RV Tips: 7 Ways to “Leave No Trace”

Make 2024 your best year yet in your new or used RV! How? By abiding by those three little words we see posted all over the place in campgrounds and parks: “Leave No Trace.” Here are our RV tips for what this phrase means, and how the way you camp and travel impacts the world and environment around you.

RV Tips

The Principles of Leave No Trace

There are seven principles which guide the Leave No Trace mindset. They’re not boring rules meant to keep anyone from having fun, but rather helping you have more fun by maintaining a happy and healthy environment around you through responsible traveling decisions. These seven principles are:

  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

Plan Ahead and Prepare

Being spontaneous can be great, but it can also be costly and irresponsible, because it can result in wasting resources and being ill-preparedyou’re your trip. Make thorough plans so you can pack and prepare exactly what you need, what you can leave behind, and stay mindful of any cleanup needed along the way. 

Travel and Camp on Durable Surfaces

Always, always park your new or used RV on the designated parking pad in your campsite. Campgrounds and state and national parks have specific areas designated for camping, parking, hiking, and more. This is to accommodate their visitors as well as maintain the environment for the wildlife habitat residents. When non-camping areas are used to park an RV or tent, the wildlife that had been inhabiting it may abandon it once it’s disturbed. You wouldn’t want someone to wreck your home – so don’t wreck the home of others!

Dispose of Waste Properly

Only ever handle your black tank dump and flush at a designated dumping station. Dispose of grease and food scraps in proper and designated locations – never at the edge of your campsite. And make sure to dispose of wrappers and other garbage in proper containers and bins, too. Don’t drop those wrappers out on the trail!

Leave What You Find

The landscape is beautiful to look at, but please don’t take it home with you. We get it: there’s something fascinating about collecting rocks and seashells as little mementos. But the way to best appreciate nature is by leaving it in its place. If you need to take it with you, do so in the form of a photograph.

Minimize Campfire Impacts

A crackling campfire is totally iconic. Make the most of your campfire opportunities by burning responsibly. That means only using the firewood permitted by the campground, even if you have to buy it, and following all the campground rules for a campfire. Never use dangerous chemicals to start a fire or burn garbage.

Respect the Wildlife

Wildlife is not for touching, approaching, feeding, petting, or interacting with in any way. Period. Many wildlife have to be euthanized every year by rangers after that animal acclimates – and eventually becomes aggressive toward – human visitors. Resist the urge to feed or attract even the smallest critters like birds and squirrels.   

Be Considerate of Other Visitors

The Golden Rule of camping! Simply show other campers and visitors the same consideration you’d like to be shown. Following campground rules, abiding by noise and pet ordinances, and practicing good hiking trail etiquette are all ways to be considerate and help everyone enjoy the camping trip they set out to enjoy.

These 7 easy principles of Leave No Trace can help you make sure you have a fantastic camping trip – and help others do the same! One way you can also minimize your environmental impact is to schedule some RV service before you go. Clean filters and a fresh oil change are two great ways to reduce that carbon footprint. Contact us today!

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