Mt. Haggin

  • July 20, 2019
  • Posted by Jacob Beil

Mt Haggin is a super fund site found near Anaconda, Montana. Due to the over exploitation of the land, the Anaconda Copper Mining Company stripped the land of trees and leached heavy metals into the environment. This has led to melt water carving gullies in the mountainsides, instead of flowing more evenly across the landscape, as well as a killing off of native vegetation due to the heavy metal poisoning. Fortunately, heavy metal content in the soil has shown to be greatly reduced in recent years, though this is due to the metals being carried to other locations by the flowing water. This scarred landscape has become a haven for invasive and noxious weeds, such as white top and dalmatian toadflax. We sprayed for one day on a hillside in order to get practice for the bulk of our future work for the summer season.

Our hitch at Mt. Haggin mostly consisted of constructing Beaver Dam Analogues (BDA’s) and one day of spraying in order to prepare for the main bulk of our work for the summer. Building a BDA involves a chainsaw crew cutting down lodgepole pines and trimming the mid-sized lengths into stakes. These stake would then be hammered into the bottom of the stream beds, needles and smaller branches would be weaved around the stakes, and heavier logs would be place on top to keep it all weighted down. Over time the BDAs will catch sediment and cause the stream to fill out over its banks, preventing it from carving a gully into the landscape, and returning it to its more natural state.


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