The unique aspen habitat located throughout the North Zone of the Salmon-Challis National Forest has caught the attention of Wildlife Biologists. Using an established regional protocol, crew members collected GPS data for future incorporation into the Salmon-Challis vegetation geodatabases. Specific tasks included: field assessment of vegetative stand condition, collection of quantitative and qualitative data for implementation and effectiveness monitoring, development of a photographic record for monitoring, production of GIS maps, and collection of field data on wildlife and plant species of interest.
The Wildlife Exclosure Inventory project took crew members out into the field to collect data on a variety of fences. Lending support to the wildlife and fisheries program, crew members performed a variety of tasks including: field assessment of existing structural condition of exclosures; collection of GPS data on exclosure condition and location; incorporation of field data into the Salmon-Challis geodatabases; development of a photographic record for monitoring; production of GIS maps; routine maintenance activities such as installing wire, replacement of non-functional posts and braces, and use of native and/or dimensional materials for exclosure repair.
For our fuels this season we finished six projects. The projects varied in duration from a day to two months. We worked on the Upper North Fork stand exam project for the first two months, collecting data about the composition of the forest. We spent the last three months looking for old growth. All tolled we did 836 stand exam plots, 74 old growth stands, post fire regeneration monitoring and some neat white bark pine inventory.
For the past couple months, much of the trail work for the SCA Idaho AmeriCorps program has been focused on the Continental Divide Trail. Some parts of the trail have seen little maintenance this decade and others none. The crews have been rebuilding the tread, pulling boulders and stumps out of the trail, and installing drainage structures from the headwaters of Fourth of July Creek drainage into Sheep Creek, a distance of approximately 7 miles.
Working on this project for multiple months has allowed the members to experience the area in the hot and dusty summer months and the cold and snowy fall at high elevations. But the colder months also bring Huckleberry season and after backpacking in with what seems like a ton of food, the crew hikes back out with a gallon of fresh berries!
View CDT Trail Work in Google maps
Three SCA members and one staff began a new project for the season called uroutes. The purpose of the project is to identify resource concerns on unauthorized routes(uroutes) across the Salmon-Challis National Forest that may significantly impact important watersheds containing bull trout, chinook salmon, and steelhead.
The SCA members traveled to uroutes using Trimble Nomads loaded with a shapefile layer of known routes, approximately 6000 routes totaling over 2000 miles. Each route is walked and surveyed for significant erosion. Additionally all stream crossings, seeps/springs, and wetland areas are identified.
Having graduated from Penn State in May 2009, I packed my bags and left for a 5 month season up in Alaska. After the program, I decided to continue my travels and hit the road with a friend, and we drove through Alaska and Canada to the Pacific Northwest. Eventually, I ended up in Portland for a little while before we split up and I hit the road alone back to Philadelphia. I am a sculptor/potter so if we find some clay, I’d be more than happy to demo for any who wish to play with some dirt.
My name is Chris Niedbala. I’m 22 years old and from Buffalo, NY. I’m currently in school back home working towards a 2-year degree with plans for more schooling after that. A sense of adventure and love of the outdoors piqued my interest in the SCA, and I couldn’t be more excited or grateful to be here in Idaho. I enjoy reading, talking philosophy, and playing my guitar.
My name is Joe Pohnan. I’m the middle child in a family of five, and both of my siblings are sisters - who managed to end up with the same birthday. I’m 22 years old and have lived in Illinois and in my home town most of my life. I have also lived in New Hampshire during my first SCA internship. Besides SCA I’ve worked at a café, and have volunteered on farms through WWOOF. I like many things but I spend much of my time reading, biking, and cooking.
My name is Christopher Gee, and I recently finished undergraduate studies at the University of California, at Davis with a degree in International Relations. I returned this past December from a semester of education abroad at Fudan University in the cosmopolitan city of Shanghai, China. My studies in conjunction with my time trekking around conjured me to realize the circumstance of the world’s poor and disenfranchised. Many of them suffer due to ecological and environmental concerns, leading me to seek hands-on experience in the conservation field with the goal of possibly working internationally in the future. But with no desire to return to school (for now – I think), I found myself hopping onto a plane bound for Idaho to serve with the SCA. Other things about me: I enjoy singing and classical music (having also majored in Music -Vocal Performance), science fiction, the free things in life, and serving at my church.
My name is Brett Boisjolie, I'm a 23 year old guy from Southampton, MA. My last name means "pretty woods" in French, which makes sense because I grew up on a Christmas tree farm and live for the outdoors. Since graduating from Stonehill College near Boston last May, I've been able to do some pretty solid adventuring. I spent last summer trudging through swamps, hiking through thorn bushes and swimming through rivers as a surveyor on a massive field study for The Nature Conservancy's Connecticut River program focusing on the link between altered hydrology and floodplain ecosystems. This past winter I was a member of a fire ecology strike team - a small 3-person nomadic team who traveled throughout Georgia assisting in, planning, and leading prescribed burns in various forest lands. I spent numerous days riding on ATVs with flamethrowers attached, running from raging head fires, taking down burning snags with chainsaws and other such ridiculous "this is my JOB?!" moments. My work has given me an understanding of and passion for imperiled forest types, and this opportunity in Idaho represents the ideal opportunity to learn more about forestry in order to further my life work in the field of environmental conservation.
My name is Nellie A. Bunce. I know a little bit about a lot of things and a lot about a few things. My favorite parts of life are my family, whitewater rafting, and my dog Yeti (better known as THE Yeti). I believe in picking up litter whenever and wherever you see it. I love a good cup of coffee and getting up early. I have traveled extensively throughout my life and moved around a great deal growing up. I hope one day to change the world but until then will let the world continue to change me.
I grew up in the same town my entire life, where there weren't too many outdoor activities besides soccer, baseball, and the occasional cub scout camping trip. And I did the same thing that many of my friends did- went to school, got a normal restaurant job, earned money for college, and eventually graduated from college. However, I had recognized early on that the environment was pretty important to me, as I discovered the literature on global warming in the mid-90's and became a vegetarian early on. This is the first time I have had a prolonged period to devote to something non-school related, and the Salmon-Challis intro described the job as good for those who needed to get their hands dirty; thusly, I took the job.
Heather recently graduated from Cal State Long Beach with a degree in Biology. She is from Costa Mesa in Southern California where she lives with her parents and three brothers. While in college Heather volunteered at the Huntington Beach Wetlands Conservancy working on native plant propagation. She was recently employed at a hardware store.
I graduated from UC Santa Cruz in 09, with a major in environmental studies and a minor in education. I studied abroad in New Zealand for a semester and had an amazing experience learning about viticulture, maori studies, and wildlife bio. I enjoy working in the community, I have taught a garden nutrition program at an elementary school, and I worked at the Seymour Marine Center in Santa Cruz managing the volunteers. I am very interested in environmental conservation work, and wildlife as well. I have yet to hone in on a specific career path, but I am looking forward to gaining as much hands-on experience as I can with this program. Apart from my love of the environment, I have a slight obsession with baking and I hope to open my own organic and sustainable bakery in the future.
Stephanie recently returned from a two-year Peace Corps tour in Namibia, South Africa. There she served as a Health Volunteer, focusing on HIV/AIDS prevention and awareness. She went to Occidental College for her undergrad in Religious Studies. This will be Stephanie's first experience with SCA. She is from the San Diego area.
|Map: Local Fire Information|
|Map: Area Overview|
|Map: SPOT Messenger Locations|
|Project Leader: Laurie Terry|
|Project Leader: Justin Poehnelt|
|Program Manager: Jackie Lucero|
|Wildlife - Aspen Inventory|
|Wildlife - Exclosure Inventory and Maintenance Needs Assessment|
|Trail Work - Continental Divide Trail|
|Uroutes - First Run|
|Trail Work - Camas Creek Trail|