Salmo Lookout Restoration 2016 - Passport in Time

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Current Projects > 2016
Washington - Colville NF
Closed! Salmo Lookout Restoration

20150603_125347_hdr.jpg by USDA Forest Service/Stuart Chilvers
Salmo Lookout in 2015

July 18-22; August 15-19, 2016

Must commit to one entire session; may participate in more

Join us on the Colville NF this July and August as we celebrate the 50th anniversary of the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966! Our celebration will involve "reconstructing the past” to save and preserve an iconic fire lookout. The Salmo Lookout was built in 1964, and is an "R-6 Flat Cab"-type structure, built on wooden tower. It sits at an elevation of 6800’ (a.s.l.), and commands an impressive view of the Salmo-Priest Wilderness and the snow-covered peaks of the Selkirk Mountains. It was last staffed full-time as a fire lookout in the mid-1970s and, although largely disused since, still functions as originally intended intermittently when thunderstorms roll through the region in the summer. Its summit is a popular viewpoint for visitors to the area, who can see, without obstruction, vast, rugged wilderness, two states and one Canadian province. The adjacent wilderness is the home of wildlife such as grizzly bear and moose, and of the last woodland caribou herd in the ‘Lower 48.

Although out of regular use for years, and victim to time and the elements, there is a strong desire on the part of locals and the Forest Service to preserve this 52-year-old structure. Therefore, this year with your help, we will put this building and its commanding views back “on the map.” PIT volunteers and FS staff will repair and paint this structure until it shines like new. This will require a number of tasks, including (but probably not limited to): replacing severely checked or rotten timbers, removing old paint (and then re-painting), repairing the door and replacing missing and damaged hardware, reinstalling repaired window sashes and glass, and installing a new floor. It will be sweaty, dirty work, and will certainly be detail oriented, but also a lot of fun! What's more, you will be able to say that you helped breathe life back into one of the Colville National Forest's most scenic and long-lived lookouts – we hope to see you this summer!

Number of openings: 8 (4 per session)

Special skills: Must be physically capable of lifting/bending/kneeling/standing/stooping for extended periods (~8 hours) each day in a variety of weather conditions; previous carpentry, roofing, construction, painting, general maintenance, and/or historic building restoration experience helpful, but not required

Minimum age: 16 years old, under 18 with a responsible adult

Facilities: Volunteers will be (tent) camping in Gypsy Meadow, a dispersed camping area adjacent to Sullivan Creek; pit toilet; showers and potable water provided; secondary location can also be arranged if needed at East Sullivan Lake Campground (~12.5 miles away); improved amenities; water and toilet facilities; tent and RV camping available; fees may apply, and amenities vary from site-to-site; Ione and Metaline Falls are full-service communities with hotels/motels, restaurants, and a range of other amenities; volunteers responsible for own lodging/camping equipment, meals, and daily transportation to designated meeting area in Gypsy Meadow; transportation to and from lookout and Gypsy Meadow can be provided by the Forest Service

Nearest towns: Metaline Falls, 24 miles; Ione, 34 miles; Salmo, BC, 50 miles

Applications due: June 6, 2016

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