We love being home with a cozy blanket and a good book on chilly winter days, but when the weather starts to warm up we cannot wait to get outside and start exploring!
A quick whiff of Driftwood, combined with sunny spring weather, is enough to make even the homiest homebody pine for an outdoor adventure.
[Shop the Driftwood collection here.]
That said, we've partnered with our friends at Western Michigan University* to compile some tips for a camping/hiking trip that's as earth-friendly as it is fun.
1. Produce as little waste as you can!
Bring reusable utensils and plates (we love this tutorial), or food you can eat with your hands.
Opt for sustainable alternatives to sandwich bags. We're especially partial to these alternatives from local maker Bee Joyful Shop:
The Vegan Adventurist has some great ideas for alternatives to plastic bags, both reusable options AND biodegradable options!
If you’re feeling adventurous, try solar cooking! Solar Cookers International has some great info on how it works, as well as tutorials for making your own solar cooker.
2. Bring a bag to collect your (and others) waste
Keeping our wildlife areas clean is good for everyone.
"Pack it in, pack it out" is one of the basic tenets of outdoor recreation, and the National Park Service has some great info on how to be considerate of others and the environment when you're adventuring outside.
3. Stay on the trail
Even though it’s tempting to go off the trail, remember that trails are there for a reason! (They protect the wildlife.)
4. Read up on safety tips before you go to keep yourself and the wildlife safe
Know the area where you're hiking, and remember that you're responsible for your safety and the safety of local wildlife.
The US Forest Service has some great advice for making sure your experience is both fun and safe.
5. Be careful what you burn
- Know WHAT to burn (and what not to burn). Check out these best practices from the EPA.
- Believe us, we know how tough it can be to start a campfire (and we know our stuff when it comes to setting things aflame...). Make it easy on yourself with DIY eco-friendly fire starters! We love this tutorial from Salvage and Stitch.
(Bonus: you can use unused soy wax to make them!!!)
Above all, be safe around a fire. The National Park Service has some great tips for fire safety; you can brush up on your fire safety here.
Do you opt outside?
Tell us about your outdoor adventures!
*A huge thanks to the WMU Psychology Department Behavioral Approaches to Sustainability Practicum, whose students compiled this awesome camping/hiking guide for us!