Volunteer cleanup planned for Provo Canyon to remove items from transient camp

Jun 29, 2018, 7:24 PM | Updated: 9:12 pm

PROVO, Utah – From the sound of the river to the scenic views of the mountains, Provo Canyon is a favorite place to recreate in Utah County, especially along the trail.

Over the past year, something else has emerged in the brush. Transient camps.

“Just a few feet off the trail – 20 feet off the trail that is used by thousands every year – were these camps with dirty needles and drug paraphernalia,” said Nathan Ivie, a Utah County commissioner.

Ivie said after Operation Rio Grande began last summer in Salt Lake City, it drove many drug users to Utah County, who set up in the canyon.

Last fall, deputies with the Utah County Sheriff’s Office showed KSL what was happening.

Two weeks ago, county commissioners enacted a new ordinance, which prohibits the homeless camps.

“It gives our Sheriff’s Office some teeth and ability to remove these camps that are clearly not there for recreational use, the long term camps that are promoting the illegal activities,” Ivie said.

County commissioners have organized a volunteer cleanup for Saturday morning, getting the public involved in making sure the canyon remains a safe and enjoyable place for recreation.

“We hope that people will take the opportunity to show up and give some service to the community and help us preserve the vitality of the canyon,” Ivie added.

If you would like to join the Friends of Provo Canyon, arrive at Canyon View Park at 9 a.m. A free breakfast for volunteers will begin at 8 a.m.

Bring work gloves, shovels and rakes. The health department will be there to take care of biohazards and sheriff deputies will be available to provide security and ensure any evidence of criminal activity is preserved.

Volunteers will receive a free t-shirt.

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Volunteer cleanup planned for Provo Canyon to remove items from transient camp