Restoration March Madness: Join Us!
"This place used to have a highway running through it, and the school used to be right over there," said Toz Soto, lead Karuk Tribe biologist. He gestured across the flat at Ti Creek, a tributary that feeds into the Middle Klamath River. "In nature, things are dynamic, they're always changing."
Fourteen Junction School Elementary students, grades 5-8 squinted back at him, trying to envision how this place looked before the 1964 flood radically rearranged the landscape here. In small groups, the students visited five stations to learn about watershed threats such as erosion, noxious weeds, loss of forest diversity and water shortages.
A walk through a wetland invited students to think about where water comes from, where it goes, and how watercourses shift over time, forcing humans to shift their management strategies to adapt. A lesson in how to pull scotch broom to make more room for native plants on the riverbar engaged students in a physical tussle with roots in the sand, leveraging the invaders out triumphantly with their strong little bodies. Several slices - conveniently called cookies in forester lingo - from a 120-year-old Douglas fir log offered a window into tree ring science, with expertise from two plant ecologists. Another group examined soil samples, while participants were asked to think through where rocks and dirt come from and where they go. And one group worked to measure a cubic foot box, calculate its contents, and fill it with water, leading to a clearer understanding of what we mean when we talk about a cubic foot per second of flow.
The field trip kicked off a flurry of springtime events MKWC is hosting in March:
Monday, March 9 - Attend a public presentation by MKWC Director Will Harling on watershed restoration at the Panamnik Building in Orleans from 5:30 - 7 p.m. The presentation is free. So is the pizza and salad.
Wednesday, March 11 - Hear from MKWC Director Will Harling about what we're up to on the ground to restore the watershed when he presents at the Klamath Siskiyou Art Center in Happy Camp 5:30-7 p.m. More free pizza and salad for attendees.
Friday, March 13 - This is your opportunity to hop on a raft through the Orleans gorge and help us improve salmon habitat and remove invasive plant species from river bars along the way. Free lunch provided! Please RSVP soon. Limited spots available. Contact Jillienne Bishop to reserve a spot on a raft: firstname.lastname@example.org or (530)627-3202
March 20 - Restoration Friday - Volunteer to pull weeds at Tishanik. For more information contact Tanya Chapple at email@example.com or call MKWC (530) 627-3202.
March 27 - Restoration Friday - Volunteer to pull weeds at Dolan's Bar. For more information contact Tanya Chapple at firstname.lastname@example.org or call MKWC (530) 627-3202.
Be a part of the Klamath Restoration Madness of March! We're all stewards here.