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Leave No Trace

Leave No Trace

Here are our seven principles to recreate responsibly here in Ogden.

Posted: 06/15/2022

The team at Visit Utah partnered with Leave No Trace to create Utah-specific seven principles for responsible recreation. These have been adapted slightly to reflect the Ogden area community, but if your travels will take you around the state, please review the principles in full on the Visit Utah website.  Following these principles will help keep our wild places wild and ensure their enjoyment for generations.

Know Before You Go

A little extra planning can expand your knowledge, reduce your impact and improve your adventure. Prepare to travel in our community by researching your points of interest and packing for a range of conditions.

Before your trip, look up rules, regulations and possible reservation requirements for your specific areas of interest. Most public lands in the Ogden area fall under the management of the U.S. Forest Service. Check with the Ogden Ranger District Office at 507 25th Street for the most up-to-date travel and wildfire information to ensure a positive experience. 

If your adventures will take you outside, be prepared for changing weather which can happen quickly in the mountains. Pack layers, sun protection, food and plenty of water. Canyons and access to the ski resorts can be tricky in icy or wintery conditions, so always check road conditions and plan ahead, or better yet, utilize the UTA ski bus to get you safely to your destination. 

Avoid crowds by arriving early or visiting at off times such as late in the day and on weekdays. Have a backup destination planned out in case parking lots are full. This will ensure you have a better experience, keep yourself and other visitors safe and prevent damages from vehicles such as vegetation loss and erosion. Only park in designated areas and respect the local residents and neighbors of the area you’re trying to visit.

Check to be sure the roads and trails are open to four-wheel-drive vehicles before visiting with ATVs or OHVs.

Stick to Trails and “Overnight Right”

We offer trails for every traveler. Following signage, sticking to the path and using a little know-how will keep our trails and campsites safe and open.

Walk and ride on durable surfaces such as gravel, dirt, deep snow, and established trails and roads. This protects trailside vegetation and mitigates erosion.

Respect private property by sticking to designated trails and reading and following all signage.

Tread lightly if your plans include motorized recreation. Ensure you know which trails allow motorized use. The only true OHV road in the area is the Inspiration Point Trail. OHV trail riding in the area includes City View Cutoff, Coldwater Peak Trail, Dry Bread Hollow ATV Trail, Lewis Peak Trail, Mitchell Hollow ATV Trail, Skyline Trail, Tilda Springs Trail, and Willard Canyon Trail. Check with Ogden Ranger District Office for the latest in travel restrictions due to wildfire danger/mitigation or logging operations.

Find durable surfaces or pull-offs to stop and take breaks. Allowing trail users, non-motorized or motorized users to use the trail to pass encourages others to stay on the trail and reduces conflict between user groups.

Camp only in designated or existing campsites to avoid erosion and trampling vegetation. Ensure ample time to locate an appropriate site and have a backup plan if your chosen site is not available.

Trash Your Trash

One person's trash can greatly impact a natural treasure. No matter where you go, have a garbage and bathroom plan ready (for you and your group) and know how to correctly dispose of all waste, which may mean packing everything out.

Pack out everything you pack in. Trash, including food waste, can take years to decompose and is unhealthy for wildlife. 

Be prepared to bring your trash home with you in case trailhead trash cans are full or not available. This simple and easy action makes a big difference while land managers and our community finds solutions to increase trash services that meet the demands of the increasing number of people visiting the outdoors. 

Whenever possible, use the bathroom before your outing. Not all trailheads have toilets, and some toilets are open only seasonally. Check local guidance and know how to dispose of your human waste in case nature calls. Some areas may allow catholes, while others may need you to pack out your waste using WAG (waste alleviation gel) or human waste disposal bags. These bags can be found at many outdoor gear shops. 

Use a bag to pick up your pet’s waste and pack it out to a trash can. Pet waste carries diseases and pollutes water sources.

Protect Indigenous Cultural Heritage

Indigenous Peoples have contributed to the culture and natural landscape of modern-day Utah for thousands of years. Utah is home to approximately 60,000 Native Americans representing more than 50 Tribal Nations, with eight being federally recognized. These tribes are the Northwestern Band of Shoshone Nation, Confederated Tribes of Goshute, Skull Valley Band of Goshute, Ute Indian Tribe of the Uintah and Ouray Reservation, Ute Mountain Ute Tribe, San Juan Southern Paiute Tribe, Paiute Indian Tribe of Utah and Navajo Nation. Many more Tribes and Nations can trace their ancestry here as well.

Indigenous and other historical and cultural sites are everywhere in Utah and they are important to modern descendant communities and researchers. Protect these sites by observing and admiring structures, objects, rock imagery and historical inscriptions at a respectful distance.

Minimize Campfire Impacts

There’s nothing quite like cozying up to a campfire, but not all places and conditions are safe to have one. Recent drought conditions have made the wildfire risks in our community very high and extreme caution needs to be observed. In areas where fires can be built, keep them small and in existing fire rings and be prepared to extinguish them completely.

Always check utahfireinfo.gov for local fire restrictions and check to be sure it is safe to have a campfire or open flame. Utah has experienced many devastating wildfires and there may be fire restrictions throughout the year. Gusty winds and other weather can send sparks flying. Even if campfires are allowed where you are camping, do not create one in these conditions.

Use a camp stove for cooking. Camp stoves are faster and easier to use. They also help prevent impacts including attracting wildlife to your campsite. 

If you can have a fire, make sure to follow safe fire practices. This includes using an existing fire ring, keeping your fire small and using only wood that is dead, down and smaller than your wrist. If you buy firewood, do so locally to prevent the spread of harmful invasive insects like Bark Beetles and Oystershell scale. 

When you’re done, put your fire out by drowning the ashes with water until they are cool to the touch. Prevent wildfires by being prepared with 3-4 gallons of water, a shovel and never leave your fire unattended.

Keep Wildlife Wild

Being in Utah’s outdoors means sharing them with wildlife, which may include bears.

Keep yourself, pets, and wildlife safe by observing them from a distance, controlling your pet and never following or approaching wild animals.

Never feed wildlife. Human food is unhealthy for all wildlife and can cause them to become aggressive.

Always store your food and trash securely so that wildlife cannot get access to it. In many areas, be bear aware by putting all food and smellables in bear lockers, canisters or a locked vehicle. Keep cooking areas clean and set them away from your tent where possible.

Know local hunting, fishing and boating regulations for the area you plan to visit. Anyone age 12 and older is required to have a license to fish in Utah. Hunting ages and guidelines vary by permit. Visit wildlife.utah.gov to learn more.

Share Our Parks, Trails and Roads

When traveling here, you may find yourself part of a crowd. While there are many ways to enjoy the outdoors, we can help each other out by being patient, minimizing noise and reducing speed, whether in town or on the trail.

Be considerate of those you are sharing the outdoor space with. Crowds are common in Utah’s popular natural destinations. Remember that anytime you are in a crowd, you are the crowd. A little patience and understanding will go a long way. Be nice, say hi.

Respect the experience of other visitors by being mindful of your group’s noise levels. Everyone enjoys the outdoors in different ways. While some visitors may go outside to be with friends and family, others may be looking for more solitude. 

Reduce your vehicle’s speed or stop and turn off your engine if passing non-motorized users. This helps reduce dust in the air, keeps horses and cattle from being spooked and lets others enjoy a peaceful outdoor experience.

Be mindful of your vehicle’s noise and speed in gateway communities. This consideration shows respect for local residents and maintains outdoor recreation access for all users.

When passing people on the trail, downhill hikers yield to other hikers coming uphill. Bikers yield to all hikers and all users yield to equestrians. Allow others to pass by taking breaks at appropriate spots off the trail. 

Visit Ogden has partnered with the Trails Alliance of Northern Utah to promote their mission to educate, advocate, and raise awareness of proper trail etiquette for all trail users. We are all outdoor enthusiasts and members of this community who love Ogden and its trail system. We encourage others to use these trails in a kind, respectful manner by promoting trail etiquette, courtesy, and respect for fellow trail users. We encourage you to join our efforts by taking the pledge.

By taking the pledge, you are standing with us and promising to encourage others to use the trails in a kind, respectful manner. You also promise that you will do your best to set an example of using trail etiquette, courtesy, and respect for fellow trail users. You will help us to enhance the experience of trail users as well as teach responsible trail stewardship.

plan YOUR trip

Plan Your Trip

Here in Ogden you can experience 3 ski and summer resorts, combined boasting over 11,600 skiable acres and miles of single track for those who love to mountain bike and hike! We offer a wide range of breathtaking recreation options with everything in easy reach. Whether you settle in at one of our many friendly hotels, out-of-the-way campgrounds or modern meeting and event venues, you will find that Ogden is an ideal travel destination offering one-of-a-kind outdoor recreation and metropolitan delights throughout the year. Wander and get lost in Ogden!

Wander and Get Lost in Ogden!

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