PLANET GRANITE BLOG

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*Trip report written by PG Managers Cris Valerio and Eliot Carlsen.*

THE YOSEMITE FACELIFT 2014

For almost a decade now, climbers and Yosemite National Park staff have joined forces for one of the most unique public-service events held worldwide – The Yosemite Facelift

For one week in September, the park provides programming, prime camping spots, and more in exchange for climbers help in picking up trash after the busy tourist season. And it’s been wildly successful!
Facelift 1
Last year alone, 1,600 Yosemite Facelift volunteers collected more than 22,000 pounds of trash and debris!

Free camping, raffles with prizes, beer AND climbing celebrities?

It’s no wonder a couple dozen PG members and employees including PG San Francisco Manager Eliot Carlsen, Setter Mark Heal, Marketing Manager Cris Valerio, and PG’s most understated member, valley crusher Lucho Rivera showed up to participate in the festivities.

Over the course of several days the team set out with different partners to clean up areas that would cause John Muir to roll over in his grave.
Facelift 2
A few memorable highlights:

  • TWO – the number of dirty diapers (!) found in Eliot’s trashbag after a particularly grimy rappel session at the Wawona Tunnel View overlook.
  • 14 lbs : 1 lb – Going to weigh the trash you picked up throughout the day and realizing Eliot picked up 14 pounds while Cris picked up 1…
  • FAME – Eliot finally having his moment of fame as tourists from around the world asked to take pictures of a man picking up trash in a (gasp!) harness.

Facelift 3

  • FIRST ASCENTSFriday night’s packed auditorium to hear both PG member Lucho Rivera talk about the many first ascents he’s put up throughout Yosemite as well as former PG employee and current Big Wall superstar David Allfrey give context behind his El Cap speed ascents.
  •  PRIZES – Winning daily raffle prizes!
  • CLIMBING – And…. getting the opportunity to do some awesome rock climbing throughout the event!

Facelift4


*Want to join in the fun?

Learn more about the Yosemite Climbing Association and their annual Facelift event HERE – http://www.yosemiteclimbing.org/

Or join them on Facebook.


More Pics from the trip:


IMG_3416Written by Eliot, Manager of PG San Francisco – A native of Sonoma, Eliot’s dad introduced him to camping, backpacking and mountaineering at an early age. After taking a rock-climbing course in Leavenworth, Washington, he immediately became hooked. While studying the last few years at UC San Diego, Eliot made the granite laden foothills of Mt. Woodson a home away from home. He’s always looking for enthusiastic climbers to share a rope or crash pad.