(We set up right in front of the life guard stand with a sign for our volunteers to find us with 808clean up supplies ready to be passed out!)
Before the climbing gym existed, Waimea bay was the first place I tried bouldering and the go to spot for bouldering, if not sport climbing at Mokule'ia. Waimea bay on the north shore is truly a magical place, not because of it's beauty, clear blue waters, occasional spinner dolphins visiting over the summers and the monstrous winter waves, but because of the people you meet. I've met many people and made many friends over the years climbing at Waimea bay. Your never alone even if showing up alone.
(We split up in two groups, one group headed in the direction in this picture and the other group in the opposite direction. It was great to see kids join us that morning.)
Unfortunately we did a terrible job at capturing the day on camera. What we do have from that day aside from photos above will be in the following slide show. Hope you enjoyed this brief blog and our photos. Feel free to send us any feedback or suggestions for crags you want to us to tackle next!
I'm a bit delayed on this post considering the clean up was back in August and we're now in the month of October, but I guess better late then never!
The Silo, where to start with that mess… Let's start from the beginning. The Silo was founded sometime in the summer of 2015 by a local climber. I was invited out to this crag many times before, but at the time I was taking a break from climbing (as I do every year) and was uninterested in going. I was also informed about the massive amount of trash that was left behind from squatters who have since been cleared out (at least the majority of them). With the attempt of contacting the church, which the land belonged to, he expressed wanting to clean it out with their permission and assistance and with the intention of building a relationship with the church so that climbers would always have access to these boulders. The church granted permission for the cleanup but could not provide resources or assistance. In result, the cleanup never happened.
(Saint Peter and Paul's Mission Church was built in 1953. Although the church lot is 0ften filled up with Waimea bay beach goers looking for parking, it still holds Sunday mass.)
Over a year later, this past summer, with my newly found motivation to get back into climbing along with our mission, my partner Nate and I decided to check it out. With the help of our friend Christy guiding the way, we started up this very pleasant trail that sits at the back of St. Peter and Paul’s Missions Church. It welcomed us with a St. Mary statue that stands about 2ft tall a little past the entrance of the trail. The 5 minute approach to this awesome little spot that consist of about 5 problems or so was awesome and ideal. What wasn’t ideal was the massive amount of trash that you had to hike through (I never understood the severity of it till witnessing it myself). Nate was convinced there was a body under one of the tarps that was left behind. Such a pleasantly short trail to some amazing routes, have been desecrated. Our hearts sunk at the thought of anyone being able to leave such a mess behind on such a beautiful trail.
(Here's Nate posing for the camera and a few pics of the area, keep in mind a lot of trash is hidden behind brush and trees. We showed up before the volunteers to set up a perimeter of mosquito punks.)
With our non-profit just starting and our goal to encourage stewardship, the Silo Cleanup became our 2nd project to tackle. With the church already being hounded before, we decided to contact them again and actually get the job done with or without assistance. After leaving numerous messages, Nate finally got in touch with Josh (the church grounds keeper) who told us the same as he has said before that we were welcomed to clean it out but without their help of the trash removal from the property, which meant finding the means ourselves.
(Here's a few more before shots for good measure!)
After figuring out logistics (trailer rental, supplies from 808 Cleanups, etc...), and getting the word out there, we were able to pull together an amazing group of climbers (11 of us total), new and old, to come together on a Friday early morning to tackle this job together. Only the 3 of us (Nate, Christy and I), have been to the Silo and knew what to mentally prepare for. As for everyone else, it was their first time and was anticipating only picking up a bottle or two because of past experiences. Instead, we were pulling up rotting carpets with weed growing through it, tarps, tents, lawn chairs, coolers, camping stoves and bag after bag of trash! The trash was never ending! It was a HUGE task for such a small group.
(Here's a few of us along with myself and Nate behind the camera getting an early start. Other volunteers showed up shortly after.)
(Nate smiling for the camera with the trailer partially loaded and ready for it's first run to the dump in Wahiawa.)
(Nate, Kris, Jess and I did the first trip to the dump to unload and make room for round 2.)
Four hours later and a trip already to the dump to clear the 4x8 trailer for more trash, we got the job done. With the area cleaned out, we enjoyed the rest of the afternoon with lunch, couple of beers and climbing at the Silo. I cannot thank our volunteers enough for sacrificing their time to help make the Silo a more pleasant place to enjoy and my partner Nate for making this all possible! All in all I thought it was a very enjoyable satisfying day off spent!
(Our second load wasn't as big but I guess that isn't a bad thing.)
Here's more images below that captured our day. I hope you enjoyed the blog and that it might inspire you to join our future cleanups or organize a cleanup yourself! Thank you again to our volunteers that day!