2019 Corps Program Portfolios

In 2019, the Rocky Mountain Conservancy – Conservation Corps completed over 10,500 hours of volunteer service in Rocky Mountain National Park and the Arapaho-Roosevelt National Forests. This work was completed by thirty-three AmeriCorps members spread across five crews working in the Boulder, Canyon Lakes, and Sulphur Ranger Districts of the Arapaho-Roosevelt National Forests, as well as with the Trails, Resource Stewardship, and Special Projects divisions of the National Park Service in Rocky. Outside of the on-the-ground work AmeriCorps members completed educational and career development activities.

In Rocky Mountain National Park, the Estes Crew worked to restore native habitat through invasive species management and maintain the popular trail systems. This included constructing a bridge on the Black Lake Trail, above Mills Lake, maintaining trails throughout the Wild Basin area, treating 39 acres for invasive plant species through hand-pulling and spraying, and protecting native plant restoration sites. The Moraine Crew worked with the special projects division to protect historic buildings through roofing and painting projects and improved campground facilities through updating comfort stations and installing drainages at campsites to prevent erosion and washouts.

Outside of Rocky Mountain National Park, the Rawah Wilderness Crew worked with the Canyon Lakes District of the USFS in the Rawah Wilderness, Comanche Peaks Wilderness, and along the Poudre River. These crews helped rebuild the flood damaged Youngs Gulch Trails and maintain over 63 miles of remote trail systems. On the southern border of Rocky Mountain National Park, the Boulder and Shadow Mountain Crews completed extensive project work with the USFS to improve recreational access and protect ecosystems along trail corridors. In the Boulder Ranger District, the crew constructed turnpikes to protect riparian areas along South Boulder Creek, installed check steps to improve trail drainage and increase trail stability at Isabelle Glacier, and maintained over 20 miles of trail. On the west side of the divide in the Sulphur Ranger District, the Shadow Mountain Crew cleared more than 300 trees from trails, helped restore the Darling Creek Trail affected by the Sourdough Fire, and constructed a wilderness bridge along the Cascade Creek Trail.

Overall, the crews:

    • Completed 137 miles of trail maintenance;
    • Constructed 127 check steps;
    • Removed 846 downed trees from trail;
    • Installed or cleared more than 2200 drainage structures;
    • Repaired 4 backcountry bridge or stream crossings
    • Restored a dozen historic buildings, including the Thunder Lake Ranger Cabin, McGraw Ranch facilities, and Fall River Entrance station;
    • Fortified and built drainages at five campsites to prevent erosion; and,
    • Updated a comfort station to improve campground facilities.

Of the thirty-three AmeriCorps members hired for the 2019 season, 13 were local to Colorado’s Front Range. The rest of the Conservation Corps crews have come from a wide range of backgrounds and represent 14 different states.

Click on the photos below for 2019 highlights!

For a full season recap, check out the 2019 Conservation Corps Portfolio!

Beyond the Conservation Corps, the Conservancy hosted 18 high school youth in the High School Leadership Corps in 2019. These youth all came from Colorado communities. The 18 crew members were divided into two crews, one serving in June and the other in July. They spent 12 days camping, working, and learning in Rocky Mountain National Park. During that time they participated in service learning projects monitoring and expanding native seed plots, mechanically removing invasive species from roadside areas, restoring native ecosystems, constructing a stock bridge on the Young Gulch Trail, building 30 feet of turnpike, and improving trail corridor and structures along the Cub Lake Trail. This was partnered with experiential education in Rocky Mountain National Park, leadership development through trainings and feedback sessions, and resume workshopping.

Click on the photos below for 2019 highlights!

For a full season recap, check out the 2019 High School Leadership Corps Portfolio!

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