This past summer, the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge saw the benefit from four additional trail crews provided by the Student Conservation Association.
They added 1.4 miles of trail to the already existing 0.9 miles of the trail. Previous SCA crews built the previous trail during two stints. The last stint was back in 2007 by a high school SCA crew.
This year’s SCA crew worked on scouting out the route for the new portion of the trail. Then, the refuge trail crew did all the saw work in logging out and opening up the corridor for Bravo and Echo to begin their work of digging the tread for the new section of trail.
The goal was to connect Burney’s Trail to Hideout Trail, which was accomplished in early August. Once the crew finished digging tread, they spent about a week fine-tuning and performing cleanup work.
Burney’s Trail now sits at 2.3 miles one way from Hidden Lake Campground, where it starts to the “tie-in” spot on Hideout Trail.
Although the refuge doesn’t have SCA crews every year, the years the refuge has them made it a little easier to work on some lagging projects. As we look toward next season, the refuge is looking forward to hosting another 12-week SCA crew in the summer of 2022 to continue to improve additional miles of hiking trails for the enjoyment of those who spend time on the refuge.