What would happen if everyone picked up at least one piece of litter on National CleanUp Day?
The more I hike, the more I value the untouched places in our world. Yes, I know that many have come before me and many will follow. But to be in a place in nature and feel like my footsteps are the only trace of my presence is a pretty magical thing.
Finding traces of others presence through trash kills the joy I feel being in those places. In 2018 I started really paying attention to the garbage I find on trail. Rather than just walking by it, I made a commitment to myself to pick up what I can. Sometimes it’s just a few things. Other times I’m completely floored about how much is everywhere.
The reality is that there is just too much everywhere for me to do it all. If I think about it in that way, it’s overwhelming. It’s less overwhelming to think about all the garbage when you work with a group.
Mark Your Calendar for a National Cleanup Day Hike
So on September 21, 2019 – National Cleanup Day – I’ll be part of a group meeting near Minnehaha Falls in Minneapolis to spend two hours picking up as much trash as we can. If you’d like to join us, meet on the south side of the park building at 9 AM. Look for anyone carrying a Dueter Dirtbag from the Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics (that green bag in the picture above) or with a Women Who Hike patch. The hike is open to anyone. We’ll see how much we can cleanup. At the end we’ll weigh it all so we know the impact we had.
If that doesn’t work for you, make a commitment to pick up a piece of garbage you see that day and get it to the trash. It will all add up. And the next day, do the same. Just keep going and I will too.
*To find out more about Leave No Trace (LNT) principles,
check out the Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics.
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