High Lakes Fence Pull

Greg Burke   Website


John Cunningham, ONDA member and volunteer

John Cunningham, ONDA member and volunteer

Restoration is hard slow work. It takes hold, or it doesn’t, in fits and starts. The immensity of the need can be discouraging, but we must carry on. I am so thankful ONDA carries on.


Aaron Tani, Sage Society Member

Aaron Tani, Sage Society Member

“It feels good to support ONDA on a monthly basis, because I know they never stop supporting our public lands. ONDA works to help make our lands a better place for the future, and I feel like I’m a part of that every month with my support.”


The Land Between: The Greater Hart-Sheldon Region

The Land Between: The Greater Hart-Sheldon Region

Organizer: Jeremy Austin

Start Date: 5/23/2019

End Date: 5/26/2019

Region: Greater Hart-Sheldon Region

Difficulty Rating: 4 out of 5

Maximum Group Size: 15 participants

About the place

The High Lakes area is located to the east of the Warner Valley and directly south of Hart Mountain National Antelope Refuge.  Located on a large plateau dotted with intermittent lakes and playas, the area is part of an important regional migration corridor for pronghorn and other wildlife and contains some of the greatest concentrations of rock art in North America, some dating to more than 7,000 years old. The project area lies within the High Lakes Area of Critical Environmental Concern (ACEC), a nearly 40,000 acre management unit designated to protect the unique cultural, botanical and wildlife values in the area.

About the stewardship work

Obsolete barbed wire fences present barriers to wildlife movement and fragment landscapes. ONDA has worked for decades to help remove obsolete fences from Oregon’s high desert.

This project will involve the removal of a temporary exclosure fence that is no longer needed.  Much of the fence is in a dilapidated state and is already on the ground.

Taking apart barbed wire fence is scratchy, hot, dusty work… and incredibly satisfying. The work involves using hand tools to remove clips holding barbed wire to posts, rolling up barbed wire, and using a hand-operated post-puller to remove the metal fence posts. There is ample opportunity to choose specific tasks that match your fitness level and interest and to switch tasks throughout the day. We take frequent breaks and encourage folks to work at a sustainable pace. No experience is necessary; we can teach all you need to know.


Trip timeline

  • Thursday, May 23, 10 a.m:  We will meet the Lakeview Bureau of Land Management at the District Office in Lakeview. Volunteers will park their cars there and then we will all shuttle to our campsite. Once at camp, we will set up tents and discuss the weekend plan.
  • Friday, May 24: We will leave camp around 8 a.m. and make the short walk to our worksite. At the project site we will conduct a brief training and safety talk before a full day of pulling fence.  Plan to arrive back in camp around 4 p.m.
  • Saturday, May 25: Similar to the day before, we will leave camp at 8 a.m. and head to our work site for another day of fence removal.
  • Sunday, May 26: After a morning breakfast we will pack up and head back home. For those interested in spending more time in the area, we can organize group side trips and hikes.


We will be camping near our project site in a primitive camp setting with no amenities. Due to the high clearance access road, ONDA and the BLM will be shuttling volunteers into camp. Please plan accordingly and pack your camping gear and essentials to facilitate a seamless shuttle process. Further details will be provided to participants in the logistics email sent out three weeks prior to the trip departure date.


Some heavy lifting, car camping, and tasks associated with barbed wire fence removal. Volunteers will be able to choose tasks that fit their ability level and there will be plenty of opportunities for pacing and sharing of work tasks during the day.

Participant responsibility

Participants are responsible for their own food and food preparation, day pack and camping gear as well as transportation to and from Lakeview. Sturdy off-trail ankle-high boots are recommended for this trip.

Gear provided

ONDA will provide tools for the work, leadership and a number of group camp items to make things more comfortable such as a few chairs, a cook table, and sun/rain tarp. ONDA and the BLM will provide transportation to the work site from the BLM’s office in Lakeview.


An ONDA registration application and medical form are required for this trip. Check the box next to each trip you would like to attend. You only need to fill this form out once per year.

 Apply Now

What happens next?

You will receive a confirmation email within 10 working days of submitting your form. The confirmation email will provide information regarding which trips you are on the “participant list” for, and which trips are full, and therefore you have been placed on the “waitlist.”

Six weeks before the start of the trip, the trip leader will send out an RSVP to make sure everyone is still able to participate. Based on RSVPs, open spaces will be backfilled with people from the waitlist.

Three weeks before the trip start date, registered and confirmed participants will receive driving instructions, maps, carpooling options, and additional information in an email sent by the trip leader

If you have any questions in the meantime, please don’t hesitate to contact the trip leader.