We all love heading out to open land for races, to go camping, or to see how brave we are behind the wheel. Unfortunately, a good number of trashy people, as well as a few fellow outdoor enthusiasts, do not practice the "pack out what you pack in" rule of the great outdoors. Four years ago, a few guys lead by Adam Filbin decided to take cleaning our deserts into their own hands by starting Clean Dezert.
Clean-Dezert.org is a body of concerned off-road enthusiasts that are committed to educating the younger generation about maintaining and improving our desert resources, keeping lands open, and improving the image of the off-road culture. With growing concerns over illegal dumping in desert OHV areas, the off-road community, with Clean Dezert's help, is taking steps towards reversing the reputation of desert-goers as the ones responsible for these actions. By rallying fellow off-roaders together, we can make a positive contribution to the communities surrounding OHV areas.
We spent some time with Adam to get his thoughts on the fourth annual event:
"Well, that was a weekend for the books. Clean-Dezert decided that we would get a jump-start on the weekend this year and head to Barstow on Thursday morning. We stopped off in Victorville to fill up on food for the BBQ and water for the volunteers. After spending over an hour filling two shopping carts and a large flat bed pushcart, we were off to Barstow. Figuring we could spend Thursday setting up and organizing, we were pleasantly surprised that a couple people were already out there and were excited for the weekend to come.
"The Bureau of Land Management and the City of Barstow donated two giant scrap metal bins and six oversized dumpsters that were set up and ready to be filled. By 9 a.m. Saturday, there were already 425 people signed up, confirming [that the 2010] event would be huge. With people trickling in all day long, the final tally for participants was [about] 475 people. By the end of the weekend, [more than] 10 dumpsters were filled with trash, including [almost] 400 tires.
"Concluding the event was one of the largest raffles we have seen in the desert. This year, we had [more than] $8,000 in prizes, which included the grand prize of a full-floating rear axle housing donated by Camburg Engineering. Other sponsors included Richer Racing, DMZ Fabrication, PCI Race Radios, Black Knight LED Lighting, Off-Road Expo, OFF-ROAD magazine, Dezert-Rangers, Race-Dezert, AEM Intakes, Poly Performance, Radflo Shocks, King Shocks, Fox Racing Shox, Ironclad Gloves, West Coast Jewelry, BTF Fabrication, 4130 Clothing, Weddle Industries, and Parkhouse Tire.
"Thanks go out to all the sponsors, volunteers, and participants of the 2010 Barstow clean-up. Everyone did a great job, and we hope to see even more (people, not trash) out there next year."