Dozens of volunteers braved frigid temperatures Saturday to help plant hundreds of trees and shrubs at the Steigerwald Lake National Wildlife Refuge.
It may have been chilly, but the Boy Scouts, Daisy Scouts and others who attended the joint effort between the Lower Columbia River Estuary Partnership and Columbia Gorge Refuge Stewards were happy to be greeted by sunny skies, instead of showers.
Volunteers have had to suffer through a number of rainy weekends as thousands of trees and shrubs have been planted during the past three months at the Washougal site including elderberry, dogwood, cottonwood, willows and wild rose. The purchase of the bare root trees and shrubs, and other costs such as staff time, was funded through grants from LCREP.
Another planting event will be held this Saturday, from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., at the refuge. Others could be held in April, according to Refuge Manager Jim Clapp.
“Planting during the winter is going to give all of these starts water for the next three months,” said Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife volunteer Andy Reid. “Because after April, there’s no guarantee as to how much water we’ll get.”