Conservation Committee

The Yankee Doodle Lake Wetlands Restoration Project

This project was initiated and designed by the Boulder Ranger District of the Forest Service, in conjunction with several jeep clubs. It's purpose was to revegetate some motorized user-created trails and wetland damage adjacent to Yankee Doodle Lake, located near the Needle's Eye Tunnel on the Rollins Pass Road. The James Peak Wilderness borders on this area. The project involved building post-and-cable fencing to prevent further encrouchment by off-road vehicles into the wetland and onto user-created trails, then planting locally-collected willow cuttings to restore the original wetland and trail surfaces.

The project took place on Saturday August 26 and September 2nd of 2006. On the first Saturday, the Jeep Club volunteers and Forest Service personnel constructed the post-and-cable fence, and on the second Saturday, Forest Service personnel, eight Sierra Club volunteers, and a couple jeep club volunteers did the plantings. All in all it was a very enjoyable and well-planned project that will yield dividends to the sub-alpine natural environment along the Rollins Pass Road.

Here is an overview of the project area from the vicinity of the Needle's Eye Tunnel along the Rollins Pass Road. Yankee Doodle Lake is on the lower left of the photo, and the user-created trails span the middle of the photo.

This close-up of project area shows the user-created trails and mudhole, with the remaining wetlands to the left of the mudhole.

Jeep Club volunteers installing the post-and-cable fence Saturday, August 26th.

Preliminary work by a Forest Sevice backhoe to break up the compacted soil in and around the mudhole and trails.

Sierra Club volunteers and Forest Service personnel collecting willow cuttings for replanting on Septmber 2nd.

Sierra Club volunteers and Forest Service personnel spreading mulch and seed on the trail surfaces and planting willow cuttings at the endge of the mudhole.

Other volunteers planting willows along the vehicle-damaged stream channel downstream of the mudhole.

At the end of the day, this is what the mudhole area looked like. Hopefully, we will have additional (and greener) pictures at the end of next year's growing season!

The Sierra Club volunteer crew and Forest Service staff.

Thanks to Sierra Club Bill Ikler and his wife, Roz McClellan and her husband, Todd Sanford, Kirk Cunningham, and two other people whose names were not available for doing this work!

(Pictures courtesy of U.S. Forest Service)