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$1,000 reward offered for information on grease-smeared boulders at popular Moab climbing spot

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Posted at 1:52 PM, Feb 23, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-23 15:54:50-05

MOAB, Utah — The Bureau of Land Management is now offering up to $1,000 for information leading to the identification and conviction of those responsible for greasing the handholds at the Big Bend Bouldering Area.

Last week, the BLM was notified that petroleum-based grease was smeared on the climbing handholds at the popular recreation area north of Moab along the Colorado River in Grand County.

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Big Bend Bouldering Area in Moab, Utah.

“It is up to each of us to help keep public lands safe and clean for future generations,” said BLM Moab Field Manager Nicollee Gaddis-Wyatt in a release. “Our employees are out on public lands every day, cleaning bathrooms, maintaining trails, and engaging with the visitors. Even so, we don’t see everything. When incidents occur, we appreciate the public’s help in reporting information to the BLM’s law enforcement team.”

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Thick mechanical grease was smeared on hand holds at Big Bend Bouldering Area in Moab, Utah.

The Big Bend Bouldering Area is located upstream of the Big Bend Campground along the Colorado River and State Route 128, about 10 miles from Moab. The bouldering area has been popular with climbers for more than 20 years, who benefit from its easy access, density of boulders with problems of varying difficulties, and relatively flat landings.

Anyone with information about this investigation or other incidents on BLM-managed public lands is encouraged to call the tip line at 435-259-2131. Callers may remain anonymous.