For many anglers in Southern Ontario, the weekend before trout opener is a chance to prep gear and scout spots. For a group of dedicated volunteers from Trout Unlimited Canada’s Greg Clark Chapter and Credit Valley Conservation, the weekend before trout opener was a chance to clean-up trash around the Credit River, helping to keep the river as pristine as possible for the start of the season.
On April 28th, volunteers gathered at a property in Caledon to conduct the annual clean-up spearheaded by the Greg Clark Chapter. The landowners generously allow anglers to access the Credit through their property, and this event goes a long way in keeping the river open for everyone’s enjoyment.
Volunteers split into groups and worked their way along the river and down the road. Garbage was evident no matter where one looked, with Tim Hortons cups, plastic water bottles, and beer cans being the most frequently encountered items along the road. For those who take time out of their day to help at events such as this, it is difficult to fathom how these items end up in the ditch instead of the landfill.
Shining sun and warming temperatures put smiles on faces, even if those smiles sometimes turned to grimaces while working with a particularly foul piece of trash. Talk turned to fishing, trout opener, conservation, volunteering, and the long winter. Working alongside others passionate about helping the environment is a rewarding experience, and having a fishing chat is the perfect way to top it off.
As always, there were some interesting, and some disturbing, finds along the way. A traffic pylon was pulled out of the river. Three large black bags were found in the ditch and as they fell apart with movement, smaller bags containing dirty diapers spilled onto the ground. One has to wonder about the person who felt the need to dump dirty diapers in a ditch. Perhaps most unsettling, were the five or so full jugs of used motor oil that had been tossed in the ditch in two separate locations. Oil will cause serious damage to a river, or anywhere else for that matter, and needs to be disposed of properly.
In all, 902 lbs of garbage was collected and taken to the landfill. That’s some pretty awesome work by a great group of volunteers. Much appreciation to the Greg Clark Chapter and Credit Valley Conservation (CVC) for organizing this very needed event. It was a fantastic way to help the river, get ready for trout opener, and make some new friends.
If you would like to get involved and help out, both organizations offer some great opportunities.
For a list of volunteers events with CVC, see the events page on their website.
The Greg Clark Chapter is gearing up for some major restoration work at the Upper Credit Conservation Area. Many volunteers will be needed to help complete the work. No experience is necessary, just a desire to work hard, help out, and have some fun. For more information, check out their Facebook page, or attend the AGM on May 13 (see below).