Two Weekends of Work and Fun

by on October 24, 2013 in Hikes and Nature, Home Page

Nelson TrailsThe Nelson Trails committee has been busy over  two recent weekends, building bridges and improving trails for your walking pleasure.   September 21 dawned cool and comfortable: a perfect day to put in a bridge over Bailey Brook in order to begin trail work on the new trail to Kulish Ledges.  Dave Birchenough had designed the bridge and pre-cut all the materials, and the crew of Dave Birchenough, Dave Patek, Tom Murray, Rick Church, Maury Collins, and Maury’s friend, Elk, were raring to go.  The hardest part of the project was getting the telephone pole stringers in place, but apparently, it went perfectly, with the stringers falling into place like legos.  By the time I arrived to do some trail clearing at 2 pm, the stringers were in place and almost completely bolted down.

An hour later, when I returned, the decking was down.  The crew was really moving along!  In addition to the bridge building team, Al Stoops, Anita and Harry Flanagan, and Linda Cates helped out with trail clearing above the beaver dam and pond.  A good day’s work.  Two days later, the bridge crew returned to install the railing and the steps.  The bridge is complete and offers a beautiful way to safely cross Bailey Brook. 

Four days later, Al Stoops and I met four representatives of the Jolly Rovers Trail Crew who had traveled from New York State to teach the trails committee and other interested participants some trail building skills.  We brought Artie, Bob, Doug and Debbie to the Bailey Brook trail head and walked the proposed trail to Kulish Ledges with them.  They offered us a lot of great tips on improving the route to make it more walk-able and less prone to erosion.

We gathered at Linda Cates and Tom Murray’s house for a potluck on Friday evening.  After a delicious meal and good company, we called it a night to rest up for the next day’s workshop. Saturday morning, we met again at the trail head, 12 participants from our trails committee and a few eager out of towners from Harrisville and Keene, and the Jolly Rovers crew.  After some lessons on tools and safety and some discussion on problem areas on trails, we got to work.  One crew worked on a section of trail to learn how to “crown” a trail in order to prevent erosion from compaction.  The other crew learned how to “side-hill” so that water would move across rather than down the trail.

We didn’t cover a lot of ground during the workshop, but we learned some valuable skills that should help us as we work to keep the trails we have finished in good shape and to develop the new trail to Kulish Ledges.  We welcome fellow Nelson residents to check out the work the trails committee has done over the past two weekends and to hike the completed trails: Bailey Brook, Murdough Hill  Meander, and the Old Road to Dublin.

Thanks to the Jolly Rovers for sharing their expertise, to all that worked over the past two weekends, served as hosts to the Jolly Rovers, provided food for lunches, and to all those who have come to walk the trails.  The Nelson Trails Committee is committed to giving Nelson residents good trails to enjoy in our beautiful town.

The trails committee meets monthly to plan workdays and hikes. New members are always welcome.
Contact Rick Church, chairman of the committee, if you are interested in joining in the fun.  trails committee workdays 023 trails committee workdays 004 trails committee workdays 027

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