My name is Andrew and I am a returning intern from last summer here at Starker Forests. After such a great summer last year learning so many new things, I decided I would return to the crew and continue to gain valuable experience in the field. A little background on me is that I am originally from Molalla, Oregon, and I am about to enter my senior year of college at Oregon State University to finish my Forest Engineering degree.
This summer, I started my first day back by heading out to the woods to cruise a recently thinned stand and was able to meet and work with Nic, one of the new interns from this year.
On Tuesday, the entire intern crew and part of the office staff got to partake in one of my favorite experiences Starker offers – the annual tour. Part of what makes this so special and unique is getting to go into the field as a group and hear about what each forester does at Starker to ensure the land is managed to the highest standards. During this year’s tour, we were able to see everything from active thinning and cable logging operations to culvert improvements for fish passage and the importance of broadcast and pile burning for seedling regeneration.
In the remaining days of week 1, the focus turned to fire training and ensuring all the necessary equipment needed to fight fires is in working order. With fire season starting last week, we brought all three Starker fire trucks out as well as water pumps to test. After making sure everything was working well, we transitioned into learning progressive hose laying as if we were surrounding an actual fire and used this as a good opportunity to spray down some trees in a freshly planted clearcut. The week closed out with working one more time on laying fire hose and digging out an old burned slash pile to ensure there was no longer any heat remaining underground.
Week two brings the excitement of attending a fire training class at ODF!