Habitat Restoration Kayaking Expeditions
Sixteen high school students from Valdez, Tatitlek, Whittier, Girdwood and Anchorage spent 10 days traveling by kayak, and working alongside US Forest Service biologists to restore habitats in remote parts of western Prince William Sound. Students get hands-on experience with invasive species management, and visit remote campsite locations where they participate in design and ‘hardening’ efforts to establish proper camps that don’t harm the environment. Wilderness and leadership skills are explicitly taught; exploration and fun are naturally generated. Students volunteers for these expedition are coming from Whittier, Ancorage, Valdez, Taitlek, and Chenega Bay. Partners include the Chugach National Forest, Chugach School District, REI, Alaska Pacific University, and Anchorage School District, with additional contributions and discounts from kayaking and outdoor gear companies.
Prince William Sound Marine Stewardship Expedition
Now in its fourth year, this eight-day boat-based expedition takes place aboard the vessel Babkin. The focus is on learning about environmental change in Prince William Sound. Students explored the unique marine and temperate rainforest ecosystems of the Sound, investigating oil spill recovery and prevention, and the impacts of marine plastic debris on the marine and coastal habitats of this region. They also honed outdoor skills, created multi-media projects to document their experiences, and worked as a team with peers from different rural and urban communities. Students for this expedition came together from Cordova, Valdez, Chenega Bay, Anchorage, and Homer. Partners who make this expedition possible include the Chugach National Forest, Prince William Sound RCAC, Center for Alaska Coastal Studies, Gulf of Alaska Keepers, and Babkin Charters.
Ice Patch Expedition
2012 was the third year of a partnership between the Chugach National Forest and Kenaitze Tribe connecting teens from the Kenai Peninsula with US Forest Service archeologists, scientists, and recreation leaders to survey archeological resources being exposed by shringking ice patches in the far reaches of the Kenai Mountains.