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LEAVE NO TRACE-- The Principles of Minimum Impact

 

On Everett Parks and Recreation hiking trips, we take very seriously our responsibility to travel with minimum impact on the land.  These are special, and often very fragile places that we visit, and we must do all we can to make sure we leave them in as good of condition, or even better condition than when we arrived.

 

 

We expect our trip participants to:

 

  • Leave no litter behind.  If you pack it in, you must pack it out.  In addition, pick up and pack out litter that others have left behind.

  • Stay on established trails and impacted areas.  Avoid cutting trail switchbacks.

  • Protect all vegetation by taking care where you step.  Choose resting spots carefully, and avoid sitting or placing your gear on the vegetation.  This is especially crucial in higher elevation meadows where growing seasons are shorter, and damage can take years to heal.

  • If you must move off a trail, protect the vegetation by using rocks, bare dirt, or snow to step on.

  • If no established restroom or toilet is available, protect water sources by moving at least 100 feet away from all lakes and streams when you “do your thing.”  It is best to urinate on rocks, snow, or bare areas.  Solid human waste must be buried in the ground, preferably at least 6-8” deep.

  • Respect the wildlife, and take care to avoid disturbing creatures large and small.  Don't approach wildlife, and never ever feed them.

  • Respect other trail users and understand that you have an impact on their experience too.  Avoid making loud noises, allow faster trail users to pass by, and be courteous and pleasant to those you meet.

 

Very often, our group is the largest one on the trail, so we are very visible and our impact is noticed.  If we all do our part to travel with minimum impact, and care well for the places and people we encounter, we will be thought of well and will be welcomed back to these special places.   

 

 

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