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Colorado Mountain Club
The Colorado Mountain Club (CMC) improves people's lives and our environment through education, conservation, and recreation in Colorado. The CMC was organized in 1912 to unite the energy, interest, and knowledge of the students, explorers, and lovers of the mountains of Colorado; collect and disseminate information regarding the Rocky Mountains on behalf of science, literature, art, and recreation; stimulate public interest in our mountain areas; encourage the preservation of forests, flowers, fauna, and natural scenery; and render readily accessible the alpine attractions of the region.
- The Colorado Mountain Club (CMC) improves people's lives and our environment through education, conservation, and recreation in Colorado. The CMC was organized in 1912 to unite the energy, interest, and knowledge of the students, explorers, and lovers of the mountains of Colorado; collect and disseminate information regarding the Rocky Mountains on behalf of science, literature, art, and recreation; stimulate public interest in our mountain areas; encourage the preservation of forests, flowers, fauna, and natural scenery; and render readily accessible the alpine attractions of the region.
Upcoming event: Wild & Scenic Film Festival on August 22. www.cmc.org/films
The Colorado Mountain Club saw a number of achievements in our 2013 fiscal year.
2013 was an exceptional year for the Youth Education Program (YEP), which served 6,558 students through its school and individual programs. Through active learning adventures taking place at the AMC and throughout the Front Range, YEP uses our Rocky Mountain backyard to teach kids science and recreation. In addition to meeting school science standards, YEP classes encourage students to work as a team with their classmates, and to challenge themselves both mentally and physically. Teachers and students alike appreciate the combination of learning and personal growth offered by YEP programs.
Our Conservation Department logged over 4,000 hours of volunteer work on stewardship projects across Colorado. CMC Conservation assumed leadership roles in two state-wide collaborations, Southern Rockies Conservation Alliance and Outdoor Alliance Colorado. Our Backcountry Snowsports Initiative successfully re-engaged several public lands agency staff. We commented on various agency projects and attended more than a dozen public educational events.
CMC Press had a successful 2013, publishing four new titles-The Best Vail Valley Hikes; The Best Estes Park Hikes; The Colorado Trail Databook, fifth edition; and The Best Rocky Mountain National Park Hikes. In 2014, the press will again publish four new titles-The Best Front Range Hikes for Children, The Best Telluride Hikes, The Best Aspen Hikes, and The Best Front Range Trail Runs.
Young Adult Participation: We are expanding our capacity to serve youth with the launch of our new "Alpine Start" program for young adults. This program will serve both teens and college-age students, providing opportunities for outdoor recreation, skill-building, and service learning through activities designed specifically for these age groups. The Alpine Start program will serve teens and young adults who are interested in exploring Colorado's mountains through rock-climbing, hiking, backpacking, and outdoor adventuring. The goal of the program is to provide youth with opportunities to develop technical and outdoor leadership skills, while meeting other young adults with similar interests. Youth will fulfill service requirements for their high school graduation and college applications. Our long-term goal is to teach youth the leadership skills they need to have healthy lifestyles, and to empower them to support themselves through the challenges they will face, both in the outdoors and into adulthood.
Transportation: We are facing a barrier in serving a larger population through our YEP program, and that barrier is transportation. We are seeking means of providing transportation for those school districts that currently cannot provide their own transportation, as a way to broaden our program's reach.
Diversity Inclusivity: The YEP program currently reaches 33% ethnic minorities, but our program leadership does not yet match the target market that we are serving. We will research strategies and dedicate funding to diversify and develop our program leaders, volunteers, and staff to help us meet our inclusivity goals.
Conservation Program Support: Our conservation program works to preserve the wild places of Colorado, educate the public about threats to our wild places, and strengthen alliances to support human powered recreation and land sustainability. This program requires resources in the field to get the job done.
Technology: We are currently working to integrate our participant, donor, and accounting databases. A stronger technology platform is also needed to meet the demands of program evaluation, and to share program results.
Serving climbers, hikers, skiers, outdoor enthusiasts and the community since 1912, the CMC is the oldest outdoor recreation and conservation organization in Colorado. The CMC reaches a constituency of over 30,000 citizens, located mostly in Colorado, and over 6,000 youth each year, providing a comprehensive and diverse range of programs and activities. The CMC offers a wide range of opportunities for the public to explore and learn about the Southern Rockies, while leading efforts to protect the species, habitats, and wildness of our public lands.
The CMC was instrumental in landmark achievements such as the designation of Rocky Mountain National Park, Dinosaur National Monument, and the passage of the Wilderness Act. The CMC continues this tradition with trail stewardship projects and by working throughout the state with land management agencies, partner organizations, and coalitions to permanently protect our last remaining roadless areas and wildlife corridors, protect and restore the quiet outdoor experience, and safeguard the ecological integrity of Colorado by reducing the impact of recreation on the natural environment.
Today, CMC's key programs are environmental and recreation education for children and adults, conservation of Colorado's wild places, publishing outdoor books and the Trail & Timberline quarterly magazine, operating the American Mountaineering Museum, leading adventure travel trips, and encouraging volunteerism.
Executive Director Statement
The CMC is truly the organization of its kind. We take our mission of education, recreation, and conservation and we implement it in a variety of learning methods that everyone can enjoy. We do this by leading over 3,000 recreational activities, managing a mountaineering museum, publishing dozens of outdoor recreation and conservation books, educating over 6,000 youth, conserving our Colorado landscape through advocacy and stewardship projects, traveling the world with our members to recreate in other countries, and bringing in other like-minded organizations to our building, the American Mountaineering Center. There is not one particular method we use to achieve our mission, but rather many!
Board Chair/President Statement
From the 2012 Annual Report:
What a momentous year for the CMC - our centennial! The year was filled with many celebrations. The highlight for me was the celebration at Rocky Mountain National Park in April: Listening to the wonderful talk by Jerry Kaplan about the CMC's role in the formation of Rocky Mountain National Park; being privileged to accept an award on behalf of the CMC from the Park; having our picture taken by John Fielder against the backdrop of the Park's magnificent peaks; and singing happy birthday to the CMC before blowing out the candles - with lots of help from the children present - on our birthday cake.
CMC members also climbed all the accessible Fourteeners in Colorado on one day in September. The weather was perfect, so we knew the universe was eager to help them on their way! Some members took videos of their climbs, so now we have not only a movie celebrating the day, but also lots of other footage and photographs. This is a wonderful legacy to leave the CMC members of the future. Imagine being at the bicentennial celebration, with one of the events being a screening of that movie.
Now we are looking forward to another 100 years. I'm sure the CMC will continue to have high quality schools and training opportunities, as well as many recreation opportunities. But who knows what else the future will bring? We will have many challenges ahead of us, but with help from all of our members, leaders, teachers, staff, and other supporters, I know we'll be able to meet these challenges.
"We could write a book trying to explain what CMC's program
means to Drew. The biggest challenge (among many) Drew has
is interacting with people. Drew's deafness isolates him from the
hearing world and Drew's autism isolates him from his signing
peers. He delights in climbing because other kids try to help him and thereby become involved in his activity-- in his world. Drew
desperately wants to interact with his peers but doesn't know
how.... I just can't express to you how important that is."
-a note of thanks to the Colorado Mountain Club' Youth
Education Program, from Drew's dad. (CMC has an on-going partnership with the Rocky Mountain Deaf School, whereby students develop self-awareness and leadership through rock climbing and team-building.)
"I helped at a top rope session in Eldorado Canyon for a group of city kids, ages eight through about fourteen. They were enrolled in a weeklong YEP camp -- climbing indoors, climbing outside at Eldo and Maxwell Falls, and wrapping up with a day on St. Mary's glacier. These kids live with their families in motel rooms on Colfax Avenue. Being a part time teacher, I sometimes wonder what percentage of kids in my class are living away from a real home. They dressed and acted like regular city kids in that they were fairly new to the outdoor scene. A few were a bit hyperactive, and despite climbing for two days indoors they were somewhat intimidated by the real rock experience.They loved Eldo. This was a very culturally diverse group of kids who live in tough circumstances every day. I was touched by a few of them who reminded me of my nieces Haley and Kayla. They had similar issues of fear of heights and fear of lowering from the top. But they embraced the challenge. A few words of encouragement and praise really brought out the pride and smiles in them. High fives!
Thanks for asking me to help out on this one. Being a part of getting these kids out climbing for a day really brightened up my week." -- Larry De Saules, CMC volunteer