White Mountain TrACS: The Beginning….Hitch 1 Report

White Mountain TrACS
Hitch 1 Report
Androscoggin District – Direttissima Trail, Raymond Path, Glen Boulder Trail
6/1½012 – 6/14/2012
Total miles TrAC-ed: 4
Total miles hiked: 14.4
Total service hours: 120
Prepared by Alice P. Webber

Monday, June 11, 2012:
Monday marked the White Mountain TrACS team’s first official service day in the field! After two weeks of SCA training in Seattle, and one week of TrACS training in New Hampshire, Alice, Eben and David were ready to hit the ground TrAC-ing. They met agency contact Jake Lubera, Assistant Ranger of the Androscoggin District, in the early morning at his office to exchange supplies, information, and hellos. The team spent their morning preparing the safety features of the internship; creating the Job Hazard Analysis document, the Emergency Response Plan, locked into the USFS radio communication system, and became acquainted with their first trail, The Direttissima.
The afternoon began and ended at the trailhead. Eager to do follow the no. 1 lessen of TrACS training, “Collect the right information the first time,” the team set a sustainable pace that allowed for productivity and education. The successful first day of TrACS completed .74 miles of data collection, as well as countless opportunities of absorbing new information.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012:
After a bowl or two of oatmeal, the team was ready to begin their first full day in the field. They returned to The Direttissima Trail and completed the final ¼ mile within an hour and half. First trail successfully TrACed! A brief stint in the Androscoggin District office followed their hike out to review their data, as well as prepare for their next trail: Raymond Path.
A great thanks to the Mt. Washington Auto Rd. for allowing the team special access to the trail heads. 2 miles up the Auto rd. at Old Jackson Rd. Trail and the team hit Raymond Path head on. The afternoon totaled 1.2 miles of Raymond Path TrACed.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012:
Back up the Auto Rd. to complete Raymond Path. Today was the first day that the team faced of the hairy challenge of “TrACing in the Rain,” and thankfully they were prepped with a few precious “Rite in the Rain” forms. This was also the first day that the team applied the practice of combining multiple features into a singular section, and just recording the mile post of each individual feature. This saves time, and very much paper. Neither the rain nor the river crossings could slow the team down now. By 12:30 the team reached the ending termini of Raymond Path, having completed TrACing the final 1.2 miles of trail. A few moments at the end of the day were spent reviewing the collected data to make sure everything was correct before handing in the information to the USFS, as well as prepping for their next adventure.

Thursday, June 14, 2012:
Taking Jake’s advice to exploit the day’s beautiful weather, the team decided to begin TrACing Glen Boulder Trail. The trail rises in elevation quickly and comes out above tree-line within 1.5 miles with exposure to weather and expansive views, including the one and only Glen Boulder. The team spent the entirety of the day in the field, TrACing drainages, up and over rock staircase after rock staircase, and climbed out of tree-line by early afternoon. They saw and recorded new features, such as rock cairns and talus fields, and ended the day strong at 1.6 miles TrACed. The hike down caused s couple “jelly-knees,” and a nice long sit back at base camp was the perfect way to begin the weekend.