Follow Me Live Chat Transcript July 27, 2012

Chat schedule:

  • >

    Joe Thurston

     Stacey!

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    good morning!

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    you must be winded!

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    Living 5 minutes away from the office by bike is pretty great

     :)

  • >

    Joe Thurston

     Wow!

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    you have a bike up there??

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    No wolverines… or moose… or bears, unfortunately

     ;)

  • >

    Joe Thurston

     heheh

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    Yep, KEFJ is super supportive of alternative transportation, so they have
    loaner bikes for seasonals

  • >

    Deb Keller

    Maybe you could catch a ride on one of those mosquitoes!

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    Haha if only

     :)

    They’re definitely big enough…

  • >

    Deb Keller

    That’s what was covering your head gear in the photo in your latest post,
     right?

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    All those little black dots in front of the glacial outwash plain view?
     Yep

  • >

    Deb Keller

    I’ve got to know — did the otter make it to his “doctor appointment”
     OK

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    Haha he did

     :)

    We dropped him off with a kayak tour group and they took him safely to
     shore.

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    No word on the autopsy yet though

  • 11:22 AM
  • >

    Kevin Hamilton

    As others have noted, you write very well, and your pictures are great.
    Where does that come from and do you ever stand on level ground?

  • 11:23 AM
  • >

    Joe Thurston

    hmm. wondering if the technical difficulties are back…

  • >

    Deb Keller

    I get the impression you have some real temperature swings there. What’s
    a typical day temp vs night temp?

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    Sorry still here! Thanks Kevin! Living in a place like this definitely
    helps… there’s a lot to write about, especially in such a dynamic landscape
    like Alaska’s. I feel like I’m being constantly challenged to think about
    why we’re doing what we’re doing, and what our place in the grand

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    picture of the landscape is

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    Deb, typical daytime temp is anywhere from 40 to 75—today’s gonna be
    a scorcher, def above 70

     :)

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    night is arond 45?

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    Sorry, not sure what you mean by level ground, Kevin?

     :)

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    he means, i think, are you ever not clinging to the side of a mountain?

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    Haha. I guess it seems like it

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    It’s so easy to go alpine here because we’re so far north

  • >

    Patty Holland

    Stacey - are you keeping track of how many invasives you’re removing?

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    I went hiking with a friend yesterday, we ended up at around 1000 ft and
    he said that the rainforest looked more like 5000 in WA

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    Yep, we track pretty much every plant we pull by GPS

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    We have Trimble units that get down to sub-meter accuracy

  • >

    Joe Thurston

     whoa

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    And it’s pretty easy to estimate area and the number of plants you’ve
    pulled when you plug in the numbers

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    what’s the nastiest invasive you deal with?

  • >

    Kevin Hamilton

    Every photo I see, you’re way up on a slope

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    We have a few really nasty ones, but fortunately they’re pretty small
    in scope

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    bird vetch, and sheep sorrel, maybe

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    just can’t stay away from the mountains

     :)

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    so, no moose, bears, wolverines, or jaguars…

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    Not so far…

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    Lots of marmots though

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    what kind of wildlife have you encountered?

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    i mean, in addition to those otters.

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe


     :(

    poor otter. We have seen a wolverine, which was super exciting, and the
    occasional black bear

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    and run into a couple of grizzlies out on the outwash plain where exit
    glacier melts out

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    but that’s usually seeing the back ends of them turning tail and running
     :_)

  • >

    Evan Escamilla

    What made you decide to leave your home in Hawaii for an SCA internship
    in Alaska?

  • >

    Joe Thurston

     wooooooow!

  • >

    Dominick Harris

    Glad you are having an awesome time, I used to live up there, such a beautiful
     place!

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    I just graduated from school in CA and wasn’t sure what I wanted to do
    yet, wanted to get more field experience, so I applied through SCA! Def
    hoping to go back home and work in HI though

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    Thanks Dominick, so true! Where in AK did you live?

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    I had a lot of friends at school who were from Alaska too, and I saw their
    pictures from home online and have been wanting to come out here forever

     :)

  • >

    Me

    NOTE: We will have Nora on in a minute as well, feel free to ask questions
    to either, just prefix it with @Stacey or @Nora. Thanks!

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    But everyone probably remembers seeing Balto, or reading Julie and the
    Wolves, and falling in love with the idea of living in the frozen North…

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    @Stacey It is a lovely idea! But so I’m dying to know more about what
    kind of lodging they have for you out there.

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    @Stacey What’s your housing like?

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    Joe, I live in an apartment in town with two other SCAs at KEFJ. But pretty
    much everyone in my building works for the park, so it’s been really fun

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    We get together and have family dinners, or go for hikes, or just hang
     out

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    @stacey Sounds so fun!

  • >

    Lillian Falese (Bloch)

    Have you been able to do a lot of traveling around Alaska?

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    Not yet, just to Anchorage for EPMT training at the beginning of the season

  • >

    Lillian Falese (Bloch)

    Well that’s not too shabby!

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    Definitely not!

     :)

    But hoping to get out to Cordova and Kodiak where friends from school
     are!

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    Any places you’d recommend?

  • >

    Dominick Harris

    I lived in Anchorage, how long are there for?

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    @Nora Where are you joining us from today?

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    As cities go, Anchorage is pretty prime… surrounded by mountains

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    I’m here in Seward untii the end of August

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    @stacey What elevation are you living at?

  • >

    Nora Kaufmann

    Hey there everybody! Nora here, I am a crew leader blogging for the SCA
    about my time leading high school crews this summer. I just got started
    with my second high school crew in Big Sur, CA after finishing up with
    my crew in Wind Cave National Park, South Dakota. Feel free to ask me any
     questions!

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    @Nora Good morning!!!

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    Thanks for the intro!!!

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    I’m at sea level right now; we’ve got an excellent view of Resurrection
    Bay and the mountains beyond from the apartments

  • >

    Nora Kaufmann

    Right now I’m coming at you from the River Inn at Big Sur while my kids
    are hard at work about a half hour down the road!

     :)

  • >

    Caroline Hankour

    @Nora hope the trip is off to a great start, kids adjusting?

  • >

    Deb Keller

    @Nora I’m curious about the bison — the crew journal you posted mentioned
    an aroma…?

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    @stacey That’s awesome! Your housing comes with friends AND a view!

  • >

    Deb Keller

    that would be an aroma to the bison (not the crew, although that could
    be true too…

  • >

    Nora Kaufmann

    Caroline, The kids are doing great! I think they’re really starting to
    get the hang of things down here and so far they’ve been having a great
     time!

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    Yep

     :)

    But we regularly get up to 3000 or so on the Icefield trail

  • >

    Nora Kaufmann

    Deb, Oh yes, the Bison leave all kinds of great presents for us everywhere

  • >

    Julia Jandrisits

    @Nora What project will you be working on at Big Sur?

  • >

    Nora Kaufmann

    But I think the smell that was mentioned in the journal cannot be attributed
    to the Bison…

  • >

    Deb Keller

    @Nora Haha, OK we don’t need to go there then…

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    @Stacey That’s so cool.

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    Nora, I love your posts; being on hitch with a crew sounds like a blast!
    Do the kids have to give up cell phones, internet, etc. when they’re out
    working with you?

  • >

    Nora Kaufmann

    Julia, the project that we are working on here in Big Sur is AWESOME.
    They had some big fires a few years ago so we are fixing some slides caused
    by the fires and bringing an old ADA trail back up to meet standards

  • >

    Caroline Hankour

    @Nora sounds awesome! How many hours a day have you guys been working?

  • >

    Nora Kaufmann

    Some of it is a bit tedious at times, but then I turn around and realize
    that my office on the side of a cliff with a bright blue ocean in the background
    and a waterfall that drops straight onto the beach, and all is well again

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    Holy smokes!

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    @Nora I hope you have some pictures of THAT to share with us!

  • >

    Julia Jandrisits

     amazing

  • >

    Nora Kaufmann

    Stacey, yes, the students hand over their phones and iPods and such on
    that first day. We find that it helps build that intentional community
    that the high school crews really thrive on. It brings the students away
    from their “real lives” and helps them focus on our community

  • 11:49 AM
  • >

    Deb Keller

    Nora, is the transition to unplugged a tough one?

  • >

    Nora Kaufmann

    Caroline, the students have been putting in 8 hours of work a day, which
    is really impressive! They have been doing a really great job at the worksite,
    they are really starting to get the hang of trail work, but I think they
    are really looking forward to our day off on Sunday

  • 11:50 AM
  • >

    Caroline Hankour

    @Nora sounds like you’re breaking them in! what do you get to do on the
    day off?

  • >

    Nora Kaufmann

    Sometimes it can be a little tough. Usually our worksites are in areas
    that wouldn’t get cell service anyhow, and there is no place to plug in
    an iPod, so the technological crutch would be short lived

  • >

    Patty Holland

    @Nora, where are all of your members from?

  • >

    Caroline Hankour

    oh, and what would be in an ideal care package?

     ;)

  • >

    Nora Kaufmann

    Caroline, yes, I think they are starting to get used to the idea of an
    8 hour work day! There is quite a bit of poison oak in the area, so we’re
    doing our best to mitigate that problem!

  • 11:53 AM
  • >

    Nora Kaufmann

    Patty, the three girls on my crew are from California- Palo Alto, Oakland,
    and Capitola, and the boys are all from the East Coast- Massachusetts,
    New York, and North Carolina

  • 11:54 AM
  • >

    Patty Holland

    Wow - a bi-coastal crew! Very nice!

  • >

    Nora Kaufmann

    Oh, anything you think Nadir might miss from home; We try to do a pretty
    comprehensive job with our food shopping, but chocolate chip cookies seem
    to be popular…!!

  • >

    Nora Kaufmann

    sending a compact card game or some magazines can be fun as well

  • >

    Deb Keller

    How often do you get mail?

  • >

    Nora Kaufmann

    We try to check mail every afternoon… so that the cookies don’t go stale!

  • >

    Mike Maher

    @Nora, I’m wishing I were there. I’ve camped at the Big Sur Campground,
    eaten at the Big Sue River Inn and lived in Monterey for a year. One of
    my favorite places in the world.

  • >

    Caroline Hankour

    @Nora sounds good! thanks for everything!

  • >

    Nora Kaufmann

    It is a beautiful area, that’s for sure! I’m at the Big Sur River Inn
    right now!

  • >

    Deb Keller

    What are your plans for your crew’s day off?

  • >

    Nora Kaufmann

    Well one of our students volunteers at the Monterey Aquarium and can get
    us in for free, so that is definitely in the plans for one of our days
     off

  • >

    Nora Kaufmann

    She even says she can get us “behind the scenes” whatever that means…!!
    Hopefully we don’t get eaten by sharks.

  • >

    Patty Holland

    I was there this spring. It’s fantastic…and the otter exhibit is so
    much fun!

  • >

    Patty Holland

    We also have an SCA Alumnus that works there.

  • >

    Nora Kaufmann

    I think we will wait until next Sunday to do that trip; this Sunday we
    might take a trip to a local swimming hole and then see what the area has
    to offer in terms of day hikes!

  • >

    Nora Kaufmann

    Yes, I think the whole crew is pretty excited about the Monterey aquarium,
    but I think they’re even more excited to sleep in…

  • >

    Stacey Torigoe

    Gotta get to snow shovelin’, great talking to you and have an awesome
    time with your crew, Nora!

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    @Stacey Thanks so much for joining us!!!

  • >

    Deb Keller

    Great talking to you Stacey!

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    have a great day! stay away from those wolverines!

  • >

    Nora Kaufmann

    Thanks Stacey!

  • >

    Caroline Hankour

    @Nora what is the camp site like?

  • >

    Deb Keller

    Nora how early does your crew normally have to get up and get going?

  • >

    Nora Kaufmann

    The campsite is really nice- its in a grove of Redwoods an since they
    are doing construction on one side of the campground, there is no one behind
     us

  • 12:04 PM
  • >

    Nora Kaufmann

    I;ve never been camped in such a public place before so that takes some
    getting used to (last night someone decided to start singing the mamas
    and the papas at the top of their lungs at midnight), but its a really
    beautiful spot and we’ve got a creek right behind us

  • >

    Deb Keller

    Were they singing “California Dreaming?”

  • 12:05 PM
  • >

    Elena Marroquin

    Hello everyone! My name is Elena and I just completed a 5 1/2 week community
    crew in Houston as a student apprentice.

  • >

    Me

    @Nora is the waterfall at Julia Pfeiffer running or has it been too dry?

  • >

    Nora Kaufmann

    We start work at 7- starting with a stretch circle and game to get things
    going, and we are usually on the trail by about 7:45 after factoring in
    our drive.

  • >

    Joe Thurston

     Alright!

  • >

    Patty Holland

    Welcome @Elena!

  • >

    Andy Janes

    Hello Elena!

  • >

    Joe Thurston

     Yes!

  • >

    Nora Kaufmann

    Deb, YES! They were! And they were actually really good!

  • >

    Nora Kaufmann

    If I wasn’t trying to sleep it would have been quite nice!

  • >

    Elena Marroquin

    Thanks Patty! Hi Andy!

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    please address questions for Elena with @Elena. Thanks everyone!

  • >

    Nora Kaufmann

    Yes, the waterfall is running; its right in view from our work site and
    it’s pretty awesome!

  • >

    Nora Kaufmann

    unfortunately there is no way to get down there, but we definitely enjoy
    the view

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    @Elena So what kind of work were you up to with your community crew?

  • >

    Me

    Can you kayak onto the beach or is it off-limits?

  • >

    Patty Holland

    @Elena - Those benches your team constructed are fabulous. How long did
    it take your team to put them together and set them up?

  • >

    Jamie Scott

    Elena! So glad you participated this year!

  • >

    Liz V

    Hey Nora

     :)

  • >

    Nora Kaufmann

    Hi Liz!! How are you?!

  • >

    Liz V

    Great! So glad to hear of your adventures on Follow Me!

  • >

    Nora Kaufmann

    I’m not sure if you can kayak to the beach or not; I think the close place
    to put in is pretty far away…

  • >

    Andy Janes

    @Elena - What was the best way you found to combat the Houston heat?

  • >

    Nora Kaufmann

    Haha, the stories pretty much wrote themselves, as is usually the case
    on high school crews

     :)

  • 12:11 PM
  • >

    Elena Marroquin

    My community crew was able to work on building trails, benches, trashcan
    holders, compost bends.

  • 12:12 PM
  • >

    Elena Marroquin

    At one point we tried to put in water bars into a trail in Memorial but
    the rain did not make it a easy task.

  • >

    Elena Marroquin

    Although we were able to learn and see how water travels on a path and
    what improvements could be done for next time.

  • >

    Deb Keller

    @Elena, your before & after trail pix are dramatic. Did the crew members
    really think they could do it when they first saw the trail site? I could
    see where they might think it was pretty impossible…

  • >

    Elena Marroquin

    The benches actually only took our crew 2 days to build and only half
    a day to put in!

  • >

    Deb Keller

    That’s pretty amazing!

  • >

    Elena Marroquin

    The crew had a wonderful dynamic and were constantly working at a steady
    past, which is how we were able to finish so quickly.

  • >

    Deb Keller

    So your crew really bonded with each other?

  • >

    Jamie Scott

    @Elena, how was your experience different coming in as a crew leader apprentice
    versus a member from previous years?

  • >

    Elena Marroquin

    The best way I could combat the heat was by wearing a bandana over my
    neck and forehead and wetting it whenever it got really hot. Plus wearing
    a long sleeve shirt and drinking A LOT of water.

  • 12:18 PM
  • >

    Elena Marroquin

    For a lot of our crew members it was the first time they ever did a hands
    on project like this, so I don’t think they knew how much work they could
    all do together as a team if they put their mind to it. It was wonderful
    to see their reaction at the end of every day because with hard work and

  • >

    Elena Marroquin

    good conversations you don’t see how much work you’re doing at the time
    and how fast time flies

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    @Elena Wow. That’s so cool.

  • >

    Elena Marroquin

    But I will say this, once they completed this project which was their
    first they were excited for the rest!

  • 12:22 PM
  • >

    Garrett Allen

    does the crew have any customs or secret handshakes, trail songs or chants
     etc?

  • 12:23 PM
  • >

    Elena Marroquin

    I can say that as a apprentice I see things differently now then I did
    as a member. When I was first told I had to go to training I thought I
    was going to know everything, even though I hadn’t done SCA in three years.
    But I soon realized that the reason we are sent to training even if you
    were a

  • 12:25 PM
  • >

    Elena Marroquin

    previous member is to be able to see the program with different eyes.
    I more importantly learned how to teach what I know to others.

  • >

    Elena Marroquin

    I also soon realized that I had the lives of 11 students and how important
    their safely is.

  • >

    Patty Holland

    That sounds like such an amazing experience.

  • >

    Elena Marroquin

    Looking back at it now I can see why certain rules are done and enforced,
    that i might have not understood as a student a couple of years a go.

  • >

    Deb Keller

    Did you feel that the training was good preparation for leading your crew?

  • >

    Jamie Scott

    @Elena, rock on! You did great and we look forward seeing you come back
    as a leader.

  • 12:29 PM
  • >

    Nora Kaufmann

    Bye everyone, thank for the questions, I hope you had an awesome time
    on your crew, Elena!

  • >

    Elena Marroquin

    My crew was pretty funny so they made up handshakes, told jokes, sang
    songs, and played trail games. One trail game that we played was when you
    say a name of a movie and then you have to name another movie that begins
    with the last letter of the movie you just said.

  • >

    Jamie Scott

    Thanks Nora!

  • >

    Deb Keller

    Bye Nora Thanks for chatting with us

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    Bye Nora!

  • >

    Elena Marroquin

    Thanks Nora!

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    Thank you!

  • 12:32 PM
  • >

    Deb Keller

    @Elena that movie games sounds like a good one for car road trips!

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    @elena Sounds like a fun game.

  • >

    Elena Marroquin

    I honestly feel that without of the training a lot of things could have
    gone wrong this summer. If we as leaders don’t know the basics and more
    I feel that we can’t be good leaders for our students. So I am very happy
    with the training because I took a lot from it and made some awesome friends!

  • 12:34 PM
  • >

    Elena Marroquin

    Thank you Jamie! I look forward to coming back in the future!

  • 12:35 PM
  • >

    Joe Thurston

    @Elena How many years have you worked with SCA, and what was the temperature
    on the hottest day you worked on this year?

  • 12:37 PM
  • >

    Elena Marroquin

    I worked with SCA in the summer of 08 and 09 and in 09 I did a small internship
    at the Houston office to see what all goes into preparing for a summer
     crew.

  • >

    Elena Marroquin

    So this would be my third year with SCA.

  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

    Hello everybody! Been watching the interesting questions yall have here.
    I’ve just been looking for non-copyrighted music to put on my vid, which
    will go on my next blog. But ask away for any questions! I’m at Grand Teton
     NP.

  • >

    Elena Marroquin

    I believe the hottest it got this year was 109 degrees!

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    @Elena Wow!!!!!

  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

    once you have a question in mind, please address me with @Carlos for any
    questions.

     ;)

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    @Carlos Welcome!

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    Thanks for joining us!

  • >

    Elena Marroquin

    Welcome Carlos!

  • >

    Patty Holland

    Welcome @Carlos!

  • >

    Deb Keller

    @Carlos I love the marmot photo! How did you get that with it’s crazy
     expression?

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    @Carlos I’ve been dying to know about your photos too!

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    Have you taken some photography classes?

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    You’re like a pro with that camera.

  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

    Thanks! ha, yeah. I’ve been hearing people like that one. I actually got
    it in one of my first hikes around the Jenny Lake area over here. They
    were just running around.

  • 12:42 PM
  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

    No, I was actually thinking of taking digital photography, but I’ve heard
    that they teach mainly on photoshop. Thanks, I do enjoy taking pictures.

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    @Elena That’s awesome that you’ve stuck with SCA for so many years. Was
    illuminating to see the office side of SCA work after working in the field?

  • >

    Deb Keller

    @Carlos have you met any interesting volunteers or visitors at the park?

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    @Carlos Glad you enjoy taking the photos. Keep it up!

  • >

    Kevin Hamilton

    @Carlos: assuming you flew into Jackson, what went through your mind when
    you soared past those mountain peaks?

  • >

    Elena Marroquin

    It really was! As a student coming into the program you only see the summer
    crew but you never get to see all of the work that happens before and after,
    as well as all the hard work the organization does to stay afloat!

  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

    @Deb. Yes! I’ve had some good conversations with some of them. they tell
    me their experiences with the parks, they motivate me. Visitors are just
    great, they’re from all over. Sometimes I catch some that speak spanish,
    so I get a chance to talking to them in our language.

  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

    @ Kevin. It was soo amazing. I’m from Texas, flat state, yellowish. But
    here, its so beautiful. I literally spent like 8 hours walking around,
    driving around taking tons of pictures!

  • 12:47 PM
  • >

    Elena Marroquin

    Thank you everyone for your awesome questions. I hope you all have a great
    weekend and Carlos enjoy the chat!

  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

    @Kevin: that flight down coming into jackson is awesome, most of the time
    you land in a plane its all flat around you, but here….we land IN the
    park!

     :)

  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

    @Elena: Thanks!

  • >

    Deb Keller

    Bye Elena thanks for joining us!

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    @Elena Thanks for the awesome answers! Have a lovely weekend!

  • >

    Deb Keller

    @Carlos Really! in the part. Among the elk?

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    @Carlos Yeah, wow, in the park? Were you flying in a tiny little plane?

  • 12:51 PM
  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

    @Deb and Joe: yeah, I think Grand Teton NP is the only park with the airport
    in it. There wasnt another good area around for an airport, but here in
    the Valley of Jackson Hole. The elk kind of keep their distance from the
    airport because of all the noise, but you might be able to see them or
    the big

  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

    herds of bison around. It was…a mid size plane, not the tiny little
     one.

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    So cool.

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    Speaking of bison and elk, what’s the coolest wildlife encounter you’ve
    had out there? I mean, aside from the surly marmot…

  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

    @joe: I think i heard this Jackson Hole airport is the most popular and
    widely used in Wyoming. Close to both Grand Teton and Yellowstone parks.

  • >

    Joe Thurston

     whoa.

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    conveniently located.

  • >

    Deb Keller

    @Carlos It sounds like you’ve had so many great experiences. If you had
    to pick just one single out, what would it be?

  • 12:54 PM
  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

    @Joe: It might have to be a Moose that got pretty close. He was just minding
    his business around, but there was many people that dont know when its
    too close with a wild animal.

  • 12:56 PM
  • >

    Joe Thurston

    Wow, yeah, moose are huge, and i’ve heard they can get aggressive on occasion.

  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

    @Deb: I think it would be hiking on of the peaks here, Static Peak. It
    was a cool experience, tallest peak I’ve ever hiked yet. Funny thing, there
    was a nearby thurnderstorm, and as I got pictures of myself in the peak,
    I was feeling my hairs rise up from the static of the clouds.

     :o

  • >

    Deb Keller

     Whoa!

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    Sounds a little terrifying.

  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

    @Joe: they are pretty huge! but some people thing this place is like a
    zoo. and dont think they’ll do anything bad until something bad happens,
    then they worry, move around, and give them a bad reputation.

  • 12:58 PM
  • >

    Joe Thurston

    Have you found yourself spending a lot of time educating people about
    the right way to behave when they encounter wild animals?

  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

    I think the best things I’ve liked about this park is just the activities
    it offers. I’ve done hiking, running, biking, swimming, boating, canoeing,
    photography, camping, etc. Its a great park, mainly because of the awesome
     mountains.

  • 1:00 PM
  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

    @Joe: actually yes. idk if you remember from my last blog that I was going
    to give a presentation about pronghorn. Well that happened yesterday, my
    first evening program. It went great I think. And there, I talked about
    the resources in the visitor center and bear safety along with my Pronghorn

  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

     presentation

  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

    which, included animal interactions.

  • >

    Deb Keller

    That’s great. I think most people don’t have a clue what to expect or
    how to act around wild animals

  • 1:02 PM
  • >

    Joe Thurston

    yeah, nice. what’s the most interesting thing you learned about the pronghorn
    while you were preparing for your presentation?

  • >

    Patty Holland

    Hey @Carlos - I just wanted to say that I loved this one particular thing
    you said in your blog: “Conservation in today’s world should be part of
    a lifestyle. Our earth is our park in this universe.” Truly fantastic quote!

  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

    @Deb: right. Most of the people in the US live in urban areas, and think
    this is just going through a zoo. But its a bit different. Its real, its
    dangerous. And average people are not adapted to the wild.

  • 1:04 PM
  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

    @Joe: I had a busy week this week, but thanks to my procrastination college
    skills, I was able to get the studying for the pronghorn presentation down.
    It will probably be the interaction with people, with a big group. Like
    how to have conversations with a big group is the interesting thing I learne

  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

     d

  • 1:06 PM
  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

    @Patty: Thanks! Randomly when I was thinking of the future, I’ve thought….so
    if we move into space, that wont be as exciting as Earth; then people would
    just come back to Earth as they would come to a park. And that quote came
    up when I was writing my blog.

     ;)

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    Nice! Public speaking experience is a great thing to have!

  • 1:07 PM
  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

    @Joe: yes it is! I’ve never though I would love working with people unti
    this parks experience. I was a bit into just working with wildlife. But
    to change and enhance wildlife environments, you gotta hit people first.
    Education with people is the answer.

  • 1:09 PM
  • >

    Joe Thurston

    So true. Speaking of people, have you had much opportunity to make friends
    during your internship?

  • 1:10 PM
  • >

    Deb Keller

    @Carlos I love the way you’ve been reflecting on all the experiences you’re
    having. Really looking at them in different contexts and sharing that has
    been so thought-provoking and inspiring for me.

  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

    @Joe: yes, employee friends. park employees are just awesome! They have
    all kinds of experience. have similar hobbies. and in the park there are
    different kinds of jobs, so that gets interesting.

  • 1:12 PM
  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

    @Deb: Thanks! you should check out my next blog, it might be up tomorrow
    maybe. I have it done(havent sent it), plus I’m including a video of my
    experiences here.

  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

     *there.

  • >

    Deb Keller

    Great I can’t wait.

  • 1:15 PM
  • >

    Joe Thurston

    @Carlos Has working in a national park been everything you expected it
    to be?

  • >

    Evan Escamilla

    @ Carlos I’m about to board a plane but I wanted to say hi Carlos! I always
    enjoy your pictures. Hope all is well!

  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

    @Evan: hey Evan! have a safe flight! thanks, hope to see you around back
    in A&M.

  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

    @everyone: hey just pointing out that Evan was the recruiter who got me
    into this. He came down to my college and gave me a little taste of the
     SCA.

  • 1:18 PM
  • >

    Joe Thurston

    Nice work, Evan!

  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

    @Joe: I actually did not know too much of the parks. I didnt know how
    they were organized, what was in them. And there might be tons of people
    like that. I was expecting to be educating people in some sort of way.
    It did turn out that way, and turned out better than expected.

  • 1:20 PM
  • >

    Joe Thurston

    So cool. I see on you bio that you were thinking you might want to work
    in a park someday, maybe as a park interpreter. Do you still feel that
     way?

  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

    One thing about Grand Teton NP is that it has crazy bipolar weather. Right
    now its raining, and like most of the times, it might clear away in like
    two hours.

  • 1:22 PM
  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

    @Joe: yes. My field of study in college leads me through being a scientist
    with wildlife. But through experience, I’ve decided I am not too much into
    research. So education is on top of my pyramid now, and interpretation
    in the parks sounds that it would fit just right. So yes. I get wildlife
     here..

  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

    activities, and would get to work educating people about nature, wildlife
    and other stuff.

  • 1:24 PM
  • >

    Joe Thurston

    that’s so great. would you have ever thought of working in a park if Evan
    hadn’t told you about SCA?

  • 1:27 PM
  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

    @Joe: well, probably not. Its like this. I’m always going to workshops
    and events where people from different companies come at. I was interested
    in the SCA, and wanted to hear about it. So I actually missed another workshop
    (not as good) for the SCA one. I started out in the NPS Program that they..

  • 1:29 PM
  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

    just started. Im second generation in this SCA/NPS spring academy. So
    I decided to apply and travel during my spring break. I got in, the trip
    here to the Tetons was amazing. Never seen so much snow AND mountains beside
    them. The next step after that was getting an internship, so I decided
    to come..

  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

    back to the Tetons because I did not want to stay south or where I would
    spend another hot summer. So many people in the academy go to go to different
    parks around the US.

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    Wow. That’s so cool. So glad you chose the SCA workshop instead of that
    other one!

  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

    So yes, if it wasnt for even. I might have applied for SCA, and would
    probably have gotten an internship which I would not like as much.

  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

    or I would end up working with Animal Care with exotics (because I’ve
    had experience with that).

  • >

    Joe Thurston

     Nice.

  • >

    Joe Thurston

     Alright

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    @Everyone Thanks for joining us for our first ever Follow Me Live Chat!

  • >

    Joe Thurston

    and thanks Carlos for sticking around late, and having such great answers!

  • >

    Carlos De La Torre

    @Everyone: Thanks for coming, or just reading. @Joe: thanks, it was cool
    to share some of my stories.

  • >

    Deb Keller

    Thanks Carlos — can’t wait to see your next post!

  • 1:34 PM
  • >

    Joe Thurston

    @Carlos Glad you could make it. Enjoy the rest of your time at Grand Teton.
    Can’t wait to see that video!

  • >

    Carlos De La Torre


     ;)