Lake Meredith National Recreation Area asks visitors to ‘Leave No Trace’

Local News

FRITCH, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) – With many visitors coming to Lake Meredith National Recreation Area to celebrate the summer, the Park asks that you work to reduce impact by practicing Leave No Trace principles.

Leave No Trace, described by the Park, is a program aiming to support the nation’s wildlands through education, research, and partnerships to increase awareness and respect for public recreation areas like Lake Meredith.

The program is supported by four federal land management agencies: The National Park Service, U.S. Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, ad U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Working with outdoor retailers, educators, and user groups, these agencies work to help make Leave No Trace “the common language for all outdoor enthusiasts.”

“Packing out your trash is a vital Leave No Trace principle. Lake Meredith continues to see increased visitation, especially on the weekends. Several campgrounds are extremely crowded with visitors wanting to get as close to the lake as possible.” said the Park, “The amount of trash, such as plastic bottles, glass, and paper products, coolers, dirty diapers, tents, torn awnings, and outdoor grills are more often than not, left behind after the camper leaves instead of placing the trash in the proper trash containers.”

The Park continued to ask visitors to, “please practice Leave No Trace when you visit Lake Meredith. Each of us play a vital role in protecting our National Parks, Recreation Areas and National Monuments. As we spend time outdoors in the natural world, and wilderness areas, it is important to be conscious of the effects our actions may have on plants, animals, other people, and even entire ecosystems. We need your help to keep Lake Meredith beautiful.”

Leave No Trace principles include:

  • Plan ahead and prepare
    • Know the regulations and special concerns for the area you will visit.
    • Prepare for extreme weather, hazards, and emergencies.
    • Schedule your trip to avoid times of high use.
    • Repackage food to minimize waste.
  • Travel and camp on durable surfaces
    • Durable surfaces included maintained campgrounds and designated camp sites.
    • Protect riparian areas by camping at least 200 feet from the lake.
    • Good campsites are found, not made. Altering a site is not necessary.
    • Using existing campsites.
    • Keep campsite small.
  • Dispose of waste properly
    • Pack it in, pack it out. Inspect your campsite, food preparations areas, and rest areas for trash or spilled foods. Pack out all trash and food.
    • Utilize toilet facilities whenever possible.
  • Leave what you find
    • Preserve the past examine, photograph, but do not touch cultural or historic structures and artifacts.
    • Leave rocks, plants, and other natural objects as you find them.
    • Avoid introducing or transporting non-native species.
    • Do not build structures, furniture, or dig trenches.
  • Minimize campfire impacts
    • Where fires are permitted, use established fire rings. It is against park policy to pick up rocks or stones to make your own fire ring.
    • Keep fires small and use the grills provided if possible.
    • Fires are prohibited in backcountry areas.
    • In developed areas, fires are prohibited except in designated fire grills, portable stoves, or grills. Keep fire out of contact with the ground.
    • Burn all wood and coals to ash, put out campfires completely, then scatter cool ashes.
  • Respect wildlife
    • Observe wildlife from a distance. Do not follow or approach them.
    • Never feed animals. Feeding wildlife damages their health, alters natural behaviors, and exposes them to predators and other dangers.
    • Protect wildlife and your food by storing rations and trash securely.
    • Control pets always or leave them at home
  • Be considerate of other visitors
    • Respect other visitors and protect the quality of their experience.
    • Be courteous. Yield to other users on the trail.
    • Step to the downhill side of the trail when encountering pack stock.
    • Take breaks and camp away from trails and other visitors.
    • Let nature’s sounds prevail. Avoid loud voices and noises.

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