Monday, July 15, 2013

The Great Wall of Tamarisk

So maybe I’ve never seen the Great Wall of China, but I believe that now I’ve seen something that surely must match it in its grandeur, and what better name to refer to this something than by the Great Wall of Tamarisk. This was my second journey to Death Valley. What the first hitch provided in regards to downtime and adventurous opportunities, this hitch made up for with sweat, blood and achy muscles. Each day began with a half hour hike over sand dunes, mud, and puff dirt until we arrived at the Amargosa River – Death Valley’s only river. From there we’d look out over the previous days’ progress which was made evident by the growing line of tamarisk slash pulled up on the upper banks. When, at the beginning of the hitch, our supervisor walked out with us all that she wanted us to accomplish by the end of the week, I think that all of our hearts sunk into our stomachs a bit as we all realized that the feat she was asking of us seemed an impossible one to take on. But our chainsaws were strong and our will was stronger, and each day giant clusters of the stubborn plant fell victim to our wrath. Half way through day seven, the 532nd and final tree was mowed down, marking the completion of that goal which 6 days previously seemed so impossible to reach. That didn’t stop us. We keep on going like the freaking Energizer bunny. MACC crew, out.

p.s. Camping, good.

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