The UIAA Respect the Mountains series, partnered by KEEN, will take place throughout the summer, with nine events held across eight countries in some of Europe’s most popular and beautiful mountain tourist destinations – from the lush green valleys of North Wales to the alluring, vibrant Black Forest to sunkissed Tenerife and the imposing might of Mount Kazbek. With over 100 million visitors travelling to these areas each year, the environmental impact is considerable and the need to raise awareness about mountain protection greater than ever.
North Wales will host one of the UIAA Respect the Mountains events, with Llanberis providing the setting on Sunday 26 June.
All of the events unite clean-up initiatives, adventure and a chance for volunteers to share their appreciation of mountains. This is a ‘grass roots’ concept welcoming all types of mountain visitors – tourists, local volunteers, sport enthusiasts and businesses to come together and foster their own mountain community. The event programmes are designed for all ages and a wide demographic, with an emphasis on team spirit and a mutual appreciation of mountains.
Throughout the 2016 series, the UIAA and KEEN will promote the ‘7 Ways to Respect the Mountains’. These are: book smart, travel wise, support sustainable practices, be a respectful mountain tourist, leave no trace, Reduce, Reuse, Recycle & Upcycle (RRRU) and spread the word. At each event, one of these rules will form part of the core message.
The programme in Llanberis will start at 10am with participants provided with a full briefing before being divided into groups with the cleaning equipment. The teams will also focus their attention on some obvious (and not so obvious) sites where litter can be collected – roadsides, parking areas, hillsides and wind traps.
After a few hours of rewarding work, participants will then have the possibility to socialise around a lunchtime BBQ provided to all volunteers at Llyn Padarn. In the afternoon the focus switches to enjoying one of the many types of activity the area has to offer. This includes climbing and abseiling, open canoe or Stand Up paddle boarding, a guided trail run (maximum five miles), nature walks and other activity sessions – all facilitated by local providers.
Throughout the day, participants will need a keen eye as the volunteer discovering the most original piece of garbage will be awarded a prize from the KEEN product range. The event finishes at 4pm.
The event is organised in conjunction with RAW adventures and the British Mountaineering Council (BMC).