With the first hitch of the season under my belt I feel confident and amped up for the coming months, both the service to be done and the time around my new home. For the first hitch my crew and I focused our efforts on clearing corridors and removing blowdowns throughout the Kenneth Dubuque State Forest trail system. Conveniently this forest is also where SCA Massachusetts AmeriCorps is based out of. Through hiking and clearing the trails that have surrounded me for the past two months I was able to see just how beautiful and diverse the place where I live is. A calming brook...Read more
At out project site on the Quinobequin Road trail we had the pleasure of making acquaintances with multiple trail users. Many were eager to ask us what we were doing and where we were from. Most of the users lived in the surrounding neighborhood and were very happy to have the section of trail moved to keep it out of the water that covered the path in the wet season. One of the highlights of being on this section of trail was seeing massive snapping turtles mating. It was something most of our crew had never witnessed before. The turtles were 40 lbs each and made quite a scene by the...Read more
Our team started our Conservation Season with a pretty challenging first project. The location: Middlesex Fells Reserve – a large reserve ten miles north of Boston. The project: install stone steps on a 100 foot portion of the Skyline trail. From the beginning, we knew that we wouldn’t be able to lay 100 feet of stones in 5 days. I spoke with our State contact about this and he agreed that the project was ambitious for the period of time. He left it up to our team as to how we wanted to improve the trail with the time we had.
This was pretty daunting for a first time crew-...Read more
When Student Conservation Association (SCA) supporter and 1983 alumnus, Bob Kachinski, was fresh out of college, he went on what he describes as “a real adventure” by boarding a bus in Massachusetts for a three-day, three-night cross-country trip to rural Worland, Wyoming. Once at his destination, Bob was to start a three month SCA internship with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) as an assistant to a regional wildlife biologist.
Recalling his journey and his first impressions upon arrival, 31 years later, Bob says he was struck by how different things were. “…..Confined to...Read more
I am a gripper of the hoist. That means that my specialty skill is rigging, using a griphoist to set up highlines and/or draglines to move heavy objects like boulders that would be otherwise too diﬃcult to move. Our motto is “Slow and boring!” mostly because if we mess up, boulders can go crashing through the forest, wreaking havoc wherever they may!
Specialty skills week has been a whirlwind of learning new skills and honing decision-making processes, making rocky (ha!) puns, and overcoming the challenge of the seemingly never-ending...Read more
Zach Colatch is the SCA Massachusetts AmeriCorps Project Leader. He is responsible for providing technical field support to SCA Massachusetts AmeriCorps members throughout conservation service season. He is originally from Western Pennsylvania, and graduated from West Virginia Wesleyan College with a degree in History. Zach has a long history of community service, starting as an AmeriCorps Vista member in Pennsylvania. He served as a corps member with the Maryland Conservation Corps, and from there he served as a member with the SCA NH corps. Zach moved into a leadership role with SCA as a...Read more
James Sims is currently serving his first year as the SCA Massachusetts Conservation Coordinator. He is responsible for coordinating all aspects of conservation service season, from project set up, to member training, to supporting members in the field. He is originally from Chicago and is an SCA Massachusetts AmeriCorps alum from 07-08. James studied writing and Chinese at Hampshire College, and spent three months traveling in China and Siberia. He is a long time SCA Crew Leader,...Read more
David grew up on the coast of North Carolina, surfing and skateboarding. Between surfing and spending time in the woods in his giant backyard, David really learned to depend on time outdoors for his mental sanity. Growing older only served to reinforce what he already knew as a child, nature is the most important resource for harboring happy and healthy minds and bodies. Through his adult years David has spent countless hours and days in the woods, enjoying hiking, camping, mountain biking and just trying to watch and listen to everything that nature has to teach. David has always been...Read more
Jenny Welsh is originally from Sacramento, California. She recently got her associates in Sociology from Monterey Peninsula College. She plans to transfer into a four-year univesrity and get her Bachelor’s in Visual Merchandising. She enjoys playing soccer, going running, and hiking through Big Sur and along the California coast. She also really enjoys all water sports especially swimming and water polo. During the trail season, she looks...Read more
Tommy is from Lancaster, Pennsylvania. He graduated from the University of Pittsburgh in 2014 with a degree in Biological Sciences. This is his first experience with the SCA and is very excited to spend the next 5 months building trails and working in the conservation community. Tommy loves hiking, animals, and playing soccer. Read more