That’s how I summarize Leave No Trace principles to my young kids.
Why is it so important? It’s great that more people are getting out and enjoying nature, but too many people aren’t respecting nature and our increasing presence is taking a toll. In practice, your goal should be to leave nature exactly how you found it such that the next person to come by would have no idea that you were ever there.
By the way, it’s not enough to not throw your garbage on the ground (you don’t do that, do you?). I always bring a garbage bag with me and try to pick up at least a few pieces of trash that I find on the trail. If you found this website useful, I ask that you pay it forward by doing your part and helping keep our trails clean.