Having fun in the outdoors also means maintaining your playgrounds for future visits and visitors. Here is a list of ideas on how you can tread more lightly during your next outdoors adventure.
Camping off designated sites can spoil the natural environment and depreciate the landscape and scenery for future visitors. It is important to use existing campsites and camp only in designated areas.
Remember to pack out what you pack in and leave the scene as you encountered it. No one likes to hike into the wild and find someone else’s garbage along the way, or at their destination.
Mountain Biking / Dirt Biking
Stay on designated trails. If you’re not sure where the trail is, ask or find a map. Riding off-trail or widening existing trails further degrades the terrain and results in premature trail closures and loss of precious habitat.
After your trip, remember to wash down you watercraft and gear. This helps reduce the transfer of invasive species from one body of water into another. Here, invasive species refer to plants or plant material foreign to a specific area.
What's the big deal? Some native species of plant life can't compete with invasives and become extinct. Local wildlife lose a food source and you lose biodiversity.
Ways to prevent this unwanted transfer is by draining your livewells and transom wells at the boat ramp when you leave, as well as removing any visible plant material on your watercraft and gear.
Stick to designated trails during the shoulder seasons when trails are more commonly muddy. This helps to prevent the widening of trails.
If skiing, snowboarding, or snowmobiling, avoid areas with insufficient snow cover. Otherwise you run the risk of scarring the landscape--and your gear.
If traveling by foot, its a good idea to keep to the trail even when crossing streams. Also, be aware of any fishing restrictions on where you intend to fish.
Also, practice catch and release and be familiar with length and bag limits for those fish you intend to keep. It all helps to preserve your fishing hole for another day.