Week 1


On week one the team all met up for the first time in Rapid City, South Dakota, Quickly our military experiences were brought up, and people started to learn more about each other. We learnt that corpsmember Brock had helped lead dozer in wildfire operations while as a combat engineer at Camp Pendleton. or how Mike used to be a radio host right over the state line in Gillette, Wyoming. Once we arrived though we conducted SCA training using drive smart/ drive safe, AmeriCorps expectations, and creating a group contract for example. We also met with our Forest Service contact an engine captain by the name of Dave who is also a veteran. Dave issued us our gear and gave us a short briefing on what the season hopefully will look like. Finally we all piled into our trusty compandy Dodge and drove down to Colorado Fire Camp to start classes for our red cards (wildland fire fighting license) and to learn how to properly use chainsaws. For the rest of the week we spent time learning about chainsaws, chaps and safety gear, as well as how we should be 2 and a half tree lengths away from anybody falling a tree, LCES (Lookouts, Communication, Escape Routes, and Safety Zones) was first introduced to us during this time, and stressed with us calling out our cuts such as when we were going to do a sloping cut, gunning cut, back cut, and when the tree was falling and what direction the tree was going. Everyone on the crew qualified as A sawyers, meaning that they can fall trees under 9 inches DBH (diameter at breast hieght) with a B Sawyer supervisor.