Friends of the South Fork of the Kings River Org
Kings River Clean up dates for 2019
This year’s Kings River Clean Up events will be held
September 7th, &
I am writing to you on behalf of the Friends of the South Fork Kings River (sfkingsriver.org, facebook.com/FOSFK). We are an alliance of people who care enough about the watershed that contains Cedar Grove that we have chosen to adopt it through the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) since 1998. The EPA is leading an “Adopt Your Watershed” campaign to encourage citizens to protect pristine rivers such as the South Fork Kings. “Adoption” means any citizen based effort to restore or protect a watershed, river or lake. The group started, having grown out of a group of families that have been camping in the area since the road was initially completed in the 1940’s, from a desire to keep this beautiful area as clean as possible for future generations.
Each year between April and November, we host a series of litter clean-up events in Sequoia National Forest and Kings Canyon National Park along California Highway 180, from Yucca Point to Roads End. A distance of approximately 20 miles (See attached photo Project1.jpg). We try to schedule the events to immediately follow weekends of the major holidays Memorial Day, 4th of July, & Labor Day, along with the opening of the roadway for the season, and just prior to it’s closing. In order to have the events approximately 1 month apart we usually have one in early August as well.
For each event our president, retired Federal Hydrologist, State Environmental Scientist and Watershed Coordinator, William “Bill” Templin sets up a table at his campsite with banners and information about the group, in order to recruit volunteers for our event. If possible a member of the group attends the evening, ranger hosted, campfire programs for the same reason of recruitment. The events themselves are on Saturday morning from 9am thru 12pm… ish. We meet in the parking lot of the convenience store/hotel across the river from Sentinel campground and main ranger station for Cedar Grove. Everyone signs into a log book; litter-getters, bags, gloves, and florescent vests are distributed, and a “before” photo is taken. We then select preferred areas to focus on for clean-up based on the number of volunteers. Obviously, more volunteers allows for better focus, and more areas to be inspected. The volunteers separate to their various areas either on foot or car to begin removing litter. We meet back in the parking lot at the end of the event to collect, sort, & weigh the litter gathered, along with taking an “after” photo.
Before and after the events we encourage people to come by where the group is camping for potluck barbecues, fishing instructions/suggestions, as well as stories of camping in the area from many years ago. We also offer the loaning of litter removal gear for around “personal” campsites. My younger brother as part of his Boy Scout experiences participated in a troop hike out the eastern end of Kings Canyon, to Mt. Whitney, up to it’s peak then down and out through Whitney portal on the eastern side of the Sierra Nevada range. Our group has also participated in National Park and National Forest run volunteer efforts for reforestation after various forest fires and trail maintenance.
We would like to request your assistance recruiting volunteers, from the various troops, throughout central California, and beyond. This is a great activity for various merit badges involving community service, conservation, nature, etc. Also, as previously stated, the more volunteers we receive the better we can inspect and remove litter.
This year’s events will be held April 27th, June 1st, July 6th, August 3rd, September 7th, & November 9th (See attached flyer “2019 Press Release.jpg”).
Please peruse our website sfkingsriver.org, and follow us on Facebook (facebook.com/FOSFK). If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact Bill Templin or myself via email, the group website, or Facebook. Any assistance will be greatly appreciated.
Board Member, Friends of the South Fork Kings River