Arizona Elk Society's 5A Work Project

Once again Ryan and I found ourselves at the Arizona Elk Society's (AES) 5A Work Project.  We were two of over a hundred volunteers that came out this past weekend to help improve the habitat for animals in Arizona's GMU 5A.  Projects that people were assigned to this weekend included fence removal, putting up meadow enclosures, and piling up small trees that were cut down because they are encroaching into meadows and critical riparian areas.

After a hearty breakfast supplied by AES, Ryan and I were assigned to a team that was piling up dead trees in one of the local meadows to be burned after it dries out.  There were plenty of trees already cut down for us to pile up, and the AES sawyer crews got busy cutting down more trees.  We were later joined by a USFS fire crew who proceeded to make short work of even more trees.

The work was tough, but very satisfying to see how much of a difference it made in opening back up the meadows.  Ryan and I slept very well Saturday night after a day of working, and then a delicious steak dinner and root beer floats for dessert supplied by AES.

The highlight of the weekend though was when we were heading over to the edge of the rim to do some glassing Sunday morning before breakfast and we saw a cinnamon phased black bear off the side of the road, and then while glassing saw 3 additional bears, plus the 30-40 elk spotted down below us.  Seeing 4 bears that morning was very exciting.


Special thanks go out to the hard working volunteers at Arizona Elk Society.  They put on a great work camp and it is always a lot of fun!


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