Kootenay Lake Foreshore Clean-up, October 17th 2020

Kootenay Lake Foreshore Clean-up, October 17th 2020

On September 17, 2020 we conducted a fore-shore clean-up of the excessive litter build-up along the lakebed beneath the Prestige Marina in Nelson, BC. This clean-up was organized by Kootenay Lake Sailing Association, West Kootenay Boating Association, Kootenay Pedalwheelers and Friends of Kootenay Lake Stewardship Society.

Jay Blackmore and Bruce Morrison are local recreational divers to the Nelson region. During routine dives, they noticed large amounts of garbage and wreckage along the lakebed in the high traffic shopping and dining district of Nelson. To conduct this underwater clean-up, Bruce and Jay suited up in their diving gear and plunged into the late fall waters. They used mesh bags to hold small pieces of trash, plastic bits and cans. These bags along with larger items such as chairs, shopping carts and tires were hoisted up on custom made grappling hooks by volunteers on the surface.

Volunteers sorted trash from refundable cans, continually filling two small boats with garbage and transporting the boatloads to a designated dumpster in Lakeside Park. Most of the garbage were items that had fallen off the docks in the strong lake winds commonly experienced down at the marina. Some of the items of note were two tricycles, five car tires, two boat windshields, five chairs, numerous articles of clothing, one small boat and numerous cans and lighters.

This clean-up couldn’t have happened without the dedicated work of the volunteers from Kootenay Lake Sailing Association, West Kootenay Boating Association, Kootenay Pedalwheelers and Friends of Kootenay Lake Stewardship Society.

Huge thanks to the organizers and volunteers for making this event possible!

And a massive thanks to:

John Wright with Arcright Welding for donating the custom made grappling hooks,
Mountain Bin for donating the disposal bin,
Columbia Basin Trust for sponsoring this event,
City of Nelson for waiving tipping fees,
BC Ministry of FLRNORD for helping us apply for permitting,
Mike Sagal for capturing awesome footage of the event,
Thors Pizzeria for donating pizza for our volunteers, and
Backroads Brewing for donating some local brews for post-clean-up refreshments!

This event was an incredible showcase of the power of community. We hauled away a lot of garbage and made lasting memories while doing it. That in itself is really, really cool!