Desert Restoration Corps

SCA's Desert Resoration Corps works in the Mojave and Colorado Deserts

For the last decade, members of SCA’s Desert Restoration Corps have monitored, preserved, and repaired fragile habitat in the Mojave and Colorado Deserts of Southern California.

The DRC is one of SCA’s most challenging programs. Members should be prepared to live and work as a small, tightly knit community in extremely remote locations. Environmental conditions can be harsh, and the projects themselves are physically and mentally challenging. Those able to meet these challenges, however, can look forward to an unforgettable conservation adventure that will test their very limits.

During the 10-month DRC season, members will restore, protect, and monitor thousands of acres of desert wilderness and will complete a number of other conservation projects. The Peer Leadership model will also provide leadership experience for all members.

The first eight months of the DRC are based out of Ridgecrest, CA. Each team will live and work out of remote tent camps for 10-day periods while undertaking projects, allowing members to fully experience the lands being served. While the majority of the season is devoted to mitigating the impacts of Off-Highway Vehicle (OHV) recreation in the desert surrounding Ridgecrest, Teams will take on additional projects elsewhere in California as the heat of the desert summer encroaches during the final two months of the work season. Projects typically include habitat restoration, fence/barrier construction, public outreach, trail work/assessment, invasive species management, and resource (i.e. water, wildlife) monitoring.

Members of the Desert Restoration Corps receive or have the option to receive the following trainings or certifications:

  • CPR Certification
  • Wilderness First Responder Certification
  • Leave No Trace (LNT) Trainer Course
  • S212 Chainsaw Certification
  • Advanced Off Highway Vehicle training
  • Peer Leadership
  • Restoration Philosophy and Practice
  • Trail Skills

Applicants must be between 18-25 years of age and must pass a background check.

The Desert Restoration Corps (DRC) is a partnership between the Student Conservation Association (SCA), Bureau of Land Management (BLM), and California Off-Highway Vehicle Commission (CA-OHV).

For more information:

recruiting@thesca.org

603-543-1700 x 1499

 

Related Posts & Program Information

           Desert winds beat sand against any exposed skin, into the eyes, ears, nose, and mouth. By the end of the day, red beards have become brown, pale skin looks tanned, and tan skin appears chalky and pale. Meals eaten outdoors are inevitably seasoned with sand and grit. Days go by, and you forget what still air is like. We climbed up and down hills, then back up and back down. We moved earth and rock. The wind picked up speed. It slowed down. It rushed back up and whirled around.

Read more

 

“I know you are tired. I am tired too.

Will you walk along the edge of the desert with me?

I would like to show you what lies before us.”

-Barry Lopez, Desert Notes: Reflections in the Eye of a Raven

           

Read more
sunny

Disclaimer: These journal entries are an exaggerated account of the hardships faced by the DRC.  Contrary to the following passages, we do in fact have fun on hitch (look at the pictures).

Day 1:

Read more

Hitch 3 led the Wildcorps crew to our southernmost destinations yet—El Centro and Yuma, where we hiked throughout the Indian Pass and Picacho Peak Wilderness Areas as well as North Algodones Dunes. This was the first hitch in which we wouldn’t be swinging any tools but our feet. Our job seemed simple: hike a couple miles or more each day into a specific patch of desert to find “Guzzlers,” or manmade water tanks that collect yearly rainfall to provide drinking water for local fauna.

Read more

After living in the desert through the heart of winter, springtime in the Mojave comes on like a freight train, and suddenly you’re walking through a Ralph Steadman painting and there’s lilies and poppies and blue dicks and the beavertail cactus is blooming, as is the creosote and the bladderpod and the hopsage.

Read more

Pages