May 4, 2018
Ron Hardin, a heavy equipment instructor at Shasta College in Redding, Calif., tells third-graders from Columbia Elementary School near Redding what a fire bulldozer is used for at logging sites.
Schoolchildren from around Northern California had a unique field trip this week -- a chance to watch an actual logging operation in action.
Some 800 kids from elementary through high school toured the Sierra Pacific Industries-managed site near Viola, Calif., over a two-day period May 1-2. They stopped at 16 stations and listened as industry pros told them how various pieces of equipment worked and also taught them about such efforts as water quality control, fire prevention and forest replanting.
The field trip is hosted each year by organizers of the Sierra Cascade Logging Conference in Anderson, Calif., in February. A similar day in the woods is slated for May 10 in the University of California-Berkeley's Blodgett Forest in Georgetown, Calif.
For both the Viola and Georgetown events, the conference provides transportation funding to schools. The events are among many held throughout the year to attract young people to the timber industry.
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