Show Love For This Place:
Wenatchee Valley

Show Love for This Place

Respect and protect Wenatchee Valley’s natural beauty, environment, and resources.
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Visit Wenatchee: Show Love for This Place

How Can You Show Love For This Place?

Wenatchee Valley contains a unique ecosystem of arid desert climate, wild waterways, and pristine forest. We must sustain these natural systems to ensure the outdoors remains a viable playground for all who live and visit here.

Showing Love For this Place Means:

  • Prioritizing the safety and well-being of all recreationists. 
  • Preserving the unique beauty of the Wenatchee Valley and the flora and fauna that call it home.
  • Sharing our passion for the valley and making it a welcoming place for those who live and play here.

Six Ways to Show Love For This Place

  1. Prepare & Stay Aware
  2. Be A Caring Camper
  3. Recreate Respectfully
  4. Keep Wildlife Wild
  5. Be Fire Savvy
  6. Be Water Wise

Plus, check out these Recreation Resources

1. Prepare & Stay Aware

Prepare and Stay Aware

Research the area you plan to visit.

The Tread App is a great resource for checking local trails and provides real-time updates on issues impacting the recreation experience, including crowding, parking, and trail impediments.

Download the Chelan County PUD Current App to check river conditions and lake levels for the Columbia River and Lake Chelan.

Always bring a GPS device and satellite communication, and know how to use it.

Additional useful wayfinding and safety items include: compass, map of the area, waterproof matches and firestarter, first aid kit, emergency blanket, headlamp, battery bank and cords, extra medications, water filter, and water bag.

Confirm important information.

Research permit requirements, whether dogs are allowed on trails, and if they should be leashed.

Visit early or late in the day to avoid crowds.

Have a backup destination prepared in case the parking lot is full. Don’t start your hike too late to ensure you have plenty of daylight.

Pack for all conditions.

Weather can change unexpectedly, so come prepared with extra layers, a rain jacket, and a headlamp, regardless of the time of year.

Share your planned route with a friend or family member.

Ensure that someone is in the know of your whereabouts in case of an emergency.

Understand trail and weather conditions.

Pay attention to water flow and temperature, marked-off areas, and snake activity.

If you lose the trail, don’t wander into the wilderness.

Stay exactly where you are and “hug a tree.” Often, you’re not far from the trail once you realize you’ve lost it, and staying in one location makes it more likely to encounter another hiker sooner rather than later.

2. Be a Caring Camper

Be a Caring Camper

For developed campsites, make a reservation in advance and only camp in designated areas.

When camping in an area without designated sites, give yourself ample daylight to scope out a location, and always set up camp at least 100 ft away from water.

Avoid unwanted run-ins with wildlife by washing dishes away from camp and securing food before sleeping.

Always check fire restrictions and remember that campfires are prohibited in most high-use areas, whether you’re above or below the tree line.

3. Recreate Respectfully

Recreate Respectfully

Pack it in & pack it out.

Bring all trash and food waste back home in garbage bags or plastic containers. This includes both litter and organic waste like peels and cores.

Trash can take decades to decompose, is unhealthy for wildlife, and impacts the experience for all recreationists.

Hit the bathroom before you hike!

If you have to go #2 in the wild, use developed bathrooms where possible.

If none are available, dig a hole 6-8 inches deep and 100 ft from water, do your business, then bury it! Always pack out used toilet paper in a garbage or air-sealed bag.

Follow leash regulations and pick up after your pup.

Deposit poop bags in designated trash cans and don’t leave them beside the trail.

Stick to the trail.

The Wenatchee Valley consists of fragile waterways and arid desert landscapes. Keep yourself and your pets on the trail to protect and preserve the natural habitat of the area.

Only walk, run, and bike on designated trails, and be mindful of private land.

Leave it as you find it.

Don’t disturb or take home plants, trees, rocks, or historical artifacts.

Always thoroughly clean and dry watercraft between use.

This applies to all watercraft, including paddleboards and kayaks, to avoid introducing invasive species. This goes for shoes, tires, and camping equipment as well.

Double-check everything before leaving your campsite.

Ensure you haven’t left anything behind. Always extinguish your campfire before leaving, even if for a short time.

Don’t freestyle.

Use only designated access points for lakes, rivers, and other waterways.

Practice standard bike etiquette.

Stick to the trails, pass on your left, control your speed, and be respectful of others on the trail.

Know the right-of-way.

Remember — horses and adaptive users have the right-of-way, followed by pedestrians and those moving uphill. Don’t step too far off the trail while yielding.

Be mindful of sound.

If music is part of your outdoor experience, listen with only one earbud to respect others and stay aware of your surroundings.

4. Keep Wildlife Wild

Keep Wildlife Wild

Protect animals and yourself by giving them plenty of space.

Always observe wildlife from a distance. While wild critters are cute, they can become easily distressed by human interaction, causing them to flee, become defensive, or even abandon their young.

Never feed wild animals.

Human food can harm wildlife, including birds, and may wreak havoc on their digestive system or cause them to become aggressive.

Use leashes.

Always leash pets around wildlife to prevent both from harm.

Don’t interfere with injured animals.

While it may be tempting to help, moving an injured animal can cause more harm than good. Not only can sick animals carry diseases harmful to humans, but you may put yourself in danger if predators are nearby.

5. Be Fire Savvy

Be Fire Savvy

Skip the campfire.

You’ll enjoy stunning views of the night sky, plus cooking on a camp stove is easier anyway!

If you do build a fire, follow all campfire etiquette and guidelines.

Confirm there are no fire restrictions, build your campfire 100 ft from water sources and trails, use only existing fire rings, and never leave the fire unattended.

Don’t bring foreign firewood.

Use locally sourced firewood (purchased or gathered from your campsite) to avoid introducing invasive species.

Put out fires correctly.

Extinguish your fire by allowing the wood to burn to ash and then dousing it with 3-4 gallons of water until the ashes are cool to the touch. You don’t need to remove ashes to extinguish the fire.

Do not park on dried sage grass.

Even the smallest spark can start a fire!

6. Be Water Wise

Be Water Wise

Always wear your life jacket.

The only way your life jacket protects you is by actually wearing it, so keep it on at all times while aboard any watercraft.

If you don’t have a life jacket, check near the boat launch for spares.

The Chelan County PUD provides life jackets for loan at most public boat launches.

Be aware of water temperature and conditions and don’t make assumptions.

Water conditions can change very quickly and without warning.

Keep an eye out for kids.

Always supervise little ones near water.

Don’t be a hero.

Do not run into rushing or turbulent water to save someone’s life, as this can put you in extreme danger.

Remember that open bodies of water can be unpredictable and dangerous.

There may be steep and unexpected drop-offs into deep water, sharp and jagged rocks, and rapid changes in conditions that can lead to danger or harm.

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