Life as a Recreation Intern

The second week of my internship consisted of the CLM workshop in Chicago. It was a lot of fun, and nice to be in a big city for the week. It also made me appreciate the lack of heat and humidity back in Wyoming.

The day after I arrived back in Buffalo, I drove to Newcastle, WY and met a group of 8 middle schoolers that had all signed up for a science camp. We drove up to Summit Ridge in Black Hills National Forest and set up camp. For the next four days, teachers from Upton middle school and BLM specialists from various offices came to teach lessons and facilitate activities. Some topics included Astronomy, Wildlife, Gold panning, GPS, Forestry, and Water Quality testing. I helped teach Orienteering and Water Cycle lessons, and put my Master Educator certification to good use by teaching a Leave No Trace lesson and a game. The kids were great and really enjoyed and learned a lot from the week. It’s hard to believe I’m getting paid to go camping!

Helping kids build bat boxes at the Upton Science Camp

Leave No Trace lesson- notice my diy backcountry white board 🙂

The next week started out with a long and hard day. A trail at one of the sites was being rerouted by a Montana Conservation Corps crew because of some old bison bones that had started to become exposed along the old trail. Rachel and I hiked the flagged out route for the new trail carrying carsonite trail markers and the heavy, awkward beast used to pound them into the ground. Once we got to the end of the trail, we turned around and hiked the old trail so we could dig out the old markers. Although I expended a lot more energy than I normally would on a hike, the trail and area were both stunning and I was glad to be spending the day outside recreating.

Tuesday and Wednesday consisted of some more necessary trainings- GIS and ATV, the latter being quite exciting.

ATV Training

On Thursday, I got the chance to teach another Leave No Trace workshop for some teens on a camping trip through an organization from Casper. Outreach and education is probably my favorite part of my job so far. I’m really passionate about LNT and love getting to introduce it to others!

One of my favorite LNT games- Okay! No Way!

I’m loving the variation in duties that a “recreation intern” has, and the amount of time spent thankfully outside. My days off are also amazing, being only a few hours from some of the best and most beautiful climbing, hiking, and National Parks in the country.

Got to spend a weekend in Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks- only a 4 hour drive!

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