The WHAT and WHY:
Late July and August is a great time to get in that last week or weekend to take the family camping in the wilderness before the school year begins. An avid camper can carefully purchase zero-impact gear, camp locally or regionally and leave the electronic gadgets at home to reduce his or her footprint.
The term “glamping“, is defined as luxury camping by urbanites who cannot give up their tech or toys while trying to be “in nature”. To me, that defeats the purpose. You can be comfortable, clean, eat well and and be healthy with a tiny footprint.
Where I grew up, we spent lots of time in the BWCA, where the rule was, “whatever goes in, you bring out”. I was an environmental advocate as soon as I learned how to crawl out of the tent. Girl Scouts helped too.
It was only when I became an adult that I realized how the rest of American campers “enjoyed” nature. I have news for you, packing the car with tons of gear, food, hi-tech toys and amenities was what campers did decades ago. It’s so yesterday, so not good for us, or other living things.
Getting away from all the amenities of the modern world and reconnecting with nature is really the objective. If bicycling to your destination is not your thing; or it is not possible, perhaps you can carpool with friends or neighbors.
Let’s honor Mother Nature and the environment, its creatures, flora and fauna; try solar water bags (for your evening shower) and solar powered or hand cranked gear is a solution for minimal environmental impact. My Goal Zero Yeti 400 powers whatever my camping group needs, emergency phones and solar lights. I use my Biolite Campstove Bundle to cook while it powers up my phone. And I take a couple of Solar Luci lights, just for fun!
Remember your sunscreen and consider using one of the eight natural mosquito repellents.
This week’s practice is to plan and enjoy a sustainable camping experience.
We suggest you adopt the “Leave No Trace” Seven Principles *, (click on Seven Principles to learn more):
1. Plan Ahead and Prepare
2. Travel and Camp on Durable Surfaces
3. Dispose of Waste Properly
4. Leave What You Find
5. Minimize Campfire Impacts
6. Respect Wildlife
7. Be Considerate of Other Visitors
The Deep Dive:
Hand Crank SteriPen water purifier, one liter in 90 seconds
Leave No Trace, Center for Outdoor Ethics website
Sustainable camping in Sardinia, (one of the Founder’s favorites)
Up Shit Creek, a collection of Horrifying Wilderness Toilet Misadventures
*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