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Trail maintenance in PA

We seem to have gotten at least a little bit of interest about trail
maintenance on PA trails with the Keystone Trails Association.  So
maybe I'd better say a few words about the KTA Trailcare weekends.

They're scattered all across PA, so some are closer to Ohio and some
closer to NY or Maryland. If you live in NJ and want to do the North
Country Trail weekend - you've got a long drive to get there. Pick
your weekends with location and driving time in mind.

Most of them are "camping " weekends. The camping is usually at a
PA State Park campground (free if you're doing trailcare). One of them
(the Link Trail in April) is at Rich Scanlon's hunting camp complete with
indoor bunks, a fireplace, shower and - probably - blueberry pancakes for
breakfast. At least that's what Rich told me.

For the November weekend on the Quehanna Trail there are cabins that
can be used as well as campsites.  Last year some people were very
happy that they used the cabins - the temp was 20 degrees when we
woke up on Sunday morning.

Most of the weekends could be termed 'rustic'.   You supply your own
food, water, camping gear and work clothes. The KTA supplies the tools
and the opportunity to acquire some blisters.

I should give fair warning about the Chuck Keiper Trail weekend - bring
a "good" tent. We've been rained on for every Trailcare for the last 3
years. In fact I've never been on the Chuck Keiper that it hasn't rained
 on Saturday night - and I mean gully washers, thunderboomers and toad
stranglers.   Bring rain gear, too.

Rain on Saturday generally (but not always) means going to a restaurant
for dinner. But rain doesn't stop the work - it just makes painting blazes

The work involves painting blazes, clipping, clearing blowdowns, sidehill
and waterbar construction, assisting the chainsaw and brushcutter
operators and just generally rearranging the furniture in the forest.
Most of the trails we work on make the AT look like a superhighway.

Make sure you call the trip leader beforehand to get directions and to
be sure nothing's changed.  We wouldn't want to lose anyone.

Anyway, that's a few of the basics - in fact, I think it might be good
basic training for prospective thruhikers. But who asked me?  <g>

The way the schedule reads right now, we'll be at the May, June,
July, August and November weekends.   We're not sure about the
September weekend.   Hope we see some of you there.

Walk softly,
Jim Owen

OK - I'll include the schedule again, too.

                The 1996 KTA Trailcare Schedule

Leader: Mike Sausser (717) 628-5205

We will camp at Rich Scanlon's hunting camp near McAlvey's Fort, PA. Call
or E-Mail Rich
(717)242-1644 or richards@pennet.net for a map and/or directions. The
traditional blueberry
pancake breakfast will be served.

Leaders: Ron Kutz (717) 243-1713 and Carl Lorence (717) 234-1521

Camp at Camp Sinoquipe 1.9 miles north of US 522 at Fort Littleton. Bring a

Leader: Dave Maxwell (412) 341-7632

Camp at the Fish Dam Camp on PA 144. Water available from a nearby pipe
spring. We will try to
catch up on some much needed work on the CKT.

12, 13, 14 July : LOST MOUNTAIN TRAIL
No leader as yet. Leave E-Mail for me (richards@pennet.net) for questions

Camp at the group camping area in Black Moshannon State Park. Build one of
the first sections of
this new trail along the Allegheny Front.

2, 3, 4 August : DONUT HOLE TRAIL
Leader : Joe Healey (717) 655-4979

We may be camping at Hyner Run State Park. More information as we get
closer to the date. Check
with the trip leader or leave a message at: richards@pennet.net

23, 24, 25 August : TERRACE MOUNTAIN TRAIL
Leader : Rich Scanlon (717) 242-1644 or richards@pennet.net

We will be working on the Terrace MountainTrailand camp at Seven Points
Recreation Area at Lake
Raystown, only if the Park officials don't turn it over to mountain bikes.
Otherwise we will work
on the Loyalsock Trail and camp at World's End State Park. More information
about this as the date

6, 7, 8 September : NORTH COUNTRY TRAIL
Leader : Mark Eckler (412) 588-6164

We will be working near Moraine State Park. If the Game Commission has not
approved the route
thru the State Game Lands 95, we will be working elsewhere in Western
Pennsylvania. More
information to come on this trip.

Leader : Tom Thwaites (814) 237-7703

Camp at Canoe Creek State Park. Will be working in the State Game Lands 73
if approval comes
from the Game Commission.

1, 2, 3 November : QUEHANNA TRAIL
Leader : Ralph Seeley (814) 692-8223

We will camp at Parker Dam State Park and do general trail work on the
Quehanna Trail.