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Enhancing Trail Stewardship through Leave No Trace
September 15, 2022 @ 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm
Learn about what one parks, trails, and open space division accomplished in order to enhance Leave No Trace stewardship practices and address growing trail issues throughout their system.
- Gillian Rossi, Recreation & Cultural Services Department, City of Colorado Springs Parks
Like a lot of areas around the country, Colorado Springs’ population is rapidly expanding with more people excited to use the parks, trails, and open spaces. The problem (or opportunity!) is those areas aren’t expanding along with the population and require an enhanced sense of environmental stewardship from park visitors and staff alike to remain sustainable, scenic, and safe. User conflicts and negative trail impacts have increased as more people share the trail system. The City of Colorado Springs’ Regional Parks, Trails & Open Space division launched a Leave No Trace Stewardship Initiative to increase knowledge of responsible recreation practices and promote positive behavior changes from park visitors. Utilizing Leave No Trace education strategies has given park staff the tools needed to create effective change throughout the trail system. Setting visitors up for success by making trail maps easy to access and providing proper wayfinding through the system is a top priority. The initiative is one based in positivity and the creation of a culture of stewardship, not shaming and citations. Join in to learn more about the steps taken to build this initiative, challenges faced, and how your agency or organization can help support turning park visitors into park ultra-stewards!
- Participants will learn about Leave No Trace as an organization and what benefits a community partnership can provide.
- Participants will learn what steps the City of Colorado Springs took to become the first municipality in the nation to attain Leave No Trace Gold Standard Site designation for multiple properties in its park system.
- Participants will learn strategies taken by soft enforcement park staff to promote positive behavior changes by trail users.
- Participants will learn strategies to enhance park signage in order to gain compliance.