Granite Gear Grounds Keepers Show Up for Nature Again in 2023

January 31, 2023

Over 36,025 Pounds of Trash Since 2017

Two Harbors, MN — January 31, 2023 — Granite Gear’s Grounds Keeper program kicks off its 7th year of picking up trash from wild places and “leaving it better.” Since the program’s inception in 2017, a sponsored team of dedicated hikers, bikers, and paddlers has cleaned up over 36,025 pounds of trash. 2022 was the Grounds Keepers’ most ambitious year yet with over 11,237 pounds packed out from green spaces in cities, beaches, national parks, and other trail systems. The 7th class of Grounds Keepers includes 10 diverse nature lovers from around the country who have committed to a year of leaving their environment and community better than they found it.

The list of brands supporting this program continues to grow, and this year, the 2023 team is being sponsored by the following: Sawyer, Astral, Katabatic Gear, Kula Cloth, Hikers Brew, Lava Linens, UCO, Hibear, Farm to Summit, Appalachian Gear Company, and Jetboil. Granite Gear is thrilled to have a strong coalition of companies backing this initiative year after year.

Out of hundreds of applicants, the Grounds Keepers were chosen based on their passion for the outdoors, cleanup goals, commitment to DEI initiatives, and outdoor experience. With the collective mission to leave our planet better, the 2023 team includes: Chris “Mischief” Phillips, Alexia “Papercut” Oneill, Erik “Mountain Goat” Barrus, Joshua “Blue” Durum, Mike Kennedy, Andie Kolasinki, Dominick “City Dog” Ruggiero, Summer Michaud-Skog, Sydney “Giggles” Morgan, Cory Maria Dack. Applications for the 2024 team will open up in November.

“When I’m outside, I feel the most at home within my body. I am able to connect with myself, my community, and to nature,” says 2023 Grounds Keeper Summer Michaud-Skaug of Fat Girls Hiking. “I am thrilled to be part of the Grounds Keeper team because I want to inspire others to respect the outdoors and take care of the spaces where we recreate. I love leading group hikes where we can share the responsibility of cleaning up trails, beaches and natural areas.”

Granite Gear and brand partners share stories from the Grounds Keepers often. For more information on the Grounds Keepers program, please email Julie Bacon at jbacon@granitegear.com.

About Granite Gear
For 37 years, Granite Gear has brought cutting-edge products to the outdoor industry. Their award-winning backpacks, adventure travel gear, extensive variety of storage sacks, lifestyle accessories, and canoe gear offer excellence in design and construction. Granite Gear’s desire is for all outdoor enthusiasts and travelers to experience the incredible durability and comfort of their products. Located in Northern Minnesota, just minutes from the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness and the Superior Hiking Trail, they have a rugged and beautiful testing ground for their products. Learn more at granitegear.com and follow along on Instagram.


Julie Bacon