August 10, 2022

Highway cleanup in Big Cottonwood Canyon with Keep Nature Wild

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Many years ago, Save Our Canyons eagerly adopted mile 8-10 up Big Cottonwood Canyon (BCC) to better protect this heavily used area in the Wasatch by hosting trash cleanup volunteer days. Our section runs from the Mineral Fork Trailhead to the Butler Fork Trailhead. Even though this only covers two miles of highway, you would be shocked to see how much trash can build up on either side of the highway. 

Lucky for us, we partnered with Keep Nature Wild and their amazing group of “Wild Keepers” to host a trash cleanup mid-July 2022! We met at the BCC Park & Ride bright and early on a Wednesday to beat the summer heat and to carpool up the canyon. With the help of four Wild Keepers, Bri Sullivan from Keep Nature Wild, and Alex Schmidt and Claire Parsons from Save Our Canyons - we were able to pick up over 90 POUNDS of trash in only 2.5 hours! We found many sport gel wrappers, granola bar wrappers, crushed up cans, and oddly enough, pieces of cars like bumpers and taillights. 

With COVID slowing down our volunteer workdays, it was uplifting to see that even though 2+ years have passed since our last trash cleanup in BCC, the level of trash found on this day was not as bad as we had expected. It makes you feel grateful for the few trash cans that are placed and eager to get more in place. We are really excited to start our highway cleanup projects up again and look forward to hosting more this fall and next spring. 

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