Boulder Backyard Collective- A Complete Success!


ConservationNEXT organized another successful Backyard Collective, this time in El Dorado Canyon State Park near Boulder, CO.

Check out the highlights:

  • 100+ volunteers
  • Sponsoring companies:  Osprey Packs, Kelty, Sierra Designs, GoLite, La Sportiva, Backpackers Pantry, The Outdoor Industry Association, and The North Face
  • Other volunteers joined us from Teko Socks, Burts Bees, Leisure Trends, KEEN, and Clif Bar
  • Extraordinary organization by Conservation Alliance grantee, the Colorado Mountain Club.  Special thanks to Anya Byers!!!
  • Volunteers removed invasive plant species, installed railroad tie/rebar steps, and built rock steps
  • Grantees present included Colorado Mountain Club, Colorado Environmental Coalition, The Wilderness Support Center, and The Access Fund
  • The Wilderness Support Center signed over 200 post cards encouraged the Delegation to move forward with legislation to permanently protect portions of the San Juan Mountains.
  • Thanks to IMBA for sending an expert group of trail builders out!!
  • Also special thanks to Colorado Fourteeners Intitiative for sending their trail guru, Brian Wallace!!
  • Jonathan Lantz, President of La Sportiva brought his  band, Seismic Shift for some great apres trail work entertainment
  • A special thanks to donations provided by Mountain Khakis, Prana and Whole Foods
  • New Belgium Brewery contributed beer and cash to the event.  BIG THANKS!!!


Check out additional Boulder BYC photos here.

Next BYC destination- Vermont on September 26, 2006. If you are in the area be sure to check it out.

Watching a Dam Come Down

Conservation Alliance grantee WaterWatch led the effort to remove the Savage Rapids Dam on Oregon's Rogue River. Removal began in May, and will conclude in December. The project will clear a major obstacle to fish passage on the Rogue, renowned for its whitewater boating and fishing. WaterWatch has posted on their website some amazing photos of the dam removal as it progreses. Check out this visual show of history in the making!

Backyard Collective Descends on El Dorado Canyon

ConservationNEXT's sixth Backyard Collective event will be held tomorrow in El Dorado Canyon near Boulder, CO. The ConservationNEXT crew has teamed up with Colorado Mountain Club, ConservationNEXT to host a day of trail restoration at the state park, a popular destination for climbing, hiking and mountain biking. Budget cuts have severely cut Colorado's State Park trail crew projects, and El Dorado Canyon's recreation manager, psyched for volunteer help, will provide a range of activities from building steps to pulling weeds, depending on the interest and ability level of volunteers.

As a reminder, the Backyard Collective program is our effort to connect individuals from our member companies directly with the work of our grantees. Employees from the following companies will participate: Osprey; GoLite; The North Face; La Sportiva; Headsweats; Kelty; Sierra Designs; Teko; Backpackers Pantry; Outdoor Industry Association; Leisure Trends; and Burt's Bees. We expect roughly 100 volunteers throughout the day, and will post photos early next week. Thanks to all the participants, and to Brook Shinsky (The North Face) and Deanna Lloyd (The Forest Group) for pulling this one together!

Bill McKibben on Colbert

VIDEO: Bill McKibben on The Colbert Report

Last August, The Conservation Alliance was fortunate to feature author Bill McKibben as the guest speaker at our Outdoor Retailer trade show breakfast. Bill talked mostly about global warming and his organization Last night, McKibben addressed a much larger audience when the was the guest on the Colbert Report. Bill did a great job communicating the importance of bringing atomospheric CO2 levels down to 350 parts per million. Check out his interview with Colbert. And to learn more about, check out…

Obama Will Uphold Roadless Rule

In strong comments, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said on Friday that the Obama Administration will uphold the Clinton-era Roadless Rule. If the rule continues to be tied up in the courts, Vilsack further stated that his team would write a new rule to protect America's roadless forests. The Roadless Rule protected 58 million acres of US Forest Service land from new road construction. Click here for more details.

How ConservationNEXT inspired us…




Outdoor Outreach ( is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to empower at-risk and underprivileged youth to make positive, lasting changes in their lives  through comprehensive outdoor programming.  Through the encouragement of Conservation Next, our entire staff made specific New Year's resolutions that would benefit the environment in the name of our most special place in nature.
My resolution was to convert one of our 15 passenger vans to run on  Waste Vegetable Oil (WVO).  I am proud to report that with the help of Veg Powered Systems, we recently made good on the resolution.  The conversion will not only save us close to $5,000 a year, but also serve as an educational tool to inspire the youth we serve to learn more about their impact in the environment. 
Local restaurants have generously donated the used vegetable oil from their deep-friers to us.  Flour, water and other impurities are then filtered out before the oil can be used for fuel.  According to the U.S. Energy Information Administartion, Americans use 390 million gallons of gasoline each day!  Converting the van to run on WVO saves us approximately 132 gallons a month or 1,500 gallons a year.  Because WVO originates from plants, the environmental impact is greatly reduced when compared to fossil fuels.  Special thanks to Las Patronas, The Coronado Rotary Club and Jimbo's for making grants to fund the purchase and conversion of the vehicle.


Salazar Dedicates New Colorado Wilderness Area

Interior Secretary Ken Salazar was in Grand Junction, CO this week to dedicate the new Dominguez-Escalante National Conservation Area, a 210,000-acre wildland protected in March. The Conservation Alliance supported protections for the area with grants to Colorado Environmental Coalition and Western Colorado Congress. In his dedication, Salazar referred to the economic benefits of protecting places like the Dominguez Canyon (pictured above). Click here for the full story.

Conservation Alliance Grantee Reports: Progress from Coast to Coast

Each year, we receive two formal reports from our grantee organizations describing the progress they've made on their conservation projects with the help of our funding. It is always exciting to sit down and read these reports, and realize just how much great conservation work is going on in the US and Canada. We hope you'll check out this summary of the reports we recently received from the organizations we funded in 2008. Happy reading!

Paddlers Like Dam-Free Rivers. Imagine that!

American Whitewater, a Conservation Alliance grantee, was featured prominently in a good article in the New York Times about the benefits of dam removal to whitwater paddlers. Though the premise seems obvious to most of us, it's nice to read in the Times that we are now in "the age of dam removal." The article includes a list of dam removal projects nationwide, including several that The Conservation Alliance has supported with grants to groups like AW. Check it out!

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