Tracks and Trails - ‘outstanding Green Travel Company’
The Guardian newspaper compiled a list of ‘outstanding’ British travel companies working to reduce their environmental impact. Tracks and Trails Ltd was named as a company where a transparent degree of environmental monitoring was demonstrated.
Tracks and Trails was born from a passion for the mountains and our company is built on the concept of sharing this beautiful world with our clients. Protecting our natural environment is ingrained in our DNA and we are 100% committed to taking action. We have compiled a simple action plan for ourselves and our clients to help reduce our environmental impact.
TRACKS AND TRAILS pledge
- With the help of Carbon Foot Print we offer guests on our trips the chance to 'plant a tree' free of charge as part of their booking.
- Our guides are briefed on our environmental policy and take part in local scientific studies to monitor any changes to the mountains we adventure in.
- As individuals, we take stock of our environmental impact when we work – from being mindful of how we travel and choosing local produce, to avoiding single use plastics and unnecessary printing. We endeavour to work with companies whose sustainability ethos matches our own, including our hotels, sponsors and guides.
Our 5 Point Customer pledge:
What 5 things do we ask you to do when you travel with us?
- When you book, please choose to plant a tree rather than receive a free gift from us. You will see this option on the booking form.
- Review your travel options and choose to travel by train or bus if possible. If you fly, you can easily carbon offset your flight. We like www.carbonfootprint.com.
- Respect the mountain environment you are holidaying in. That means no litter, sticking to marked paths, and choosing local or shared transport.
- We ask you to make mindful choices about your consumption while on holiday. Please avoid single use plastics and bring your own reusable bottle for drinking water. Consider choosing a vegetarian option in restaurants and buying local, seasonal food when you can.
- We love kit too, but consider not buying new equipment, unless you really need it. Consider buying second hand or borrowing anything you don’t already have.
It is integral to our work to ensure the mountain landscape is protected and preserved for future generations. We aim to reduce our impact, while increasing your appreciation and understanding of the outdoors. Read our blog on How To Be A More Sustainable Traveller.
Tracks and Trails was set up in 2006 by Julia Tregaskis-Allen and Lindsay Cannon, both International Mountain Leaders. To gain this qualification they had to undergo a lengthy examination process with an emphasis on understanding and protecting the mountain environment. From our very beginnings, right through to managing a vibrant adventure holiday company, we have strived to care for and to protect our outdoor ‘office’.
While in the mountains
- We work with small groups to reduce the impact of noise and visual pollution
- We promote healthy lifestyles and staying active outdoors
- We require that you do not leave litter of any form, even biodegradable
- We pick up litter, which has been left by others on the trail
- We strongly discourage shortcuts, which can cause path erosion
- We explain why you should not take souvenirs, such as flowers, from nature
- We ask you not to pollute water sources when answering a ‘call of nature’
- We discuss why leaving picnic remnants for the wildlife is not in their interest
- We discourage plastic pollution asking that you take a water bottle which can be used indefinitely
With regard to our trip infrastructure
- We support communities by using family run hotels whenever possible
- We use local providers for any extra activities requested by our guests
- We use the local train and bus networks whenever possible
- We encourage our guests to ‘share’ transport to our trip meeting points
- When possible we buy locally produced food for packed lunches
- We encourage drink/food stops at remote facilities to support the owners
- We do not 'include' packed lunches in your trip package as we have found there is too much wastage
Environmentally aware trip itineraries
- We think carefully about our routes and where possible promote ‘less travelled’ trails
- We ensure our guides understand our Caring for the Environment Policy and promote it
- Where possible we book accommodation with providers who truly share our love of the environment
- We promote winter ski journeys, which do not require ‘built’ infrastructure such as ski lifts
- If we need to include transport we strive to use local buses and trains
- We use local ‘guest travel cards’ which through taxes put funds back into the community
These are just some of the ways we work to “Leave No Trace” and encourage you to look after the mountain environment.