End-Of-Season Portfolios

After each season, the Rocky Mountain Conservancy compiles reflections from crew members, data about work completed, and photos of the season to create End-of-Season portfolios for the Conservation Corps and High School Leadership Corps.

These portfolios provide a glimpse into the experience these program provide and the valuable work the crews complete. Check out the 2018 End-of-Season Portfolios below:

2018 Conservation Corps Portfolio

2018 High School Leadership Corps Portfolio

National Public Lands Day 2018

On National Public Lands Day, the Rocky Mountain Conservancy hosted 32 volunteers for a litter clean-up at Beaver Point in Rocky Mountain National Park (just outside the Beaver Meadows Entrance).

In less than two hours, volunteers collected over 160 lbs of trash from the area. This included construction materials, vehicle parts, abandoned camping gear, cigarette butts, and lots of plastic containers and wrappers!


Volunteers ready to go collect some trash!


Volunteers proud of their work and the impact on public lands!

National Public Lands Day is a nationwide celebration of OUR public lands. On the third Saturday in September, thousands of individuals across the country get out and celebrate public lands through volunteer projects, community events, and recreational offerings! On top of all of this, it is a fee-free day at most public land sites, making it a great opportunity for everyone to get out and enjoy these beautiful places!

National Day of Service and Remembrance

The Conservation Corps season may be over, but that doesn’t mean the Conservancy has wrapped up its field season!

Today, Conservancy staff and local volunteers joined the Rocky Mountain National Park Wildland Fire Crews to complete some fire fuels reduction. The project was organized on the National Day of Service and Remembrance to honor the 9/11 victims, survivors, and those who rose up in service in response to the attacks.

The project focused on reducing the fuel load available for future wildfires. The work included collecting downed limbs and trees, previously cut by NPS staff, into slash piles (see photos). These piles are constructed during the summer and fall and then burned during the winter, when the conditions are correct. These projects remove potentially hazardous fuels from areas close to roads, trail heads, and campgrounds. By removing the fuel, volunteers are helping protect wildland firefighters from erratic fire behavior caused by excessive fuel loads and ladder fuels, which allow low-intensity ground fires to move up into trees.

Today, September 11, 2018, eight volunteers joined National Park Service fire crews and completed 10 slash piles. Each of which held more than 2000 cubic feet of fuel. Check out photos from the project below:

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-Geoff Elliot (Director of Conservation)

Winter Updates

As the winter wind settles into Estes Park, we are working through our preparations for the 2018 season!

That being said, before we look forward to next summer, I wanted to share a Story Map created by one of our 2017 Conservation Corps Crew Members, Ally Gustafson. Ally created the map as part of her internship requirement as she prepares to graduate from Colorado State University’s Warner College of Natural Resources with a degree from from the Human Dimensions of Natural Resources Department. The map provide a unique visual perspective on the geographic scope of the Conservation Corps’ impact during the 2017 season. Check out the map and project highlights at the following link:¬†RMC-CC Project Story Map – 2017.

Now, let’s take a look at 2018!

First and foremost, we are excited to announce the 2018 application for crew leader and crew member positions are live as of 12:00PM on December 1, 2017 (TODAY). Be sure to share this opportunity with anyone interested in learning about the outdoors, natural resource management, and conservation work. Crew members need NO previous experience, just a desire to learn and a strong work ethic! Follow the link below for more information: https://rmconservancy.org/learn-us/rocky-mountain-conservation-corps/

Secondly, we are pleased to share that we are transitioning into becoming an AmeriCorps program. This transition will allow us to provide a greater benefit to our Conservation Corps interns in the form of an Education Award that can be applied to tuition, student loans, and other qualified educational expenses. This will allow participants to better utilize the educational benefits of the internship depending on their particular educational goals.

Lastly, as we gear up for 2018, follow our “Photo of the Season” series on Facebook and Instagram. Each installation features a photo from the 2017 season selected by a corps member with a brief description of their selection!

I’ll leave you with a photo of a recent ski trip in Rocky Mountain National Park…

Ski trip

The season has officially changed in Rocky. Photo taken on November 17, 2017.

-Geoff Elliot, Conservation Corps Manager

End-Of-Season Wrap-Up

With the 2017 Conservation Corps season a month behind us, the Conservancy has had a chance to compile some of the data from the season and reflect on our successes and lessons learned. Most notably, we are excited to share our 2017 End-Of-Season Portfolio, recapping the experience of the crews, work completed, and individual reflections from the season. To view the portfolio, visit 2017 End-Of-Season Portfolio.

Over the course of the twelve week season, the Conservancy hosted 36 conservation corps interns spread across six crews. All in all, the crews contributed over 12,000 hours of volunteer service on public lands. This service equates to $289,680 contributed to the National Park Service and USDA Forest Service in Northern Colorado. During these hours on-the-ground, the crews:

  • Maintained 225 miles of trail
  • Cleared 1,452 downed trees from trail
  • Repaired or installed 1,110 drain structures
  • Built 28 check steps
  • Constructed 2.7 miles of trail
  • Constructed or repaired ten stream crossings
  • Replaced 267 feet of turnpike (raised trail through wet areas)
  • Planted 2,480 native plants
  • Decommissioned more than 1,000 feet of social trail
  • Rebuilt a 1,200 square foot deck
  • Moth-Balled a historic structure by creating 25 window coverings
  • Refinished the exteriors of five cabins
  • Installed 50 bear boxes for campsites

In addition, the young adults developed leadership skills, learned about the natural and cultural history of the Rocky Mountains, and gained valuable jobs skills and career resources to help propel them forward in their academic and professional careers.

To see a brief recap of the season, view our slideshow at 2017 End-Of-Season Recap.

As we work through the off-season, stay tuned for posts of Corps members’ reflections and photos from the summer!

Applications for 2017 are LIVE!

Are you looking for an opportunity to give back to the environment by completing conservation work in the beautiful Colorado Rockies? Do you know someone who might be?


If so, this is the opportunity for you! The Rocky Mountain Conservancy – Conservation Corps has posted applications for the 2017 season. The Conservation Corps provides youth (ages 18-23) with an opportunity to spend a summer living in Northern Colorado gaining skills and an understanding of on-the-ground conservation methods alongside the National Park Service and USDA Forest Service!


This is a great opportunity for anyone who enjoys the outdoors, is interest in conservation-related careers, or just wants to do something unique and fun during the summer. During the season, youth are enrolled as interns and provided with on-the-job skills training, leadership development opportunities, and educational programming to empower interns for future success.


To find out more about this great opportunity, check out https://rmconservancy.org/learn-us/rocky-mountain-conservation-corps/.