With the arrival of spring comes longer days and warmer temperatures, providing the perfect opportunity to explore Colorado’s stunning wilderness. Camping is an excellent way to appreciate the present moment, disconnect from the chaos of daily life, and become a responsible steward of our shared planet. For those new to Boulder, Colorado, who are eager to explore the region’s natural beauty, we offer some tips on how to minimize your impact on the environment.
Before embarking on your outdoor adventure, you can contribute to environmental protection by purchasing from companies with ethical policies. Local Boulder stores such as Neptune Mountaineering, Boulder Sports Recycler and Mount Inspiration Apparel offer a variety of environmentally friendly outdoor gear. If you must order online, consider shopping with certified B Corporations or supporting goods suppliers that have excellent return or repair policies.
Absorb the LNT Principles
The “Leave No Trace” principles are founded on the idea of leaving the outdoors in the same or better condition than you found it. This includes minimizing physical and acoustic pollution, properly disposing of biodegradable waste, and selecting suitable locations for setting up tents and parking cars.
While Colorado’s natural beauty draws millions of visitors annually, exploring its wilderness requires preparation and caution. Sudden weather changes, thunderstorms in the summer and confusing backcountry trails require careful planning. Bring a map, consult a ranger, inform someone outside of your group of your plans, and pack appropriately. Lack of preparedness may impact other members of your group or necessitate Search-and-Rescue assistance. Consider enrolling in mountaineering or wilderness first-aid courses to enhance your safety and preparedness.
Let the Wild Be Wild
We venture into nature’s wildness to experience things beyond our everyday lives, such as wildlife, bubbling streams, alpine lakes, and dark night skies. However, our interactions with these elements can tarnish or damage them. Consider your impact on the environment and tread lightly. Be mindful of your presence and interference, such as the noise level at your campsite or the placement of rocks along a riverbed.
Stay On the Trail
When camping, park or pitch your tent only in designated areas to avoid disturbing fragile ecosystems. While exploring, resist the temptation to venture off the beaten path in search of a secluded spot, as it can harm the environment and take decades for plant life to recover. Tread Lightly provides a range of ethical recreation guidelines that significantly reduce your impact on the environment.
Living in Boulder, Colorado, affords us the opportunity to contribute to nature and the world around us while creating a safe and inclusive space for others to do the same. Many of us live or move here to experience big, beautiful, and life-changing outdoor experiences that can only be found outside our comfort zones. By being considerate of all life around us so that we can continue to enjoy Colorado’s picturesque natural environment for years to come.