Leave No Trace

Leave No Trace is for individuals who love the river and surrounding floodplain — and want to embrace a personal role in preserving outdoor experiences for future generations.

Mississippi River paddlers are encouraged to practice the Leave No Trace principals, which are based on common sense.  Leave No Trace includes picking up after yourself and not destroying nature.  Adopted by the National Park Service and taught to Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, and Mighty Quapaws, Leave No Trace is all about respecting the environment you are in and being a good visitor. Just the same as entering someone’s home, you are entering the homes of animals, birds, fish, insects and a unique floodplain ecosystem.  Its always best to be gentle and ask permission when possible.  Pick up all trash and leave nothing but footprints.  Pick a spot 100 yards away from the water’s edge and dig a hole at least a foot deep when going to the bathroom.  Don’t leave toilet paper on the ground.  Your consideration will make the journey much more enjoyable for future paddlers not to mention fisherman and other locals who also use the river.  For more information about Leave No Trace, please visit their website: www.lnt.org

The Seven Leave No Trace Principals

Leave No Trace Principals appropriate to paddlers on the Mississippi River include:

1) Plan ahead and prepare
2) Dispose of waste properly
3) Deposit solid human waste in catholes dug 6 to 8 inches deep at least 200 feet from water, camp, and trails.  Cover and disguise the cathole when finished.
4) Pack out toilet paper and hygiene products.
5) Leave what you find
6) Respect wildlife
7) Be considerate of other visitors

The member-driven Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics teaches people how to enjoy the outdoors responsibly. This copyrighted information has been reprinted with permission from the Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics: www.LNT.org