Outdoors

Free Leave No Trace workshops coming to Mount St. Helens

An estimated 300,000 people visit Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument each year. The monument and Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics will host a series of free programs to reduce the impact of visitors on the monument.
An estimated 300,000 people visit Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument each year. The monument and Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics will host a series of free programs to reduce the impact of visitors on the monument. AP file, 2010

The Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics is teaming up with Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument for a series of events beginning Sept. 1.

The popular monument has, in recent years, experienced visitor-created impacts that include excessive trash, damage to vegetation and trees, and trail erosion. An estimated 300,000 people visit the monument each year.

The Leave No Trace Traveling Trainers team and monument staff will host community events and educational activities to try to reduce these impacts.

The Hot Spot Program, a component of the Leave No Trace in Every Park initiative, works to raise community awareness and bring solutions to natural areas facing heavy recreational use, according to a monument news release.

“The cumulative impact of so many people enjoying such a great national treasure such as Mount St. Helens can have negative effects,” Jenna Hanger, a Leave No Trace Traveling Trainer, said in the release. “In most cases, the land impact isn’t due to a malicious intent to harm nature and wildlife. Instead, it’s simply lack of Leave No Trace education and practices.”

“We are thrilled to work with the Leave No Trace Traveling Trainers to help educate our community and raise awareness for the future enjoyment and preservation of our beautiful landscape,” monument manager Tedd Huffman said in the release.

Here is the schedule:

6:30-8 p.m. Sept. 1: Leave No Trace general awareness workshop. This is an interactive presentation about the how to enjoy the outdoors responsibly. Participants will learn how to easily and effectively integrate Leave No Trace into their daily lives. Gifford Pinchot National Forest Headquarters, 10600 NE 51st Circle, Vancouver, Washington.

7-8 p.m. Sept. 3: Hunter awareness workshop. This session focuses on how hunters and outdoorsmen can apply Leave No Trace principles to their activities. Woodland Community Center,782 Park St., Woodland.

9 a.m.-3 p.m. Sept. 5: Campsite and trail cleanup. All ages are invited to help clean up trash at campsites, remove fire rings, work on trails and learn how to apply Leave No Trace on their next outdoor adventure. Meet at Cougar Snow Park at the junction of Forest roads 81 and 83 on the south side of Mount St. Helens. Bring plenty of water, lunch, sun protection and wear appropriate clothing.

The events are free and open to the public. For more information about individual events, call 360-449-7800 or send an email to awilson@fs.fed.us. For more information about Leave No Trace, visit LNT.org.

  Comments