(all the good photos below thanks to Grzegorz Tos, follow him here: https://www.instagram.com/tosgrzegorz/)
The 2021 Frank Slide Cleanup Day was a huge success! SABA would like to thank every one of the nearly 100 climbers who came out on Saturday (June 5, 2021) to volunteer to pick up garbage and make Frank Slide a cleaner place!
This Cleanup Day initially was planned to be a garbage and litter cleanup of the climbing areas, but it became quickly apparent that there was already next to NO garbage in the actual climbing areas, so the efforts of volunteers were turned to cleaning up those areas of the Slide that see the most travelers and other visitors (the rocky areas adjacent to the highway parking lots, the hiking trails through the Slide, and gravel access roads in the southern part of the Slide).
As volunteers arrived, they were provided with a small map which showed them their ‘Designated Cleanup Area’ and then given an industrial-size garbage bag so they could quickly be on their way. The cleanup areas were assigned so that volunteers could stick only with the small group they had arrived with. This allowed us to minimize the size of the gathering and to follow COVID protocols for the event.
After the volunteers had combed through the areas near the Slide, the final tally of garbage that was removed was astounding: 61 bags of trash, 6 old mattresses, and two truckloads of assorted metal and tires! This included a huge number of disposable drink cups; Tim Hortons’ cups were certainly one of the most ubiquitous items found! After dropping off their collected trash, everyone headed out to enjoy a sunny afternoon of bouldering.
A couple of key takeways from this event:
- Despite the massive increase in climbers visiting the Slide in the last year or two, climbers are doing a great job of keeping the climbing areas we visit super clean and tidy. People are packing out what they pack in, and being good members of the community and stewards of this awesome place we all love to climb in.
- We can make a huge impact to help out the community! To our knowledge this was the largest volunteer “community cleanup” ever organized for the Slide area by a recreation group, and the amount of garbage we were able to remove speaks for itself.
SABA would like to extend huge thanks to Flashed Climbing of Calgary, who sponsored the Frank Slide Cleanup Day! They provided giveaways (brushes and bags of chalk) that made everyone’s day a lot brighter, and one lucky climber left with a custom Hueco Pad from Flashed!
We would also like to thank the staff of the Frank Slide Historic Site for helping us with the planning of the event, and the Municipality of Crowsnest Pass for waiving the landfill fees for the truckloads of trash that were picked up.The feedback from some local businesses and residents both in person and online was also very positive, thanking climbers for their efforts.
Thanks again to everyone who came out! This really set a great tone for future community stewardship events. We hope to see you in the Slide!