As our season is winding down the Rands Crew is making the most of it! This hitch we had the Golden Valley Crew out for a day of work. We showed them what restoration is all about as we wove Creosote bushes and built rock walls. Much joy was shared between the two crews as we laughed and restored together. After Golden Valley’s departure, Rands Crew continued to work diligently completing ten incursions in total during the hitch. But more fun was had by the crew during hitch 12! On the fifth day we joined forces with Jawbone and learned about the natural history of the area from a BLM representative. We discovered more of the history of the Rand Mountains, which as it turns out used to be a conifer forest. Archaeologists discovered, by studying pack rat middens, that Creosote bushed have only been native to the area within the past 7,000 years. Additionally, the Basque people used to herd sheep in the mountains and there used to be annual OHV races held in the area. All of this information was gladly received by the crews although there was one piece of bad news that was particularly heartbreaking to some crew members: as a result of a low amount of precipitation during the winter there will be few wildflowers founds in the Rand Mountains this season. Things have been greener in the Mountains during the last few weeks but we will not be bombarded with a mosaic of colors. However, the crew is keeping their heads up and looking for the flowers that can be spotted few and far between. After the morning lecture the two crews got down to business and restored together, shoveling, weaving and sharing techniques. Jawbone came back to camp and stayed for the night. Room in the white tent was scarce but it was made up for with smiles and some good music. The next morning Jawbone departed and the Randles got back to work, after a day of restoration we headed out of the field to prepare for Easter Outreach. We were joined by the Owens Peak Crew for outreach on the 7th. For many from the Owens Peak Crew it was their first outreach and first time in the Rands. It was a relatively calm weekend for OHV riding but good information was spread by the crews to people riding in the area. After the day of outreach is was back out into the field for the crew, we did two more days of restoration. Restoring in total this hitch 3,659.5 meters squared, which put us over our total goal for the season. The hitch ended on a high note when Jon took us out for milkshakes in Randsburg to celebrate our hard work. The crew is excited for next hitch and the Earth Day events. As the days dwindle in our season, the crew is still hopeful that we’ll see a desert tortious before it’s all over!
April 13, 2012 •