"Leave No Trace" initiative encourages people to respect Colorado outdoors

Posted at 10:07 AM, Apr 02, 2018
and last updated 2018-04-02 13:46:54-04

NEAR LITTLETON, Colo. -- As Colorado continues to grow, more people are moving here to enjoy the natural beauty of the outdoors. In some of our most prized state parks, that tough love is rubbing off in the wrong ways.

Roxborough State Park is an example of a state park dealing with issues from increased visitation. During the last four years, the park has seen double the number of visitors. The park created a partnership with the Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics with hopes to minimize the adverse impacts seen at the park including:

· User-created (undesignated) trails which lead to erosion, wildlife and vegetation disturbance
· Increasing amounts of trash found on the trails
· Wildlife being approached or fed
· Wildflowers being picked or trampled
· Unprepared hikers
· Disregard for park rules

The Colorado Parks Foundation and Friends of Roxborough State Park are non-profit organizations supporting the Leave No Trace initiative, along with additional support from Colorado Parks and Wildlife, the Park's staff and a Volunteer Naturalist Team. The group is implementing a comprehensive program to help all visitors learn about minimal impact hiking and recreation as part of the overall initiative of "Leave No Trace in Every Park." This program includes educating Roxborough visitors on the seven principles of Leave No Trace to help ensure they recreate in an environmentally responsible way. These principles are:

1. Know Before You Go
2. Stick To Trails
3. Trash Your Trash
4. Leave It As You Find It
5. Be Careful With Fire
6. Keep Wildlife Wild
7. Share Your Trails

The park is focusing on programs for the public, local schools, Junior Naturalists, Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, and all park visitors! Programs scheduled include:

· April 21 - Leave No Trace Awareness program for the public
· May 19, 26, 27, and 28 - Leave No Trace patio and trail programs
· June 9 - Junior Naturalist program on Leave No Trace
· June 16 - Leave No Trace patio and trail program