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Re[2]: [at-l] exhaustion and WMNF/AMC signage

"...Sorry  about  the  signage  on your hike. (in the White Mountains) I guess I
never  noticed  it  too much. I was just looking for white blazes," reports Papa

 I  hike  mostly in Maine, but I wander into the Whites quite often, and I agree
 with  Papa  Bear. I've never found it difficult to know where I was or where to
 go in the Whites. Certainly in 1993 I had no difficulty that I can remember.

 As  for  the  contrast between Maine and the AMC efforts, Maine has a two-prong
 approach to trail management.

  Unlike  the  Whites,  where  the  AMC  has  a  trained  trail  crew to augment
 volunteers,  the  basic  maintenance  in  MATC  territory  is done by volunteer
 maintainers.  Someone  is  assigned  to maintain every section of trail between
 Grafton Notch and the Katahdin summit. These are all volunteers who mostly have
 to  work  for  a  living and who have other responsibilities. When a wind storm
 blows  down  trees  it  may  be days before the maintainer learns of the event.
 Jobs,  families,  personal responsibilities can interfere with prompt response.
 And  from time to time there are no volunteers available to maintain a section.
 I,  for instance, have two vacancies among the 23 volunteers needed to maintain
 the  Whitecap  district  between  Monson and the Jo-Mary Campground road that I
 oversee. (enquiries are welcome!)

 Maine  also  hires  experienced trail people to work with volunteers on special
 projects,  mostly  erosion control, safety matters, campsite construction, rock
 steps,  etc.  These  are  exclusively long term "capital" projects, not routine
 blowdown  removal of brush cutting. We advertise for the volunteers nation-wide
 to  spend  a  week or two in Maine. Most summer weeks we have two crews working
 simultaneously on these major projects.

 Back  to  sloetoe's  original  comment. The problem with the Whites is that AMC
 management  of  the  trails  long predates the Appalachian Trail, and AT hikers
 make  up  a  very  tiny percentage of the trail users. New England hikers think
 about  doing the "Crawford Path." They do not think of the path as a section of
 the  AT. They do the "Presidentials" not another AT section, though their route
 is mostly one and the same.

 I agree improvements could better guide thru hikers through the complex maze of
 White  Mountain  trails.  But money, volunteers and resources are always scarce
 and they tend to go to help the most users, not a tiny minority of AT lovers.

 Weary,  who  has  returned early from his exploration of the Gaspe and Canada's
 Maritime Provinces, thanks to a false alarm.