Participants who helped clean up the Thredbo River.WHAT type of people are prepared to venture down the Thredbo River with their white-water kayaks and portable pack canoes, with little expectation of paddling any real distance because of low river levels?
The answer, absolutely dedicated, hardy souls who love their sport and love their river. This sums up the commitment of seven participants in this year’s Clean-up Australia Day event.
Starting at Thredbo Village participants negotiated boulders, pools and thick riverbank vegetation. These intrepid white-water enthusiasts collected over four cubic metres of rubbish ranging from milk crates, tarpaulins, tree guards, corrugated iron, plastic bags, bottles and even a chair.
The original plan was to clean-up the river as far down as Ngarigo Rest Area, approximately 7km, but after 4.5 km the day had run its course and it was time to leave the river.
Although the low water level prevented any ‘real’ paddling, this actually made it easier to collect rubbish from between rocks and material caught up in stream-side vegetation. In fact the only way this amount of litter was ever going to be collected was from within the river, with the crafts making good pontoons to help carry the rubbish to pre-arranged pick-up points.
“This clean-up activity was a collaboration between NPWS and Snowy Mountains Whitewater,” NPWS Environmental Liaison Officer Dave Woods, said.
“I knew there was material in this part of the river but I had no perception as to how much was there.
“The effort from the guys and their persistence was absolutely fantastic and forges other opportunities to work with this and other groups on similar projects. On behalf of Clean-up Australia and NPWS we would like to thank Snowy Mountains Whitewater for coordinating and undertaking this venture.”