The 2021 Youth Conservation Program continues to grow as a team as they work and learn while on the trails of Grand Teton National Park. In their seventh week, the crew focused on repairs at Schwabacher Landing, a popular destination along the Snake River.
It was an exciting week for both the crew members and their NPS leaders. Seven weeks into the program, the participants began taking charge and running the show. Their leaders stepped back and allowed the crew to plan and direct their projects, and they reported their amazement and pride in how far these young people have come in such a short time. "They did a wonderful job communicating, ensuring crew and public safety, and coming up with new efficient ideas for the projects," said one NPS trail crew leader.
Later in the week, the team hiked the steep trail to Surprise Lake where they removed outdated and eroded water bars that have become tripping hazards for trail users. Working in high temperatures at elevation is no easy task, but the crew pulled it off and received a reprieve at the end of the day in the form of a nice, cool rain shower. Their week ended with an educational day with Grand Teton's physical science/GIS division. The crew was interested to learn about how to get their foot in the door within the science field of the National Park Service. They finished the day by returning to Schwabacher Landing to complete their work removing old causeways and installing buck and rail fencing to prevent resource damage.
Thanks to all of the park staff who made this another incredible week for the Youth Conservation Program!