hiker sitting on a rock while working on a laptop being charged by solar panels

Your Guide to Sustainable Camping

While spending time camping outdoors is one of the most natural things we can do, it doesn’t necessarily mean that camping is a sustainable activity that is good for our environment. We must be mindful of our actions when we enjoy the great outdoors and aware of the consequences of our choices while at a campsite, whether you’re camping at our Queensbury, NY campground or elsewhere.

There are a number of things that you can do to make your stay at a campsite eco-friendly, and we are including some easy-to-implement sustainable practices below.

Borrow, rent, share, and repair gear instead of buying new.

If you only go camping a few times a year, you probably don’t need to purchase all of your own gear. Consider borrowing some things from a friend or renting from a local camping gear retailer.

If you have a piece of gear that breaks, consider a repair before tossing it. Many outdoor companies have programs to repair broken and damaged equipment. This will extend the longevity of your gear and keep it out of landfills.

If you want to purchase something, try getting it secondhand before buying new. Scour thrift stores, garage sales, Craigslist, and Facebook Marketplace. You may be surprised at what people want to part with for a fraction of the cost of buying something new. On the flip side, if you have older gear that you are ready to retire, consider donating it instead of throwing it out.

Practice responsible fire-making.

The first step is to ensure that you are allowed to make a campfire where you are staying – you may need to obtain a permit. If permitted, using established fire pits, keeping fires small, using dead wood, and extinguishing fires completely are necessary to support the environment. And this should go without saying, but never leave a fire unattended as it could lead to disaster.

Use biodegradable toiletries such as soap and toothpaste.

Products like soap and toothpaste can have a negative impact on the environment as they can take a long time to degrade out in the woods. The simple solution is to purchase biodegradable products for your camping trips! And be sure that you are always at least 200 feet away from streams, lakes, or any water source when you dump any dirty, soapy water.

Charge devices with solar energy when possible.

In general, use as few electronic devices as possible when camping. And when a device is necessary, try charging it with solar energy.

There are so many solar-powered camping gadgets on the market these days, like generators, cookers, coolers, lanterns, and more.

Invest in reusable kitchenware.

While it might be more convenient to stock up on paper plates and plastic silverware for your camping trip, it is certainly not the most environmentally friendly option. By investing in reusable kitchenware like utensils, plates, cups, mugs, bowls, etc., you will significantly reduce the amount of trash you generate. Not only that, but it will make packing easier as you will always have what you need on hand!

Respect the natural surroundings and wildlife.

While picking a few flowers or taking home that cool rock as a souvenir may be tempting, imagine if everyone did the same. There would be nothing left! Stick to designated camping spots and explore only where permitted.

When it comes to wildlife, what may seem fluffy and adorable is likely threatened by your presence in their natural habitat. Observe the wildlife from afar and don’t feed or engage with them. Be mindful of your noise level at night, as loud music and voices can scare the animals.

Abide by carry in, carry out.

It’s really quite simple – anything you carry into your campsite you bring back home with you, especially your trash. This ensures that the campground stays clean, but it also ensures that the garbage is properly disposed of, whether it be recycled, thrown away, or composted.

Make a list…check it twice.

Before heading out the door, double and triple-check that you have everything you need for your camping trip. This will ensure that you won’t need to make any unnecessary purchases on the way or buy things like single-use plastic and non-biodegradable toothpaste.

Ready to start thinking about a camping trip? Consider camping in upstate New York with us at Lake George Campsites. We have all the amenities you will need for a memorable Lake George vacation. Plus, we’re close to everything that the Lake George area has to offer, from hiking trails to beaches, restaurants, amusement parks, mini golf, museums, and more.

Book your 2024 camping trip today>>