View Full Version : Leave no trace

Former Admin
09-03-2002, 19:52
How far are you willing to go with the leave no trace ethics? Do you burn trash or pack it out? Do you pack out your human waste? Do you pack out others trash? Do you have rubber tips on your hiking pole? etc........

Hammock Hanger
09-04-2002, 21:03
I have burned my trash a few times when someone had a fire going. However, I usually carry out all my trash including used TP. I must say though that I have never packed out my human waste. I usually hike on the east coast. I hear that this is common practice out west and would be more then willing. -- I always lookover my campsite before I leave to make sure it does not show that I was there. I used rubber tips, I use treehugger web staps with my hammock, I don't normally make fires and if I do I do it in an exisiting fire ring.


09-05-2002, 19:15
im willing to go as far as necissary. i believe that we need to protect our trials. if we abuse them now than we wont be able to enjoy them in the future. somtimes we love our trails to death. packing out i believe is always the wisest thing, as far as human waste, well thats somthing that i havnt yet tried but in more remote areas than im sure that would be a practice id get used to. i try to pack out others trash if i come across it but the major trash ive come across lately has been glass which i was incapable of safely transporting. im a strong suporter of leaving only footprints and taking only photos and i believe than any thruhiker should adopt similar policies in order to keep our trials beautiful for the next generation to enjoy as well.

09-06-2002, 02:00
I like to think that I naturally ascribe to LNT principles, although I'm sure I could use a little fine-tuning. I tend to be pretty neat and unintrusive anyway, so there is typically little for me to do to tidy up before breaking camp.

I rarely have a fire and then it's usually after dinner, so all my trash is packed up so I rarely try to burn anything. I've found that a surprising number of wrappers et al. contain foil or something that tends not to burn very well.

I do not pack out my excrement, but do take full advantage of privies when available. If unavailable when the urge arises, then I make sure that I'm well off the Trail and water sources of any kind.

While I have packed out the assorted bit of trash, I'm afraid that I'm not in the habit of doing so.

SGT Rock
09-07-2002, 17:27
Trash: I mostly pack it out, but occasionally burn it. Many times I pack out someone elses because I hate seeing it in the woods.

Poles: Tips, but for more than preserving the trail.

Water: I actually drink most of my dish water. I rarely ever leave brown water.

Fire: I rarely make one anymore. It has to be a damn good reason for me to do so. If I make a fire, the wood comes from dead fall.

Vegitation: I leave it as found, I do not use it as wiping material. I do not clear vegitation for my shelter because I hammock, and I use "Tree Huggers" to prevent damage to tree trunks (same as HH).

TP: I use TP and I bury it.

Food: I rarely ever have uneaten food. I once threw some in a pit latrine before I found out I shouldn't. I now save it in my Lemonade bowl for breakfast.

Food (peels and cores): I chuck them into the woods.

Bathing in streams: I like to take a dip. I have on a couple of occasions used Dr Bonners in a stream before I was educated. Now I bathe away from a stream.

Noise: Not everyone thinks of this because it doesn't actually leave a trace, but it is polution just the same. I move quiet, stay quiet in camp, and occasionaly use a radio, but so quiet that no one knows I have it.

Light: Same as noise in my book. I avoid using a light unless totaly needed. I have a packing system and can find most of my gear without light and can pack without it as well. When I do use light it is in colors designed to preserve the natural night vision of others. I HATE headlamps, and I do not want to look into yours.

Colors: I also try to use nutral colors so I don't stick out when I camp. People go to see the woods, not bright purple tents. The only offenders are my legs which never get sun because I wear a uniform at work.
I edited my post to include a couple of other things since Peaks posted below.

Trails: I stay on them, never cut switchbacks.

Dogs: I used to take my dog hiking, but don't anymore.

09-08-2002, 06:47
Just so we stay on topic, the Leave No Trace Use Principals, as printed on some ATC maps is:

* Travel only on foot.

* Stay on the footpath;short cuts erode the land and make more work for the volunteers whot take care of the Trail for you.

*If you packed it in, pack it out! Help out by picking up any trash others have left behind also.

* Travel in small groups. Four to six is ideal; 25 is the maximum (think it's 10 maximum most places).

* Camp at sites established for overnight use.

* Camp in gourps of 10 or less. If you have more than five or six people in your group, set up your tents in an appropriate area so that all the hikers at a site can use the common facilities. Leave the shelters for solo hikers and smaller groups.

* Purify all drinking water and dishwashing water before you use it.

* Take only pictures, leave only the lightest of footprints. Remember, nuts, berries, and flowers may be the only food of (for?) creatures that call this home all the time.

* Use a small backpacking stove instead of building campfires. Nevere cut live brances or trees for firewood.

* Stay on Trail lands; if you wanter too far, you may be trespassing on private property.

* Use the privy if the campsite has one nearby. Otherwise, dispose of your waste in a "cathole" 6"-8" deep, 4"-6" wide, at least 50' from the trail, and 200' from water, campsites, and shelters.

* Don't wash or rince your dishes in or near open water.

* Respect other hikers - and the wildlife - by traveling and camping quietly.

* Pets are best left at home. If you do bring them, keep them on a leash and away from water sources, and clean up after them.

04-27-2003, 20:45
I pack out all trash, including used TP.
Like HH, I look around at my campsite before I leave to make sure no trash, etc. has been overlooked.
I use iodine tablets to purify my water
If I have to poop, I use a privy generally if one is nearby; if not, I do the cathole thing.