Hitch 1 – South Zone Trails
Hitch Lead: Katie
Members: Lisa, Trever, Robert, Conner, Dain, and Jerri (first half only)
It’s the first hitch of the season! After a month of training and training and more training we’re finally setting out to do what we came here to do: work. Or in my crew’s case: smash rock.
Our work for South Zone Trails took us down by the Sawtooth mountains, a truly gorgeous area. Our base camp was set up at the Cape Horn Guard Station and our work took us to the Valley Creek ATV Trail. This is a litigation trail and our work fixing the areas in bad condition will help the Forest Service meet the requirements of the case (i.e. fix the trail). Fixing an ATV trail is much different than fixing your average hiking trail. There’s a lot of foundation that needs to go down and support structures put in so the trail will withstand the continued use from ATVs. Our work consisted of laying check bars as support structures every 20 feet, filling the space between the checks with crushed rock, and then laying a foot of dirt on top.
Our crew smash rock. And we smash rock good.
The days were spent digging out the trail for the checks to be placed (perpendicular to the tread) and giving room for crush to be added, quarrying for rock, then chinking in checks with rocks and smashing rocks into fist sized crush between the checks, building borrow pits for dirt, and finally laying out the dirt on top of the crush and checks. Oh and of course, at the end of that work we spend time doing restoration to the trail, so it was like we were never there. Overall we worked on 530 feet of trail, 440 feet of which is completed. I say that’s pretty darn good for seven days of work.
Our Forest Service contacts and crew, Phil, Eric, Jason, and Megan, were amazing and great fun to work with. I know we all learned a lot from them and have great memories to bring back to Moyer. It was truly a great hitch and a great way to start our season.
Just a few last words: Mustaches, Smash Rock, Beef Stroganoff, Tony and Kimberly, Three-man Tents, Accents, and Eee-Ooo.