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Cottonwood Narrows Service Project

August 24, 2019 - August 25, 2019

The Land

The lands contained within Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument provide an “outstanding biological resource, spanning five life-zones – from low-lying desert to coniferous forest. Deep within this vast and austere landscape, the Anasazi and Fremont cultures made contact in the period AD 950-1100, leaving behind rock art panels, occupation sites, campsites and granaries. Stepping further back in time, fossil excavations have yielded more information about ecosystem change at the end of the dinosaur era than any other place in the world.  The Monument’s size, resources, and remote character provide extraordinary opportunities for geologists, paleontologists, archeologists, historians, and biologists in scientific research, education, and exploration. This unspoiled natural area remains a frontier with countless opportunities for quiet recreation and solitude” [BLM].

The Work

As visitation has increased over recent years, so have impacts to natural and cultural resources. Achieving camping and travel (hiking and recreation) compliance is a tall order and our service project will support local efforts to ensure managed, safe recreation protective of the landscape. Our work will focus on the North Cottonwood Narrows trailhead, where social trails have proliferated, causing erosion to areas of steep incline adjacent to the official trail. We will define the main trail and remediate the social trails, posting information signage where appropriate. In addition, we will travel Cottonwood Canyon Road to remediate the impacts of dispersed camping.

On Saturday evening, we will be treated to programming by our coordinating BLM ranger. (6) spaces are available.

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

  • campsite compliance and clean-up;
  • informational/educational signage installation;
  • manual reclamation of visually disturbed surface/vertical mulching

Our Objective: 
To achieve camping and trail compliance at the North Cottonwood Narrows TH and along Cottonwood Canyon Road.

A comprehensive itinerary will be provided to registered volunteers.

  • Friday, August 23rd: Optional early arrival and camping.
  • Saturday, August 24th: Day 1. Orientation. Begin project. Group Dinner & Evening Program
  • Sunday, August 25th: Day 2. Group Breakfast. Complete Project.

Project Rating 

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.

Camping & Meals

Specific location of camping site(s) and meal planning will be provided in the Welcome Letter sent to registered volunteers.

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.


A 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.

Apply Now


August 24, 2019
August 25, 2019
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