On the Trail

All photos and captions courtesy of the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation

The SCA Adirondack Corps wrapped a successful summer season in October. It was a learning curve of how to adapt the program to many new Covid-19 guidelines, but the crew members were on board every step of the way.

The 10-person team spent four months accomplishing many trail projects around Adirondack Park. They rebuilt 350 feet of bog bridging on the Cranberry Lake Trail; painted and refurbished the Mount Arab Fire Tower; built stone turnpiking on the Deerland Canoe Carry Trail, and so much more.

Here are a few photos of the crew’s many accomplishments and testimonials on their experiences.

1. Tirell Pond 

 
At Tirell Pond in the Blue Ridge Wilderness Area, the crew replaced a bridge that provides access to the O’Neil Flow lean-to. The team’s work will allow safe passage for travelers looking to enjoy this secluded spot along the Northville Placid Trail.

2. Mount Arab Fire Tower

Another needed project the crew worked on was painting and restoring the Mount Arab Fire Tower in Horseshoe Lake Wildby. Some major areas of focus were fixing up the fire tower trail and building a stone staircase to prevent erosion on the Low’s Dam Canoe Carry in the Eastern Five Ponds Access Wilderness Area. 
 
“It’s hard to capture in a few sentences what this program has meant to me. It didn’t take long after arriving here for me to realize that this was exactly where I needed to be at this point in my life. I’ve learned so much about conservation, trail work, and how we humans impact the environment. I’ve also grown as an individual; becoming more confident, capable, and willing to take on challenges. I know that this program is something that I will look back on as a treasured time and a turning point in my life. The things I’ve learned here, and the people I’ve been lucky enough to call my crewmates and friends, I hope will stick with me for the rest of my life.” – Kay Emery

3. Cranberry Lake 50 Trail

On this trail, the crew cleared overgrown brush and replaced worn out bog bridges. These help protect wet areas from erosion and allow hikers to avoid trudging through the mud.

4. Northern Forest Canoe Trail

As a sustainable solution for the Northern Forest Canoe trail, the crew installed new turnpiking. This provides hikers with a dry, stable surface that also prevents trail widening. 
 
“When I decided to come join the Adirondack Corps I wasn’t exactly sure of why, but in my gut I knew that I should. Now that my first season is over, I couldn’t be happier that I took this leap into the unknown. Here in the park, I received great outdoor experience, I learned many new and useful skills along with a chance to live in a beautiful place, surrounded by new lifelong friends, and help make the world a better place all at the same time.”  - Drake Fortner
 
Since 1998, the SCA ADK AmeriCorps has provided nearly 400,000 hours of service to the lands and people of New York. Each year, 22 volunteers contribute more than 20,000 service hours completing conservation service projects that improve and protect the state’s cultural, recreational, and natural resources.