Backpack for the Marmots: Olympic National ParkBackpack for the Marmots: Olympic National Park
Washington's National Park Fund is funding a project in Olympic National Park to observe marmots, and they need your help. This is an observational study that will send you to pre-determined locations in Olympic National Park where Olympic Marmots are known to have burrows.
Time commitment: 5 - 8 days, including 1 day of training in Port Angeles, WA.
Skill Level: Moderate - strenuous, ability to hike with a backpack and tent camp at elevations of 4,000 to 8,000 feet for 4-7 days. Ability to navigate off-trail using GPS and maps/compass.
Hiking Distances: Initial hike into backcountry of 5 - 15 miles. Daily hikes to study sites of 4-8 miles with some off-trail route finding in steep and rocky terrain. Expect elevation change of 1,000 - 2,000 feet per mile.
Gear required: Backcountry camping gear including backpack, tent, sleeping bag, safety equipment, appropriate clothes/boots, and food. Rain gear highly recommended. Good boots with ankle support and aggressive tread a must.
Gear provided: GPS, binoculars, and backcountry/wilderness permits.
Schedule: all trainings will be held on a Tuesday, with study work taking place Wednesday - Saturday OR Wednesday - Tuesday.
Dates: July 20 (training day), July 21-24 OR July 21-27 (hiking, camping, observing marmots)
July 27 (training day), July 28-31 OR July 28 - August 3 (hiking, camping, observing marmots)
August 3 (training day), August 4-7 OR August 4-10 (hiking, camping, observing marmots)
August 10 (training day), August 11-14 OR August 11-17 (hiking, camping, observing marmots)
August 17 (training day), August 18-21 OR August 18-24 (hiking, camping, observing marmots)
Group size: 2-12 people per group. Up to 7 groups can be simultaneously hiking to study sites.
If you are interested, please respond to Eleanor Kittleson, Executive Director of Washington's National Park Fund, with the date or dates you are available and the number of people in your group. Also provide name, address, telephone and email contact information for the primary person in the group, along with names of other participants, if known. This will be forwarded to the staff at Olympic National Park, who will follow up with you directly.