Ah, summer. Long, sun-filled days open up an abundance of opportunities when it comes to outdoor recreation, especially in Whistler. From exploring alpine trails with stunning mountain views to shaded forest pathways and paddling waterways teeming with wildlife, Mother Nature gives us so much.

That’s why it’s important to respect your time in the great outdoors, so it can continue to be a place of adventure and wonder for years to come.

The above is part of a new video series called Bad House Guest, starring comedian and actor Katie Burrell. The series was launched just before the May Long Weekend and parallels Katie’s outrageous behaviour as a guest in someone’s home with poor behaviour that is common when recreating outdoors. This is just one of the tactics the innovative Don’t Love It To Death (DLITD) campaign is utilizing this summer to spread better outdoor decision-making.

Another tactic is the 158 Don’t Love It To Death signs going up this summer on trailheads, and in parks and natural spaces. They feature images of the region with thought-provoking messages, which remind residents and visitors to be aware of their impact and respect the environment, wildlife and fellow recreationists. Thirty-one jurisdictions have been engaged, and more than half of the signs are already installed across the region.

Don’t Love It To Death also recently shared the top-level results of a new survey broadly targeted at southwest British Columbia residents. Seventy-nine percent of the 700 respondents found summer to be the season with the most irresponsible behaviour. Below are the concerns that made the podium spots.

The Top Three Concerns

  1. Overcrowding

  2. A lack of respect for nature

  3. Garbage and human waste

The concerns found in the survey aren’t unfounded. Here are some heart-stopping stats:

6 Things to Do This Summer so You Don’t Love It To Death

1. Practice fire safety by obeying fire prohibitions when in place and using campfire best practices. Make sure to download the updated BC Wildfire Service app.

2. Follow the AdventureSmart Three Ts: Training, Trip Planning and Taking the Essentials to reduce the severity and frequency of Search and Rescue calls.

3. Familiarize yourself with the 7 Principles of Leave No Trace, including properly disposing of human waste.

4. Keep wildlife wild, and remember you are in bear country. Ensure pets are on leash, give wildlife space, and don’t pet/feed animals.

5. Reduce your impact on overcrowding by visiting at off-peak times, exploring less busy areas and planning ahead with public transit, parking, and permits.

6. Stop the spread of invasive plant species—one of the largest threats to biodiversity—by practicing the tenets of Play, Clean, Go. Clean your boots, gear, pets and vehicles of plant fragments, seeds and mud before and after you play outside; and please stay on the trails.

“The Whistler community is committed to preserving the beauty of our natural environment and protecting where we play,” says Barrett Fisher, President & CEO, of Tourism Whistler. “The Don’t Love It To Death public education campaign is a critical reminder to recreate responsibly – not just for visitors, but for locals too. Everyone in Whistler should use the principles of Leave No Trace when visiting the outdoors to preserve and support our wildlife and green spaces.”

One thing Barrett wishes people knew: Use recyclable containers to reduce your carbon footprint and pack out what you pack in. Whistler is located in bear country, and unfortunately, there is no happy ending for garbage-dependent bears.

 

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Don’t Love It To Death works with partners like BC AdventureSmart, BC Wildfire Service, Camper’s Code, Sea to Sky Invasive Species Council and more to give outdoor enthusiasts and visitors the tools and knowledge they need to be mindful of their behaviour and understand their impact on nature, wildlife and communities through their activities.

Visit the Don’t Love It To Death for practical resources and links to organizations offering useful tips on how to enjoy the outdoors responsibly and sustainably. We look forward to welcoming respectful explorers to the mountains this summer!

INSIDER TIP: For more information on what Whistler’s doing in the sustainability space visit our dedicated page. It includes our Whistler Changemaker video series that highlights businesses that are putting sustainability at the forefront of what they do.

Book your summer stay between May 1 and October 31, 2024, and save up to 25% on lodging and 15% on activities. Plus, you’ll receive a free $100 Activity Voucher on stays of 3 or more nights. Secure your mountain getaway with Whistler.com for personalized service and the local knowledge of our Whistler-based teamIf this post has you dreaming about Whistler, enter our Feel It All in Whistler summer contest to win a trip for two!

Author

You can often find Dee exploring all Whistler has to offer with her three-kid tribe in tow. Originally from the UK, Dee enjoys balancing out high-thrills adventures with down-time basking in the beauty of the wonderful place she now calls home.