High School Students Spend Summer Building Trails in the Wilderness


Student Conservation Association students; Sue Davendonis, Dominick Schiessel, Wynter Lim, Zachary Wagner-Zapelllusch, Trevor Smith, Anthony Fasick and Chris Arrate in Granite Chief Wilderness.

Bob Holland, Trails and Wilderness Technician with the Truckee Ranger District – Source

The Student Conservation Association, in partnership with the Forest Service, hired local high school students to repair trails in Granite Chief Wilderness in the Tahoe National Forest. The 5-person crew (and 2 leaders) spent two months pulling crosscut saws, brushing, building trail structures, cleaning drainages, hardening stream crossings and replacing signs; all the while living in the Wilderness. Alpine Meadows Stables resupplied the crew with fresh food and the students made sandwiches from bread baked daily in a backcountry oven.

The crew learned valuable wilderness skills and worked trails from Diamond Crossing over the Sierra Crest to Picayune Valley. Crew member Wynter Lim stated, “I felt proud that the crew’s hard work would provide access for people to enjoy the wilderness.” Trevor Smith also commented, “My trail work experience before this summer consisted of planting willows on Truckee Trails Day, but now after putting in 40 hour weeks using crosscut saws, brushing, and levering large rocks, I have a new appreciation for trails.”

According to Bob Holland, Trails and Wilderness Technician with the Truckee District, “The kids really worked hard. They completed work on 26 miles of trail which are now in the best shape they’ve been in for a long time.” This project was funded through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

Student Conservation Association