2017 Pacific Crest Trail Clean-Up
BUFF® Staff / 9-19-2017
Through our partnership with the Pacific Crest Trail Association (PCTA) we recently received the opportunity to volunteer on the Echo Lakes project. This is a combined club trail-clearing with the Tahoe Rim Trail Association, the California Alpine Club and members of the U.S. Forest Service. On our project, a group of 22 volunteers took one day and worked on a 3-mile stretch of the Pacific Crest Trail aka the PCT.
We arrived Friday night at the California Alpine Club's Echo Summit Lodge just in time to see one of those sunsets that PCT hikers look forward to each and every night on the trail.
Early Saturday the work begins but not before a group photo.
After hiking a few miles the real work begins... clearing debris off the trail, cutting down unsafe dead trees and making sure the footing is solid for the thousands of annual thru hikers and horseback riders. An unexpected but important task was to cover up shortcuts made by other hikers. If all the hikers blazed their own trails you could imagine what the surrounding terrain would be dimished too... a combination of intertwining paths in what should be unspoiled forests.
Cleaning the trail gives you a chance to see its beauty and learn from longtime volunteers and Pacific Crest Trail Association staff on hand.
The Pacific Crest Trail is a massive trail that is 2,659 miles long starting with the sourthern most point near the Mexican border in California and the northern most point is near the Canadian border in the state of Washington. Lucky for us, the trail is just a three hour drive from our offiice in Santa Rosa, CA. With so much ground to cover you can image how much maintenance needs to be done in order to keep this trail preserved for all the hikers that use it year after year.
The day continues with a mix of hard work while taking in the beautiful surroundings.
It ends with a warm meal at the lodge that overlooks the Sierra Nevada mountain range. It doesn't get much better! We were honored to be part of this project and we want to say THANK YOU to the California Alpine Club for hosting this event. They were very generous by providing all the volunteers with lodging and meals for the weekend.
If you want to learn more about the PCT contact the organizations below and get involved, they can always use your help. It's the best way to gain the confidence to start trekking on your own and help preserve wild and scenic lands.
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