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Cedar Mesa Service Project

October 20, 2018 - October 21, 2018

Apply Now <– Submit your application today!
Don’t forget to complete the Volunteer Agreement.

If you have questions, please don’t hesitate to contact our program coordinator:
volunteer@suwa.org  or  (435) 259-9151.

Read on to learn more about our project and site!

The Land

Remote and rugged backcountry, the area is accessible only by pack animal or on foot. The Anasazi (“Ancient Ones”) flourished in Grand Gulch between 700 and 2,000 years ago. The fact that so many sites remain–and that they are in such excellent condition–makes Grand Gulch a special area.

Throughout the mesas and canyons of Southeastern Utah, there are countless places important to Native Americans and to the non-Indians who live or visit here. During your stay, recognize how important these sites are to all of us: Native Americans, non-Indians, historians, and archaeologists. You will see dwellings, pottery, tools, and art work.

The earliest known Anasazi inhabitants of Grand Gulch were the Basket Makers, who lived here from A.D. 200 to 700. This culture is thought to have derived from earlier nomad hunters and gatherers, but artifacts from the Basketmaker period are the oldest yet found in the Gulch. When the nomadic people learned to plant and cultivate corn introduced from the south, they became more settled, and the Basketmaker cultured evolved.

Grand Gulch’s environment can be extremely harsh at certain times of the year. You will probably find spring and fall to be the most comfortable periods. Spring rains usually end around the middle of May. The weather is hot from June through August and it is not uncommon for the temperature to rise past 110 degrees Fahrenheit. Summer rains come in late July or early August, bringing flash flood hazards. In the winter months, snow and ice cling to the canyons, and temperatures often fall below zero.


The Work

We will be hiking select canyons to address impacts of user-created social trails and illegal campsites. Get ready for a few long days of hiking in one of Utah’s most beautiful landscapes!

Work tasks will vary by need, and are slated to include:

  • brush management and vertical mulching;
  • social trail reclamation;
  • campsite clean-up

Our Objective: To eliminate trace and consequence of user-created hiking impacts throughout the canyons of the Grand Gulch Primitive Area.

A comprehensive itinerary will be provided to registered volunteers.

  • Friday, October 19th: Optional early arrival and camping opportunity.
  • Saturday, October 20th: Day 1 of Project. We will gather at 7:30am for workday orientation.
  • Sunday, October 21st: We will gather at 8:00am after breakfast. We will work until 3:30pm.

Project Rating 

Level 3 – Heavy lifting, high-elevation, remote travel, and extended durations away from common conveniences. Leave No Trace principles are essential during all of our trips but require the most thought and planning at Level 3. These trips may involve on-site training for technical skills and tool use. Excellent physical fitness is a must at this level.


Camping & Meals

Volunteers will camp on site. Specific location will be indicated in the Welcome Letter provided to registered volunteers.

SUWA will provide snacks and other small provisions during the project. Volunteers are responsible for all water and meals during the project.

Volunteer Responsibilities

Participants are responsible for their own food, water and camping gear as well as transportation to and from the project site(s). Volunteers should plan to be away from camp all day each of the work days. A recommended pack list will be sent along with the project Welcome Letter two weeks prior to the start date.


Volunteer Agreement is required for this project. 

When we have received your form, you will receive a confirmation e-mail within 5 working days of submission. The confirmation e-mail will indicate whether you have been placed on the “project roster” or a “waiting list.”

Three weeks before the start of the trip, you will receive an RSVP to confirm your participation. Individuals on the Waitlist will be contacted if spaces open due to cancellation.

Two weeks before the project start date, registered and confirmed participants will receive a Welcome Letter, with a comprehensive itinerary, including: driving instructions, a Project Map (for mobile devices), a notification about carpools and/or caravans, and additional information in a Pre-Departure email.

If you have any questions at any point throughout the process, please don’t hesitate to contact our program coordinator: volunteer@suwa.org  or  (435) 259-9151.


October 20, 2018
October 21, 2018
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