Leave No Trace: Planning For Success.
The Karrimor SF team, like most people who love and spend time outdoors, have committed to practicing and promoting the ethos and ethics of ‘Leave No Trace’. To quote our brand ambassador, Justin Miles: “‘Leave No Trace’ is about more than not dropping litter. It’s a way of life, practiced by responsible outdoors people, which minimises our negative impact on the outdoor and wild environments that we enjoy, and each and every one of us has a responsibility to promote and encourage people new to outdoor environments to think and act as we do” You can find our first Leave No Trace article here, which gives a concise general overview of the key principles. One element – or principle – focusses on planning and preparing for Leave No Trace success as part of planning for your adventure.
The ‘Leave No Trace’ planning process could include:
- Travel to and from your destination and parking if required.
- Identifying marked, established and sustainable routes suitable for your mode of transport (hiking, biking, running etc)
- Accurate navigation and location finding.
- Using sustainable and/or established camp and rest spots.
- Waste management
- Food and water provision.
Poor planning and preparation can lead to poor decision making and, when the unexpected happens, poorly prepared people often resort to high-impact decisions.
Preparing for adventure and planning for Leave No Trace success is now easier than it has ever been. An internet search for organisations responsible for the areas that you’re intending to visit will provide a wealth of useful information. In the UK, for example, those organisations could include; national park authorities, the National Trust, the Woodland Trust, English Heritage, local authorities and county councils, Forestry England, and more. Justin has posed a question on his Facebook page which may help you to find useful resources. You can find the post here
One such resource is the ‘Know Before You Go’ campaign easily found in the pages of the Forestry England website. The pages include the latest guidance on COVID19, the ‘Forest Code’, the ‘Forest Cycle Code’ and the ‘Forest Dog Code’ – all packed with information to help people to plan for Leave No Trace success and enjoy their time outdoors. Unfortunately, despite the information available on the website, plenty of signs, and resources some visitors to Forestry England sites still, often unintentionally, leave litter behind so an army of volunteers mobilises to help keep the areas clean and free of waste. You can find out more about their ‘Trash Free Trails’ campaign on this page (we already hear from many Karrimor SF users who keep a bin liner in their packs for exactly this purpose when they’re out exploring trails and wild spaces!).
Planning and preparation for adventure – any adventure – is part of the fun, and including a little planning for Leave No Trace success is responsible, ethical and helps keep our open and wild spaces open, and wild.