Field News Recap – August



Idaho Update:

Our Yellow Crew overcame incredible challenges this session, including a roughly 2000’ elevation gain hike into their first week of work at Phoebe Meadows in the Payette National Forest.  They completed a trail reroute which entailed digging almost a mile of brand-new trail to avoid the sensitive high alpine meadow.  They also got to spend a week near the historic lake Roosevelt where they got to experience the usage of trail pack mules to assist in loading in their gear for the week.  They finished off a turnpike project that the Montana Conservation Corps started but was unable to complete.  Putting the final touches on a project can be some of the most satisfying trail work out there! 

The Orange crew had a variety of work each week being different from the last.  Started off doing trail work with the Beaur of Land Management out of the Twin Falls District doing some thinning of Doug firs that were encroaching on high alpine poplar stands that are common breeding grounds for elk.  They then moved onto doing trail work near the city of rocks national monument on higher elevation trials around Cache Peak.  Once completing trail work, they got to experience what it is like being a forester for the National Forest Service, conducting basic forestry observations of forest health, diversity, and inventory.  Lastly, they finished off the season strong doing rock dams on ephemeral streams in southern Idaho.  Preventing massive erosion and head cuts from forming during flood events in wet meadows of southern Idaho’s rangelands. 

Red Crew overcame some unexpected change in plans from the get go of their season.  After being briefed to hike almost 10 miles into a very remote section of the Frank Church wilderness of no Return (they were going to return!), the project got pulled.  And this crew was exceptionally flexible as most conservation work must be.  They ended up starting the season doing trail work with the Orange crew around Cache Peak.  Then, we got them aligned with multiple weeks of backcountry trail work in the Strawberry wilderness in eastern Oregon.  They spent a lot of time on the skyline trail of the wilderness, where they encountered numerous mountain goats!  They experienced bazaar weather as well, including some 30 degree mornings in the summer.

Blue crew began their season in the Malheur National Forest doing a backlog of trail maintenance needs on multiple different trails.  They even got their chance at pulling out the legendary crosscut saws.  From there, they continued their Oregon trail to the Bonneville dam in the Colombia River Gorge.  Improving the campgrounds and recreational areas of the dam where they see thousands of visitors annually.  Once completed, after having some vehicle issues that were handled so well by the leaders, they headed back to Idaho to finish out their season with the Peyette Ranger District of the Boise National Forest completing work on the grizzly creek trail while battling the hot Idaho summers. 

Click here to read about what our crews in other states are up to!