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Please select a link above for specific information, or read on for an overview of the WODC trails program.

Setting rock steps on the Kelley TrailHistory

Trail maintenance has been one of the core activities of the WODC since the Club's formation in 1892.  The WODC has long been recognized as a "Cooperator" by the USFS, which has ultimate authority over all trails in the WMNF.  In the 1970's, WODC members joined the new WMNF Adopt-A-Trail  program, each making a personal commitment to the maintenance of a specific WODC trail.  To this day, WODC Adopters remain the backbone of our trails program, performing the majority of regular maintenance.

As trail use has grown, so have erosion and other maintenance problems.  This lead to the formation of a cooperative trail crew operated by the Sandwich Range Conservation Association.  With funding from the USFS, WODC, and other organizations, the SRCA crew worked on several trail projects each summer, including two weeks on a specific WODC project.

The activities of the SRCA also contributed to a heightened awareness of trail stewardship, as well as promoting new maintenance techniques.  This spurred the Trails Committee to undertake ever more challenging volunteer trail restoration projects.  Dozens of such projects were completed during the 1990's, with over one thousand  hours of volunteer work contributed each year.  This proved to be good preparation for the ice storm of 1998, which required over 2000 hours of volunteer effort to clear all trails.

As the Club's trail experience grew, so did its awareness of maintenance challenges that were too lengthy or remote for a weekend crew, or even for a two week SRCA program.  The result is the current eleven week, full time trail crew, staffed with volunteer crew members recruited through the Student Conservation Association (SCA).  The crew is managed entirely by WODC members and volunteers who work directly with the crew on a daily basis.

Please click on one of the the links above for details on our current trail activities.

 

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