One Last Blog Post From Carson City BLM

After spending eight months in Carson City working for the BLM I can say that I have learned a lot, I have met some awesome people, and I am ready to move on to something else. At times it was a lot of hard work, at times it was difficult to deal with exhausted and grumpy people in the field, and at times I felt like none of us knew what we were doing. However, these are the kinds of challenges that you are going to face over and over again throughout your life! Once you get over being uncomfortable and learn to work through whatever you’re facing, that’s when you really start growing as a person.
During my time here, I have gotten a lot of practice keying and verifying plants, and I learned lots of new techniques for classifying and quantifying environmental characteristics. I have gotten some serious practice with GIS and navigation in the field. I have a much clearer understanding of how the BLM functions and what they have to deal with every day.
Highlights: seeing a super cute bear cub, finding lots of obsidian arrowheads (even a 3” spearhead), plenty of beautiful scenery, and LOTS of good times with the great people I was working with.
For future interns: stay hydrated, keep a level head in the field at all times (no matter what the conditions), enjoy yourself, enjoy the great people, and enjoy the beautiful lands all around you!

A beautiful day for seed collection!

After two weeks in Carson City, NV I have experienced camping with the crew, HAF transects (a form of vegetation-based range monitoring), seed collection, and I’m getting to know Jepson (Key to higher plants of California) pretty well. My fellow interns have been welcoming and extremely helpful, and camping with them has been a delight! The days have been hot, as expected, and the nights have been refreshingly cool. I have already visited a variety of sites, from desert/sagebrush to subalpine, and have enjoyed each site in it’s own way.

I would have to say that seed collection has been my favorite activity so far. I put my headphones in and could spend the whole day collecting Achnatherum speciosum seeds (wonderful little feathery seeds!). Wandering throughout the sagebrush with various lizards sunning themselves and the occasional jack-rabbit, accompanied by the constant drone of cicadas, it is easy to forget that it is work (although the heat is an ever-present reminder).

I am happy to be learning plenty of new plants and excited for whatever experience is coming next!