An Osprey Tradition: Keeping Colorado Beautiful

For everyone at Osprey, our commitment to the environment doesn’t end with the support of various nonprofit partners who dedicate themselves to conservation, sustainability, environmental awareness and continuous efforts to preserve the great outdoors.

This commitment is something that we also work to embody as a group. Each year, Osprey Packs has a tradition of acting on this commitment with our “Adopt-A-Highway” program with CDOT. Come fall, when the leaves in Southwest Colorado begin to change and the warmer temperatures begin to drop, we offer the opportunity to all Osprey employees to join our 3 hour annual cleanup along Highway 145. This particular stretch of road takes you from the Osprey HQ in Cortez, CO to Dolores, CO — which is home to many Osprey employees — and up to our beloved winter playground of Telluride, CO. As Osprey employees, participation in this group effort stems not only from our a commitment to doing our part to take care of Mother Nature, but also because of the sentimental value attached to this annual tradition. This year we had a great turnout with 14 Osprey employees participating! Osprey’s Diane Wren, passionate advocate for the environment (be sure to read her op-ed on Public Lands), co-owner of Osprey Packs and wife of our own Mike Pfotenhauer explains why this program is important to her on a personal level and talks about the 2015 Hwy Cleanup.

How many years has Osprey Packs been doing the Hwy clean-up?

DW: Osprey Packs has been a part of the CDOT “Adopt A Highway” program for almost 15 consecutive years. We adopted a section of highway right outside the small town of Dolores which was home to the original Osprey factory and now home to many of our employees.

What motivated Osprey Packs to take on this community service?

DW: I don’t really remember, but it is a stretch of road we all pass en route to the mountains that needed clean-up support. The mountains are part of our outdoor natural community and so is the road!

How long have you been participating in the Hwy clean-up and why is it so special to you?

DW: For me there is something satisfying about tidying up almost anything!  It’s fun to be outside in the beautiful autumn weather with your co-workers (teammates) ambling along looking for interesting and not-so-interesting trash while cleaning up our roads and forests. It really is another form of hiking!

What are some interesting items you have found during the clean-up?

DW: Today Michael H. found a fishing rod, also found were boxers, panties and lots of alcohol bottles! Susan found a box of unused ear plugs.  Last year I found an old tape recorder with a tape jammed in it…too bad we couldn’t get it out so we could listen to it. The usual items are beer bottles/cans and of course skoal.