Winds in the Wilderness

This week with the Friends of Scotchman Peaks Wilderness, Friends enjoyed a North Idaho Tree Identification Walk, The ‘Old Goat’ Awards and the State of the Scotchman’s 2014 with Heather ‘Anish’ Anderson, and began the first of two sessions in the second year of our Volunteer Training Program.

Naturalist and Orienteering trainer John Harbuck is an FSPW Guided Hike Leader, Citizen Scientist, and accomplished Huckleberry Picker.


On Sunday, May 11th, vounteer John Harbuck led a group of interested folks in a tree identification walk.  Participants learned some basic tree identification characteristics, and nearly all tree species common to North Idaho were keyed throughout the event utilizing dichotomous keys.  Everyone enjoyed additional bonuses such as nice spring weather and early spring wildflowers during the day’s event.  After the tree ID session, hikers retired for conversation and picnic-style sack lunches.  Thanks John, for sharing your space, knowledge, and enthusiasm with everyone!

The State of the Scotchman’s, V. 2014, was held this past Wednesday.  It was an inspiring evening honoring great volunteers and partners in our conservation work, naming the ‘Old Goat’ of 2013, and hearing the incredible journey of one very strong, determined, and grateful young women who set the speed record for the 2650 mile Pacific Crest Trail.

The 2013 "Old Goat"
The 2013 “Old Goat”


Irv McGeachy was named the ‘Old Goat’ of 2013, due to his astute dedication to restoration of the historic Star Pear Trail.  Joel Sather of the USFS was honored with an award for his diligence and commitment as a faithful partner for stewardship of the proposed wilderness.  Celeste and Eric Grace won awards as well for their outstanding accomplishments in volunteerism throughout 2013 and beyond. After awards and updates, Heather ‘Anish’ Anderson began her presentation for ‘Tenacious: Setting the Unsupported Speed Record for Hiking the PCT.”  The audience was moved with Heather’s compelling saga of hiking an average of 45 miles a day, setting and sticking to challenging personal goals, overcoming lifelong fears and struggles, and being blessed with the good sense to follow her heart.  Thanks to Heather, Irv, Joel and the Grace’s, all our board members, volunteers and partners, and most of all our amazing community of Friends for making it a fantastic evening!

Imagine finding THESE folks in the woods!
Imagine finding THESE folks in the woods!

On Friday, Volunteer WRFA Instructor and FSPW Board Member Carol Jenkins taught a CPR/AED certification class prerequisite to students in preparation for the Wilderness and Remote First Aid Course taking place over the weekend. 5 new program participants arrived and have been undergoing WFRA training throughout the weekend, and five more will begin their certification next week.  This is the second year our organization has worked to offer this unique Volunteer Training Program.  Preparing our Stewardship, Citizen Scientist, and Guided Hike volunteers in emergency response practices increases our safety and competency performing boots-on-the-ground work and activities for maintaining the health and recreational vitality of our wilderness landscape.  Thanks Carol and all our program participants for making this endeavor a success!

544897_10150340025764978_1338872658_nWRFA training continues into next week.  Read about all over activities and more in the newest addition of Peak Experience, our bimonthly newsletter whose most recent addition hit the shelves this week.

Until next weekend, keep wild one and all!





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