Don’t be “that guy”. Learn how to properly Leave No Trace on the Appalachian Trail.
Bears inhabit or travel through nearly every part of the A.T. Sightings have increased at shelters and campsites and even small food rewards teach bears to associate humans with food. When that happens, they often have to be killed to protect human safety.
Dropped, spilled, or improperly stored food also attracts rodents to shelters. Even a few noodles or pieces of granola are a large meal for mice. Clean up spills completely and pack out all food scraps.
Store all food, trash, and scented articles (toothpaste, sunscreen, insect repellent, water purification chemicals, balm, etc.) out of reach of bears and other animals. A safe distance is 12 feet from the ground and 6 feet from a limb or trunk; however, in some areas, the use of bear canisters is required. Store your food according to local regulations.
Protect wildlife by keeping a respectful distance so as not to cause a change in their behavior. If you are hiking with a dog, keep it on a short leash. Do not follow or approach animals. Particularly avoid wildlife during sensitive times, i.e., when mating, nesting, raising young, or during winter.