Friday, August 15, 2008

Dash for Trash details

We introduced the Dash for Trash in a posting back on July 21, and discussed further details in the Northern Lites radio interview that aired on 7/27 and will re-broadcast this weekend. We're assembling a small group of people to take a trial-run... gathering trash from the St. Croix River on a route that will travel from Interstate State Park to William O'Brien State Park. Our intent is to use close friends and family on this particular trip, but if you're interested in joining us, you can still drop me an email. But so you can follow along, here's our plan.

We'll meet at William O'Brien State Park at around 10:00 a.m. on Saturday, August 23rd. A bus will shuttle us from William O'Brien up to Interstate State Park, courtesy of Wild Mountain and Taylors Falls Recreation. From there, the majority of the group will paddle roughly 17.5 miles south on the St. Croix River, landing back where we started at William O'Brien. (A Google Map of the route has been included at the bottom of this posting.) If you're a Google Earth user, you can download the KMZ file by clicking here; then, highlight it in your "temporary places, and then click on the play button to see an animation of the route.

We're thankful that the shuttle, canoes, paddles and PFD's are being provided by Wild Mountain/Taylor's Falls Canoe Rental at no charge to our clean-up team. The Wisconsin DNR has provided some garbage bags, as has the Minnesota DNR, along with a supply of sturdy gloves.

I'm going to bring along a couple of cases of bottled water, and a couple cartons of granola or energy bars. Other than that, our team is self-supplied. (The only cost should be sack lunch, if desired, gas to-and-from the park, and a $5 state park entry pass.)

Depending on the number of people who end up joining us, I'm going to ask two canoe groups to paddle for fun the first half of the trip... and then do some clean-up work on the second half of the trip, with one boat on the east bank (Wisconsin) and the other on the west (Minnesota) side. I'll ask another pair of canoe teams to clean the first half of the trip, and paddle for leisure for the second half of the voyage. Personally, I'm planning to paddle quickly to Osceola, and focus on cleaning up the backwaters there, which might add another 3 or so miles to my version of the trip. Lisa from the St. Croix River Association has tipped me off to a couple of items that she's seen in the river, but not been able to recover. I'm going after them.

I'm going to bring the two kayaks that have been provided to our project by our friends at Joe's Sporting Goods. I'll be using one... and the other can be used to solve the issue of "odd numbers," and someone doesn't want to be the third person in a canoe.

This blend of boats, teams and experiences should teach us a lot about how to create a larger event for 2009. We're going to bring along a couple of video cameras and digital cameras, and invite folks to document the day as we go (just a little). Plus, we'll have a handful of handheld GPS devices to help guide the teams to certain rendezvous points. This blend of boats, teams and experiences should teach us a lot... about how to create a larger event for 2009!

Do you have ideas about how to make the first-ever Dash for Trash a success? I'd love to hear from you, so drop me a note!

© 2008, Mike D. Anderson, Crystal, MN.

Dash for Trash route:

View Larger Map

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