Hike and help forests thrive; nonprofit asks citizen scientist help gather data in national forests

LAKE TAHOE, Calif. – Forests are naturally resilient to the threat of wildfires, invasive species, and disease outbreaks. However, climate change is increasing the severity and frequency of these disturbances, exacerbating disease and insect outbreaks, and putting forest regeneration at risk. Seed collection from wild, native trees is essential to replanting and reforestation.

Adventure Scientists’ Reforestation: Western U.S. project sends volunteers into national forests to survey conifer species for cone production. Their partner, Mast Reforestation, is seeking location and cone abundance data to inform their follow-up conifer seed collection and reforestation efforts. Mast Reforestation aims to build an accessible seedbank for the conifer forests of the Western U.S. suited for the anticipated seed migration needs of our changing climate.

Due to the limited monitoring season, Adventure Scientists’ are actively recruiting volunteers in California to venture into the following National Forests: Stanislaus, Eldorado, Sierra, Plumas, Tahoe, Inyo, Sequoia, Lassen, and Modoc.

This project offers flexible weekend or evening opportunities to collect data and only requires a pair of binoculars and a smartphone. Volunteers on the project will gain observation skills and applied experience in the field of natural science. The website offers more information on the project and how to sign up: Reforestation: Western U.S.

“I have volunteered for Adventure Scientists on numerous projects, and I really enjoy being able to give back while also being outdoors,” said Pam Hoult, from the Bay area and a current volunteer with the Reforestation: Western US project. “The Reforestation project is fun and easy, and working with Adventure Scientists gives us the impetus to explore new places as well as our tried and trusted favorites.”

Adventure Scientists is a Montana-based nonprofit that mobilizes the outdoor community to collect data for conservation research. Learn more at

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