Thursday, August 2, 2012

Summit Registers: How they can offer comfort in a time of need.

We received this touching email to our office from Mountain Rescue Aspen team regarding a fallen climber from the North Face of North Maroon Peak on 7/24.  Summit registers, which can be seen as a controversial topic regarding Leave No Trace rules, can do more than offer a sense of accomplishment-it can comfort a family. The Colorado Mountain Club has been the keepers of Colorado summit registers since 1912.

"I think this is an incredible testament to the power of "the web" and social media. I will try to make it as short as I can but I believe each "Portal" through which the information flowed need to be acknowledged.

The story, as the register is concerned, began on Monday 7/23 late in the afternoon. When at my request, one of our team members "posted" a "Missing Climber" report on the site a website. The subject's had posted via mobile transmission his having reached the summit of South Maroon "Now for part 2!"

His post had been interpreted by some as a reference to the tough descent of S. Maroon but to many as "He's going for the traverse".

While our team was in the field attempting to eliminate the eastern aspects of the two bells as search areas, the internet was at work.

Terry M., a regular on the website had remembered a "Trip Report" from N. Maroon that had been posted on 7/21, two days after the last communications from the climber. Not a normal trip report as this one contained video content and a photo of the summit registry log; presumably as a keepsake of the group having been there. Terry, went back and looked at the photo, noticed that the name of the missing climber was on this register! He sent it to some of the 
subjects co-workers who are also using social media to get the word out. The co-workers not only confirmed the handwriting but noticed his FDNY (fire dept New York) badge number in the photo and confirmed it to Terry. By this time the climber had been found. It had been determined that the subject had taken a fatal fall while descending N. Maroon, his family had been notified and his body recovered. There was more on the ledger that could not be seen in the photo and family and friends wanted (I guess needed) to know what he last ones were.

So Terry got the ball rolling. Posted a "Request from the FDNY in memory of Lenny Joyner"

While the 14ers community was throwing around ideas and figuring out "Who" was going to N. Maroon next to get a high quality photo of the register, the request for a "High Quality Photo" was coming through official channels.

I cannot take credit for originating the idea to take the original page, but do take responsibility for executing it.

So off to the summit I went with another member of the team. After removing the page I had planned to take a photo, but felt compelled to make the short video, offering our condolences and to inform the FDNY and his family that the summit ledger was in our custody and we were getting it back to them."

Main StreetGallery in Carbondale Colorado worked overnight in the middle of an art show to frame the piece for us and refused to accept any money for the frame job.

Attached you will find a scanned copy for your summit record keeping. Your registry made it possible for a family to feel the joy of the climber's accomplishment of reach the summit before his fatal fall on the north face."

Respectfully submitted by Mountain Rescue Aspen

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Xcel Energy Awards $15,000 Grant to Colorado Mountain Club

Contacts:              Sarah Gorecki

Rachel Scott
Xcel Energy Awards Grant to Colorado Mountain Club’s Conservation & Youth Education Efforts
Grants Connect Xcel Energy to Colorado Communities

GOLDEN, Colo—On July 20, the Colorado Mountain Club (CMC) received a $15,000 grant from Xcel Energy.

The grant was made through the Environmental focus area for Xcel Energy’s corporate giving, part of the company’s effort to support nonprofit agencies providing services in towns and cities served by Xcel Energy.

“The success of our company is directly related to the health of our communities,” said Monique Lovato, Xcel Energy’s director of Corporate Giving. “While Xcel Energy’s employees invest in our local communities with charitable contributions and volunteer time, these grants are another way Xcel Energy shows our commitment to improving the quality of life in the towns and cities we serve.”

Through its focus area grants, Xcel Energy supports nonprofit 501c(3) organizations that improve science, technology, engineering, economics, and math education; improve and enhance the natural environment; help individuals achieve economic self-sufficiency; and that provide access to arts and culture. In 2011, the company contributed $3.9 million in focus area grants to organizations across its eight-state service territory, which includes Colorado.

Funds will be used to support environmental and academic education through the CMC's Youth Education Program, as well as our slate of land stewardship projects in 2012.

“Xcel Energy is one of our most important corporate partners for getting kids outside and getting boots-on-the-ground stewardship accomplished, said CMC Development Director Sarah Gorecki. “Last year, our grant from Xcel Energy helped us to begin combining the two programs, by incorporating youth into our stewardship projects. We developed specific curricula to teach youth about giving back to the places they recreate in. We’re excited to continue to offer family-friendly and youth stewardship projects again this year. The grant also provides critical funding for our Youth Education Program and statewide stewardship projects.”

The CMC’s Youth Education Program provides opportunities for youth to learn about and explore the outdoors through hands-on activities in the classroom, at the American Mountaineering Center, or in local open space parks while CMC Conservation focuses on working with land management agencies, partner organizations, elected officials, and coalitions to permanently protect our last remaining roadless areas and the ecological integrity of our region.

About the Colorado Mountain Club
The Colorado Mountain Club (CMC) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to adventure, education and preservation in Colorado. Established in 1912 by mountaineering enthusiasts, CMC now has more than 7,000 members statewide who explore and protect the wild areas of Colorado. CMC offers hundreds of events and classes for all ages and abilities. Throughout its history, the club has been instrumental in landmark achievements such as the designation of Rocky Mountain National Park, Dinosaur National Monument, and the passage of the Wilderness Act. To become a member, visit

About Xcel Energy
Xcel Energy (NYSE: XEL) is a major U.S. electricity and natural gas company with regulated operations in eight Western and Midwestern states. Xcel Energy provides a comprehensive portfolio of energy-related products and services to 3.4 million electricity customers and 1.9 million natural gas customers through its regulated operating companies. Company headquarters are located in Minneapolis. More information is available at