I led a Conservation Corps Crew in 2009 in Mt. Rainier National Park. The crew was finishing up the effort to help the Park recover from a series of disasterous floods in 2006. It was a great experience for me for a lot of reasons. Of course, it was nice to have a job after being laid off in the aftermath of the Great Recession, but it was also a chance for me to get back to my roots doing trailwork in perhaps one of the most beautiful places in the country.
The work itself could not have been better experience for my crew, all of whom were new to the field. We built log bridges from scratch, piled great heaps of stone into walls the Incas would have admired, and tackled daunting walls of brush to clear the trails for hikers in the park.
We also ate a whole lot of huckleberries, made great friends with the Park Service, and learned a bunch about the history of the park.
A fantastic experience all around for me and my crew!