My view of the Thornton Gap Entry Station
Shenandoah National Park, July 24 – 27 — The North District Crew Week was anything but usual. For one, we tackled a variety of projects. For another, I only worked three of the five days. Now, it’s off to Manitoba to fish with my brother and nephews.
Usually crew week offers the opportunity to partner with the park service trail crews on big projects that are too big for either outfit alone. This year everybody was everywhere all the time.
We started with the great blowdown hunt. While the remainder of the group took on some dirt work, Wayne Limberg and I searched for a tree tangle reported by a hiker on the Shenandoah Hikers Facebook page. Shall we say it wasn’t where it was alleged to be…
On net we hiked about four miles on our search. We found it about 200 yards from a trailhead parking lot. It would have been a cinch if we had started three miles south of the initial reported position.
We managed to chew a lot of wood into sawdust, huge piles of it.
In the end, the old guys were bushed.
The next day we rehabbed the AT from trailhead parking south to the Byrd’s Nest 4 connector trail.
My last day was best. A tree on the AT about 200 yards south of Compton Gap parking became a leaner last year and ended up in a near vertical posture. This was too dangerous for volunteers to cut. After consultation we and the park crew agreed that it should be pulled down. This is how it happened.
Rigging the tree.
Dave Jenkins has a new toy. It’s a motorized winch. Beats a grip hoist any day. But, sometimes things don’t exactly go according to plan.
Ready to go.
Oh oh! Nothing is happening.
Ain’t technology great! What else. Check You Tube to find out what you did wrong.
Turns out the rope wasn’t wrapped quite the right way around the capstan. A couple of twists made all the difference.
But wait. There’s more.
The tree had dug itself in. Nothing a pick mattock could not tackle.
On the way.
One more time.
All that for 50 seconds of sawing.