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[Image Description: Two MCC members taking a brief break; one is sitting on a rock, the other is standing nearby. They are both in their uniforms, looking out at the expansive, mountain view surrounding them.]

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Unpredictable Weather and a Whole Lot of Information

A gravel road that winds into the distance, with mountains and low hanging clouds along the horizon.

Orientation week is chock full of so much information, it can be hard for field crew members to absorb it all. While learning so much in the classroom is a great way to understand basics and an overall picture of the work required of us, actually being in the field is a great way to learn lessons that can't quite be understood until you gain personal experience. Here are 10 important lessons I learned during my orientation week.

#1: Montana weather is wack
-it cannot decide what it wants to be, from rain to sun to freezing to snow and back to sun, always keep a rain jacket on you

#2: Dry feet = happy feet
-good socks, good boots, dry feet, happy feet

#3: Bears are real
-keep your bear spray on you at all times
-calm bear = be mean
-mean bear = be calm

#4: Keep your food container clean
-every meal is the same dish so unless you want to be tasting day old pesto on your turkey and cheese sandwich, wash your dish

#5: You're gonna get gross, it is okay
-hygiene is IMPORTANT, if not for yourself at least for your crew... please

#6: How to handle people
-you are around the same people every hour of every day, it is stressful and fun all bundled up in a bag of emotions

#7: How to handle yourself
-take the moments at night or in the morning to really listen and check in with yourself and your own needs. Future you will thank you.

#8: What works for someone else may not work for you
-learn what works for you through trial and error. It's a learning experience.

#9: Enjoy the little things
- Be aware of all the silly things going on, people are hilarious

#10: Look up and out
-Montana is beautiful, there is much to see and hear so look around once in a while and see what there is to see. We came here for a reason, why not enjoy the view too!

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