Death Valley National Park: Phenology ROCKS

Death Valley National Park's Phenology ROCKS unites camping with phenology activities to teach youth the impacts of climate change on desert.

For five years Death Valley ROCKS, a three-day, two-night, standards-based camping experience, introduced underserved youth in urban and rural gateway communities to National Parks. The NPS Pacific West Region completed its first year of a pilot citizen-science phenology monitoring program, the California Phenology Project, in which visitors observe and document major life history events in plants and animals, to detect subtle ecological shifts wrought by climate change

The Phenology ROCKS project united these two efforts, by incorporating phenology activities into ROCKS programs, engaging youth with the impacts of climate change on the desert landscape. As part of the National Park Foundation Ticket to Ride program, Phenology ROCKS also engaged 5th through 12th grade underserved youth from Las Vegas, Los Angeles, and surrounding gateway communities.