6 Tips for Staying Eco-Friendly on Your Hiking Adventure

Geraldine Mills
by: Geraldine Mills
6 Tips for Staying Eco-Friendly on Your Hiking Adventure

Hiking allows you to commune with nature and relieve stress and anxiety. People also use their hiking experiences to know themselves better.

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However, hiking also puts the environment at risk. That's because there are hiking habits that might harm the environment.

That said, we have listed down six best practices you should follow to become a responsible hiker.

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Remain on the Trail

One of the essential practices in protecting the environment while hiking is to stay on the path. Doing so ensures that you are not disturbing the environment.

Disrupting the local flora and fauna can make drastic changes in the state of the hiking trail. Meaning, you might not have the same experience when you traverse this trail again.

So, instead of using your hiking poles to poke around plants and turn some rocks, use them to have stability.

Leave No Trace

If you want to enjoy your hiking adventure as much as you can, you should keep this quote by Aliyyah Eniath in mind:

"Take nothing but pictures. Leave nothing but footprints. Kill nothing but time."

To be a responsible and eco-friendly hiker, the first thing you need to avoid is littering. We all know what disposable plastics and trash can do to the environment.

Birds and animals in the wild can eat those bits of plastics. And this can be detrimental for them.

Bring a Reusable Water Bottle

One way to prevent yourself from littering during a hike is to bring a reusable water bottle.

For one, it prevents you from throwing away plastic water bottles. Second, it helps you save money since you do not need to buy bottled water over and over. Instead, you can refill in the camping ground or the local community nearby.

Lastly, you only need to bring a single, high-quality water bottle. This means that you reduce the weight you have to carry to ensure that you are well-hydrated while hiking. Plus, a top-quality water bottle retains water temperature.

Camp in Designated Areas

Depending on the length of the trail, sometimes you will need to camp for the night. But that does not mean you can set up a tent anywhere you would like.

Instead, you should camp in campsites and designated areas. Seeking the help of a local guide can help you identify where those sites are.

Going rogue endangers you and can also disrupt the environment. Mind you; wild animals would tend to tread the same path and veers away from human interaction. So, camping outside a designated area could startle them.

Practice Fire Safety Protocols

One of the many reasons you should camp in a designated area is to prevent starting a forest fire and harming the local wildlife. That said, you should practice the following smart fire safety practices:

  • Know the local area's fire safety regulation.
  • Use existing fire pits.
  • Free the site of flammable debris.
  • Mind your fuel.
  • Watch what you burn.

Lastly, do not forget to put out the fire before leaving correctly.

Don't Disturb the Wildlife

When you are lucky, you might encounter some wild animals during your hike. And it can be tempting to come close and interact with them.

However, you should do otherwise and leave these animals be. And as much as possible, you should hush down during your hike. That way, you will not disturb the animals.

Aside from the animals, you should also avoid disturbing plants and flowers endemic in the area. This means stopping yourself from plucking the flower. The only thing you can do is use your hiking poles to lift the plants and branches from blocking your sight.

Conclusion: Hiking is Showing Compassion to Mother Earth

Wherever your hiking leads you, you should always respect your environment. And the best way you can do that is to be a responsible and eco-friendly hiker.

To recap, here are six sustainable hiking practices that you should keep in mind:

  1. Remain on the trail.
  2. Leave no trace.
  3. Bring a reusable water bottle.
  4. Camp in a designated area.
  5. Practice fire safety protocol.
  6. Don´t disturb the wildlife.

We know that hiking allows us to commune with nature and enjoy its beauty. However, being responsible will ensure that we enjoy the same majestic scenery next time we tread the same trail.

Hence, always protect the environment when you are hiking.

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