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: Gayle Riddervold
Date: 03/25/2015
Purpose: To clean water bars
Section: 13: US19E to Doll Flats
People: Gayle Riddervold & Becky Kinder
Summary: Today we cleaned out all the water bars and stopped briefly to talk with Carl Fritz and the maintenance crew to check out the new camp site at Wildermine. Upon returning to the trail head, we picked up trash.

Reporting: Steve Brooks - The Clinch Coalition
Date: 03/21/2015
Purpose: Clear Keokee Trail of downed trees, brush, etc.
Section: Other (Meetings/preparation/etc.)
People: Forest Service recreation director Rick Meadows
Clinch Coalition members & friends: Patrick Withen, Dennis Spjut, Blake Lawson, Connor Stanley, Trevor Makal, Jay Velasco, David Li, Owen Barbour, Riley Grecol, Jim Taylor, Finnley Willow, Hunter Taylor & Steve Brooks
Summary: With 2 certified sawyers we were able to reopen the entire trail! All downed trees were removed and much overgrown rhododendron, brush, etc. was cut back. The Trail was blazed and trash picked up.

Reporting: Joe Morris
Date: 03/25/2015
Purpose: Remove Blowdown
Section: 9b: Pond Flats to Hampton trailhead
People: Joe Morris
Greg Kramer
Kevin Sedgwick
Moose
Summary: We removed a major blowdown near the top of Pond Mountain and did some trail rehab. This section continues to improve and is in pretty good shape for this season of NOBO's.

Reporting: Ken and Lotta Murray
Date: 03/25/2015
Purpose: Shelter Maintenance
Section: 20b: Temple Hill Gap to Spivey Gap
People: Ken Murray
Lotta Murray
Jenny Eckenrode
Summary: Major task was installing 2x4s over the top edge of the hardware cloth screen which was installed this winter. The screen was coming loose and could catch on hikers and their equipment. The 2x4s will help hold the screen in place. Although this is not an ideal or permanent solution it should work for a few years.

Also replaced Shelter log book, picked up trash and clipped along the trail.

Reporting: Carl Fritz
Date: 03/25/2015
Purpose: Remove major blowdowns
Section: 11b: Canute Place to Bitter End
People: Jim Chambers, Pat Loven, Bob Peoples, Tim Stewart
Summary: This crew went heavily loaded with tools to remove about 4 blowdowns just south of Canute Place. Some were multiple, some had their root balls pulled out and ready to slide down to trail. They safely removed all the blowdowns.

Reporting: Carl Fritz
Date: 03/25/2015
Purpose: Install new camping area
Section: 13: US19E to Doll Flats
People: Paul Benfield, Jim Chambers, Carl Fritz, Pat Loven, Ed Oliver, Bob Peoples, Kim Peters, Reuben Potter, Tim Stewart, George Thorpe, Robert Torbert "Wayfarer"
Summary: We installed a new permanent campsite at Wilder mine just above old Apple House shelter site. We cleaned the area of multiflora rose, rocks and down trees. We built a new rock fire pit with rocks as seats surrounding it. Reuben demonstrated how to skillfully remove a hazard tree that was entangled with grapevine. The campsite is marked with a carsonite sign.

Reporting: Carl Fritz
Date: 03/25/2015
Purpose: Install temporary campsite
Section: 9a: US321 to Pond Flats
People: Paul Benfield, Carl Fritz, Ed Oliver, Kim Peters, Reuben Potter, George Thorpe, Robert Torbert "Wayfarer"
Summary: We primarily installed a new campsite about 0.2 miles south of US 321 and about 300 feet north of Wilderness boundary. This will be a temporary campsite during bear closure around Watauga Lake. It has no water source. Kim and Ed also collected some information on two bridges on north side of US321. Ed measured line of sight along US 321 for several road crossings.

Reporting: Mike Hupko
Date: 03/24/2015
Purpose: Spring Maintenance
Section: 16b: Greasy Creek Gap to Iron Mountain Gap
People: Faye Guinn, Howard Guinn, Judy Middlemas, Eric Middlemas, Wayne Jones, and Mike Hupko
Summary: Cut 13 trees on the trail, repaired about 20 feet of trail where one large tree fell, cleaned water bars, picked up trash, broke up an illegal fire ring, and checked the spring at the orchard which was flowing good.

Reporting: Tim Stewart
Date: 03/22/2015
Purpose: check section
Section: 11b: Canute Place to Bitter End
People: Tim Stewart
Summary: From Bitter End I hiked to Moreland Gap Shelter to check half of my section. The trail looked good. Did some lopping of rhodos, but not as much as anticipated.

Shovel, broom and rake were present at shelter. Placed new log book and some hand sanitzer and removed trash. Ashes in fire pit felt warm so was unable to disperse them. Saw 3 NOBOs and one section hiker at the shelter.

On the hike back to trailhead, removed 2 fire rings.

Reporting: Kevin Sedgwick
Date: 03/21/2015
Purpose: Trail Maintenance
Section: 12d: Campbell Hollow Road to US19E
People: Kevin Sedgwick, Gloria Sedgwick
Summary: Walk Thru of section. Broke apart 2 campsites. Cleared 2 minor blow downs. Cleared lots of small and medium size limbs. Reset 2 trail marker posts. Lopped rhododendron and multiflora rose. Rehabbed 23' of trail. Carried out 1 bad of trash. Met 3 early thru hikers and 1section hiker.

Reporting: Timbo Schaef
Date: 03/23/2015
Purpose: Testing form again
Section: Other (Meetings/preparation/etc.)
People: Tim
Summary: Testing again. I put the submitter in the email subject since the from address will no longer be them.

If desired, I can put anything submitted in the subject if anyone has a preference. Contact me at tschaefer@eastman.com with requests.

Available field tags:
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[from_email]
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[purpose]
[section]
[location]
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[total-hours-rounded-to-whole-hours]
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Reporting: Tim Schaefer
Date: 03/10/2015
Purpose: Testing form
Section: Other (Meetings/preparation/etc.)
People: Tim
Summary: Testing changes to form. Email was getting swatted by some since the email from address was being "spoofed" (i.e. coming from tehcc.org but appearing to come from @yahoo.com or @aol.com). Some email providers were complying with instructions to not accept messages that arrive in that fashion from appearing to be from specifically Yahoo or AOL. Changed to appear always coming from webmaster@tehcc.org. Contacting will require you looking within the message.

Reporting: Steve Wilson
Date: 03/21/2015
Purpose: Cleared water bars and cut briars
Section: 2b: Abingdon Gap Shelter to McQueen's Gap
People: Steve Wilson
Summary: I cleared leaves and mud from the water bars from McQueen’s Gap to Abingdon Gap shelter. The shelter looks good, but may still have the water leak in the back left corner. The shovel is in good shape, but the broom is worn out and needs replaced. I found three significant blowdowns which will require a chainsaw to remove due to their sizes. The first one is a step over, and the other two blowdowns can be ducked under so they aren’t obstructing hikers. I plan to remove them next weekend.

Reporting: Terry Oldfield
Date: 03/17/2015
Purpose: Maintain Double Springs Shelter
Section: 4b: Double Springs Shelter to TN91
People: Kim Peters, Terry Oldfield
Summary: We hiked to Double Springs Shelter from TN 91, and back. We picked up trash at and near the shelter, cleaned the gutter, and left a new log book. We also broke up a few fire rings. On the way back, we cleaned out waterbars. The trail is in good shape, except for one 14" blowdown about 1 mile in from the edge of the woods. It can be stepped over, so cutting it out is not urgent.

Reporting: Kim Peters
Date: 03/21/2015
Purpose: Clean up campsites
Section: 8: Wilbur Dam Road to US321
People: Phyllis Cairnes, Rolla Wade, Bob Byrd, Jim Floyd, Brad Leath, Olivia Leath, Connor Leath, Anna Hackler, Andrew Scott, Terry Oldfield, Kim Peters
Summary: What a great turnout for the first Hiking with Tools trip in 2015! Eleven people showed up on a cool and cloudy morning prepared to help clean up the campsites around Watauga Lake. The sun came out after a few hours and it turned out to be a lovely sunny warm day to be out in the woods.
We split into two groups and equipped with shoves, rakes and trash bags we proceeded to break up the dozens of fire rings along the shore between Shook Branch and Watauga Lake Shelter. There were more fire rings than I could count and we hauled out at least 5 bags of trash but we left the area much nicer than we found it.
Many thanks to all the great volunteers.

Reporting: Faye Guinn
Date: 03/12/2015
Purpose: make trail passable
Section: 16b: Greasy Creek Gap to Iron Mountain Gap
People: Howard Guinn
Faye Guinn
Wayne Jones
Brigitte Koegel
Summary: We knew there were some blow downs to the big rock and we wanted to see if there were any pass there that needed a chain saw and with hand saw and loppers we hoped to make the trail passable until we could get a day to take in the chain saw. We cleared a lot of smaller things out of the trail but found we will need to take the chain saw all the way thru. We could not make the trail passable but will get in as quick as possible to do that with a chain saw, chain saw needed for 10 trees that are across the trail.

Reporting: Carl Fritz
Date: 03/18/2015
Purpose: Dig and Prepare Relocations
Section: 1: TN/VA state line to Backbone Rock Trail
People: Ken Buchanan, Kayla Carter f, Jim Chambers, Collin Edwards, Jim Foster, Carl Fritz, Mike Hupko, Greg Kramer, Pat Loven, Bob Peoples, Kim Peters, Kevin Sedgwick, Tim Stewart, George Thorpe
Summary: Part of the crew finished digging the lower relocation closest to parking lot and opened it. Rest of crew reflagged the upper two relocations and cut out many of the wood obstructions. There is sufficient work prepared for Konnarock crew this year.

Reporting: Carl Fritz
Date: 03/16/2015
Purpose: Meet with Forest Service
Section: Other (Meetings/preparation/etc.)
People: Carl Fritz, Ed Oliver, Ted Mowery
Summary: We had planned a large meeting with primarily Watauga Ranger District and some of regional Forest Service personnel. Unfortunately, we were confused on the time with FS thinking 10 AM and we were thinking 2 PM. We did discuss some business with Lynn DiFiore. Larger meeting will be rescheduled.

Reporting: Joe DeLoach
Date: 03/16/2015
Purpose: Chainsaw recertification
Section: Other (Meetings/preparation/etc.)
People: Joe DeLoach and Steve Wilson
Summary: Thanks very much to Reuben Potter for extending this recertification training to Steve and Joe!

Reporting: Ken and Lotta Murray
Date: 03/16/2015
Purpose: Routine Maintenance
Section: 20b: Temple Hill Gap to Spivey Gap
People: Ken Murray
Lotta Murray
Mike Barosso
Peggy Cantrell
Drew Cantrell
Summary: Routine clipping, removed small blowdowns, clean shelter firepit.

The shelter log we placed there last fall is full. We will take a new one up next week.

The new paint on the shelter looks good. The picnic table is a nice improvement. The wire mesh under the sleeping platform is problematic. It has already pulled away from the wood in one place. Someone has tried to hold it in place with Duct Tape. We will try to cover it with wood trim next week.

Reporting: Lynn DiFiore
Date: 03/15/2015
Purpose: Routine maintenance
Section: 14b: Bradley Gap to Stan Murray Shelter
People: Lynn DiFiore
Summary: Picked up a large amount of trash from the barn. The brooms have multiplied as there are now 4 but the shovel is missing. Painted over some of the more offensive graffiti on the sliding door in the upper loft. Cut out 2 blowdowns & re-established all waterbars. Repainted blazes. Removed a moderate amount of trash from Stan Murray (dog carried it out). Saw 2 section hikers, numerous day hikers & a large church group on an overnight backpack. Springs are running well. A beautiful day to be out!

Reporting: Lynn DiFiore
Date: 03/15/2015
Purpose: Routine maintenance
Section: 14b: Bradley Gap to Stan Murray Shelter
People: Lynn DiFiore
Summary: Picked up a large amount of trash from the barn. The brooms have multiplied as there are now 4 but the shovel is missing. Painted over some of the more offensive graffiti on the sliding door in the upper loft. Cut out 2 blowdowns & re-established all waterbars. Repainted blazes. Removed a moderate amount of trash from Stan Murray (dog carried it out). Saw 2 section hikers, numerous day hikers & a large church group on an overnight backpack. Springs are running well. A beautiful day to be out!

Reporting: Jim Foster
Date: 03/16/2015
Purpose: Inspect the trail and remove some blowdowns
Section: 16a: Hughes Gap to Greasy Creek Gap
People: Bruce Darby, Jim Foster
Summary: Bruce and I inspected the trail and removed several small blowdowns. The trail is in good shape with no obstructions.

Reporting: Eric Middlemas
Date: 03/12/2015
Purpose: Trail Maintenance
Section: 17: Iron Mountain Gap to FS230 switchback
People: Eric Middlemas
Judy Middlemas
Summary: Walked from Iron Mt Gap to Indian Grave Gap. Removed limbs and litter from trail. Noted additional maintenance tasks for planning and future work groups. Recorded the locations of about 15 blowdowns, fire rings needing removal, and eroded sections of the trail needing rehabilitation by GPS.

Reporting: Jim Chambers
Date: 03/15/2015
Purpose: Trail Maintenance
Section: 2a: Backbone Rock Trail - Abingdon Gap Shelter
People: Jim Chambers
Summary: I removed many small blow downs between Abingdon Gap Shelter and the VA/TN state line. I have several large blow downs on the ground, so I'll return with my chainsaw in the coming days.

Reporting: Anna Hackler
Date: 03/15/2015
Purpose: Check for trash & new growth
Section: 10: Hampton trailhead to Dennis Cove Road
People: Anna Hackler
Anna Scott
Summary: Picked up trash & cleared any new weed growth we saw. LOVED the new steps & improvements near the water! Several people commented on how nice it was.

Reporting: Carl Fritz
Date: 03/12/2015
Purpose: Carter Co. as AT Community
Section: Other (Meetings/preparation/etc.)
People: Jim Chambers, Carl Fritz, Mike Hupko, Bob Peoples, Tim Stewart
Summary: Several representatives from Hampton, Carter County, Roan Mountain and Roan Mountain State Park participated in an initial kick off meeting to determine interest in becoming a designated AT Community. TEHCC was well represented. Julie Judkins provided a good overview of the program, benefits and the requirements. Discussion indicated that there is definite interest. There was some discussion as to whether there should be one or multiple AT Communities in the county. Carter County has over 80 miles of the AT within its boundary or within several hundred feet of its boundary. A follow up meeting will be scheduled.

Reporting: Craig Haire
Date: 03/08/2015
Purpose: clearing blowdown
Section: 16a: Hughes Gap to Greasy Creek Gap
People: Craig Haire
Summary: Cleared a tree that had fallen lengthwise into the trail a few hundred yards north of Little Rock Knob.

Reporting: Joe Morris
Date: 03/08/2015
Purpose: Routine Maintenance
Section: 9b: Pond Flats to Hampton trailhead
People: Joe Morris
Robin Dean
Summary: Performed routine maintenance on the Blue Blaze approach to Pond Flats. Lopped and removed minor blowdowns and tangles from the trail. Rehabbed some trail. Encountered a large blowdown approximately 3/4 mile from the top of Pond Flats; removed the root ball and the trail is passable but the blowdown will need to be removed with a cross-cut saw. The recent improvements to the blue blaze trail were draining very well. We cleaned the spring at the top and marked the best place to get water with blue paint. With the exception of the partial trail blockage from the blowdown the trail in this section is clear. Hiking out in the dark is an adventure over this rugged area.

Reporting: Scott Alan
Date: 03/07/2015
Purpose: check section
Section: 12a: Bitter End to Walnut Mountain Road
People: scott
Summary: went out to check section prior to thru hiker rush. Cut back laurel and picked up a few branches. No major blow downs. This section open and in good condition.

Reporting: Vic Hasler
Date: 03/07/2015
Purpose: Demolish campfire rings, replace tools at CMG shelter
Section: 19b: Curley Maple Gap Shelter - Nolichucky River
People: Vic Hasler
Summary: Six campfire rings were disassembled to achieve Leave No Trace standards following the instructions given at this past week’s Maintainers’ Dinner. Per Luke 21:6: “As for what you see here, the time will come when not one stone will be left on another; every one of them will be thrown down." (NIV) All of the rocks were carried to be hidden in the rhododendron and dog hobble or tossed into ravines, so that fire circles cannot be easily recreated. A tall campfire ring at one site contained over a hundred stones – and also a full grocery bag of trash.

Water bars and channels were again cleared while continuing up the trail. Three trios of college students on spring break were heading northbound, while a mother/daughter pair hiked the other way. A couple walking four labs and a speed hiker were the other folks observed in this section today. The trail from the outfitter to the shelter was free of blowdowns – and the blazes are in great shape for this year.

Curley Maple Gap shelter needed some cleaning. Another bag of trash was collected including a bright orange, light-weight tarp floating in the water source. Someone was burning the thick boards used as seats around the campfire, which was the only ring not demolished today, but cleaned. The shelter logbook has plenty of space for the thru-hiker wave. The existing broom was in good shape, but a new shovel was left as only a small military-style spade was present.

A good day to be on the Appalachian Trail, once three ibuprofen were taken for the general soreness from carrying rocks.

Reporting: Eric Middlemas
Date: 02/28/2015
Purpose: USFS Sawyer Training
Section: Other (Meetings/preparation/etc.)
People: Eric Middlemas
Greg Kramer
Pat Loven
Summary: Attended sawyer training provided by the USFS for class B certificate. Training included approximately 4 hours of classroom training and 5 hours of field training. The field training included hands-on training on chainsaw operation and minor maintenance as well as use of the chainsaw for limbing, bucking, and clearing brush. There was a strong emphasis on safety through out the training.

Reporting: Craig Haire
Date: 02/28/2015
Purpose: trail inspection
Section: 20a: Nolichucky River to Temple Hill Gap
People: Craig Haire
Roy Holcomb
Summary: Walked through some deep snow in places, melted through to the ground in other places. The trail is in pretty good shape. Did some minor chainsaw clearing in 3 locations. with my new 16" Greenworks electric. See link below.
http://www.amazon.com/GreenWorks-20312-DigiPro-Cordless-Chainsaw/dp/B00DRBBRU6/ref=sr_1_1?s=sporting-goods&ie=UTF8&qid=1425219328&sr=1-1&keywords=greenworks+chainsaw

Reporting: Richard Carter
Date: 02/25/2015
Purpose: routine maintenance
Section: 14c: Stan Murray Shelter to Carvers Gap
People: Richard Carter
Summary: I walked the section, surprisingly found only two small blowdowns which I removed, and removed a small amount of trash from Stan Murray Shelter.