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Reconnect Stewardship Event: Steenbock Preserve Cedar Removal
February 18 @ 9:00 am - February 20 @ 3:00 pm
We are happy to start off the 2021 Reconnect Season at the Alliance owned Steenbock Preserve in Columbia County. This is our fifth year of opening up the viewshed along the Gibraltar Rock Segment, which overlooks Lake Wisconsin and the river valley. From the top of the ridge, hikers can now see distant hints of the Baraboo Hills on the horizon. When the project first started, the same ridgetop trail cut through a dense cedar forest and a limited view of the surrounding landscape.
2021 marks the first year land stewardship events are fully integrated into the trailbuilding’s Mobile Skills Crew Season at a Glance calendar of events. While project participation will still be limited to account for COVID-19 precautions, this melding of projects will allow volunteers to explore new types of volunteering and hopefully meet some new faces.
This February, we will continue to clearing cedar trees to allow reestablishment of the remnant prairie and return balance to the landscape. Already, after a few years in sunlight, native prairie plants are abundant along the ridgetop. Additional clearing will also allow for the use of prescribed prairie fire in future years, which is a crucial tool in maintaining prairie habitat and protect it from the pressures of invasive species. During the event, crews will use hand saws, loppers and chainsaws to fell, pile, and burn cedar trees.
Work begins at 9 A.M. on Thursday, February 18th and will continue until 3 P.M. on February 20th. Due to Covid-19 complications, there will be no camping or lunch provided for this project. More information on meeting and parking locations will be supplied via email.
What to Bring:
1. Leather work gloves
2. Sturdy boots (ice cleats/yaktrax recommended)
3. Covid face mask
4. Personal drinking water & food
5. Eye protection
6. Ear protection (even if not sawing, working near chainsaws can be loud)
7. Non-synthetic clothing – natural fibers may singe but do not melt, wearing synthetic clothing poses a safety risk to the wearer and is likely to be damaged.
8. Certified sawyers – chainsaw and PPE (contact Eva before the event if you need to borrow saw equipment)
We love dogs, but we ask that you not bring them to this event. Woolly mammoths are welcome.
Volunteers in Parks and COVID-19 Safety Information:
No experience is necessary and volunteers of all ages are welcome, provided youth attend with an adult chaperone. If you are new to volunteering with the Ice Age Trail Alliance, please submit the volunteer agreement before the event, see below for more details. Any volunteer working on the IAT needs to complete the volunteer forms below, although volunteers working around fire are not covered by NPS volunteer coverage nor can their volunteer hours be counted towards their VIP hours. For more information, click here.
- We’re excited to have you join us, however, please know the symptoms of the coronavirus and be prepared to STAY HOME if you exhibit any of them. Please visit the CDC website and view the symptoms listed there. Consider using the Self-Checker, an interactive guide, located mid-way down the page, which can help you make your decision. Go there now.
- Please complete this COVID-19 OF-301A Fillable Form.
- The National Park Service (NPS) requires every volunteer to complete a COVID-19 OF-301A Volunteer Service Agreement, whether you are a new IATA volunteer or a returning volunteer who has not yet filled out the post-March 24, 2020 version of this form.
- Please email the completed form to Dan Watson, NPS Volunteer Coordinator, ([email protected]).
- Dan will reply to you with a signed copy of the form.
Please read through these documents as they provide additional safety guidelines: