Outdoor Ethics Guide

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Outdoor Ethics Guide
Selected by:Senior Patrol Leader (troop) or
President (crew)
Reports to:Assistant Senior Patrol Leader (troop) or
Vice President - Program (crew)


The Outdoor Ethics Guide is a youth position of responsibility in a Scout troop or Venturing crew. The Outdoor Ethics Guide should have a thorough understanding of and commitment to Leave No Trace principles and Tread Lightly! guidelines. The outdoor ethics guide helps the troop or crew plan and conduct an outdoor program that effectively practices the principles of outdoor ethics. The guide works to help Scouts and Venturers improve their outdoor ethics decision-making skills to minimize impacts as they participate in outdoor activities. He supports Scouts who are working to complete the relevant requirements for the Scout through First Class ranks.

The guide can also help Scouts earn the Outdoor Ethics Awareness Award and the Outdoor Ethics Action Award.

To be successful as an Outdoor Ethics Guide, a Scout should:

Scope of Position

As the outdoor ethics guide, the outdoor ethics guide serves as a member of the patrol leaders' council representing outdoor ethics. To be successful, the guide needs to understand the needs of the troop as well as the needs of the Scouts.

The person chosen as outdoor ethics guide must be willing to take on the additional time and responsibility required for the role. They will be the primary role model on how to behave in the outdoors. If questions or problems come up, they must be willing to go to the appropriate leadership for guidance and resolution.

A troop can choose to have several outdoor ethics guides and assign portions of the responsibilities to each. As an example, a troop might choose to have an older Scout attend the Leave No Trace trainer course and focus on high-adventure planning.


The outdoor ethics guide performs some or all of the following:

Trains others
  • Explains to Scouts the relevant requirements for the Tenderfoot, Second Class, and First Class ranks.
  • Demonstrates how to practice the Outdoor Code, and the Leave No Trace and Tread Lightly! principles to meet advancement requirements.
Provides leadership
  • Helps the troop plan and conduct an outdoor program that effectively practices outdoor ethics.
  • Mentors den chiefs in the Outdoor Code and practicing Leave No Trace Principles for Kids.
  • Helps Life Scouts understand, plan, and carry out activities or projects meeting conservation service hour requirements.
Supports recognition
Completes self-evaluation
  • Uses tools to evaluate how well they carried out the responsibilities of outdoor ethics guide.


The troop outdoor ethics guide's primary duty is to help Scouts take steps to reduce impacts of their outdoor activities. The guide should meet with the troop outdoor ethics advisor or another designated person, and identify the actions the guide will complete during his term of office.

  1. Explain and Demonstrate Advancement Requirements
  2. Help Your Unit Plan and Conduct an Effective Outdoor Ethics Program
  3. Prepare Den Chiefs to Share Principles
  4. Help Scouts to Understand and Plan Conservation Activities
  5. Encourage Scouts to Complete Outdoor Ethics Awards and Merit Badges
  6. Complete Self-Evaluation

Each of these duties is explained more fully in the Outdoor Ethics Guide Handbook (pp. 7-11)

Position resources


  1. This position was previously known as Leave No Trace Trainer. Effective January 1, 2016, the position was renamed Outdoor Ethics Guide and the responsibilities were changed.

Related awards

Outdoor Ethics-related awards
Ecology-related awards

See also

External links

Leave No Trace-related links

Personal tools