WSU's restoration ecology class came to the North Cascades Basecamp for an overnight on their 3-day eastern Washington field trip to discuss beavers as restoration specialists. Steve and I took them into the field and hosted an evening presentation to show and talk to the students about beavers and their amazing ability to restore wetland habitat for a host of wildlife species. The Methow Beaver Relocation Project was very interesting to these amateur biologists.
The Methow Valley Community School 3-4th graders were at the Basecamp for their outdoor education day and helped hang songbird-sized birdhouses throughout the upper portion of the property. We decided not to put any in the lower wetland and cedar grove areas because there is so much habitat already available to our cavity nesters. The true need was on the grounds near our infrastructure. We took note to hang the boxes on trees where disturbance is minimal, they can be seen easily from the hot tub, cabin and lodge breakfast areas, and adjacent to our home/garden. We placed them on the south to east side of the trees where the sunshine can warm their cold little bodies early in the mornings on these still so chilly nights.
The glacier lilies are blooming around the Basecamp! It is fun for us to watch the transformation from winter snow, to first flowers, and onto spring bloom. This is the season last year when we spent a fair amount of time on the property, before we made the jump to ownership. This is also how the glacier lily, a favorite of our family, became the logo for our new business venture.
The garden beds are finally snow free except for the flurries that whiten them for a mere 20 minutes each day. And the garlic is up! This is exciting since it is the first vegetable to live in our new garden space at the Basecamp. To give the garlic a good spring start, I am giving them a side dressing of compost and mulching the shoots with fresh straw we have been saving for the spring. The raised beds we are creating with recycled 2x6 wood we have scavenged. This garlic with be a loved by many a guest in in many a dish at the Lodge this winter.