Waders Are Right for Wading Right In

The majority of ASB participants spent most of yesterday flying into either Burbank, CA or LAX. After waking up early for morning flights, I was glad that we were saving group introductions for Monday. Instead we met each other at our own pace as people arrived to Malibu Creek State Park. Students who arrived first, like myself, set up tents for ourselves and for those getting in later. A fantastic dinner cooked by Haley more than satisfied our hunger and we continued our evening with a little frisbee, some jamming, and conversations covering a multitude of topics until people slowly drifted off to tents to settle in for the night.

Showing us some new moves

Monday began with a killer breakfast. An ice breaker kickstarted the morning circle and shortly after we discovered that people came from all over the continental United States, including a student who studies in Hawai’i. Staff went over camp rules, chore procedures and the crew set off to Malibu Lagoon State Beach.

Taking out invasives

Our main task for the day was to remove invasive species or species that weren’t specific to this region of Southern California. 15 of us volunteered to put on waders and work on the miniature islands, with some of us getting to set an osprey perch into the ground. Everyone regrouped for lunch on the actual beach and many of us explored the tidal pool to see what creatures it contained. We finished out the workday with some more invasives work and returned to camp for some down time.

Just testing out the osprey perch Some people went on hikes while others opted for a shower or run. A few took naps after the long day of heat which many of us aren’t used to this early in the year. Lets just say someone might have a hella ridiculous farmer’s tan come Saturday. After dinner we rounded out our night with a little Leave No Trace training. Basically it meant that we taught each other one of the seven principles. Via skits. Always a classic. The stars are beautiful out here and the moon’s practically full. I couldn’t ask for a better way to enjoy the Santa Monica Mountains.