Conservation Journal: Connor

The Lakes Region Conservation Corps (LRCC) is an AmeriCorps service program that develops skills and experiences for conservation professionals. LRCC members are the driving force behind the Squam Lakes Association’s conservation efforts. The program provides hands-on conservation work experience and numerous certifications over a broad range of areas, which ensures that LRCC members are capable of independently approaching a variety of tasks in the environmental conservation field. Members remove invasive species from the Squam watershed, manage and act as caretakers at our backcountry campsites, maintain the SLA’s 50+ miles of trails, educate the public on local and regional conservation initiatives, spearhead reports on conservation efforts, lead SLA volunteer crews and ensure the daily functioning of the Squam Lakes Association’s programs. Click here to learn more about the LRCC program.

January 5, 2018


Well we can say that we survived the holidays on Squam despite the annoyingly-timed snow storms. It was my first time spending the holidays away from home, and I mostly spent my time removing snow from SLA-maintained facilities and locations. Nothing better than shoveling 6 inches of ice-covered snow. But I don’t want to complain about it, I’d rather like to focus on the positive aspects of the events. I’ve reestablished my plowing proficiencies and upgraded myself to a plowing Jedi master. I can do that because I said so. The final task in my leveling up process was probably the point in which I had to dig the plow out of the snow because I got the truck stuck. But whatever, now I know (and knowing is half the battle). It was also fairly enjoyable just to drive around the Lake between clearing out parking spaces for our trail network, even if the roads were a little snowy and slippery; it helped keep us awake. I would also be remiss if I didn’t mention the generosity of E.B. and his family for inviting Kyle and me over for Christmas Eve dinner. It was an awesome gesture and definitely made me feel more at home.

After Christmas day, I thought I deserved quite the break, so I spent nearly all of last Tuesday under the covers of my bed, watching cartoons with a heating pad on my back. It was pretty much everything I needed. But then I eventually decided to go back to work… on Thursday. The full time staff were still away, so it was a great time to do some painting in the offices, an activity I rather enjoy and find quite relaxing, mostly due to the fumes and lack of air circulation. But I kid again. And I again wonder why I didn’t take a before and after picture of the rooms, because I was pretty proud of how they turned out in the end. We often forget to do the same for sections of trails after we exclaim, “Wow, it looks so good!... Did anyone take a ‘before’ picture?” But now as I write this, the full time staff have returned, and the offices are not so quiet as they were the previous week. Actually, they might be a little more quiet because there isn’t the sound of my podcasts blaring as I paint offices.

Connor is from Sioux City, Iowa. He graduated from Saint John’s University in Minnesota with a degree in Biology. Click here to read Connor's bio.

Join Connor for a guided hike up Cotton and Livermore Mountains on January 16th. Learn more by clicking here.