Goat Island/Yankton Cleanup 2008

Friday - Saturday, May 16-17, 2008
Yankton, S.D. & Goat Island, Missouri National Recreational River

This was our second year to come help at the Yankton Missouri River Clean-up. And once again, our friends up there set up a special task for us to do the day before the big event.

We set up camp on Goat Island, smack in the middle of the Missouri National Recreation River, the un-channelized stretch below Gavin's Point Dam. The island is somewhat of a no-man's land: Nebraska, South Dakota and the Park Service have been squabbling for years about just who manages this cedar-covered and sand-swept paradise.

Photo by Paul Lepisto

On Friday, we teamed up with folks from the National Park Service, US Army Corps of Engineers and Izaak Walton League to get rid of as many signs of humanity as we could. The island was previously used as a cow pasture. Cattle panels, watering tanks and barbed wire were scattered throughout the brush.

Saturday was the big Yankton Clean-up, and our crews focused on the leftover debris from a car dump that was removed several years before.

Volunteers spread out on Saturday morning for the Yankton Cleanup. Photo by Paul Lepisto.

For us, coming from deep down in the channelized river in Missouri, the special treat of this trip is to explore this freer version of our river, relatively unconfined (although still heavily impacted by the dam just upstream) with a more natural, braided channel. And staying on Goat Island was a huge adventure. Our morel season had ended a few weeks before, but we found ourselves in the thick of it up in South Dakota. Massive mushroom feasts were had!

Trash Tally

10 55 gallon plastic barrels
½ 55 gallon plastic barrel retrofitted as a toilet
1 55 gallon metal drum
1 recliner
¾ of a sofa
332 feet of wooden snow fence
(at least) 300 yards of triple strand barbed wire (every piece on the island!)
47 16X8 foot metal fence sections
19 curved corral fence sections
49 t-posts1 chaise lounge lawn chair
2 tire rims
6 tires
1 8-foot diameter, 3-foot deep stock tank
2 refrigerator doors
5 sheets of roofing tin
2 car batteries
7 grills
12 sheets of misc. plywood

Yankton Cleanup Results

Photo album on Flickr!

Total Volunteers: 166

  • Volunteers signed in: N/A
  • River Relief Crew: 23
  • Boats: N/A
  • River Miles Cleaned: N/A
  • River Stage: N/A
  • Landfill: .5 tons
  • Scrap Metal: 1.5 ton
  • Tires: N/A

Total Trash Tonnage: 2 TONS

Event Sponsors

Cleanup programs like these would not be possible without our generous donors and sponsors.

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