This spring our volunteer weekend within the Green Ridge State Forest was different because we met up with the FJ Bruisers at the park and tackled the volunteering jointly. From CORE the following people were able to make it out this year.
Dirty, exhausted, and hungry we thanked Mark for the opportunity to volunteer and headed back to camp…
- Larry and Berna Pope (members) and granddaughter Alexis – Blue JK
- Fred Granruth (member) and Shelley Fitch (member) – Green Tahoe
- Robert Rixham – Silver 4Runner
- Andrew and Cherie Taylor (members) – Silver Xterra
Larry, Berna and their granddaughter were the first to the park around lunchtime on Friday afternoon. After checking in at the office they headed to Group Site 32 to set up the camper and get our base camp established for the weekend. Because the FJ Bruisers would have more vehicles than us they got our usual spot, Group Site 1, and we took Group Site 32 just across the pond. They were however kind enough to let us use the porta john on their site all weekend!
With their early arrival Larry and Berna even got to take Alexis fishing at the pond between the two campsites! Fred, Shelley and Robert rolled in during the the afternoon and setup camp, followed lastly by Cherie and I rolling into camp as the sun was setting. It’s kind of our thing to set up camp in the dark.
Saturday morning, after using the campfire poptart cooker Larry lent us, we all met Mark of GRSF along with the FJ Bruisers over at Group Site 1 at 9:30. After a quick introduction and briefing on our days project we all piled into our vehicles and headed for the worksite. The work this year was part of an ongoing effort to not let the entire forest get too old. In a mimicry of natural processes the forest service had recently had an old section of forest harvested so that new younger trees could be introduced. The younger forest allows for different kinds of animal and plant life to thrive than does the older forest which is why this is important.
Once on site we were handed tools and plants and we got to work. Lucky for us it was a mild May weekend, the temperatures weren’t too hot, and the cloud cover was just enough to keep the sun from baking us as in years past. The terrain was pretty rough as it had been roughed up by the tree removal process, but by 1pm we had planted 40 small trees and 500 saplings representing a half dozen different species!
Dirty, exhausted, and hungry we thanked Mark for the opportunity to volunteer and headed back to camp to prepare lunch and relax for a little bit. As always the discussion surrounded the days work, and what we could do next time we came. We may have been exhausted, and some a little muddy from the terrain, but we were all smiles!
After lunch Larry lead us on a tour of the state forest. The drive included several stops at scenic overlooks as well as some of the rougher terrain available on the still open state park roads. Before heading back to camp we stopped by a gas station to buy firewood and other supplies for the evening.
Saturday night was similar to Friday, everyone relaxing around the fire and just enjoying being out away from it all! While sitting around the fire Cherie found a tick walking up her arm and was barely able to keep her cool as she patiently waited for an excited Alexis to pick it off with the tweezers in from her new pocket knife. Immediately after getting the arachnid she dropped it in the dirt under Cherie’s chair! After some more relaxation time around the fire we all turned in a little earlier to get a good nights sleep.
Sunday came too soon. After some good camping breakfasts we all cleaned up and packed up. We said our goodbyes, and headed out of the State Forest. We’re already looking forward to the fall!
Trail report written by Andrew Taylor. Pictures courtesy of Larry Pope and Andrew Taylor.