Jeremy, Conservation & Disaster Crew |
From May 6th to May 15th, our crew was hard at work in the Pine-forested utopias of The Angelina and Sabine National forests. Spring floods had left many of the recreational areas of the forests unusable and the summer camping season was fast approaching. Our primary overall task was to remove downed trees and trash from camping areas and thoroughly clean any campground structures.
Between rampant thunderstorms and driving rain, our crew ran chainsaws through countless tanks of fuel to buck the large pine trees littering campsites into pieces small enough to move. When enough timber was removed, we were able to come in with tractors, trimmers, and mowers to manicure each individual campsite. Over the eight days that we spent in the forests, we bounced back and forth between 4 of the major recreation areas and covered more than 500 miles on the road. All sites that we visited were opened to the public the day we left.
Weather played a major factor during this trip. Rain was a threat almost every day. Aside from the satisfaction of working to open public land that we all cared deeply about, this hitch was an unbelievable team building experience. Through all of the time spent dodging the rain, sliding through the mud, and sweating it out in the unbelievable humidity, we found solace in each other’s company. We returned to our Austin base exhausted, but as a smiling and cohesive unit ready to take on the rest of the season.