So you’ve mastered the green life at home. You recycle, compost and are eating farm-to-table as regularly as you can. However, sustainable living gets a little trickier once you get out on the trail, especially when it goes head-to-head with convenience. With that in mind, here are some of the easiest ways we can think to go green outside, as much as you do inside.
1. Solar Power
This might be a big duh, but the less batteries we use, the better it is for our planet. Using clean energy in the form of a small solar generator or solar-powered lights can help you keep the comfort of lights, chargers and gadgets when you’re out in the woods without all the batteries and electricity. Solar panels work by using photovoltaic cells. These convert sunlight into direct current (DC) electricity throughout the day. A solar panel or solar generator converts the DC electricity generated into the alternating current (AC) electricity. Sounds pretty green, clean and cool to us!
2. Purifying your Own Water
We realize this slides slightly further down on the convenience scale when you’re comparing bringing a plastic jug of water to boiling and purifying water yourself. But, bear with us, we can help you cut down a few steps by suggesting some cool purification tools like the Lifestraw, or GravityWorks filter. Purifying water yourself will cut down on the number of plastic bottles used, and with the US alone using about 50 billion plastic water bottle per year (yikes!) – we can use all the help we can get!
3. Concentrate on Waste Management
Especially on longer trips with multiple supply runs, it can be hard to aim for a zero waste trip. But, if you put a little more time on the front end in preparation, it is more attainable. A few of our best tips include bringing your own to-go containers, staying organized and being flexible! Even when we haven’t been able to pull off the ultimate waste-free trip, we have found that planning a zero-waste trip helps us to have a more organized trip overall, even beyond food!
4. Biodegradable Soap
Can we just have a minute to talk about taking an outdoor shower in the summer? There are few things we can think of that are more glorious that a cool, refreshing shower in the great outdoors after a full day of sweaty, dirty, fantastic exploring. Ah- ok! Now, let’s talk about the soap we’re using for these fantastic showers. A biodegradable soap is key when you’re out in the wilderness, because of it’s natural ingredients and their ability to break down in soil. After being filtered through the soil, those natural ingredients aren’t harmful to water supplies and are actually environmentally friendly. Bonus: if you are composting, or car-posting on the trip, you can also add your soap scarps!
5. Skip the Electronics
Ohhhh… we can feel your eyes skipping past this one, because WHAT WOULD WE DO WITHOUT OUR PHONES. Probably be a little behind on social media when we got home, but otherwise be fine 🙂 We know you’re using your solar-powered charger, but let us just imagine for a moment that we left the phones and other pluggables at home, just for one trip. You’ll be able to relax a little more, practice looking around in (natural) light and save some battery you would otherwise be charging constantly…just think about it.
These are some of our best tips on how to stay green and while still enjoying some convenience on your next camping or backpacking trip. We would love to hear your ideas on how you take sustainable living with you! Comment below to tell us!