This report covers the period 03 November 2001 to 20 November 2002. There were 4 events of note for the year:
The winter's snows held off until the new year, allowing us to search the area north of Camels Hump for a shelter location to replace Gorham Lodge. The spring and summer weather was about average.
The regular maintenance activities continued. As in 2001, we scheduled 5 work hikes. The "walk-through" approach of cleaning drainage and clipping was gradually replaced by specific tasks, like installing puncheon. We are leaving more routine maintenance to the adopters.
We have 9 adoptable sites, 8 of which have been adopted. (The exception is Watson Camp.) We don't have specific expectations for adopters' work and the submission of a report, nor a clear-cut separation of responsibilities between Forest, Parks, and Recreation, GMC, and the section. Administration of the adopter program remains informal. Having said that, we note that 7 adopters have done their work and submitted reports without prompting. Duncan W is the oldest-serving adopter. The 7 others have become adopters since the summer of 2001.
The Bamforth Ridge Shelter attracted many workers, as expected. The high point was 2 and 3 August, when 27 and 26 workers appeared. Of these two-thirds were section members. In addition, the Gorham Relocation Committee met 6 times for 2 hours each with about 6-8 members from the section.
The involvement of section members was in the range of what we expected. It was about the same order of magnitude as the interest which the "ice storm" of 1999 generated.
The most significant efforts on the Bamforth Ridge Shelter were not tallied. They included the work of Bill C and Eric S, who planned the structure and organized logistics. Ann B coordinated volunteers. Duncan W oversaw construction of the tent platforms. Andrew and Reidun N were the site greeters/overseers/work-assigners.
Although much of the work was accomplished by section members, the efforts of many others were important:
The total hours devoted to maintenance--about 1 full-time year-round worker-- was significant. We should not forget that much of the Bamforth Ridge work was done by a few people. Further, significant work was done by non-section members who performed work for several sections as well as the GMC.
The amount of labor required was much less than had been anticipated in the fall of 2001, and somewhat less than budgeted for the summer of 2002. That is, the Long Trail Patrol devoted less time than expected. (The Vermont Youth Conservation Corps did nothing.) The section picked up the shortfall by building the spur path, clearing the site, and doing the finishing touches on the rock work.
Puncheons were installed at one spot on Bamforth Ridge and 8 spots on Elephants Head. The Long Trail Patrol built staircases on the trail south of the Elephants Head view.
The Long Trail in Smugglers Notch was relocated as scheduled in the fall.
We have evolved a division of labor. Adopters make sure the trail is passable and are encouraged to identify problem areas. The section helps adopters and does "light" jobs which improve the trail. A "flying squad" of GMC-wide volunteers performs specialized tasks, such as building a privy. The Long Trail Patrol (funded mostly by the State of Vermont) performs the "heavy" rock work of building staircase. The result of this combination of effort during 2002 has been a significant improvement of the Long Trail and its overnight accommodations in our sector.
The trails continue to be passable under the 4x8-foot corridor and "no widening" rules. Routine maintenance was done as scheduled.
The items needing attention, divided into our 9 adoptable areas:
|Shelter or Trail||Status||Adopter||Last visit|
|Montclair Glen Lodge||Sill work and other reconstruction within 5 years||Duncan W||October?|
|LT: Alpine Trail - Bamforth Ridge Shelter||Install 1 puncheon north of BRS||Steve T||October|
|Bamforth Ridge Shelter||New: no problems||Fred J||29 Oct|
|LT: Bamforth Ridge Shelter - Duxbury Road||No problems||Reidun & Andrew N||12 Nov|
|Sterling Pond Trail||Heavy traffic: will require rock work within 3 years||Scott & Patricia B|
|LT: Vermont 108 - Sterling Pond||Additional rock work by LTP 2003; install 5 puncheons (material is cached)||Bill C||03-Nov|
|Sterling Pond Shelter||Slightly un-plumb||David P||15 Sep|
|Watson Camp||Roof leak; bad stairs||Orphan|
|LT: Sterling Pond - Chilcoot Pass||Puncheon at Chilcoot, perhaps||Keith L||25 Oct|
We have identified 3 possible sites for the Watson Camp replacement in 2004. The sites will be monitored and evaluated in 2003.
Trails and Shelter Committee membership. In 2001, I proposed that the committee be composed of regular workers. The official membership includes Bill C, Eric S, Fred J, Thomas W, Michael C, and probably others. We "meet" at lunch on work hikes and quite informally while hiking to and from work sites. Since I have been sending announcements of trip plans and the subsequent reports to anyone who has worked or is likely to work, I do not feel that a formal meeting is necessary. Note also that the principals happened to meet monthly throughout last winter to plan the Bamforth Ridge Shelter.
Trails & Shelter Coordinator
Edited for the website 26-Feb-03 and 17-Oct-03