IVINS — Amid the soaring canyon walls and rolling slick-rock domes of Snow Canyon State Park, an expanding tradition of using glowsticks through the caves and lava tubes are ruining the experience of many park visitors because of garbage and debris left behind.
Adding to the impact, the chemical-filled tubes are often cracked open so the glowing fluid can be flung upon the walls and floor of the cave.
The glowsticks, glass shards from the inner tubes containing the chemicals and the boxes they’re sold in are frequently left behind, covering the cavern floors with debris.
As a result, visitor experience is diminished, complaints are on the rise, habitat is degraded and park staff struggle to keep up with the litter.
Volunteers representing Friends of Snow Canyon spent several hours removing glowsticks and other trash from the park’s lava tubes recently.
“We are lucky to have the assistance of such a willing group,” Park Manager Kristen Comella said. “Their dedication to improving the recreation experience of other visitors is invaluable; however, more help is needed.”
Park staff are asking the public for assistance:
- Let friends and family know to leave glowsticks at home, flashlights are a much better alternative
- Share the message to tread lightly and leave natural areas how you find them
- Volunteer with your family or organized group to help clean up the tubes
“Snow Canyon hosts more than 340,000 visitors annually from across Utah, the country and world,” Cornella said. “All users should strive to reduce impacts on the environment as well as the experiences of other visitors. Snow Canyon should be amazing not only on the surface but in it’s remarkable underground world as well.”
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