BLM California News.bytes 
News.bytes Extra, issue 515

Youth Corps Teams to restore America's Great Outdoors

An influx of 24 student interns from the American Conservation Experience (ACE) - Public Lands Restoration Youth Corps Team - descended on the BLM's El Centro Field Office to spend time restoring the desert of impacts caused by illegal off-highway vehicle activity. (text continues below)

a group poses in the desert
The East Desert Youth Corps Team with Picacho Peak in the background.

Working in two distinct groups, and covering three separate areas, the young adults are tasked with restoring closed routes to their natural condition. Fourteen interns will tackle both the East Mesa and Yuha Desert area, with the remaining ten working on routes off of Hyduke Mine and Indian Pass Roads. The project in the East Desert represents El Centro's first large-scale restoration effort within the Northern and Eastern Colorado Desert Coordinated Management Plan area. Restoration efforts in the East Mesa and Yuha Desert have been ongoing for years.

The work is possible through a California OHV Restoration (green sticker) grant awarded to the El Centro Field Office for just this reason. Previously closed routes with recent OHV impacts encourage further illegal activity and damage. The landscape is restored by physically erasing impacts through raking, vegetation, natural barriers, etc., using only hand tools. Visitors are reminded to travel only on designated routes of travel; cross-country travel is not permitted in these areas.

For more information, or to obtain Routes of Travel maps for Eastern Imperial County (available) and Western Imperial County (pending), please contact the BLM's El Centro Field Office at 760-337-4400, or visit our web page at www.blm.gov/ca/elcentro.

another group poses in the desert
The West Desert Youth Corps Team poses in the East Mesa.


- Joya Szalwinski, interpretive park ranger, BLM El Centro Field Office/Imperial Sand Dunes Recreation Area (Jan. 20, 2012)

BLM-California News.bytes, issue 515 -- To subscribe to News.bytes, send an e-mail to: mailto:Join-Newsbytes@List.ca.blm.gov OR visit our News.bytes subscription page.