You just topped out on the Grand and you're totally stoked! Then, your buzz and all of your pictures are ruined by a trashy summit. Help us all avoid epic fails like this by joining the #trashtag project and posting pics of your own clean up efforts on instagram. We aim to make a tangible impact on the environment through the galvanizing forces of social media. Include a #trashtag and tag @UCOTRASHTAGPROJECT in the description for the chance to win awesome gear from UCO starting October 7th!
This project was dreamed up on a road trip from California to Jackson Hole, check out the story below...
Our destination was Wild Willy's hot springs–a veritable volcanic oasis–on the outskirts of Mammoth, CA. The night before, we camped under the stars at the base of Mt. Whitney inside the spooky confines of the Alabama Hills. Early the next morning we were cruising northbound on highway 395 when a shearing crosswind rattled our ride and jettisoned a receipt out of the passenger window and into the picturesque Owens Valley.
As I steadied our course, my stomach fell to pieces. That receipt was from a frivolous gear binge in Bishop, CA. I should have stopped; I should have ventured out into the dessert and removed that heinous relic of my self-indulgent shopping spree. However, Heyward and I just continued our California cruise, and I sat in silence, inwardly haunted by this inadvertent littering fiasco. My karma account felt indebted to righting the wrong of this unfortunate event. Emphatically, I vowed to gather one hundred pieces of trash during the trip!
Over the next few weeks, I proudly explored our country in eco-warrior mode. Our trip led us through Yosemite Valley, Tuolumne Meadows, The Devil's Postpile, Kings Canyon and Sequoia National Parks. In all of these places I cleansed our foregrounds of that nasty and prolific invasive species known as garbage. Heyward had to return home to normalcy after our tour of the Southern Sierras, but I continued the quest. My adventurous spirit helped me find trash on the 14,000' summit of Mt. Langley, at the base of Mt. Whitney and on the shoulder block of Cathedral Peak.
I continued my journey north, all the way to the emerald blanketed slopes of Mt. Shasta where I was able to relieve the lush landscape of its trashy burden! Jackson Hole, WY was my next destination, and there, at the alter of quite possibly America's greatest cathedral–The Grand Teton–victory was finally found. On the shoreline of Jenny Lake I reached down in one victorious swoop and grabbed a tattered granola wrapper–the one hundredth piece of trash removed from this land I so cherish!
The thrill of victory was fresh! An endorphin cocktail circulated throughout my body and my mind raced with the possibility of furthering this quest. If I could convince 100 people to join in then together we could truly make a tangible difference. If I could convince 100 people then why not 1,000... why couldn't we pick up a million pieces of trash together? Some where in those jumbled ruminations an idea formed and sprung from my mouth as quickly as the receipt from my window... #TRASHTAG!!! Instead of taking self fulfilling summit selfies we should be "#trashtag'n" ourselves in pictures where we are cleaning up our wild places!
I believed with the galvanizing capabilities of social media the #trashtag campaign could gain enough traction to actually work! A few days later I pitched #trashtag to the progressive minds at UCO. They fell in love with the idea and quickly became the driving force behind the movement! With their backing, #trashtag was officially born and with your support we can officially make a huge impact on this planet we call Earth!
Thank you kindly,
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