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Wilderness Stewards Wanted to Help Preserve the Wild
Wednesday, May 18, 2022


Want to work on behalf of the wilderness?

The ICL Wilderness Stewards Program is accepting applications for its 2022 team.

Stewards patrol local wilderness areas as an extra set of hands, eyes and ears for land management agencies who have seen their resources depleted in recent years.

In past years they have decommissioned abandoned campfires they’ve come across, noted noxious weeds that needed to be pulled, trucked out an entire kitchen someone had set up in the wilderness and removed parts from old motorcycle s abandoned near mountain lakes. They also have been able to educate fellow hikers and backpackers about how to treat the wilderness with respect.

Wilderness stewards hit the trail on their own time. Since 2016 223 stewards have completed 858 patrols, naturalized 489 backcountry campfire rings, engaged with 13,767 trail users about Leave No Trace principles and completed 30-plus certifications in Wilderness First Aid training.

Sometimes, they have participated in citizens science project, such as testing water. Some have also  monitored dark sky levels.

The Idaho Conservation League provides training, work gloves, a trash collection kit and other swag.

New activities this year will include post-holiday backcountry campfire sweeps, group education opportunities, and other conservation activities and trailhead engagement with partner organizations.

Until now patrollers have canvassed the Sawtooth and Salmon-Challis National Forests. But this year a pilot program is being implemented in the Payette National Forest.

Those wishing to take part should apply by May 20. An informational Zoom workshop will be held at 6 p.m. April 26. To learn more visit

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