WATCH: Exhausted volunteers are nursing sore muscles in Parksville after an epic clean up effort at a site that’s been used as a dumping ground for decades. Little Mountain is a breathtaking beauty just outside Parksville, so as Skye Ryan reports volunteers dug in and with air support from a donated helicopter cleaned it back up to its natural splendour.
In a scene resembling a rescue Sunday, a helicopter hooked up to giant bags of trash that had been flung from a cliff over decades. All to save the beauty of Parksville’s Little Mountain.
“This goes back decades,” said Coun. Adam Fras with the City of Parksville.
“Some of the community members here say it goes back to the 50’s, 60’s, 70’s,” said Fras.
“People have been dropping stuff over the mountain,” said Bill Rawlins with the Parkville Rotary Club.
“And to have 35 people here today to be sorting these bags coming in, it’s pretty exciting stuff to see happen.”
On the ground, at a road accessible site, teams of volunteers awaited the drops. Sorting and recycling what they could in an extraordinary show of community.
“That was just so exciting to see that come in so fast,” said Rawlins.
“Just in, drop, released and gone,” he said.
“That guy knows how to fly a chopper,” said volunteer Gerald Dupont.
With each one of the 50 heavy loads taking back their Island treasure.
“Look at this,” said volunteer Leanna Taekema.
“It’s like jaw dropping right.”
Everyone from Parksville’s Rotary Club to teenagers at Ballenas Secondary rolled up their sleeves
“This is wonderful to see so many people coming together like this,” said Fras.
“It’s affecting, there’s no animals out there,” said Casey Reumkens with Ballenas Secondary’s Interact Club.
“So maybe if we get it cleaned up animals will start coming back,” she said.
They pulled out everything from old furniture, to computers and even an old car.
All with volunteer labour, even the helicopter pilot donated his time machine and fuel, to make their piece of paradise what they remember.
“There’s no way we could get it off the mountain without the helicopter,” said Rawlins.
“And without this machine here hauling stuff around, impossible for us to move the bags, and all these people.”
They all mad a lasting impact together and are vowing to help keep Little Mountain clean now for generations to come.