|The view from Hornbuckle Overlook on the Blue Ridge Parkway|
However, most recently, I had the opportunity to step into the Mountains with the Carolina Mountain Club. Although I have walked a lot of trail, I must admit, I have built next to none. This past Saturday I got to meet some of the folks that not only build and maintain approximately 100 miles of the MST , but also many miles of the AT and various smaller trails throughout the surrounding region. Walking the trail may require physical strength, commitment, and presence of mind, but building one requires all this and a hazel hoe!
|Janet - a volunteer with the Carolina Mountain Club holding just a small handful of the foot-deep duff we encountered. She showed this trail building novice the ropes!|
|Standing on my 20 feet of trail that Janet and I hacked away at for 4 hours|
|Becky and Linda - these ladies made some awesome progress just above where Janet and I were working. Becky leads a wilderness trail crew that will be heading out again this Saturday.|
|Just one view from Waterrock Knob - elevation 5820 feet|
I strongly encourage any of my fellow hikers to get out and volunteer with your local trail crews. If it weren't for these folks, the trail would quite literally not exist. If you can't get out to lend a literal hand, then thank these people as you pass them on trail. Trail building is slow and steady and their commitment to the larger vision and hard work is remarkable. If you'd like to get in contact with this Asheville crew, please drop me a line and I will pass along contact information to you. If you'd like to get in contact with this crew or any other crew along the MST or learn how you can help in other ways, visit the FMST webpage at www.ncmst.org.
|Larry, Rich, and Rob - hardworking trail guys!!|