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  1. #21
    Registered User turtle fast's Avatar
    Join Date
    South Milwaukee, Wisconsin


    Flicking off sticks on the trail, picking up litter, and volunteering are good direct things to do. However, we are missing the obvious.....donating some folding money for the trail is just as good and is sorely needed.

  2. #22
    Registered User Dances with Mice's Avatar
    Join Date
    North Georgia


    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Tarlin View Post
    During the course of your hike, you'll undoubtedly run into crews of folks out working on the Trail. Please consider stopping for awhile, throwing down your pack, and helping these guys out for awhile. I have many friends who are maintainers and I've often asked them how often this happens when they encounter thru-hikers. Their standard response is "Never." Occasionally we get a hello or even a "Thank you!!" but it doesn't happen all that often. The best way to say thanks to the men and women whose volunteer work keeps the Trail alive is to take a few minutes and BECOME one of these people!
    That sounds so nice, simple and easy and lots of times it might work. But I need to warn the OP to not get upset if the crew leader thanks you profusely for your offer but then diplomatically suggests that your help isn't needed right then and you should rehoist your pack and keep walking. He should be very nice about it but he could also be very firm.

    It's not that your offer wouldn't be appreciated. It really would be. But for a bunch of reasons that I don't want to get into here involving the words Forest Service, liability, training requirements, Workman's Compensation and other boring stuff like that you might not be able to just walk up and join a crew. Sometimes you can. Sometimes you can't.

    Just sayin'.
    You never turned around to see the frowns
    On the jugglers and the clowns
    When they all did tricks for you.

  3. #23
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Sturgis, SD


    So glad you are willing to help. Over the years on section hikes in the Whites I would often help out the caretakers at shelters. Helped replace worn out bog bridges, fix bear lines, one time while helping with the mixing of compost from the privy I found out I hiked with the caretaker's aunt & unckle. My favorite though was helping with the helicoper drops of the parts for composting privy for Ethan Pond. So when ya take a dump there think of me, lol.

    Even just hauling out a bit of trash from a shelter helps trail crews so they can spend times on more worth while projects.

  4. #24


    I came across a guy trying to remove a blow down on the trail which was really a 2 man job, so I stopped and helped. He was very greatful for the help.
    The AT - It has it's ups and downs...

  5. #25


    If you happen to be a sobo and pass the Rocky Top trail crew in the Smokies (Early September - End of October), see about volunteering for a few days. We'll feed 'ya good. I've had the pleasure of working on that trail crew for the last two years (moreso last year than the one before) and two years ago, we adopted a few hikers over our 2 month season. The one that was there during my stint on the crew was a section hiker who went by Yogi. Last year, we disappointingly had zero adoptee volunteers. We appreciate the company from hikers too. Don't be afraid to come chat. There's probably some dinner and candy in it for you. Maybe a campfire and good stories, too, depending on the crowd. We had the somewhat famous ToothPac up there with us from Standing Bear last year.

  6. #26


    Last year I did Hardcore after Trail Days and also did Week 6 with Konnarock. We met the crew at the work location on the trail instead of at the base camp but it was still necessary to fill out the paperwork. We did that online well before we got to the assigned location. There is also the opportunity to do Maine Hardcore if you're a NOBO. Their project usually is scheduled to coincide with the Trails End Festival.
    Apart from those sorts of scheduled projects I think the previous posters have just about covered all the things you can do on a daily basis to help maintain the trail. Kudos to you for starting out with such a great attitude. I didn't really understand the need until I finished my 1st thruhike and realized how it would not have been possible without all the counless hours of volunteer work put in to maintaining the trail by the various clubs and organizations along the way.
    The 2nd time around I felt I owed the trail something back.
    AT x 3
    GA-ME 2010
    GA-ME 2011
    ME-GA 2013

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