Monday, June 23, 2008

Paddle, paddle, paddle your boat

The 27th annual LL Bean Paddle Sports Festival held in Freeport, Maine was a time for families to explore the water sport world.  Sea kayaking is one of the fastest growing sports in our country.  The festival provided the opportunity to test a variety of kayaks and canoes in beautiful Casco Bay.  With more and more people recreating on the water, it is important to learn, and practice, the Leave No Trace skills and ethics.  Although paddlers have little impact on the water itself, land managers are finding significant impacts on the shorelines and wildlife that live there.  Practicing Leave No Trace will help minimize the impacts on the 95, 440 miles of shoreline in this country.  
Safe Travels...
~Tracy and Kate, e-tour 2008

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Kittery Trading Post, Maine

Friday we arrived in Kittery, ME after a relaxing week in Massachusetts catching up with family and friends.  We spent the day at the Kittery Trading Post for Junefest.  This was an exciting event filled with great sales and Coleman was highlighted as an event guest.  Coleman's Let's Go Outside Tour, a mobile showcase providing a touch of Coleman's 100 plus year history as well as a sampling of today's products, was in the parking lot for customers to enjoy.  We met a Leave No Trace enthusiast that quizzed us on the history of NOLS and Leave No Trace skills and ethics about the use of fire.  We explained to her that Leave No Trace is not against campfires, but it is important to always check with your local land manager about fire permits.  Then you want to use an established fire ring in popular areas and keep the fire small.  Always be sure to burn the wood to ash and pack out what you can.  She was very happy to see us at Junefest and encouraged us to reach as many people as possible. 
Safe Travels...Tracy and Kate, etour 2008

Monday, June 16, 2008

Dick's Outdoor Adventure Tour-Erie

We had another exciting, and rainy, weekend at the Dick's Outdoor Adventure Tour in Erie, PA.  Although it was raining for most of the weekend, the sun popped out and we were able to reach 100s of people at the tour and provide them with Leave No Trace information.  The scavenger hunt was very successful.  We even had kids that wanted to do the hunt more than once!  We camped out right on the beach of Lake Erie while we were in Erie at Sara's Campground.  We were lucky enough to have the rains stop just in time for some amazing sunsets.  Gorgeous!
Safe Travels...
~Tracy and Kate, e-tour 2008 

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Paddling in Pittsburgh!

This week we were in Pennsylvania.  We ventured down to Pittsburgh to meet up with Jon Lucadamo, the Pennsylvania state advocate for Leave No Trace.  Jon works for a non-profit organization called Venture Outdoors.  The organization is dedicated to introducing people to paddling, hiking, and many other activites in the city of Pittsburgh.  Jon took us for a wonderful paddle down the Allegenhy River.  The river runs right through down town Pittsburgh.  What a way to start the day!  If you are ever in Pittsburgh, check out Venture Outdoors and see how much recreation the city has to offer.  Safe Travels...
~Tracy and Kate, e-tour 2008

Monday, June 9, 2008

Cathole or Kybo?

We spent the weekend at Cabela's in Dundee, MI.  Cabela's offers a wide range of gear for your outdoor adventures.  The store had many events going on including a gun show and gun exchange, tent sale, boat show, and of course the Leave No Trace e-tour!  We set up our booth in store next to the towering mountainscape.  We hosted two awareness workshops over the weekend and provided information to many customers.  We met scouting troops from Michigan and Canada that were excited to see us at the store.  Did you know that scouts in Canada use a Kybo as a latrine?  Kybo is an acronym that stands for "Keep Your Bowels Open".  One troop we met at the store was going to be building their own Kybo.  Catholes or Kybos?  You decide.
Safe Travels...
~Tracy and Kate, e-tour 2008

Friday, June 6, 2008

Trash Your Trash

We were exploring Northern Michigan this week up near Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore.  It is easy to see why this is federally designated land.  The dunes climb over 450 ft above Lake Michigan.  White sands line the shore for miles.  We stayed at a wonderful campground named D. H. Day Campground.  The campground is actually located on a sandbar that is a result of glacial erosion dating back to the Ice Age.  The sandbar separates Lake Michigan from Glen Lake, which at one time were both one lake.  Before leaving the area we refreshed in the frigid waters of the lake...brrrrr!
On our way to Traverse City, we stopped to play a round of disc golf.  It was a lovely course set in thick forests with rolling hills.  We enjoyed it immensely, beside the fact we were discouraged to see people had left there trash everywhere.  Sadly, users seemed to think that the beginning of each hole was a trash receptacle.  Waste that is improperly disposed of is not only an eyesore, but it also diminishes the quality of experiences in the out of doors.  If you can pack it in, PLEASE pack it out!
Safe Travels...
~Tracy and Kate, e-tour 2008

Monday, June 2, 2008

Dick's Outdoor Adventure Tour-Michigan

The Leave No Trace e-tour joined forces with Dick's Outdoor Adventure Tour again this weekend in Grandville, MI.  If you have never experienced a Dick's Sporting Goods Outdoor Adventure Tour, this is truly an event for the family!  Whether you enjoy paddling, peddling, camping, or fishing, this event has what you need to be planned and prepared ahead for your next outdoor adventure.  We set up our booth inside the Ultimate Campsite and provided an exciting scavenger hunt for the kids around the footprint.  We also played an activity we call "pick it up".  This activity involves placing empty water bottles around the event tagged with a message to return the bottle to the Leave No Trace booth if found.  It was a great way to introduce people to the principle of Dispose of Waste Properly.  The activity even encouraged a few kids to pick up other trash they found in the footprint of the event.  With over 2.5 million plastic bottles used every hour in the US, it is important to Trash Your Trash, or even better, recycle it!  We will meet up in the tour again in Erie, PA.  Until then...Safe Travels!
~Tracy and Kate, e-tour 2008