There are plenty of people that know how to respect nature while camping. It is often their love of animals and natural spaces that sparks the desire to camp in the first place. Yet, there are some inexperienced families that ruin the reputation of campers through their negligent actions. There are three important rules to remember when respecting nature in on your next camping trip. Be kind to your wild neighbors, be careful what you take and be careful what you leave behind.
Be Kind to Your Wild Neighbors
It is important to remember that no matter how civilized your campsite turns out to be, you are a guest within nature. Every creature that lives there and shares the space deserves kindness and respect. It is important to be careful about the creatures that you welcome into the tent. Food waste can attract bugs and rodents. Depending on the habitat, an unguarded food supply may also attract other locals. There is no reason to harm or frighten anything that wanders in, just because you were careless. Also, the right mesh on the windows should be enough to keep the bugs out. There is no need for any chemical insect repellents.
Be Careful What You Take Away From Nature
Some people would say that you should take nothing but photos and leave nothing but footprints. This is great advice for those that want to leave the campsite precisely as they found it. However, responsible campers can find appropriate souvenirs if they are careful. Be cautious when picking wild flowers, as some may be protected rare species. However, a small amount of plentiful, safe leaves, mushrooms and berries are great for foraging trips. Small discarded items like nutshells, pine cones and feathers are great keepsakes. They have served their purpose and won’t be missed. Don’t take any living creatures or deprive animals of important food sources if supplies are limited. Never disturb a nest for eggs.
Be Careful what You Leave Behind
There are few caveats here. Some couples may carve their initials on a tree. Some children may create a little leaf art for other explorers to find. The important thing to remember is that those moments are natural, biodegradable and cause no harm. Otherwise, leave no lasting trace that you were ever there. This means packing away everything you brought, as well as all the mess you created. A dedicated camping site may have recycling and waste disposal. Those in the wilderness need to sort all that out at home. Also be careful what chemical traces you leave behind with the products used. What products did you wash with in the stream?
Be Kind to Nature While Camping and it Will be Kind to You
Part of the joy of camping is the chance to head into nature and get away from the man-made world. The last thing that we want to do is spoil that wild space with man’s influence. Responsible campers will head out to make the most of these green wildernesses and celebrate the life within them. They are often rewarded with the best scenes, close encounters and a new respect for the area. Those that can’t do should reconsider whether camping trips are really for them. Wildlife and fragile ecosystems shouldn’t suffer from our laziness and ignorance.