• Cottonwood Canyons Foundation

Who we are, what we do

The mission of the Cottonwood Canyons Foundation is to work to continuously improve the environments of Big and Little Cottonwood Canyons through education and stewardship programs.

The Cottonwood Canyons are a critical and magnificent ecosystem, provide approximately 60% of the drinking water for Salt Lake City, and are a major economic engine for Utah’s ski industry. They are also located within one of the most highly-visited portions of national forest in the nation and receive extraordinarily high numbers of visitors and therefore experience high levels of use and recreational pressure.

We see it as extremely important to educate the public, who utilize this area for recreation and who rely on it daily for their drinking water, on the canyons’ importance and how they can help promote their ecological health. We also aim to provide the community with direct and hands-on ways we can all give back to this environment through volunteering.

It is our belief that if we all better understand the importance of this area, and if we all take part in helping to improve it, the Cottonwood Canyons will continue to be a healthy environment and watershed and a spectacular place to recreate for generations to come. We’re grateful to our partners and community of volunteers for their help in these efforts.

Key Education Messages in Our Programs:

  • Ecology and Natural History of the Cottonwood Canyons
  • Watershed Awareness
  • Public Lands Awareness
  • Leave-No-Trace ways of visiting and enjoying the canyons
  • Restoration story of Cottonwood Canyons

CCF programs are carried out by:

  • 1 year-round full time Executive Director
  • 1 year-round full time Trails Director
  • 1 year-round full time Community Engagement Coordinator
  • 1 year-round full time Education Director
  • 1 year-round full time Botanist
  • 2 year-round PLIC staff
  • 1 summer naturalist – staff
  • 2 winter naturalists – staff
  • 5 summer Trail Crew members – staff
  • Approximately 100 long-term-commitment volunteer naturalist guides (guide weekly through the season or year-round)

2-3 interns per year + 500 short-term volunteers