Tuesday, March 29, 2016

BreakAway 2016 Day 15

Forward progress seemed to have slowed today. Every swing of the mattock hit a root or stump that had to be removed. While most were removing roots and duff, others were involved in major rock work. I'm hoping we encounter better ground as we approach the Brayton Road crossing.

Don's photos

Shauna loves this work

Monday, March 28, 2016

BreakAway 2016 Day 14

Delaware students arrived Saturday and worked Sunday while I was home recuperating from last week so I don't have a blog entry for day 13. Lots of progress has been made on the McGill Creek segment. We are now only about 1000 feet from where trail will cross Brayton Road. If weather holds and terrain improves, we might reach the road crossing this week.

Don's photos

Moving dirt the hard way, in a bucket

Friday, March 25, 2016

BreakAway 2016 Day 12

Today ended week 3 of BreakAway 2016 with a significant amount of trail built on the new McGill Creek segment. At this rate we may cross Brayton Road and begin the descent to McGill Creek next week.

Don's photos

Mark and crew install a rock step in trail

Thursday, March 24, 2016

BreakAway 2016 Day 11

We moved to McGill Creek trail segment today and continued work that began here in January. Made lots of progress but had to quit early due to bad weather. Tomorrow's weather forecast looks much better.

Don's photos

Ryan prepares a root for removal

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Trail Data

Bob, Carol, and I returned to Graysville Mountain to collect GPS data and length measurements of the newly constructed trail which will be used to update our Cumberland Trail maps. Measurements were 8170 feet of trail and 310 feet of spur trail to overlook for a total of 8480 feet or 1.6 miles.

Group photo at end of trail

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

BreakAway 2016 Day 10

The approximate 1.6 miles of Graysville Mountain trail construction planned for Spring BreakAway was completed today. Although some of us were bogged down with rock work, most of the other workers were building trail at an astonishing rate. We will begin work on McGill Creek Trail this Thursday.

Don's photos

End of Trail sign was moved to a new location

Monday, March 21, 2016

BreakAway 2016 Day 9

Our forward progress has slowed again today. We are in some rugged terrain and having to do lots of rock work but everyone seems to enjoy it.

Don's photos

Gary Buchanan doing rock work

Friday, March 18, 2016

BreakAway 2016 Day 8

Today ends week two, the halfway point of Spring BreakAway. I think we are approaching about 7000 feet of trail built in last two weeks. With good weather next week, we should complete the section on Graysville Mountain and move to McGill Creek.

Don's photos

Lunch break

Thursday, March 17, 2016

BreakAway 2016 Day 7

Finally got out of tough terrain late today and picked up the pace. Should get plenty of trail built tomorrow.

Don's photos

Charlie loves this work

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

BreakAway 2016 Day 6

Yesterday (Day 5) was rained out although students did hike down and do some work before distant thunder forced a retreat. Lot's of work was done today but rocks and roots slowed the pace. Looks like we might be in this type terrain for a few days.

Don's photos

This area is thick with trees and rocks

Friday, March 11, 2016

BreakAway 2016 Day 4

The last day of trail building with IUP students found us working in muddy conditions after last night's rain. We continued converting an old jeep road into hiking trail which took much longer than anticipated due to multiple drainage points across the trail. We were able to work above the trail and reroute drainage into two larger streams crossing the trail. After a long hard day and a few minutes overtime, we finally completed this section.

Don's photos

Group photo with IUP students

Thursday, March 10, 2016

BreakAway 2016 Day 3

Our group finally finished the second trail segment we were assigned and moved a significant distance down the line where we are now converting an old jeep road into hiking trail.

Don's photos

We are now converting an old jeep road into hiking trail

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

BreakAway 2016 Day 2

Making lots of progress with almost 70 college students but it may slow down after today. Groups farthest down trail encountered steep terrain covered in rocks and roots. Looks like we will be using rock bars and wishing for dynamite.

Don's photos

Jane and crew building trail

Monday, March 7, 2016

BreakAway 2016 Day 1

With about 70 students and many other volunteers, we were able to get lots of trail built today but I'm too tired to type up a description so check out these few photos.

Don's photos

This stretch of trail turned out nice

Saturday, March 5, 2016

Getting Ready

Bob, Carol, and I made a quick trip to Graysville Mountain in preparation for BreakAway which begins Monday. We carried our personal tools down to work site so we wouldn't have so much to carry Monday morning. While there, we tried our luck at converting the Ditch Witch work into an actual trail. Looks like it may not be as difficult as I first thought.

Group photo on short piece of experimental trail