District Overseer Reports
Overseer – Rick SteCroix
(The Katahdin District extends from the Jo-Mary Haul Road to the Summit of Katahdin.
It consists of 55.7 miles of the Appalachian Trail and 2.6 miles of side trails.)
KATAHDIN DISTRICT – ANNUAL REPORT
October 1, 2013 to September 30, 2014
The Katahdin District consists of 55.8 miles of the A.T. and 4.0 miles of side trails. A total of 48 individuals worked 878 hours on the trails and campsites this year. They traveled 440 hours to get to their respective worksites. This comes to a total of 1318 hours of volunteer work in the Katahdin District. There are 11 trail sections assignments in the Katahdin District. The longest is 11.3 miles and the shortest is 2.6 miles with the average being 5.0 miles. The maintainers made 23 work trips this year.
We had a long and cold winter with many snowstorms. A very wet and rainy spring made for difficult conditions to get spring trail maintenance done. Work trips were done in May and June to prepare the A.T. for the hiking season. Several maintainers also made work trips in July and August. The weather was generally wet during June but we ended up with a nice summer and fall. The usual trail work of clearing blowdowns and clipping back brush and branches from the footpath were done. Painting white blazes on the A.T. and blue blazes on side trails was done where needed. Cleaning waterbars and drainage ditches was also done. Trail signs are in good shape. In Baxter State Park, the blue blazed Highwater Trail is a bypass to fording the Nesowadnehunk Stream at 2 places. Beaver activity is occurring at both outlets of the northern and southern Rainbow Deadwaters, but the trail is not affected. The Maine Trail Crew worked 3 weeks in June on the Hunt Trail (A.T.) in Baxter State Park, 3 weeks in July at the Rainbow Deadwaters, 3 weeks in July at Nahmakanta Stream and 3 weeks in August east of Rainbow Lake.
All 7 campsites received regular maintenance by the maintainers this season. The leantos at Hurd Brook, Rainbow Stream, Wadleigh Stream and Potaywadjo Spring are all in good shape. The tentsites at Rainbow Spring, Nahmakanta Stream and Antlers’ Campsites are also in good shape. Trash was picked up, firepits cleaned of ashes and unburnable trash. Abandoned clothes, gear, food and books left behind by inconsiderate hikers was carried out and disposed. All campsite signs showing directions to water sources, privies and tent sites are in good shape. The moldering privy at Hurd Brook Campsite, built in September 2000, is doing well. The moldering privy at Rainbow Stream Campsite, built in June, 2001, is also doing well.
The 5 pit privies at the other campsites are in fair to good shape. Various bootleg campsites continue to be used along the trail and the maintainers continue to clean up trash that is left behind and to break up illegal firerings. The Nature Conservancy has a campsite at Rainbow Lake Dam on a 0.25 mile side trail. The State of Maine has a couple of campsites at the southern end of Nahmakanta Lake. The major project of building an accessible moldering privy at Wadleigh Stream Campsite was accomplished in June, 2014. About 20 volunteers traveled 187 hours and worked 366 hours over 2 weekends. The lumber was precut then transported to the South End of Nahmakanta Lake. Then 2 boats were used to move the volunteers, lumber and materials 2 miles up the lake, then carried 1/2 mile to the campsite where the moldering privy was assembled. We had great weather and great volunteers to accomplish this project.
About 25.5 miles of the A.T. is on National Park Service land from the JoMary Road to Murphy Brook. About 15.2 miles of the A.T. is on The Nature Conservancy land from Murphy Brook to the Golden Road. About 1 mile of the A.T. is a road walk on the Golden Road, owned by the Katahdin Forest Management Company. The balance of the A.T., about 14.4 miles, is in Baxter State Park, from Abol Stream to Baxter Peak, Katahdin. Boats and canoes continue to be stored in the corridor at the following sites: Big Beaver Pond, Rainbow Lake Dam, Rainbow Deadwaters and Crescent Pond.
I would like to thank everyone that volunterred their time and effort in the Katahdin District in 2014. Your work is very important in maintaining and protecting the A.T. in Maine. Thank you.
Maine A.T. Club
View from the summit of Whitecap
Overseer : Craig Dickstein
Overseer Dick Fecteau
(The Bigelow District extends from Route 4 to the Long Falls Dam Road. It has 68.3 miles of A.T. and side trail.)
Bigelow District – 2014 Annual Report
Twenty six Bigelow District maintainers reported 115 trips this past season. A total of 99 individuals tallied 2465 volunteer hours working on the trails and campsites from Rt. 4 to the Long Falls Dam Rd.
Ian Fitzmorris was the Horns Pond caretaker again this past season. Ian was very efficient as a caretaker and ridge runner in the area. In addition to being a friendly and helpful host to many hikers, Ian continued to tackle projects above and beyond his care-taking duties.
Rachel Cole will be the Horns Pond caretaker for the 2015 season. Rachel thru-hiked the AT in 2011, the PCT in 2012, and the Continental Divide in 2013
Six tent platforms were replaced at Bigelow Col by twelve girls from Camp Tekawithka during the last week of June. This was a eleven hour long project that included dismantling and removing the old platforms before constructing the new sturdier platforms. Ian Fitzmorris contributed major help during and after this project was completed.
Major clipping was completed along the AT over the summit of North Crocker, a distance of 1mile. The two mile trail section from the summit north towards Rt. 27 is available this coming season.
A Maine Conservation Corp crew worked for three weeks constructing drainage structures and stone steps on the south side of Saddleback Jr.
The Maine Trail crew spent 3 weeks installing 22 rock steps on a steep section of trail about ½ mile from the Rt. 4 parking area.
Returning during the last wet weekend of July the Camp Tekawithka boys did extensive drainage work on the AT between South Horn and West Peak with help from MATC caretakers Ian Fitzmorris and Grace Glynn. Additionally these lads hauled wood chips up to Horns Pond for use in the composting privies.
The annual mid season mixer at Horns Pond was accomplished by MATC caretakers, Grace, Ian and Carol Wellman from Gulf Hagas.
Grace Glynn was the Piazza Rock caretaker this season. Grace was very effective as a caretaker, site maintainer and ridge runner in the area, plus being a friendly and helpful host to many hikers. Grace returns with enthusiasm and plans for engaging Rangeley as a trail town, and developing a music program for working with kids around the campfire, using old logging camp songs and Pete Seeger sing-a-longs.
Grace Glynn along with John Towey replaced a dozen rotted bog bridging sections just south of the Beach Hill Rd.This is a ¼ mile section of wet trail that cannot be relocated hence the ongoing bog bridging repairs.
Major projects next season include;
Poplar Ridge to Saddleback Junior Reconstruction
Berry Pickers Trail
Safford Notch side trail
A couple dozen sections of bog bridging will be installed on the lower section that was relocated several years ago. This is likely a Camp Tekawithka project.
Moose Falls campsite
Repair tent platforms and privy and build a short trail relocation around a wet section about ½ mile south of the campsite.
Many thanks to all the District maintainers and volunteers who do the vast majority of routine work that includes; blow down removal, water bar cleaning and blazing, without which there would be no Appalachian Trail in Maine.
Overseer Tom Gorrill