May 4 - May 5
Between Price, Utah and Grand Junction, Colorado, Highway 6 and Interstate 70 cross 170 miles of barren and windswept terrain. The drive would be lonely but for a constant companion: the thousand-foot-high wall of the Book Cliffs that parallels the highway just to the north. Winding for 250 miles across Utah and Colorado, it is the longest continuous escarpment in the world.
Near the town of Green River, Utah, a second escarpment, the Roan Cliffs, rises above the Book Cliffs, and together the two climb a vertical mile above the desert. From a distance the double rampart appears to be a smooth, unbroken wall, but on closer inspection it resolves into a complicated network of spurs, ridgelines, and canyons.
The Book Cliffs-Desolation Canyon wilderness is a merging of three different worlds: the great rampart of the Roan and Book cliffs, the high alpine forests and meadows of the Tavaputs Plateau, and the inner world of Desolation Canyon.
It is all marvelous wilderness. Abundant wildlife and rugged beauty have made the Book Cliffs wilderness one of Utah’s most popular backcountry destinations. Each year the region draws more than 6,000 hunters, and an equal number of river runners make the float trip through Desolation Canyon annually.
Our work will focus on wilderness study area boundary delineation and protection. Nonpermitted travel and camping in protected wilderness areas requires strategic management. We will install proper wilderness boundary signage, build natural and constructed barriers to travel, and otherwise clearly delineate protected landscapes from open route travel areas. Strategies may include vertical mulching with large boulders and downed trees/logs, the building of rock cairn baskets (wired baskets filled with rock to define a border or edge), and extensive raking and naturalization of ORV tracks.
Volunteers Needed: (8)
Project Lead: Talitha McGuire
A comprehensive itinerary will be provided to registered volunteers.
- Sat May 4 – Sun May 5
Level 2 – Our most common trip incorporates mid- to heavy-lifting, work in remote landscapes at varying elevations, an increased diversity of tool use, and an emphasis on physical fitness and hiking competency.
Camping & Meals
Specific location of camping site(s) will be provided in the Welcome Letter sent to registered volunteers.
SUWA provides select meals, snacks and drinks during the project. Volunteers are responsible for all additional meals not specified in the Welcome Letter during their stay.
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 (4) weeks prior to the start date.
Registration & Acceptance Timeline
A 2024 General Volunteer Application is required for this project.
- When we have received your form, you will receive a confirmation e-mail within (5) working days of submission.
- In order to ensure participation by the most diverse applicants, we log all applications until (8) weeks prior to the project. At this point, you will first receive a call from our stewardship team to further discuss the project.
- Following this call, you will receive an e-mail confirming whether you have been placed on the “project roster” or a “waiting list.”
- If you are selected for the project roster, you will then complete a Volunteer Agreement.
- Individuals on the Waitlist List will be contacted if space opens due to cancellation within (2) weeks of the project start date.
- At (4) 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 (when applicable), a notification about carpools and/or caravans, and any additional information pertinent to the project.
- Within (2) weeks of the project you will receive a direct call from our stewardship coordinator to answer any additional questions you may have.
If you have any questions at any point throughout the process, please do not hesitate to contact us here or by calling (435) 259-9151.