Jan 22

Elbow grease meets a lot heavy lumber.

By: Hazel England
Commentary by: Val Thorpe

We’re keeping busy making big improvements at the Conservation Management Area (CMA) on Tiger Lily Lane in Harding Twp. This work allows continued access for hikers during the winter months even as the trail system has become wetter since our recent restoration.

Yesterday, 2 staff members and 2 volunteers moved and placed (are you ready for this?) 57 12-foot long 2×6 and 30 2-foot long 6×6 railroad tie sections creating the base of a another new boardwalk. “My shoulders are feeling every one of them right now” said Hazel England, GSWA Director of Education & Outreach – Land Steward and Someone You Shouldn’t Mess With. (It’s a long title but she earned it!)

We have been constructing emergency boardwalks around the wettest parts of the trail, and have built more than 220 feet since November 2020.

The simple 3-plank boardwalk allow hikers to keep their feet dry as they cross areas where water is now standing longer because of the restoration that took place the last few months of the year. If funding and volunteers allow, this summer, the simple boardwalks will be converted to more permanent plank boardwalks.

We are truly grateful for the help of the many community members and volunteers who have assisted in carrying in all the lumber. Special thanks to volunteers extraordinaire, Steve Gruber, Wesley Boyce, and John Kramer who constructed the boardwalks.

Come check it out! Take a hike through the frozen wetlands. Hear the ice crunch underneath the boardwalk as you hike the trails – it’s magical!