2018 San Bernardino Forestry Challenge

Coalinga High School students studied vegetation management at YMCA Camp Whittle at the 2018 San Bernardino Forestry Challenge. Front row, left to right: Gabrielle Mahfood, Jessica Bailey. Back row, left to right: Valeria Ramos, Kayla Voss, Wyatt Thames, Demetrios Ramirez, Jennifer Lucero (advisor)

Green Valley Lake, CA — Six students from Coalinga High School participated recently in the 2018 San Bernardino Forestry Challenge, one group of a total of 99 high school students from 13 schools from the So Cal area.  The event was November 7 to 10 at Green Valley Lake Christian Camp, near Green Valley Lake, California.  Coalinga participated with two teams in the event.

Student Worker
Coalinga High School sophomore Demetrios Ramirez practices using a compass, one of the many skills learned at the 2018 San Bernardino Forestry Challenge.

One of the highlights for the students this year was the opportunity to visit YMCA Camp Whittle in Fawnskin to collect data on the forested portion of the property.  A fuels reduction project will be conducted on the property in the next few months with the primary goal of reducing wildfire severity.  Students used their data to determine if the upcoming project will meet the landowner’s objectives.  During the Challenge, teams of students also completed field training, followed by a field test, to assess their technical forestry knowledge and data collecting skills.

“The Forestry Challenge is a completely unique opportunity to allow students to learn and apply real-life skills in the outdoors. This is valuable to educating the coming generation about conservation and resource management to keep our earth healthy,” said Coalinga High School teacher Jennifer Lucero.  Jessica Bailey, a junior at Coalinga, summed it up as follows:  “The Forestry Challenge is really fun, and I learned so much at the same time. This experience is so unique and I definitely would go again.”