4. Leave what you find
5. Minimize campfire impacts
7. Be considerate of other visitors.
For more information on these principles, please visit the Leave No Trace website: http://www.lnt.org/programs/principles.php
There are obvious reasons why you should avoid doing other things too. You should avoid removing artifacts or moving them around because the more artifacts that are moved or removed, the less can be learned (also, in most cases of artifact removal, it is theft)! You should avoid climbing on walls of ruins because they could collapse, potentially injuring you and wholly or partially destroying the wall. You should avoid touching rock art so that it doesn’t get damaged over time. However, there are less obvious reasons for taking these steps and precautions. Namely, when you visit an archaeological site, you are visiting a place where someone’s ancestors lived in the past. Around here, most archaeological sites are associated with ancestral Native Americans, but there are some that are not. In any case, you should show respect for the ancestors of whichever group is represented at an archaeological site.
Posted by April Carroll, Contract Associate Archaeologist - Archaeology Office