Mocha Express
Thought provoking commentary on
Business, Technology, Organizations, and Organizational Dynamics
to clarify my thinking and engage in intelligent conversation.
Library: Commentary  Book: Elucidate

2.13 US Forest Service - "Leave No Trace…
    or you will do Trail Maintenance with a Trowel!"

October 13, 2007

It seems that the Forest Service may have found a solution to the two problems of lack of funds for trail maintenance and the misbehavior of some of the forest visitors:
                   requiring people to do trail maintenance with a trowel!
either that, or I experienced an experiment in how far you can get people to go.

This past year I volunteered as a "Wilderness Steward" for the Mt. Hood National Forest. This is a useful and rewarding job that requires that you:

  • schedule some hikes in the Mt. Hood National Forest Wilderness areas a couple times over the summer, preferable backpacking into the remote areas (onerous requirement ;-)
  • take a rough inventory of "wilderness permit" conformance
  • chat with people about "leave no trace", if it seems appropriate, or just chat with people.
They also loan you a radio to carry for contact and make sure you actually return.

=> A rough job but someone has to do it. :-)

I also volunteer to help the USFS people when they need an "extra hand" on a hike or the like.

Recently, I helped Mary Ellen with a trail inventory of the Paradise Park trail. It seems that the PTB (powers that be) have a "goal" of inventorying the state of one trail each year. I guess this is to find out just how bad of shape the trail is. The team measures the distances and records the state of the "features" of the trail like switchbacks, bridges, signage, etc., collects some pictures of interesting trail artifacts, and captures some GPS waypoints for reference.

I helped with the Paradise Park trail: we started at Timberline Lodge, hiked to the top of the trail at Paradise Park, hiked down about 3000(!) feet to do the top half of the trail

One of the features we inventoried was a small bridge over a small creek.

Now, the west end of the bridge was graded a bit off. It seems the trail went up from the bridge and a curb log on the down hill side not only kept the trail in place, it funneled any runoff onto the bridge.

Funneling runoff onto a wood structure is not the best of ideas: it carries water and silt onto the wood onto the wood which makes it rot quickly. Bad idea.

So, Mary Ellen noted that we really needed to change the drainage but we didn't have any tools.
What to do???

I noted that I had the required "leave not trace" "pooper scooper" (dispose of human waste properly!). As a result, I ended up grading the drainage so the water ran off the trail and not on to the bridge with:
               my "pooper scooper trowel"!

Lessons to be learned"
1) "Leave no trace" by carrying a small trowel to "dispose of waste properly", and
2) don't let Mary Ellen know you have it or you'll end up doing trail maintenance with it!!

Recent Commentaries
in Elucidate Book

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9  Ice Age Survival
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8  Ice Core TimeLine Munge
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7   Why did Agriculture Start 13,000 years ago
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6  BBC Propaganda, again
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3.3  Qualifying Experts
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3.2   Degrees of Risk
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2.2  Rewarding Accomplishing Goals
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2.4  Computer ate my Sbx Reward
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2.1  Stifle Free Speech
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2.7  Everything Old is New Again
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2.3  Banana Slugs:The Law of Unintended Consequences:Protect and Lose


1   Clever, but not very Smart
  January 01, 1997
1.1   Mayberry Rules
    February 20, 2012
2   Random Elucidatons
  January 01, 1997
2.1   Stifle Free Speech
    November 16, 2012
2.2   Rewarding Accomplishing Goals
    February 17, 2013
2.3   Banana Slugs:The Law of Unintended Consequences:Protect and Lose
    August 02, 2009
2.4   Computer ate my Sbx Reward
    February 03, 2013
2.5   The End Of Innovation or How To Lie With Statistics?
    July 02, 2005
2.6   Lying With Statistics:CNN Article that Organic Food is Not "more nutritious'
    August 22, 2008
2.7   Everything Old is New Again
    June 28, 2011
2.8   Topical:just like Sub-Prime => Commodity Greed
    April 19, 2008
2.9   Tools:Spreading Knowledge That Can Hurt:
    April 14, 2008
2.10   Tools:Trying to Help While Still Selling Corn
    February 27, 2008
2.11   The Game is Rigged:Attacking with Speculative Analysis
    January 06, 2008
2.12   Getting your "Eyes On" to see ATV Damage
    November 26, 2007
2.13   US Forest Service - "Leave No Trace... or you will do Trail Maintenance with a Trowel!"
    October 13, 2007
2.14   Act Locally, Destroy Globally:Cultivate Disease Resistance
    March 04, 2007
2.15   Joisting with Self-Glorifying Windmills
    March 03, 2007
3   Analysis
  January 01, 1997
3.1   Analysis of Medical Insurance Discussion
    April 06, 2013
3.2    Degrees of Risk
    April 24, 2013
3.3   Qualifying Experts
    January 25, 2014
4   Finches:Urban Ones Smart??
  March 23, 2016
5   BBC - Propaganda
  June 10, 2016
6   BBC Propaganda, again
  June 15, 2016
7    Why did Agriculture Start 13,000 years ago
  June 23, 2016
8   Ice Core TimeLine Munge
  September 22, 2016
9   Ice Age Survival
  December 29, 2016
Carpe Diem: What you can envision, you can achieve!sm
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