Conservation-Based Non-Profits are Critical to the Preservation of our Public Lands
"The US Forest Service (USFS) just couldn’t keep up with the ever-increasing demand, so in 2017, CBMBA stepped in beyond bikes. After officially adding “conservation” to their mandate, an unusual move for a mountain-bike organization at the time, they formed the Crested Butte Conservation Corp (CBCC), a professional, full-time, community-funded stewardship and trail crew." -Leilani Bruntz (Patagonia)
Bruntz, L. (2021, December 31). The Writing on the Wall. Patagonia. Retrieved Fromhttps://www.patagonia.com/stories/the-writing-on-the-wall-2/story-114744.html?fbclid=IwAR1Q2av8RFy94nGde_fUeATF772xHBSmzjEBI-M3bJagLK9IuUmV-Hce_As
Over the span of the last decade or so public lands are almost completely overwhelmed. Plain and simple, they cannot withstand the high number of visitors, overuse, and the irresponsibility of those who just don't know any better. Over the last ten years and exacerbated by the pandemic, people have flocked in large numbers to the outdoors and we are starting to see the negative impacts. Land managers such as the US Forest Service and National Park Service are struggling to keep up and are relying on small conservation-based non-profits now more than ever. Due to more significant funding streams, donations from the general public, and maintenance agreements with land managers non-profits are thriving under pressure and providing critical care for our public lands. This care can range anywhere from trail maintenance and new trail construction to stewardship, picking up large amounts of trash, and restoring damaged landscapes. The article posted above goes in-depth with the Crested Butte Mountain Bike Association and their conservation-based trail crew the Crested Butte Conservation Corp. The article provides a small glimpse into just one organization that is making tremendous impacts within their community and helping local land managers keep up with the increasing demand and damage to our public lands. These organizations exist everywhere throughout Colorado and the rest of the country and are always in need of assistance whether monetary or volunteering boots on the ground. With a New Year just right around the corner think about what you appreciate about our public lands, what it takes to maintain them, and how you can help!