Thursday, August 25, 2011
The June Adopt-A-Crag was a huge success. Dozens of CRAGS' friends and members converged on the camping area at Lover's Leap on the morning of the 25 and got assignments from the friendly Forrest Service Rangers. After collecting shovels, snacks and work gloves, one group headed up Pony Express to the Hogsback approach while another focused on the approach to the lower buttress. Both focused on reinforcing the existing trails using sustainable methods that would provide for heavy traffic and water-runoff.
A third group stayed in the camping area and emptied fire pits; hauling ash and garbage to the trash area and raking all flammable materials away from the pits. The more artistic volunteers received gallons of brown paint and brushes from the Forrest Service and went to work painting the picnic tables and benches, with the exception of those recently destroyed by neighborhood bears.
To thank the folks at the lodge for hosting the volunteers during dinner, another contingent dragged rakes and shovels down the hill and pulled invasive weeds and plants from the grassy area in front of the lodge, further beautifying and fire-proofing the area. Everyone stayed hydrated and happy and the volunteer time flew by.
As volunteers finished their various projects, several top-ropes were set up and folks shed their work gloved and boots in favor of climbing shoes and chalk bags. Everyone who wanted to got a chance to climb the amazing rock they'd been working to protect and some tried their hands at climbing for the very first time.
When everyone had worked up a sufficient appetite they converged on the lodge for a feast of spaghetti, garlic bread and salad and those of age chose from the bar's excellent selection of brews. When all bellies were full and high-fives were given out, volunteers trudged back up the hill and set up camp. Campfires were started, coolers were emptied and campers eventually fell asleep under the newly spiffy, safe and sustainable Lover's Leap. The next day many people stayed and climbed until they couldn't lift their arms. Thank you very much to all of the volunteers, organizers and staff of the lodge. See you next time!