Winter on the trail

Greetings from the Trail
As I was out snowshoeing in the mountains this past weekend, during one of my many breaks from shoeing through the fresh powder, I was able to observe all different forms of recreation. I was on snowshoes, but others were on snowmobiles and others were on cross country skis. I was able to see a variety of users in one area sharing the mountain and the fresh snow without a single incident or harsh word. In fact I was able to get to know quite a few others in the area while I was sitting on a rock or log catching my breath. Most of the folks were happy to stop and chat, and share a hot beverage, or even offer this poor out of shape snowshoer a ride back to my Jeep. Winter brings so many opportunities for recreation; here are some tips to keep you and everyone out there safe and happy:
• Comply with signs and respect barriers. Avoid traveling in potential avalanche areas. Use terrain to your advantage, avoiding steep slopes, cornices and gullies or depressions. Periodically check for clues to an unstable snowpack. Remember, one person at a time on slopes.
• Travel only in areas designated for your type of winter travel. This is especially important when sharing the area with other types of users.
• Respect established ski tracks. If traveling by foot or snowshoe, don’t damage existing ski tracks.
• When stopping, step to the side of the trail to let other skiers and recreationists pass.
• Obtain a map of your destination and determine which areas are open to winter travel.
• If crossing private property, ask permission from the landowner(s). Fences are often buried in the winter or are hard to see.
• Allow plenty of time for the return trip. It’s no fun to get lost in the dark.
• Always go prepared with the proper gear for the season and conditions
• Be safe and have fun out there.

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About treadlightlyoutdoors

Tread Lightly!® is a national nonprofit organization with a mission to promote responsible outdoor recreation through ethics education and stewardship. The organization was launched in 1985 by the US Forest Service and became a nonprofit organization in 1990. Tread Lightly!’s educational message, along with its training and restoration initiatives, are strategically designed to instill an ethic of responsibility in a wide variety of outdoor enthusiasts and the industries that serve them. The program’s goal is to balance the needs of the people who enjoy outdoor recreation with our need to maintain a healthy environment. Tread Lightly!’s core focus is on supporting and encouraging stewardship from those engaged in outdoor recreation on America’s lands and waterways. The organization offers unique programs and services to help remedy growing recreation issues. The federal government officially recognizes the organization as a sole-source service provider of education and training on how to be environmentally and socially responsible while using motorized and mechanized vehicles.
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