Conservation Journal: Meghan

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.

December 18, 2017


Welcome welcome welcome wintertime! My favorite season made a beautiful appearance last week with two separate snowstorms, the first one dropping just a few inches, and then Tuesday brought somewhere around 10 inches. Becca and I had the privilege of learning how to plow that night, I’m sure you already heard about it from her because it’s definitely her new favorite activity. I really enjoyed it as well – although my back was definitely very sore the next morning from shoveling the entire front parking lot, back deck, and several other areas. Because it gets so hot in the truck while plowing – I was wearing shorts and a t-shirt – and got quite a lot of stares in Golden Pond during our snack break. It was an awesome feeling to stand in the parking lot of Chamberlin Reynolds in the above-mentioned outfit – plus my trusty LL Bean boots, in the darkness with light snow falling (it was the tail end of the storm).

The arrival of winter has also brought several less-awesome/more-frustrating moments, most of them revolving around the beloved boat Calypso. It’s been a daily duty for the last few weeks to drive Calypso out of the cove and back, maintaining a channel through the ice. This often involves the very large metal ice-breaker, and sometimes the canoe paddles, sometimes a little forward-reverse-forward action (“ramming”) – but generally, we are successful. Before a couple days ago, the hardest part was backing the boat perfectly up to the dock. So cue the tumultuous times.

On Tuesday, during the torrential snowstorm, Ben and Maggie made a very valiant effort to get the boat out, but they were unsuccessful. On Wednesday morning I went to shovel off Calypso’s deck and discovered that repeatedly dropping the anchor off the front of the boat did a decent job at breaking the ice. So after lunch, Connor, Erin, Ben and I decided to make an attempt, and it went horrendously. Apparently it was a great source of entertainment for everyone at both SLA and SLCS. The ice was approximately 3 inches thick, and after an hour we had gone roughly 30 feet. Dropping and pulling that anchor back up is remarkably exhausting. And then we had the alarming realization that we couldn’t even get the boat into reverse (we need to replace the shifter cable apparently). So we had to kill the engine, and paddle the boat back to the dock. I’m sure it was quite a funny scene. Calypso is still in the water, and the very cold temperatures these past few days have definitely made the ice much thicker. I’ve been told that boat removal will now involve a chainsaw – which sounds pretty fun. Stay tuned for more winter adventures!

Meghan is from Sleepy Hollow, California. She graduated from Dartmouth College with a degree in environmental studies. Click here to read Meghan's bio.