This week we finally tied back in with the Forest Service and immediately started to make an impression that we were there to learn and to work. Adam met with a high ranking official from Rapid City Fire and has already arranged a time to do a shadowing opportunity with the city, so he can learn more about how cities prepare and handle the added obligation of wildfires, and doing wildland urban interface work on top of the ems and structure fire calls they recieve. A couple other corpsmembers have met VFC alumni from the summer crew done here in the Mystic Ranger district and that the Forest Service has hired on as seasonals for Trails work, and have expressed interest in that. We’ve also turned in all of our paperwork and have recieved our red cards, though there is confusion about our sawyer certifications, and we might have to retest with a C-certifier to be allowed to cut on this forest. We also started work on the Carter Road project which is about a mile long fuel break that the forest service is putting in. It was started on by the previous VFC that was here and all the falling of tree’s has been done. So we were basically making slash piles until the Government shutdown occured. We then drafted up a plan to start online classes for S-290 which is intermediate fire behavior, and started to co-ordinate with the State of South Dakota to tie in with a type 2 handcrew called the Blackhats. Which was originally an all Native American Crew, until the state took it over. Unfortunately due to liability issues we couldn’t tie in with them this week, and instead found ourselves doing computer work, and waiting out a blizzard that hit Rapid City, so badly it was even given a name, Atlas.
October 16, 2013 •