Trail building was a great day of hard work and team bonding. We built a switchback into a too steep section of the Mattabesset trail here in Connecticut, making a much more fun, and safer hike for visitors. The day included lots of rain, black snake sightings, rocks covering potentially infinitely deep holes, and a new appreciation for the hazel hoe. Overall it was a lot of fun and a nice change of pace to get outdoors and work in the environment we joined this program to protect. (stacy)

I have to admit, I was not mentally prepared for a 45 minute hike involving a 55 degree incline to get to our rerouting site. It was refreshing though to get out of the office and doing manual labor more reminiscent of the typical SCA Corps. It was really cool to work on one of only 11 designated National Scenic Trails in the US. I have never done trail-work before and found it exciting to learn how to make something I use on a regular basis. (chamae)

Trailbuilding with the Corps was an amazing experience. The walk up to our site was tough, but we made it! We split up into two groups to work on the Mattabasset Trail. Stacy and I carved and raked a scenic path, while Jenna, Kayla, and Jeff used McLeods and hoes to dig the trail. It rained, but that did not slow us down! (bijal)

We worked with Clare of the CT Trails Association to build a switchback into one of the many local trails. It was very rewarding to work in an outdoor setting and see the fruits of our labor at the end of the day. Even though it rained us out of our last hour of work we cleared over half of the trail. (jeff)

If we only get one day to pretend to be a real SCA crew, we better make the most of it. We may have gone a little overboard with the dead tree tossing, boulder rolling, and loose dirt stomping, but once the skies opened up and we were all drenched in mud, you’d be hard pressed to say we didn’t look authentic. I definitely see the appeal of plowing through a grassy hilltop with a McLeod or wrenching some rocks out of the ground with your bare gloved hands and watching the Armadillidiidae scurry away. It’s fun to engage in the occasional guilt-free destruction for conservation’s sake. (jenna)

Team McLeod worked hard. One of us has absolutely no skills and the other couldn’t determine the proper angle for knee bends when working with her tool. We moved many a rock and sang a home-spun song about acorns. Overall, I’d call that a good day. (kayla)

This month we volunteered with Clare from the CT Trails Association to build a switchback on a trail in Wallingford. It was a really great change from working in the office setting and the perfect way for us to help the natural environment. It is great to know that people will be using a trail for years the we help to build. (kate)

Aside from the perfectly vertical hill that we had to hike in on, this was a pretty great experience. It was pretty awesome to think that we’re building something that hundreds of hikers will likely use for years to come. It was also good to see what so many other corps in the SCA do on a daily basis – I’m not sure I could do it, so props to the folks that do! (erin)