Nature enthusiasts seeking to learn wilderness skills joined a community of nearly 220 backpackers of all skill levels trekking more than 30 miles through the Colorado Rockies this month on Fjällräven Classic USA.
Following the fourth annual Fjällräven Classic USA, 100% of the proceeds from ticket sales were donated to the Continental Divide Trail Coalition (CDTC), an organisation of volunteers and outdoor enthusiasts working hand-in-hand with the U.S. Forest Service and other federal agencies to build, promote and protect the 3,100-mile Continental Divide National Scenic Trail.
Nathan Dopp, Fjällräven’s CEO of Americas, said, “Everything we do at Fjällräven boils down to inspiring people to walk with nature. The Classic events are a very Swedish concept, and they resonate with Fjällräven fans in America, too. We are committed to offering an introduction to trekking that gives people the right tools and confidence to immerse themselves in nature while taking away the intimidation of heading out on your own.
“We built this year’s Classic USA to give attendees the tools and education needed to responsibly go out on their own next time. Caring for nature goes hand-in-hand with developing trekking skills, and we are honored to work with organizations like the Continental Divide Trail Coalition and Leave No Trace to lead new and experienced backpackers toward behaviors that maintain and protect the wild places for which we care so deeply.”
The CDTC was founded in 2012 to bolster community engagement for the popular national trail system. Through CDTC, volunteers, recreationists and scientists actively cultivate a designed to support and protect trails for generations to come. Launched in 2016 in the U.S., Classic events parallel the CDTC’s mission to inspire and enable more people to get outside by tapping into the brand’s Swedish history of taking time to relish the journey, while preserving wild spaces.
In addition to the CDTC, Fjällräven worked closely with non-profit partner Leave No Trace to lead participants in caring for the trail, educating trekkers about their impact on nature and assisting them in leaving the land in better condition than it was found. Additional partner organisations offered educational demonstrations at group campsites, such as explaining the history of the Continental Divide and teaching footwear first aid. Fjällräven also used a sweep crew to follow final trekkers each day, ensuring there was no trace of the event left behind, including signage, waste or gear.
The Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics is a national organisation that protects the outdoors by teaching and inspiring people to enjoy it responsibly. The Center accomplishes this mission by delivering cutting-edge education and research to millions of people across the country every year.
Dean Rozoni, Leave No Trace director of strategic partnerships, said, “The Fjällräven Classic USA is filled with backpackers who are brand new and don’t necessarily know how to practice Leave No Trace, so we are there to bridge that gap and inform participants on each of the seven principles of Leave No Trace, and how they can be applied to the trek. Through tailored messaging, on-trail staging, and presentations to all participants, Leave No Trace works with all parties to ensure every participant is well informed prior to hitting the trail.”