbelievable amount of determination and physical toughness as each person crossed the finish line.

Kids of all ages took part in the Karno Kids Race

There were many children in attendance that took part in the Karno Kids Race, including one of Leave No Trace's biggest kid at heart- Bigfoot!  A local middle school brought 53 students to the 5k portion of the Endurance Challenge as part of the Fit Club at their school. We even watched as an eight year old boy completed his first 5k race on Sunday. Way to go!

The North Face takes many steps to minimize the impact placed on the event locations.  In addition to encouraging all of the athletes to practice Leave No Trace during the race by packing out all trash, including goo packets, and staying on the established trail, they give each athlete a reusable water bottle and have staff scouring the grounds for microtrash.  They even used clothes pins to hang up the trail markers along the route, instead of nailing them into the trees!  We appreciate all of the proactive efforts The North Face takes to protect and enjoy the outdoors.
Trail Marker along the 50 mile race route
Be on the look out for Team West, Jason and Agata, at the final stop of the 2011 Endurance Challenge Series in San Francisco on December 3-4.
Explore Responsibly...Kate and Tracy

Friday, October 14, 2011

Picture of the Week 10/14/11

Sometimes one picture of the week just isn't enough...

Leaf Peeping In West Virginia

Up Close and Personal With the Beautiful Fall Colors

Happy Fall Adventuring...Kate and Tracy

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Ingrid Backstrom Speaks Tonight in Seattle

Seattle, WA - Ingrid Backstrom, extreme skier and The North Face athlete, will be speaking tonight at the REI Flagship store at 7 PM as part of The North Face Speaker Series, which showcases the world's top outdoor athletes.

Ingrid has starred in ski films like the acclaimed 2007 film Steep, and was the sole female on Powder Magazine's list of Future Big Mountain Heroes. Her quest to ski has taken her around the globe, and she's tried adventure sports from climbing to BASE jumping. Tonight she will present "Whimsical Dreams: The Skiing Life."

General admission is free, so come out tonight to see Ingrid's presentation and to visit with Team West.

Where: REI Seattle Flagship, 222 Yale Ave N., Seattle, WA 98109
When: October 13, 2011, 7 PM
More information: here

All the best,

Agata and Jason

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

World Famous Mountains Conference

Portland, OR - This week in Portland, resource and recreation managers of mountains from all over the world are getting together to share ideas at the third annual World Famous Mountains Conference.

The World Famous Mountains Association is a non profit organization made up of policy makers, government officials and representatives of organizations that manage the world's most famous mountains. The Association was formed in China in 2009 and now represents 25 mountains from Australia, Austria, Brazil, China, Germany, Japan, the Philippines, Romania, South Africa, South Korea, Tanzania, and the United States of America.

This year's conference is being held in the United States for the first time thanks to the generous support of the US Forest Service. The conference, which was held in China the first two years, is focused on natural resource protection, sustainable tourism, environmental education, and the conservation of our world's cultural legacies.

Team West was thrilled to have the opportunity to give a short presentation on Leave No Trace to the international audience present at the conference. It was also a pleasure to listen to Monday's keynote speaker, Stacy Allison, the first American woman to summit Mt. Everest. Stacy's dynamic presentation focused on the importance of partnerships when managing the world's most famous mountains.

All the best,

Agata and Jason

Monday, October 10, 2011

Rock Climber on the Endless Wall

Lansing, WV. Team East spent last weekend in the New River Gorge in West Virginia to provide outreach at the Canyon Rim Visitors Center. The New River Gorge is a fantastic area to rock climb, white water raft, hike, camp, and sightsee at the many historical mining towns. Although the weather was unforgiving, this did not stop people from floating the river all weekend. We had the chance to speak to many visitors as they stopped in the Canyon Rim Visitor's Center to get local information and to gaze at the New River Bridge, which is the longest arch bridge in the western hemisphere. We were fortunate enough to enjoy a personal tour with Park Ranger Jodi French-Burr, who is also the Northeast Region Outdoor Ethics Coordinator, through the Nuttallburg Area. This is a newly restored mining town that will soon be open to the public. A special thank you to Jodi for taking the time to share the magic of this beautiful gorge!
Happy Adventuring...Kate and Tracy

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Spokane High School Students Learn How to Teach Leave No Trace

Spokane, WA - Today, we visited RiverCity Leadership Academy (RLA), a project-based high school that uses a hands-0n, interdisciplinary approach to learning. The students at RLA will be working with the West Valley Outdoor Learning Center and the Bureau of Land Management on various projects, including teaching community members about Leave No Trace at the Fishtrap Recreation Area, managed by the BLM.

Today's visit provided the RLA students with an introduction to the seven principles of Leave No Trace and equipped them with lesson ideas and teaching methods they will be able to use when working with the West Valley Outdoor Learning Center and the BLM.

All the best,

Agata and Jason

Monday, October 3, 2011

Western Kentucky Trainer Course

Cadiz, KY.  Autumn has fallen upon us here in the Southeast.  The leaves are beginning to change, the temperatures are dropping, and the fall harvest is abundant.  Last week, we had the pleasure of instructing our second Leave No Trace Trainer Course with Kentucky State Parks.  We had five engaging individuals that were eager to learn about the Leave No Trace program and put their new found knowledge to the test as we spent one evening camping at Lake Barkley State Resort Park.  Four of the new Leave No Trace Trainers were Kentucky State Park employees and we even had one gentleman drive six hours from Missouri to take the course!  He is a volunteer with his son's boy scout troop and was excited to challenge the boys to some of the activities he learned during the course.

We would like to extend a special thanks to Lisa Deavers for working out logistics for the course.  In addition to being the Western Regional Recreation Coordinator for Kentucky State Parks, Lisa also finds time to be the Leave No Trace State Advocate for the entire state of Kentucky!  We look forward to our next adventure with the Kentucky State Park System.

Happy Adventuring...Kate and Tracy