Oregon Trail Workers Needed URGENTLY!

DEC and the Thurman and Wells Snowmobile clubs have done a lot of work to get permission to do some major work on the connector trail between Thurman/Lake George and Wells/Speculator. This section of trail is C4, otherwise known as the “Oregon Trail”.

If you have ever rode the trail you are aware of the approximately 14 mile section in the Wild Forest along Route 8 that is narrow, off-camber, and filled with washouts. These make the section extremely hard to groom and the trail can’t be opened early because of all the water. By time the water freezes there is often more than 4 feet of snow that needs to be broken. It’s a sad example of a connection trail between two snowmobiling hot-spots.

Now’s your opportunity to help fix it. DEC Forrester Tate Connor (who is also responsible for Mulleyville’s Trails) has spent a ton of time working with APA and his superiors to get permission to improve the trail this fall. He needs manpower URGENTLY, and the Thurman and Wells Clubs have asked for any snowmobiler who has ever rode the trail and wanted better to come out and help. Tate is one of the good guys that is working hard to improve snowmobiling in the Adirondacks and we as a group need to support him or he’ll be less likely to go to bat for us in the future.

You can find out more info at ilsnow BB or NYSSA BB
All work will be done manually and on foot per DEC and APA usage guidelines, hence the need for bodies to turn out.

Here’s quote from Tate’s Request for help:

Hello Gentlemen,

After getting sidetracked on a few other assignments and working on other Forest Preserve snowmobile issues; we have preliminary permission to start working on the trails. I will go into details in another email. There are several small minor reroutes and bridge issues that we are proposing as well. The reroutes and bridges are still being looked at by the APA. I hope to hear from them this week. A few things to keep in mind:

1. This work is meant to stop negative environmental impacts of the users on the trail and IMPROVE the SAFETY of the users.
2. This work will not be done with any machinery
3. ATV use will be limited to bringing in Bridge materials (provided we get approval) and your annual ATV trip under the AANR
4. Most of the work sites are less than 2 miles from a road.
5. Work was planned to eliminate the “worst” sections of the trail, that cause people to get stuck or are difficult to cross.
6. You will not be able to groom these trails with a tracked groomer, just a snowmobile and drag.
7. This is meant to make the trail more ride-able, the work is not meant to bring it up to a full community connector status.
8. A Forester or Ranger needs to be on site everyday you guys are doing work.
9. There is a lot of grubbing and digging to be done; swinging mattocks, hoes and shovels.
10. There is a lot of Brushing to do, so if you know anyone with a clearing saw or heavy duty brushsaw, that would be handy.
11. The state will probably not be able to buy any bridge materials for the larger bridges.
12. Bottom line this is going to be a lot of hard manual labor; you will reap the results this winter when you can actually get through with less effort and damage to your machines!!!

And more:
Dates for work parties

8-16 Sunday @ 8 AM. Meet at Georgia Creek Parking Lot (Big Gravel lot and plow turn around north of Griffin)
8-21 Friday @ 8 AM. Meet at Georgia Creek Parking Lot
8-22 Saturday @ 8 AM. Meet at Georgia Creek Parking Lot
8-29 Saturday @ 8 AM. Meet at Georgia Creek Parking Lot
8-30 Sunday @ 8 AM. Meet at Georgia Creek Parking Lot
9-12 Saturday @ 8 AM. Meet at Georgia Creek Parking Lot
9-13 Sunday @ 8 AM. Meet at Georgia Creek Parking Lot

If people are interested in working weekdays have them contact me for days I will be working.

When you send out emails or put notices on websites; I would like you to have people who are interested in coming RSVP with me directly. This way I will have a good count of how many people are coming and also have contact info for people if the day is canceled for some reason. Having people RSVP with me directly will also avoid each of you having to keep track and contact me whenever a new person says they want to come.

This is an example of what you could add when you ask people to help:
If you are planning on helping out on any of the Trail Work days, please contact DEC Forester Tate Connor to RSVP. This will help better coordinate and plan our efforts for each work day, so your volunteer time is the most productive. Tate Connor can be reached at 518-623-1278 or tmconnor@gw.dec.state.ny.us. Please include your name, phone # and the date(s) you want to work.

Any questions let me know.

Here’s a couple of photos of the trail and it’s needs:
The Mckittrick gang More Benchwork