Leave No Trace e-News                                         April 2008

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In This Issue
News You Can Use - Proper Waste Disposal
Grant Highlight - Connect Grants Application Deadline April 15th
Community Highlight - Fond Farwells and Happy Trails
Partnership Highlight - Think "Leave No Trace" This Earth Day
Road Wisdom - A Slickrock Sidewalk?
Store SALE - Skills and Ethics Booklets
Update Your Mailing and Email Address
The calendar says spring, however, the weather says something very different here in Colorado: Brrrrrrr. Despite the cold, bulbs are blooming, little tree buds are bursting, and there is a certain buzz in the air indicating that people are itching to get out and enjoy the season.

Here at Leave No Trace, spring is a time to refresh and relaunch many of our programs. We're introducing four new Traveling Trainers (Team Tanya/Cody and Team Topher/Alexis who are joining now veterans JD and Emily); a new e-tour team, Kate and Tracy, will hit the road; our website is full of new ways to gain Leave No Trace information and connect our state communities; our blogging community is becoming more and more active; and many other initiatives have the Leave No Trace staff fired-up to get the season started.

Now, more than ever, is your time to join the Leave No Trace community and capture the spring energy: check out our website, join the blog dialog, email your state advocate and get involved. And most importantly, get out and be inspired by the season!

Dana Watts
Executive Director
News You Can Use
Dear Education Department:

I'm a college student and have learned the "codes and conducts" of Leave No Trace over the years, while working in the outdoor education field.

I'm planning to go on a backpacking trip this Spring Break with some of my college buddies. The thing is, they're cool with everything except that they don't see anything wrong with bringing toilet paper into the backcountry. They insist on bringing toilet paper and burying it in the hole. Is there any information/law/ materials to help back me up?

I'd like us to do our part in the spirit of Leave No Trace, but they are not convinced, and do not wish to pack out paper with them. Using pinecones, snow or sticks doesn't sound too fun for them either.

Any advice or additional information would be greatly appreciated. Thank you!

Bathroom Help


Dear Bathroom Help:

Thanks for your support of Leave No Trace! As you probably know, the four objectives for proper disposal of human waste in the backcountry are:

· Avoid polluting water sources.
· Eliminate contact with insects and animals.
· Maximize decomposition.
· Minimize the chances of social impacts.

Improper disposal of human waste can lead to water pollution, the spread of illnesses such as Giardia, and unpleasant experiences for those who follow. Wherever soils are thin or sparse, such as the arctic tundra or above treeline, rainstorms can flush food wastes and other pollutants from campsites directly into water sources. Contaminated water is common near shelters and huts in the White Mountains of the northeastern U.S. during the summer. Both livestock and wildlife can also be responsible for the presence of bacteria in wildland areas.

As far as the use of toilet paper, I wouldn't try to get your buddies to pack out or forgo using it. Rather, I'd break them in slowly and allow them to develop their own Leave No Trace ethic, which takes time. Burying toilet paper, while not the best option, is an acceptable way to deal with TP in the backcountry (unless it's against regulations in a particular area). Think of Leave No Trace as a spectrum - one end you have folks operating in the most ethical way possible (packing out their TP and their human waste) and on the other end you have folks doing nothing to minimize their impacts. I'd recommend that you help your friends figure out where they fit in the spectrum, in other words, where they are comfortable. Once they understand the natural world around them and the consequences of their actions, they're much more likely to change their behavior. However, it's not realistic to expect everyone to do everything 100% Leave No Trace all the time. Rather, the goal is to have folks doing something to minimize their impacts rather than nothing.

Happy Trails!
Education Department

Photo Credits: Cody Hanford, Traveling Trainer, demonstrates proper
catholing technique during a Master Educator Course, March 2008
Grants Highlight
First Connect Grants Deadline is April 15th!

Connect Grants provide direct support and training grants for organizations and people that serve culturally diverse communities. The primary Connect Grant goals are to:
  • Increase the cadre of culturally diverse educators;
  • Provide Leave No Trace education for organizations serving predominately Latino, black, Native American, Asian as well as other diverse communities; and,
  • Provide broader Leave No Trace educational opportunities for youths not served before with these programs.
Grant awards range between $500 and $2500 and can be used for Leave No Trace educational materials and/or to cover the tuition of a Master Educator Course(s). Grant applications can be submitted online via the Grants and Scholarships page of the Center's website. If you have any questions, please email grants@lnt.org or call the Center at 800.332.4100 x 107.
Community Highlight
Fond Farewells and Happy Trails!

Over the last year, we have had to say goodbye to some very dedicated Leave No Trace State Advocates. Turnover is natural in any volunteer position, but as you will see from the list below, we have been fortunate to hang on to some excellent volunteers for more than two years. The Center's staff cannot say enough how thankful we are for all of our volunteer State Advocates' hard work and dedication. We would like to thank the following people for their years of service as advocates (start dates in parenthesis):
  • Blaine Boxwell in Conneticut (2000);
  • Abby Spotskey in Arizona (2002);
  • Hiedi Rieck in New Mexico (2002)
  • Jill Imboden in Arkansas (2004)
  • Mark Gleason in Michigan (2003)
  • Teresa Martinez in Virginia (2004)
  • Jen Visitacion in Utah (2004)
  • Zeb Weese in Kentucky (2005)
  • Marcia and Gabe Williamson in Maine (2005); and,
  • Paul "Hutch" Hutchinson in New Hampshire (2006).
These advocates have grown the Leave No Trace program throughout their entire region and laid the foundation for future Advocates.  In the last year and a half, we have gained 13 new advocates ready to take over where these great individuals left off.  Please welcome aboard our newest advocates:
  • Mike Bilbo, in New Mexico;
  • Alicia Brossart, in North Dakota;
  • Chris Derman, in Hawaii;
  • Noelle Grunwald, in Kentucky;
  • Laurie Harmon, in Virginia;
  • Jennifer Hazelrigs, in Arkansas;
  • Paul Holle, in Idaho;
  • Dan McCoy, in Wyoming;
  • Rex McRee, in Connecticut;
  • Nick Myers, in Tennessee;
  • Justin Robbins, in Nevada;
  • Tom Rogers, in Mississippi; and,
  • Kathi Stopher, in Utah.
It is always hard to say goodbye to such valuable people, but you can see how it makes it a whole lot easier when the organization gains passionate people who are eager to carry the torch and bring Leave No Trace information to their state. Leave No Trace currently has 44 states with Advocates. We are still looking for volunteer State Advocates in Alaska, Arizona, Maine, New Hampshire, Nebraska, Michigan and South Dakota. 

If you live in one of these states and are interested in learning more about the State Advocate program, please email Outreach Manager, Dave Winter, at dave@LNT.org.

Who's your State Advocate?  Visit the Leave No Trace Community to find out!

Partnership Highlight
Think "Leave No Trace" This Earth Day!

As Spring has (finally) arrived in Boulder, the Center has gotten more requests to the familiar question, "what can I do to get more involved with Leave No Trace?"  As a partner, you have a lot of options - from as simple as displaying your partnership placard in your office or store to holding a Leave No Trace-specific event, training or fundraiser. 

Here's one idea we like:

April 22nd is Earth Day!  What better way to celebrate our planet and your fabulous partnership with the Center than with a fundraiser or Leave No Trace awareness workshop! Consider hosting a free event - a speaker, booth presentation, slideshow or film - and asking for donations at the door to benefit the Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics.  Or, as a retailer, consider donating a percentage of your proceeds from sales generated on April 22nd. You may be surprised at how much your customers and community will appreciate and enjoy it!

Earth day inspires hundreds of exciting fundraisers, festivals, and events worldwide!  Bring your world and your community closer together by incorporating Leave No Trace into your Earth Day this year.

Feel free to contact the Center for more ways to enhance and build your partnership on Earth Day, and every day.

If you are interested in learning more about the Leave No Trace partnership program, please visit our Partners Page, or call 303.442.8222 x.105. 

Road Wisdom
A Slickrock Sidewalk?

From:  Cody Hanford and Tanya Rich
Subaru/Leave No Trace Traveling Trainers

There are countless perks when you are a Subaru/ Leave No Trace Traveling Trainer, the most obvious of which is our constant opportunity to get outside and enjoy new places.  One of our first opportunities to do so was at Arches National Park in Utah. We picked the Park Avenue trail: an easy two mile hike.  It is one of the first trails you can take as you enter the park, so it receives many visitors. 

We are greeted by a great "Don't Bust the Crust" sign that reminds us all to stay on the trail and watch out for cryptobiotic soil.  The trail descends and the views begin.  Massive rust red canyon walls evoke a mystical feeling as we follow the trail.  We admire the colorful patterns on the rocks, but notice some unusual markings on the slick rock trail and walk ahead to investigate.  Busted, powdery rocks lay next to the proclamations, "Norbert was here" and "We love Arches."  For the rest of the hike, the trail resembles a neighborhood sidewalk full of many modern day intaglios.  By no means did these etchings ruin our hike, but they did leave an impression on us which we wanted to share with you. 

We're sure the people had no ill will when they were making these drawings, but they could have chosen a different way to express their love for Arches.  It's important for all of us to act as role models when in the outdoors and to encourage visitors to practice Leave No Trace.  It's also very important to allow people to express themselves while in the outdoors.  Some alternatives we suggest would be photography, sketch pads for drawing and writing, or simply to just let it be and enjoy what you see.

Happy hiking,

Tanya and Cody
Team West
Picture: Arches National Park, Utah. Courtesy of Tanya and Cody.

Read More from the Road on the Traveling Trainer Blog.

Stay tuned for next month: the first Road Wisdom
from Team East, Alexis & Topher!

Store Promotion

Leave No Trace Skills and Ethics Booklets are 30% Off!

Ever wanted to round out your Leave No Trace knowledge?  Now you can with one or all of the 16 Skills and Ethics Booklets in the series. Each is approx. 24 - 28 pages, and focuses on Leave No Trace principles and techniques for one of 9 specific geographic areas, or one of 7 specific activities.

Regularly $2.95, now $2.05 each through April 30th. 

For the educator or enthusiast looking to fully round out their knowledge, or have available a comprehensive Leave No Trace resource, buy the "Library" (one of each booklet) and get all 16 for the price of 10.

Take advantage of this offer by visiting our online store!  See the coupon below for details.

Leave No Trace
Skills and Ethics Booklets!

Order online or call 1.800.332.4100

Offer Expires: April 30th, 2008.
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Changing things up?

Please keep your email and mailing addresses current!

is one step we are making toward a more consistent online communication for our community, in an effort to conserve our resources and our planet!  Please help us in this endeavor by e-mailing info@LNT.org to update your records.