Leave No Trace Principle #1

Plan Ahead and Prepare

“Wilderness is a dry, hot, dreary place where all manner of wild beasts dash about uncooked. ” – variation on 19th century quote.


Plan Ahead and Prepare is probably the most important of the seven LNT principles!

Clouds moving in for the evening.

  1. Plan ahead and Prepare
  2. Dispose of Waste Properly
  3. Travel and Camp on Durable Surfaces
  4. Be Considerate to Other Visitors
  5. Leave What You Find
  6. Minimize Campfire Impacts
  7. Respect Wildlife

If you don’t plan ahead and prepare, things could go drastically wrong.  Having enough water keeps us alive, the right shelter keeps us warm and dry, and food keeps us going up the trail!  Being prepared also helps us Leave No Trace. If we have the right supplies, we can prepare low waste meals, hike on established trails, and bring less stuff to carry!

Be flexible!  One of the questions we discussed on our LNT training was “when have you decided to turn back on a trip because something happened that you weren’t prepared for?”.  Then funny enough, right before we were to set up camp for our evening LNT classes, as a group, we decided that the winds were picking up and temperatures were dropping enough for us to take the group and head back into Gerlach for the evening!  We enjoyed the veggie stew, sausages and classes in the warmth of the Friends of Black Rock office and were offered camp sites in town!

Shown below are a few quick tips to help you think about Plan Ahead and Prepare in the wilderness, at Burning Man and if you visit Fly Ranch!

Veggie stew to warm us up!

Wilderness LNT Quick Tips

  • Check weather conditions and local regulations to stay safe
  • Bring a map, (in case technology fails)
  • Plan out meals and how to cook and clean up, repackage food.
  • Bring appropriate clothes, shelter and footwear for weather and locale
  • Bring Ziplock bags, a trowel and even a wag bag

Burning Man LNT Quick Tips

Jai, Zobek and Lela make snow cones

  • Read the Survival guide and First Timers Guide (even veterans!)
  • Review packing lists so that you are prepared for anything on playa!
  • Develop a LNT/Green Plan for camp
  • Plan out space in your vehicle and include space for trash on way back.
  • Bring tie downs to keep your camp from becoming MOOP and tarp all active areas, especially kitchens, eating and construction areas.
  • Reuse, Reduce, Recycle

Fly Ranch LNT Quick Tips

Fly Ranch

  • Read emails from Trip Coordinator or Hiking Guide
  • Check Friends of Black Rock website for weather reports
  • Read the Fly Ranch Survival Guide
  • Make sure your packing list includes warm clothing, hats, long pants, good footwear and binoculars!

What are your favorite ways to Plan Ahead and Prepare?

Learn More Here: Plan Ahead and Prepare Tips

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