The sun is shining, the days are long and spring is most definitely springing! Like lots of people we’re really enjoying getting out and about for walks, bike rides and general adventures in our local parks, woodlands, riversides and more – but there’s one thing we don’t like. It’s the site of litter in the environment.
It’s not just unsightly – it also pollutes the environment and can injure or kill wildlife.
So since it’s spring, why not take action and do a spring trail clean!
Introducing Trash Free Trails
Trash Free Trails is a small organisation with big goals:
Our mission is to reduce plastic pollution on our trails and wild places by 75% by 2025 and (re)connect people with nature through purposeful adventure.
They’re all about inspiring and empowering people to take action in their local environment, along their favourite paths, bike trails and running routes. Trash Free Trails is all about helping people reconnect with those places, because after all, the more we feel a connection with a place and the more we love it, the more likely we are to look after it!
They organise trail cleans and events throughout the year, and also put together took kits so you can take action yourself as an individual, or with your friends and family. It’s their ‘Do It Ourselves!’ philosophy.
The Spring Trail Clean
Trash Free Trails (TFT) invites you to give your local trails a spring clean!
This April, they’re encouraging everyone to join in a huge trail clean (working together, but separately) and they’re hoping that together we’ll all be able to remove a record-breaking amount of single use pollution from our trails and wild places.
They’ve developed a brilliant tool kit that you can use on your own, with your mates, in school groups, on a family walk – however you’d like. You can also report back on what you’ve found to help them in their research into what pollution is out there, where it comes from, so we’re better able to prevent it getting there in the future.
The three R’s are important to the Spring Trail Clean; Remove, Record and Reward!
Remove: This is about removing single use pollution, and as they say, even single piece removed makes a difference and gets everyone closer to the TFT goal.
Record: TFT are also doing research into single use pollution, and you can become a citizen scientist by reporting what you’ve found. There are lots of ways to do this, from filling in a State of our Trails report on the TFT website, completing a Trail Bandit Bingo Card, or just sharing an image (or more!) on Instagram and using the following hashtags: #jointhetrashmob #springtrailcleans #trashfreetrails
Reward: This is a biggie. TFT are all about making this a positive experience, and celebrating every success – so for every trail clean, every piece of litter you remove, no matter how big or small, give yourself a pat on the back and shout about it, or a bigger reward! TFT suggest a nice ride or walk, or how about a slice of cake or a biscuit?
Who can get involved?
This is for anyone, anywhere, in any country! At the moment, Trash Free Trails is mostly based in the UK but there are Spring Trail Cleans taking place everywhere from the Highlands of Scotland to the Himalayas. So wherever you live, you can get involved and make your favourite local places nicer for you, for wildlife and for the planet.
(and don’t forget to make sure your trail clean is Covid-safe!)