Public Lands Stewards: Lyman Lake

The Lake Chelan area that we have been working on has a large number of trails, from short hour-long trips to destinations that can take 3 days of hard work to get to. A significant amount of our time is spent on one 30-mile stretch of trail and its branching trails. Continue Reading…

Public Lands Stewards: Holden Village, A Backcountry Utopia

At the start of every hitch, backcountry ranger Aaron Mines travels by ferry to a small town called Holden Village. From there, he begins an 8-day trek to various parts of wilderness to conduct trail maintenance and make visitor contacts. The following is an introduction to the unique town that serves as a launching pad for our Public Lands Stewards serving in the Chelan Ranger District of the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest. Continue Reading…

Public Lands Stewards: Two Weeks and Some Change

And so the countdown begins. Only eighteen more days to be exact. I remember back in May when I started this adventure they said to cherish every moment you have this season because it will be over before you know it, and oh were they right. It seems like yesterday I just made the drive to Entiat and was meeting all the people that would surround me for the next six months. The experiences that I have been able to be a part of these last months are forever life changing. I can’t begin to express how thankful I am for the position that I have been placed in. I have gained so much knowledge; everything from a behind the scenes look at how the Forest Service operates, to the hands on experiences of public contact, trail work and so much more. You can’t put a price tag or value on something like this. I’ve totally fallen in love with this area so much so that I’m going to be coming back this winter to help as a snowmobile ranger. Continue Reading…

Public Lands Stewards: Of Bears and Blueberries

After three days assisting the trail crew on a construction project I was finally beginning a six-day backcountry ranger tour into Washington’s rugged and remote Glacier Peak Wilderness. I had hiked this trail before and knew it well, but a darkened sky and chill to the air gave the area a new foreboding ambience. Continue Reading…

Public Lands Stewards: Who Are You? And What Do You Do?

“So what exactly does a wilderness/backcountry ranger do?” This is the question invariably asked by friends, family and public alike when I explain that for six months through the summer I will be patrolling the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest. When I first applied for the position I had little more than an idea of the actual duties of a wilderness ranger, and honestly after my first few weeks I wasn’t much closer to a solid answer. Finally now, after a full two months of stumbling, learning and experiencing the job first hand, I am pretty sure I have a reasonable grasp of what I do. Continue Reading…

Public Lands Stewards: Feeling Grateful!

My adventure of working for Mt. Adams Institute and being partnered with the Forest Service at the Cle Elum Ranger District has being purely amazing. I wasn’t too sure of what to expect at the beginning, but I have been given so many skills that I can use to pursue other opportunities in life and I’ve met people who have taught me so much. I couldn’t be more grateful for this experience. Continue Reading…