Conservation Team to Begin Landmark Project in Little Cottonwood Canyon

This April, the Access Fund-Jeep Conservation Team West crew will begin an 11-week project to reconstruct climbing access throughout the Gate Buttress area in Little Cottonwood Canyon outside of Salt Lake City, Utah.

© Photo courtesy of Andrew Burr

Last summer, the Salt Lake Climbers Alliance (SLCA) and Access Fund signed a 10-year recreational access agreement with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church) to secure access to the 140-acre Gate Buttress parcel. Prior to this lease, Gate Buttress was one of the largest unsecured private climbing resources in the country.

This groundbreaking lease agreement not only secured climber access to world-class granite climbing, but it established a new style of partnership between climbers and private landowners. SLCA is charged with stewarding and developing the area into a sustainable climbing recreation resource.

SLCA has called in the Access Fund-Jeep Conservation Team to lead this project, and they will leverage the team’s technical expertise to tackle a series of highly complex restoration projects. Carolyn and Allen, the Conservation Team West crew, will work with SLCA volunteers and Single Track Trails to construct dozens of stone retaining walls, stone staircases, and bouldering platforms to mitigate high levels of soil erosion and plant loss.

We will need volunteers to help with these projects during Adopt a Crag events scheduled here.

This stewardship project is made possible through an SLCA-awarded grant from the Utah Office of Outdoor Recreation, an American Alpine Club grant, and generous support from REI, Petzl, and SLCA donors..