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Field Program

[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.]

Pig or Grizzly?

A crew digs a hole to place a beaver dam analog post into the ground.

For our second hitch, we were building beaver dam analogs in the Big Hole Watershed. Morale was high with project partners' dogs working with us most days. Watching my fellow crew members get excited after every single beaver dam built, especially Keller, made it so much more invigorating. Getting to see the effect of the beaver dam as it slows water and starts flooding the plain pretty much instantly was very gratifying to see and fulfilling to know your work is having an impact.

As the week went on, we got to see many different wildlife sightings. While sitting and taking a water break, Matt asked, “What’s that?”. We all turn, and he said, “Is that a pig?”. Our crew leader Brendan said, “Nope that's a grizzly, let's cross the creek.”. Terrifying yet, astounding to see. As the early riser of the group, I always get to start my morning about an hour or two before everyone else, making sure the water is boiled and starting the fire for the freezing mornings. One morning I kept hearing this strange animal noise, so naturally, I went to go see what kind of animal it was. I walked over to the ridge to peer down into the valley and was greeted with a large herd of elk bugling. I’m left excited to be able to see so many other amazing animals and views this season.