Volunteer with the FBRHR Field Team

FIELD TEAM

Event Chair: Terra Celeste

DETAILS:

Volunteer and explore the Black Rock Desert High Rock Canyon Emigrant Trails NCA in 2020! 

What is the FBRHR Field Team? 
The FBRHR Field Team program supports keeping public lands open to responsible public use. Today and in the future we work to conserve the NCA's historic trails, natural habitats, dark skies, and open view sheds for the public to enjoy.

In 2020, FBRHR'S Field Team will be led by Jonathan Hurt, Environmental Stewardship and Volunteer Coordinator, from AmeriCorps. A typical day will start at the Visitor's Center in Gerlach 320 Main St. where you will review maps and pack any necessary tools and supplies. Volunteers must pack and bring your own lunches, along with a refillable water bottle. From the Visitor's Center you'll head out to one of our focus sites: Black Rock Desert, Trego, Black Rock Point, Soldier Meadows or other sites as assigned within the NCA. Assignments are made by FBRHR Staff, either Stacey or Terra.

What are Field Team Volunteers expected to do?
As one of our guiding principles, Friends of Black Rock High Rock (aka FBRHR) encourage and provide opportunities for active stewardship of public lands. FBRHR Field Team Volunteers will work with Jonathan to monitor, record use, and note any areas which may require remediation or restoration after use (once campers have left). As assigned, the Field Team will also return to sites for clean up or restoration, or in follow up to previous monitoring trips. Public educational outreach through social media and our website will be guided by feedback from Field Team volunteers, along with Field Reports (filed by Jonathan).

  • MONITORING
    Field Team members will monitor campsites, whether full, almost full, partially full, some use, or little to no use. Team members will also note types of recreational activities observed, hiking, camping, biking, moto-sports such as OHV or motorcycles, etc. 
  • EDUCATION and OUTREACH
    Education outreach will be primarily through printed posters (a series of three to five posters) and messaging through FBRHR's website, blackrockdesert.org, along with our social media pages including Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. The field team will provide feedback to FBRHR Staff to help direct public outreach with messaging about responsible public use of public lands. Field Teams members will be trained in outreach and providing information to visitors as questions may come up, however Field Team members are not expected to interact with camps or actively go to camps for outreach. 
  • SITE CLEAN-UPS
    FBRHR Field Team will make note of any sites which need clean-up after a camp has left. Our existing infrastructure includes a field truck and tools such as shovels, landscape rakes and a magnetic rake to support this work.
  • SITE RESTORATION
    Document and record any site damage. Occasionally an area is in need of more than a clean up, based on Field Team reports, FBRHR's Staff and Board will coordinate with the Field Team or other groups to actively restore damaged sites in the NCA. Sites needing restoration will be detailed in the Field Team report at the end of October.
  • TRAIL WORK
    Avoiding sensitive areas and guiding visitors to stay on designated routes and established trails. Trail maintenance and restoration as needed.

 

How should I plan ahead?
FBRHR Field Team Volunteers must have some experience with, and be prepared for, back-country primitive day trips and/or camping. You are responsible for getting yourself to and from the Visitor's Center in Gerlach, NV. You must also bring all the water, food and shelter (tent/blankets/camp-gear) you will need for your visit. Volunteers may also bring your own mask, recommended as protection in dust storms which are common in the Black Rock Desert. Keep in mind, the Empire Store will be closing July 2020. The closest markets are in Fernley, Reno/Sparks or Cedarville (about 100 miles from Gerlach). Restaurants in Gerlach are open at this time.

FBRHR Field Team staff and volunteers are expected to follow CDC guidelines, avoiding large groups and maintaining social distance while in town and in the Field. For this reason, the number of people in the field truck at a time is limited to 4 (including driver). 

What will Friends of Black Rock High Rock provide?
Friends of Black Rock High Rock will provide water, maps and transportation in the NCA (volunteers must get themselves to/from Gerlach) along with gloves, hand sanitizer, first aid kits and tools (magnet rake, shovel, etc.) as may be needed for site clean up or restoration.  An example of Field Work: safely dispersing a non-established fire ring, raking out charcoals, packing out any trash. 

How else can I help?
Support this work, even if you're not able to be in the Black Rock Desert with us, by making a donation. Friends of Black Rock High Rock is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization.

Email info@blackrockdesert.org if you have questions or would like more information regarding this volunteer opportunity. Thank you! 

August 8, 2020
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