Recent AT Maintenance

Below is submitted maintenance activities for the last 6 weeks. Please note that trail conditions can change quickly. Or view maintenance by section.

Reporting: Jim Chambers
Date: 08/20/2017
Purpose: Wright State Prep/Tool Cleaning
Section: Other (Meetings/preparation/etc.)
People: Connie Squires
Jim Chambers
Summary: Pressure washed dirty tools and hard hats from Friday's ASU trail work event that will be used for the Wright State trail work event on 8/22.

Reporting: Ken Murray
Date: 08/19/2017
Purpose: Blowdown Patrol
Section: 20b: Temple Hill Gap to Spivey Gap
People: Ken Murray
Summary: I had a report of blowdowns on this section. I removed several small ones with my Silky saw. I GPS'd the location of 8 more (stepovers) that were too large for the Silky. Someone had previously cut a shoulder high blowdown with a chainsaw.

Reporting: Jim Chambers
Date: 08/17/2017
Purpose: Wright State Prep
Section: 17: Iron Mountain Gap to FS230 switchback
People: Joe Morris
Mike "Lumpy" Price
Jim Chambers
Summary: Conducted final prep for the Wright State trail work event. We hauled up, skinned, and staged all Locust logs for cribbing and steps. Identified usable rock and suitable areas to mine dirt for backfill.

Reporting: Paul Benfield
Date: 08/16/2017
Purpose: Mow Grass
Section: 14b: Bradley Gap to Stan Murray Shelter
People: Paul Benfield, Ted Mowery
Summary: Mowed and weed eat the camping area and trails as needed. Picked up trash. Broke up firerings and disposed of rocks. Water running good at the Source.

Reporting: Greg Kramer
Date: 08/12/2017
Purpose: Cut weeds
Section: 3a: McQueen's Gap - Spring 2.3 miles N of Low Gap
People: Greg Kramer
Summary: Cut back 70% of the weeds between 421 and the spring. Another trip needed to finish up on high weeds.

Reporting: Joe DeLoach
Date: 08/13/2017
Purpose: Shelter repair and section maintenance
Section: 15a: Carvers Gap - Cloudland Hotel
People: Joe DeLoach
Summary: In a chance encounter Carl Fritz and Jim Chambers had with a hiker at Roan High Knob Shelter, the hiker told them that rain was coming in through one of the windows, not the roof. They found that the window latch had rusted out, and I replaced it. The latch for the other upstairs window is fine, but one of the downstairs windows could use some work next time. Also whacked blackberries and clipped brush along the way.

Reporting: Jim Chambers
Date: 08/12/2017
Purpose: Blow Downs
Section: 5: TN91 to Iron Mountain Shelter
People: Jim Chambers
Connie Squires
Summary: Cut and removed massive Red Oak near Nick Grindstaff Monument between Iron Mountain Shelter and Route 91. Rehabbed trail upon removal, and brushed in trail that hikers created due to obstruction. Removed all other blow downs in that area.

Reporting: Carl Fritz
Date: 08/11/2017
Purpose: Prep for ASU
Section: 4b: Double Springs Shelter to TN91
People: Dean Baird, Paul Benfield, Jim Chambers, Carl Fritz, Greg Kramer, Bill Murdoch, Bob Peoples, Mike Price, Kevin Sedgwick
Summary: We continued staging rocks and locust logs and built some trail. We should be ready for ASU students next week. And we just took very light showers.

Reporting: Richard Carter
Date: 08/10/2017
Purpose: cut encroaching vegetation
Section: 14c: Stan Murray Shelter to Carvers Gap
People: Richard Carter
Summary: I finished cutting encroaching vegetation from the upper 6 switchbacks most of the way to the Grassy Ridge Trail intersection.

Reporting: Jim Chambers
Date: 08/10/2017
Purpose: ASU Prep
Section: 4b: Double Springs Shelter to TN91
People: Joe Morris
Mike "Lumpy" Price
Jim Chambers
Summary: Continued preparation for the August 18th ASU trail work event. We installed and back filled cribbing and steps on the steep side hill areas in sections 2 and 3 in order to alleviate grade change issues, and to insure that the more time consuming and labor intensive work is accomplished prior to the 18th.

Reporting: Phyllis Cairnes
Date: 08/09/2017
Purpose: shelter maintenance
Section: 2b: Abingdon Gap Shelter to McQueen's Gap
People: Rolla Wade
Phyllis Cairnes
Summary: We re-painted the graffiti board (3 coats Kilz), replaced the shelter log, shoveled out the fire ring, cleaned the gutter, and picked up trash. We did not see any other hikers today. All was uneventful except for the rattlesnake near McQueen's Gap, which we gave a wide berth. Its tail, sticking up from the weeds, was buzzing and rattling loudly.

Reporting: Paul Benfield
Date: 08/08/2017
Purpose: Mow Grass
Section: 4b: Double Springs Shelter to TN91
People: Paul Benfield, Ted Mowery
Summary: Mowed and weedeat the AT and the Accessible Trail across the Osborne Farm.

Reporting: Carl Fritz
Date: 08/08/2017
Purpose: Cut hazard tree
Section: 15b: Cloudland Hotel - Hughes Gap
People: Jim Chambers, Carl Fritz
Summary: Jim did an excellent job of felling two dead maples that were hazard trees in Ash Gap camping area. They had been identified by Dan Firth. After two days of rain, water was abundant on the mountain meaning water was running in many places. We also did a quick inspection of Roan High Knob Shelter.

Reporting: Eric Middlemas
Date: 07/24/2017
Purpose: Remove blowdowns
Section: 17: Iron Mountain Gap to FS230 switchback
People: Eric Middlemas
Rich Ritter
Wayne Jones
Summary: Removed 5 large blowdowns between Iron Mtn Gap and Cherry Gap Shelter. Removed trash around shelter and checked water sources (both springs running well).

Reporting: Carl Fritz
Date: 08/03/2017
Purpose: Prep for ASU
Section: 4b: Double Springs Shelter to TN91
People: Daryel Anderson, John Beaudet, Paul Benfield, Ken Buchanan, Richard Carter, Jim Chambers, Carl Fritz, Greg Kramer, Lily Kramer, Joe Morris, Ted Mowery, Bill Murdoch, Bob Peoples, Kim Peters, George Thorpe, Matthew Watford
Summary: We continued preparations for Watauga College so that we can open relocation on that work day. We located some rock, locust logs, and potential soil mining sites. Greg removed a hornet's nest close to the new trail. Greg's nephew, Matthew, joined us for his first time.

Reporting: Dan Firth
Date: 08/02/2017
Purpose: Survey ash stands for possible treatment for EAB
Section: 5: TN91 to Iron Mountain Shelter
People: Dan Firth, Bill Tindall, Judy Tindall
Summary: Starting at RT91 and continuing south identified and surveyed stands of ash trees for potential treatment for protection against the emerald ash borer. Many healthy and large ash trees were found. Surveying consists of recording GPS coordinates, counting and measuring the diameter of the ash, and identifying other species in the plot. Ash make up a significant part of the forest on the ridges above 4000 feet on Iron Mountain. Their loss would have a significant impact on the forest. A large stand also occurs at the trail head across from the parking lot.

Reporting: Joe Morris
Date: 08/02/2017
Purpose: Cut seasonal growth
Section: 16b: Greasy Creek Gap to Iron Mountain Gap
People: Joe Morris
Summary: Holy weed whack Batman. Only made it to the Orchard today due to equipment malfunction and abundant growth.

Reporting: Gayle Riddervold
Date: 08/01/2017
Purpose: Routine Maintenance
Section: 13: US19E to Doll Flats
People: Gayle Riddervold & Becky Kinder
Summary: We wacked weeds and stinging nettle, cleaned out all the water bars and sawed and removed a midsize tree from the trail. Made it up to the power lines and had to head back due to a downpour. We dismantled a fire ring and removed 2 small bags of garbage at the trail head.

Reporting: Carl Fritz
Date: 07/31/2017
Purpose: Prepare Trail Relo
Section: 4b: Double Springs Shelter to TN91
People: Carl Fritz, Kim Peters
Summary: We marked off crew sections and determined tools needed for Watauga College.

Reporting: Craig Haire
Date: 07/20/2017
Purpose: clearing trailside vegetation
Section: 20a: Nolichucky River to Temple Hill Gap
People: Craig Haire
Summary: Weed whacked about a mile of trail. Met one southbound through hiker.

Reporting: Lynn DiFiore
Date: 07/14/2017
Purpose: Cut vegetation
Section: 14b: Bradley Gap to Stan Murray Shelter
People: Lynn DiFiore
Summary: Imagine my surprise as I showed up to find some Good Samaritan had cut vegetation for a ways trail north from Yellow Mtn Gap. Not knowing if my day would be spent on "trimmer carrying practice" or not, I continued on & found plenty of weeds to cut to Bradley Gap. I dispersed the recurring fire ring at Little Hump & removed minimal trash from the barn. Muddy conditions have caused the hikers to create even more braided trails in the relo area past Little Hump.

Reporting: Lynn DiFiore
Date: 07/13/2017
Purpose: Cut vegetation
Section: 14b: Bradley Gap to Stan Murray Shelter
People: Lynn DiFiore - 6
Summary: Used the trimmer to cut back the weeds from the barn to Stan Murray. Made good progress despite the afternoon t-storms. Conducted condition assessment survey for Stan Murray shelter for NFsinNC. Very muddy conditions.

Reporting: Jim Chambers
Date: 07/30/2017
Purpose: Blow Downs/Hazard Tree Assessment
Section: 15b: Cloudland Hotel - Hughes Gap
People: Jim Chambers
Connie Squires
Summary: Cut all blow downs between Hughes Gap and Cloudland to include all Blue Blaze trails. Conducted hazard tree assessment and possible felling plan on recently reported hazard trees at the overnight campsite at Ash Gap. Hazard Tree Assessment Form will be forwarded to Carl Fritz for review.

Reporting: Jim Chambers
Date: 07/29/2017
Purpose: Wright State Prep
Section: 17: Iron Mountain Gap to FS230 switchback
People: Jim Chambers
Connie Squires
Summary: Prepped trail for Wright State outing on 8/22. Felled enough Locust for 300 feet of cribbing and 5 steps, to include 35 stakes. Removed large blow down that had fallen during the day.

Reporting: Richard Carter
Date: 07/27/2017
Purpose: cut encroaching vegetation
Section: 14c: Stan Murray Shelter to Carvers Gap
People: Richard Carter
Summary: I cut encroaching vegetation, mostly briars and nettles, & have completed cutting from Stan Murray shelter up to the upper switchbacks.

Reporting: Paul Benfield
Date: 07/26/2017
Purpose: mow grass
Section: 14b: Bradley Gap to Stan Murray Shelter
People: Paul Benfield, Ted Mowery
Summary: Mowed and weed eat the camping area and trail to privy. Weed eat around the shelter. Cleared rocks in the camping area. Water source running great. Gate was found unlocked. We had tire trouble which took a long period to alleviate.

Reporting: Carl Fritz
Date: 07/27/2017
Purpose: Trail Prep for ASU
Section: 4b: Double Springs Shelter to TN91
People: Daryel Anderson, Paul Benfield, Ken Buchanan, Jim Chambers, Carl Fritz, Ezekiel Grzenda, Paul Grzenda, Waylon Jenkins, Greg Kramer, Bill Murdoch, Bob Peoples, Kim Peters, George Thorpe
Summary: We did some more preparation for upcoming Watauga College outing. Daryel also refreshed blazes on accessible trail and put blazes on new rock cairns across pasture. We had trucks within a 1000 feet of everyone at end of day when the drenching rain came.

Reporting: Paul Benfield
Date: 07/24/2017
Purpose: Mow Trail
Section: 4b: Double Springs Shelter to TN91
People: Paul Benfield, Ted Mowery
Summary: We mowed and weed eat the AT and the Accessible trail across the Osborne Farm. Mowed around the entrance to the Barn.

Reporting: Carl Fritz
Date: 07/25/2017
Purpose: Inspect Trail
Section: 17: Iron Mountain Gap to FS230 switchback
People: Jim Chambers, Carl Fritz
Summary: We were checking on a good trail rehab project for Wright State University students for mid August. Just north of Cherry Gap a couple of switchbacks need log cribbing and some steps.

Reporting: Jim Chambers
Date: 07/22/2017
Purpose: Blow Downs
Section: 13: US19E to Doll Flats
People: Jim Chambers
Connie Squires
Summary: Removed all reported blow downs between 19E and Doll Flats

Reporting: Richard S Carter
Date: 07/22/2017
Purpose: cut weeds
Section: 14c: Stan Murray Shelter to Carvers Gap
People: Richard Carter
Summary: I cut weeds, mostly briars and nettles, in the areas where they encroached most.

Reporting: Dean Baird
Date: 07/20/2017
Purpose: Inspect and maintain trail section
Section: 9b: Pond Flats to Hampton trailhead
People: Dean Baird
Jennifer Baird
Summary: We did weed eating and machete work under the power lines and machete work ONLY where trail was immediately adjacent to the creek. Removed a large garbage bag full of trash.

Reporting: Carl Fritz
Date: 07/20/2017
Purpose: Shelter Repair and Relo Prep
Section: 4b: Double Springs Shelter to TN91
People: Daryel Anderson, Paul Benfield, Ken Buchanan, Carl Fritz, Joe Morris, Ted Mowery, Kim Peters, Kevin Sedgwick, Tim Stewart and SCA: Erika Hoad, Amy Spinden, Ted Turner
Summary: We were pleased to have the three member Student Conservation Association crew (SCA) join us today. They are working on Cherokee for about five months. Part of crew installed hardware cloth and framing under sleeping platform. Rest of crew cut some weeds on Old Ridge Road relocation and starting preparing for Watauga College.

Reporting: Carl Fritz
Date: 07/18/2017
Purpose: Check Trail
Section: 14a: Doll Flats to Bradley Gap
People: Jim Chambers and Carl Fritz
Summary: We walked the trail from Wildermine up to Hump. Good news is trail is in great shape especially after all the Hard Core and Thursday outings in 2015. There is some minor rehab closer to Hump. Bad news is there is not sufficient work for Wright State University students. We did remove some minor blowdowns with the largest being 10 inches. We also cleaned some of the waterbars up near Dolls Flat. Some more could be cleaned but we had no digging tools.

Reporting: Kim Peters
Date: 07/15/2017
Purpose: Cut annual growth, paint blazes
Section: 15b: Cloudland Hotel - Hughes Gap
People: Lori Mirrer, Judith Ratcliffe, Kim Kreuzman, Heather Sheppard, Kim Peters
Summary: For this July 3rd Saturday - Hiking with Tools trip we headed to higher elevation for cooler temperatures and tackled the prodigious weeds growing between Hughes Gap and Ash Gap. Many thanks to the amazing group of Rogue Dames who traveled 3 hrs from Charlotte to help accomplish this much needed task. In addition to cutting the head high weeds, we painted the blazes all along this section as well as the two blue blaze trails to the water sources, brushed in places where hikers are cutting switchbacks and picked up a minimal amount of trash at the campsites. There is a large blowdown about head high on the water trail about 0.5 m north of Hughes Gap. We experienced some thunder and a few sprinkles around lunchtime, but mostly enjoyed the cooler temperatures (much cooler than Charlotte!) on this partly cloudy day. Surprisingly, we only saw two other hikers all day.

Reporting: Brian Paley
Date: 07/14/2017
Purpose: Cut weeds
Section: 8: Wilbur Dam Road to US321
People: Brian Paley
Summary: Cut very overgrown multi-flora roses from US321 to beyond Forest Service gate. Cleared one blowdown near bog bridge.

Reporting: Carl Fritz
Date: 07/15/2017
Purpose: Rehab water trail
Section: 2b: Abingdon Gap Shelter to McQueen's Gap
People: Paul Benfield, Jim Chambers, Carl Fritz, Tim Stewart, Steve Wilson; ATC -Ben Barry; Troop 135-Doug Bushong, Gary Kennedy, Lewis Brooks, Clay Brooks, John Logan Maddox, Caleb Strickler
Summary: Steve cut back most of the weeds. We all worked on installing locust steps on Abingdon Gap water trail. The scouts really got into hauling locust logs, digging them in and mining dirt to back fill. They also helped retrieve many rocks to fill in edges of steps to prevent water and hikers from avoiding the steps. Rain held off and even 11 year old Clay said he had a fun day. "At home his father does not let him dig in the yard and he really gets tired of cutting weeds." He sounds like a future trail maintainer!

Reporting: Jim Chambers
Date: 07/14/2017
Purpose: Debris Removal
Section: 13: US19E to Doll Flats
People: Jim Chambers
Summary: Removed remaining debris from the new bridge construction south of Rt. 19E.

Reporting: Carl Fritz
Date: 07/13/2017
Purpose: complete Wildermine Bridge
Section: 13: US19E to Doll Flats
People: Paul Benfield, Ken Buchanan, Richard Carter, Jim Chambers, Carl Fritz, Joe Morris, Ted Mowery, Bill Murdoch, Ed Oliver, Kim Peters, Kevin Sedgwick, Tim Stewart, George Thorpe
Summary: The willing and capable crew finished the new Wildermine bridge by adding posts and hand rails. Most of the crew worked on turnpiking the southern approach. Bridge looks like it should last many decades. Yay!