This summer camping season in BC, learn how to pack lean and practice responsible outdoor recreation. Responsible recreation means trying to preserve our environment when we spend time in nature, so our parks and outdoor spaces can be enjoyed by everyone for decades to come. Many campers and outdoor adventure-seekers can tell you that the easiest way to leave nature the way you found it, is to prepare before you pack your food and camping gear. This way, you can return home with as little waste and as few disposables as possible.
Below are some easy tips and tricks on how to prepare so you can pack lean!
Prep food before you pack
Seasoned campers know it’s a good idea to plan your meals ahead of time, but if you also prep your food ahead of time, you’ll reduce your waste as well as maximize your time to kick back and enjoy the outdoors!
Chopping vegetables, making salsa, and prepping food for the BBQ is fun the whole family can take part in.
Pack bulk foods in reusable containers
No need to bring the whole box or bag, instead minimize your waste by packing bulk food (like trail mix, veggies, pasta, and snacks) in reusable plastic storage containers or glass containers when possible. And any hard plastic or paper packaging you did have, can stay home in your recycling bins/bags.
Bring reusable plates and cutlery
If you love camping or even just dining outdoors, reusable plates and cutlery are light, easy to clean, and a good investment for future excursions, not to mention it reduces the amount of plastic and paper to recycle at the end of your camping trip.
Bring a large water jug (rather than small single-use water bottles)
If you’re packing up the car for the weekend, a flat of water bottles can seem like an easy option, but by bringing one large jug of water with reusable cups and water bottles instead, you’ll drastically reduce the amount of single-use plastics to collect for your trip home.
Plan to use larger plastic or paper bags and reusable containers to pack up recyclables
As you empty food from plastic bags on your trip, pack small soft and flexible plastics, like zipper-lock pouches and energy bar wrappers into the bigger bags, like grocery bags or chip bags so they’re easy to drop off at a Recycle BC depot on your way home.
Paper products, metal food cans, hard plastic containers, and cartons can also be stored in paper bags, reusable bags or cardboard boxes for recycling at home or at a Recycle BC depot. Discover all the items you can recycle here.
Pro tip! When packing, remember to pack up your recyclables and bring them back, for example, if you have a cooler, it can be a storage unit for recycling at home.
Plan a Recycle BC depot stop for the trip home
Did you know that there are over 250 locations around BC where you can drop off your plastic, metal, glass packaging, and paper for recycling? When you plan how to dispose of recyclables in advance, it makes packing lean easier. You can find a depot here.
Enjoy your time in nature, and don’t forget to Pack Lean, Leave Clean!