20 ways you can care for wild lands to celebrate Earth Day everyday

What kind of footprint do you leave on the wild lands you love?

flickr, blaircook

You love the Earth because you have felt its beauty every time you visit wild places. And every time you visit is a chance for you to give back to those lands.

Earth Day is a day for reflection about our role on this planet. The Earth keeps giving year-round, and you can too with these tips on actions you can take to contribute to the wild lands that you love:

  1. Visit wild lands to support them and reconnect with nature. This video from the National Parks Service explains the importance of outdoor ethics:

  2. Take a child outdoors and teach them to love wilderness.

  3. Ask your legislators to support the protection of more wilderness areas.

  4. Thank decision makers for protecting public lands.

  5. Minimize your impact in wilderness areas by staying on trails.

  6. If you pack it in, pack it out (especially trash).

  7. Leave what you find.

  8. Unless it's litter, then pick it up.

  9. Minimize campfire impacts by starting only when necessary and in established fire rings.

  10. Respect wildlife by viewing from a distance. Never feed a wild animal!

  11. If you choose to enjoy wild places with your dog, be sure to keep them on a short leash.

  12. Become a friend of your favorite park.

  13. Join a wilderness volunteers or local trail maintenance group.

  14. Use a reusable water bottle on hiking trips. Support the Park Service's efforts to do the same.

  15. Buy sustainable recreation equipment.

  16. Get a permit for backcountry adventures and a license for hunting.

  17. Be mindful of seasonal concerns.

  18. Sign-up for WildAlerts to stay in the loop on opportunities to help protect public lands.

  19. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook for news on wildlands conservation.

  20. Save energy! This saves wild lands too. For specific ideas on how to conserve, see more tips here.

If you want more good ideas on what you can do to reduce your impact on the environment, check out our list of things you can do at home.