|Access Fund Announces 2010 Adopt a Crag Awards|
The 11th anniversary of Adopt a Crag was another great year with over 4,300 volunteers and 32,000 hours of work to improve and steward crags around the country. Since its inception in 1999, Adopt a Crag has been the largest climbing community volunteer initiative throughout the nation. Adopt a Crag events show land managers and the public that climbers take care of the places they climb. These stewardship efforts not only conserve our climbing areas, but also strengthen the reputation of the entire climbing community.
Each year, the Access Fund and its sponsors honor those organizers who went above and beyond. We are excited to present the 2010 Adopt a Crag awards to a deserving group of volunteers. We want to thank everyone who hosted or participated in an Adopt a Crag this year—it starts on the ground with your commitment and dedication to make this program a success.
Adopt a Crag of the Year Award – New River Alliance of Climbers
REI and the Access Fund are proud to present the 2010 Adopt a Crag of the Year Award to the New River Alliance of Climbers (NRAC) for their incredible work year after year stewarding the expansive network of crags and trails in the New River Gorge. Of special note is their multi-week effort in August and September to clean up and rebuild the approach to Junk Yard Crag. The name says it all—in previous decades climbers had to scramble down a garbage dump to reach the popular crag. Now, fifty volunteer days later, NRAC and local volunteers have cleaned up the area and constructed a set of stairs dubbed The Great Wall of Junkyard. "The goal here was to build something that we’ll never need to revisit," says trail guru and NRAC President Gene Kistler. See photos of their accomplishments at www.newriverclimbing.net/local-updates/50-junkyard-trail-riser-project.
Conservation Award – Greg Sievers and Rocky Mountain National Park
CLIF Bar and the Access Fund are honored to present the 2010 Conservation Award to Greg Sievers for his long-standing leadership organizing the Annual Lumpy Trail Day. This year marked the 10th anniversary of the event, and Rocky Mountain National Park led a dedicated group of 60 volunteers to complete 413 volunteer hours of work. Over the last decade, the partnership has provided over 560 participants and 4,400 hours of service work at Lumpy Ridge. Volunteer trail crews are known to complete hard physical labor, but it all paid off this year with the improvement of over 500 vertical feet of approach trails that will withstand the test of time. We thank all the supporting organizations of this great event: American Alpine Club, Leave No Trace, Colorado Mountain School, and all the sponsoring companies for their donations.
Stewardship Award – Will Buckman and Devils Tower National Monument
REI, CLIF Bar, and the Access Fund are proud to present the 2010 Stewardship Award to Will Buckman and Devils Tower National Monument for their dedication in preserving this incredible formation in Northeastern Wyoming. Devils Tower sees over 400,000 visitors annually, and of these visitors, approximately 5,000 come to climb the tower. In 2010, trail crews restored approach trails to popular staging areas and routes along the base of the tower. We thank all the organizers and supporters, including the Devils Tower Natural History Association for hosting a thank-you barbecue for the volunteers.
A League of Their Own Award – Ken Yager and the Yosemite Climbing Association
We are once again honored to present the 2010 League of Their Own Award to Ken Yager and the Yosemite Climbing Association for the 7th Annual Yosemite Facelift. The event was an incredible success, with 1,001 volunteers who dedicated 17,000 volunteer hours to collect trash across 160 miles of roadway, 100 miles of trails, and 20 miles of river corridors. Of the 172,000lbs of trash, 80% was recycled. The Yosemite Facelift is an inspiration to the climbing community and a testament to land managers that climbers are stewards of our climbing resources nationwide.