Saturday, July 01, 2006

Brush Busters

Tomorrow I’m off on a grand adventure. I’ll be spending the next week on the Appalachian Trail vollunteering with the Brush Busters Trail Crew. I’m pretty excited. It’s going to a bit different than my experience on the trail last summer when I was solo hiking but I know it’s going to be fun.

The days sound as if they are going to be long with lots of work but I know it will be satisfying. The handbook states that the mission of the crew is (in order of priority):

1. Cutting back woody growth on the uphill side of the A.T. that is forcing hikers to the outside of the trail tread. This basic maintenance will help prevent larger problems from developing in the future.

2. Cleaning out clogged drainage structures (e.g. waterbars, drainage ditches, ect.) and muddy sections of trail.

3. Re-digging failing sidehill sections of trail.

I don’t feel nearly as orgainized going into this as I typically would. I think that’s because I know that most of it is being planned by someone else and I’m just the labor that they are hauling along and also that I have hiked on the trail a few times and now know more of what to expect.

I’ll be off the trail next Saturday and probably back to civilization that evening or Sunday morning. I doubt I’ll get much running in the next week. I wonder if I can count hiking as part of my 1200 miel club mileage.

The hike is long, my pack is heavy, but I hit the trail knowing I’m ready.

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