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RVing message boards => Boondocking => Topic started by: Urban Hillbilly on August 08, 2017, 09:57:43 AM

Title: Leave No Trace!
Post by: Urban Hillbilly on August 08, 2017, 09:57:43 AM
I have recently read about some incidents of how people leave and treat natural areas when camping and RVing. After about 12 years of Scouting involvement with my son going through Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts and becoming an Eagle Scout, it wasn't only him who was learning some great traits, but me as well. One of the best things is to "Leave No Trace". I've included a link to read the whole principle. It's short, but gets the point across. (http://www.scouting.org/scoutsource/BoyScouts/TeachingLeaveNoTrace/064_principles.aspx), but here's some key points:
1)Travel and Camp on Durable Surfaces, 2)Dispose of Waste Properly (Pack It In, Pack It Out), 3)Sanitation, 4)Leave What You Find, 5)Minimize Site Alterations, 6)Minimize Campfire Impacts, 7)Respect Wildlife, 8)Be Considerate of Other Visitors, 9)Plan Ahead and Prepare.
And if I might add, pick up things others have left behind.
I know most RVer's are considerate of where they go and stay, but unfortunately some think they are still in their backyards. I posted this under Boondocking, but a lot of the same principles can be exercised at regular campgrounds, too.
I'm not trying to "bust" on anyone, but what we have left of our great outdoors belongs to everyone to enjoy.

 
Title: Re: Leave No Trace!
Post by: blw2 on August 08, 2017, 10:14:57 AM
I think the "be considerate" part is one that often gets lost when thinking leave no trace...  Usually it's thinking from the perspective of "future" visitors to that area.  It also can apply to "present" visitors as well....

For example, a subdued colored tent can be better so as not to destroy the view that others might enjoy in the area....
.. I put it this way.... imagine a beautiful mountain lake scene... nobody around for a thousand miles.....now imagine someone setting up a tent over there on the opposite shoreline... a nice blaze orange tent will work...  boom, just ruined the image, right?
   now change that tent to a olive drab color, or some other more subdued color...so that it nearly disappears....much better, eh?

RV'ers do a similar thing even in campgrounds....with huge lanterns, music blaring, large smokey camp fires, etc...
Title: Re: Leave No Trace!
Post by: SeilerBird on August 08, 2017, 10:18:58 AM
Leave no trace? How does one do that in an RV? There are no all electric powered RVs yet, someone tell Elon to hurry up.
Title: Re: Leave No Trace!
Post by: Joezeppy on August 08, 2017, 10:27:53 AM
Good points, Urban. A good reminder to leave the site better than we found it, rather it's boondocking or at a high-end RV Resort.


RV'ers do a similar thing even in campgrounds....with huge lanterns, music blaring, large smokey camp fires, etc...
LOL - reminds me of one time we were camping with a large group and one guy actually brought his lantern over to the campfire and set it on a table next to his chair. Very relaxing...NOT!
Title: Re: Leave No Trace!
Post by: BinaryBob on August 08, 2017, 10:49:10 AM
Ugh... Those old coleman white gas lanterns should be outlawed. They're like a sun going super nova.
Good link Urban Hillbilly. As someone who went up the ladder with my boys in scouts, I am adamant about the condition of our site when we leave. I often end up picking up the previous occupants little crap.
Title: Re: Leave No Trace!
Post by: Urban Hillbilly on August 08, 2017, 11:26:53 AM
Leave no trace? How does one do that in an RV? There are no all electric powered RVs yet, someone tell Elon to hurry up.

It's a given, an RV is not like a tent, but I've seen tent campers leave a bigger mess than an RVer and you usually drive a car to the campsite. Also, you can do things like solar to curb some of the energy issues. It's just not a perfect world, even for Elon! I agree, it does start with a considerate attitude.
Title: Re: Leave No Trace!
Post by: SeilerBird on August 08, 2017, 11:36:23 AM
It's a given, an RV is not like a tent, but I've seen tent campers leave a bigger mess than an RVer and you usually drive a car to the campsite. Also, you can do things like solar to curb some of the energy issues. It's just not a perfect world, even for Elon! I agree, it does start with a considerate attitude.
You missed my point. Claiming to leave no trace but then driving a vehicle is counterproductive. It is not not leaving a trace.
Title: Re: Leave No Trace!
Post by: Oldgator73 on August 08, 2017, 12:42:51 PM
Once we get all packed up we all take a turn around the campsite. Once we're hooked up and I pull out I drive back around to the campsite and stop in front and everybody takes a good look. That way we can see it from the perspective of the folks that may be coming in behind us. We can see if we left anything under the truck or trailer.
Title: Re: Leave No Trace!
Post by: blw2 on August 08, 2017, 01:45:16 PM
Ugh... Those old coleman white gas lanterns should be outlawed. They're like a sun going super nova.....

yep.  I've been saying the same thing since I started scouting with my son's cub scout pack.  Even the electric lanterns.... just when I start getting a little bit of night vision adaptation going, somebody with their shiny new lantern would stroll by on the way to the bathhouse or someplace.... :o

When I wrote my post though, i had pictured in my mind the time when we were camping in a state park.  We were in our popup trailer at the time, and the guy in the next site over had a "bucket light" hanging high in the tree above.  Must have had a 200 watt bulb, maybe more in that thing.  The whole place looked like a walmart parking lot!
Title: Re: Leave No Trace!
Post by: SeilerBird on August 08, 2017, 02:09:48 PM
Ugh... Those old coleman white gas lanterns should be outlawed.
:)) :)) :))
Title: Re: Leave No Trace!
Post by: John From Detroit on August 08, 2017, 05:56:12 PM
I recall an advertisment (Do not litter ad) Featuring an Indian who walked the forest Came to a River, observed some junk (I recall a plastic bottle carrier and some other stuff) and cried.

Only problem with the ad is that he was a Forest indian, a TeePee dweller. They were nomadic, THey moved in, Destroyed the enviorment, then leaving all their junk to decay over time moved on.

Not like the Pubelo dwellers of the Dessert regions.  (NOTE: Confirmed with a genuine Pubelo Dweller, the daughter of a Tribal Leader no less, when I was in AZ some years back)

But then.. She was amazed I knew the differene  (I am often amazed at how little some people know.. But then I like to read, and when you read..... You learn).
Title: Re: Leave No Trace!
Post by: DearMissMermaid on August 10, 2017, 06:24:49 AM
Firepits are not garbage pits. It seems many RVers like to toss their crap in the fire pit for the next person to clean out.

I travel with a long handle picker-upper because I don't like all the little bits of garbage I find all over most campsites I go to set up on. Straws, beer caps, cig butts, plastic crap from juice box straws (really hate that system!) and so on.

I seem to spend an hour just cleaning up a site so I am not ashamed to be seen camping on it.

When I leave, I doubt if anyone could find anything wrong with the way I leave the camp. I would say that 99% of the time I leave it in far better shape than I found it.

I am appalled at the cavalier attitude towards garbage and the laziness in hauling it out or disposing of it properly. I have even found entire garbage bags full stuffed in the fire pit for the next hapless camper to deal with.
Title: Re: Leave No Trace!
Post by: kwbush on August 10, 2017, 09:40:58 AM
Boy, I'd love to follow y'all when I camp but unfortunately, I too get the pigs who leave all the garbage behind. Can we start shooting the litterers? Seems that is the only thing that will stop them. Oh, and don't shoot to wound!

Keith
Title: Re: Leave No Trace!
Post by: NY_Dutch on August 10, 2017, 01:13:35 PM
We have one of only a few active lifetime camping/hunting access permits left for a 400 acre tree farm in the Adirondacks owned by a large paper company. When we were there for a week last summer, the senior forester for the company came by to introduce us to a new summer intern. The intern was first out of the truck, and he immediately started in on us ranting about the sewer hose that he thought was running out on ground. When the forester caught up with him, he started laughing, making the intern even madder. Once the intern finally calmed down, the forester asked him to go over and see where the end of the hose went. The puzzled look on the interns face when he found the elbow screwed into a PVC pipe fitting was priceless. The forester finally told him that the little clearing we were in was where the forester had lived in his trailer 30 something years ago while he was building a cabin to live in a few miles away. While he was in the trailer, he had a 500 gallon septic tank and leach field installed at the clearing, and had showed us the inlet long ago so we could use it too. When we're preparing to leave, the fireplace rocks are scattered with the wet down ashes raked out, and the sewer inlet covered with brush. Anyone coming by would be hard pressed to know that anyone had been camping there at all, much less in a 34' motorhome.
Title: Re: Leave No Trace!
Post by: Old_Crow on October 22, 2017, 08:05:39 AM
OK, I gotta say this.  First, I also spent around 10 years coming up through the Boy Scouts with my kids, and have been on tons of camp outs with the Scouts.
 
I've spent the last 2 summers camp hosting outside the park at the North Rim of the Grand Canyon.  Without a doubt the worst campsites I've had to clean up were sites occupied by Boy Scout troops.  Not sure what they're teaching the kids these days, but it's sure not "leave no trace".
I've seen sites where a bunch of guys were drinking and piling the empties on the picnic table that were cleaner when they left than sites with Boy Scout troops. 
Even the leaders have trouble following simple things like the parking rules for the sites and fire rules.  Had a troop this year that showed up during a period of red flag conditions that even banned fires in the campgrounds.  They hadn't brought any kind of stoves to cook their food, so were starting fires even though it was posted in several spots around the campground not to.
When I asked them to put out the fires, it was, "how are we supposed to cook our food?"  Hey, when I was a scout leader we brought Coleman stoves with us to cook on if we needed to.  Whatever happened to "be prepared"?
 
Title: Re: Leave No Trace!
Post by: Kevin Means on October 22, 2017, 12:31:27 PM
Amen!
Title: Re: Leave No Trace!
Post by: ArdraF on October 22, 2017, 02:46:43 PM
Good grief!  No brains I guess.  The Girl Scouts taught all that and more when I was one.

ArdraF
Title: Re: Leave No Trace!
Post by: kdbgoat on October 22, 2017, 05:16:05 PM
A couple of years ago, the Rangers had a Boy Scout troop pack up and leave in the middle of the night at a local state park here.
Title: Re: Leave No Trace!
Post by: OBX on October 22, 2017, 08:07:36 PM
It seems like beach state parks tend to be the worst.  Sand, sun and for some people their only foray into the outdoors all year.  I pick up around my camspites and neighborhood.  I like when I see others doing the same.
Title: Re: Leave No Trace!
Post by: Joezeppy on October 22, 2017, 08:25:42 PM
OK, I gotta say this.  First, I also spent around 10 years coming up through the Boy Scouts with my kids, and have been on tons of camp outs with the Scouts.
 
I've spent the last 2 summers camp hosting outside the park at the North Rim of the Grand Canyon.  Without a doubt the worst campsites I've had to clean up were sites occupied by Boy Scout troops.  Not sure what they're teaching the kids these days, but it's sure not "leave no trace".
I've seen sites where a bunch of guys were drinking and piling the empties on the picnic table that were cleaner when they left than sites with Boy Scout troops. 
Even the leaders have trouble following simple things like the parking rules for the sites and fire rules.  Had a troop this year that showed up during a period of red flag conditions that even banned fires in the campgrounds.  They hadn't brought any kind of stoves to cook their food, so were starting fires even though it was posted in several spots around the campground not to.
When I asked them to put out the fires, it was, "how are we supposed to cook our food?"  Hey, when I was a scout leader we brought Coleman stoves with us to cook on if we needed to.  Whatever happened to "be prepared"?
 

As an Eagle Scout all I can say is I'm appalled at what you experienced. My leaders were perfect examples for us. Terrible that all leaders are not like that!
Title: Re: Leave No Trace!
Post by: SeilerBird on October 22, 2017, 08:47:09 PM
I have gone into people's houses and cars and almost thrown up due to the mess and the liter. Not everyone values neatness.  ???
Title: Re: Leave No Trace!
Post by: John Beard on October 23, 2017, 07:15:43 AM
And if I might add, pick up things others have left behind.
I know most RVer's are considerate of where they go and stay, but unfortunately some think they are still in their backyards. I posted this under Boondocking, but a lot of the same principles can be exercised at regular campgrounds, too.
I'm not trying to "bust" on anyone, but what we have left of our great outdoors belongs to everyone to enjoy.

Kind of judgmental aren't you. I know folks who talk the talk, but forget to walk the walk...which are you? Instead of lambasting what you ASSUME to be the truth, live your words and be an example and change YOUR little corner of the world.

"What we have left"??? I travel the Western USA and I see people caring from here to there, and a few less informed doing what you noted.
Title: Re: Leave No Trace!
Post by: kdbgoat on October 23, 2017, 08:45:00 AM
Having camphosted for a few years locally, I find most people are pretty good about keeping their sites clean, or at least cleaning before they leave.
Title: Re: Leave No Trace!
Post by: Oldgator73 on October 23, 2017, 09:43:14 AM
There are some CG's that actually use the time between check out and check in to clean the campsite. Ft. Wilderness at Disney World is one of them. We pulled up to our site and it was spotless. It had been raked. I observed employees cleaning campsites during our stay. But it should be spic and span for $75 a day.
Title: Re: Leave No Trace!
Post by: Len and Jo on October 23, 2017, 09:50:37 AM
Most all the national forest campgrounds in Michigan have campground hosts and for the most part they do an excellent job cleaning the sites between visitors.  So with our 50% off senior discount when we check in the sites have been raked and the fire pits cleaned.  All this for ~$9 a night.  Of course if would easier on everyone if all national and state forest guests policed their sites.

Some times though what is left behind can be kind of weird.
Title: Re: Leave No Trace!
Post by: wackymac on October 23, 2017, 10:13:35 AM
I have gone into people's houses and cars and almost thrown up due to the mess and the liter. Not everyone values neatness.

10-4 Tom.  A lady died one house down from us.  Can you say "hoarder" and 40 yard Dumpster time?

I really get ticked off when I see cigarette butts all over the ground at camp sites and RV spaces.
Title: Re: Leave No Trace!
Post by: kdbgoat on October 23, 2017, 10:26:08 AM

I really get ticked off when I see cigarette butts all over the ground at camp sites and RV spaces.

That ticks me off too,...and I'm a smoker. I don't throw cigarette butts in my yard, nor do I like it if someone else throws them in my yard. That said I won't throw them in anyone else's yard either. Another thing that puzzles me is when one finds butts on the ground right around a butt disposal can.
Title: Re: Leave No Trace!
Post by: blw2 on October 23, 2017, 10:38:07 AM
me too about the butts.  One of my huge pet peeves about the more natural state park type campgrounds.  Usually it seem that the campers or CG hosts are pretty good about keeping sites clean, but the butts always remain....

With our scout troop, we general will form the line and walk doing a litter pick-up before loading up in the car.....and then do it again if the Scout master finds anything after....
Thing about scout troop, just like people in general...there are all kinds.

I've been really getting interested again in doing some backpacking.  Saw a youtube video (Kenneth Kramm) a while back where the guys expanded on the term
"Leave No Trace, Be No Trace"
That Be no trace really resonates with me.  In my thinking he meant to not only leave the place clean, but try to camp in such a way that others around you can enjoy the place too.  A good bit different with the RV perspective, but still loud music and bright lights come to mind....
Title: Re: Leave No Trace!
Post by: SeilerBird on October 23, 2017, 10:50:51 AM
I have gone into people's houses and cars and almost thrown up due to the mess and the liter. Not everyone values neatness.

10-4 Tom.  A lady died one house down from us.  Can you say "hoarder" and 40 yard Dumpster time?

I really get ticked off when I see cigarette butts all over the ground at camp sites and RV spaces.
10-4 good buddy. I use to manage an apartment complex. Well actually it was mostly a bunch of small cabins in Reno. One lady moved out after living there a long time and the maintenance man told me that she owned several small dogs and no one ever saw them leave the cabin. He told me there was a path through the crap to get from the bathroom to the bed.  (:(
Title: Re: Leave No Trace!
Post by: Len and Jo on October 23, 2017, 12:33:31 PM
me too about the butts.  One of my huge pet peeves about the more natural state park type campgrounds.  Usually it seem that the campers or CG hosts are pretty good about keeping sites clean, but the butts always remain....

With our scout troop, we general will form the line and walk doing a litter pick-up before loading up in the car.....and then do it again if the Scout master finds anything after....
Thing about scout troop, just like people in general...there are all kinds.

I've been really getting interested again in doing some backpacking.  Saw a youtube video (Kenneth Kramm) a while back where the guys expanded on the term
"Leave No Trace, Be No Trace"
That Be no trace really resonates with me.  In my thinking he meant to not only leave the place clean, but try to camp in such a way that others around you can enjoy the place too.  A good bit different with the RV perspective, but still loud music and bright lights come to mind....

Just getting back into it myself.  It has been many years since I did any backpacking and canoe camping.  It all of a sudden dawned on me that I am getting older and I better not keep putting this off to tomorrow.  I posted the link to a short 6 day, 5 night trip I just took with my son-in-law on the RVForum but here it is again.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_wh_zxykPM8  I am planning in a week or two to take a solo trip 5 day, 4 night trip to the Michigan Mio area. 

While on the last trip shared camp with six wonderful women.  They are all friends and get together once a year backpacking.  I would guess they were 60-65ish.  They all had what I would consider the best and latest equipment.  As one said; she wants to keep doing this and as she gets older and best and LIGHTEST equipment really makes it all do able as we age.  Inspired,  I have just replaced my pack, sleeping bag and sleeping pad and shed a good 7 pounds.

Hope you enjoy getting back into backpacking.
Title: Re: Leave No Trace!
Post by: Oldgator73 on October 23, 2017, 02:52:21 PM
Just watched your video. Looks like you had a great time. Beautiful country. Did you take your son-in-law along for muscle? Looks like he can handle himself.
Title: Re: Leave No Trace!
Post by: blw2 on October 25, 2017, 05:08:48 AM
Just getting back into it myself.  It has been many years since I did any backpacking and canoe camping.  It all of a sudden dawned on me that I am getting older and I better not keep putting this off to tomorrow.  I posted the link to a short 6 day, 5 night trip I just took with my son-in-law on the RVForum but here it is again.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_wh_zxykPM8  I am planning in a week or two to take a solo trip 5 day, 4 night trip to the Michigan Mio area. 

While on the last trip shared camp with six wonderful women.  They are all friends and get together once a year backpacking.  I would guess they were 60-65ish.  They all had what I would consider the best and latest equipment.  As one said; she wants to keep doing this and as she gets older and best and LIGHTEST equipment really makes it all do able as we age.  Inspired,  I have just replaced my pack, sleeping bag and sleeping pad and shed a good 7 pounds.

Hope you enjoy getting back into backpacking.

Nice spot!  I only skipped through your video, in a hurry to get to work..... but looks like a great trip!
I see you have a solo stove.  Like it? 
I love the idea of something like that, but in the vain of your point about getting light, I recently bought a little BRS stove from amazon.  Less than $20 for a super ultralight way to heat water or warm some food.  I also recently got a zpacks arc blast pack.  Unbelievably light.....but expensive!  My last major thing to get is a lighter tent.  I have one suitable, but figure this older body can benefit from lighter weights....
Title: Re: Leave No Trace!
Post by: Len and Jo on October 25, 2017, 02:39:46 PM
Nice spot!  I only skipped through your video, in a hurry to get to work..... but looks like a great trip!
I see you have a solo stove.  Like it? 
I love the idea of something like that, but in the vain of your point about getting light, I recently bought a little BRS stove from amazon.  Less than $20 for a super ultralight way to heat water or warm some food.  I also recently got a zpacks arc blast pack.  Unbelievably light.....but expensive!  My last major thing to get is a lighter tent.  I have one suitable, but figure this older body can benefit from lighter weights....
I have a Huba one persom MSR tent, about 3.3 lbs.  IF I was doing it over again I might consider the Huba Huba two person tent, about 0.5 lbs heavier but twice the floor space.  Very easy to add weight.  A little extra here and a little extra there and all of a sudden you have added several pounds.