Volunteering for a few hours at an event - that's impressive and greatly appreciated. But volunteering an entire week of your summer to improve trails on our public lands? Now THAT deserves an extra dose of appreciation!
Earlier this month, seven BHA members plus a few packers and one crew leader, Ally Pike from the Bob Marshall Wilderness Foundation, packed in seven miles into the Great Bear Wilderness and set up camp along the Middlefork of the Flathead. There, the volunteer crew attacked two trails: Granite Creek Trail # 155 and Big River Trail # 156. In total, these rockstars maintained 12.5 miles of trails, cleaned three drains and accomplished 1,500 yards of strenuous treadwork!
"The group was AMAZING," said Ally Pike. "I cannot describe in enough words how awesome they were. To have a crew of all younger to middle-aged folks, that loved to fish and hunt and be outside, that brought all the proper gear, who were extremely safe, prepared, and always willing to listen & learn, helped in camp without me ever saying anything, never gave me reasons to be anxious, and in general just really worked hard. Overall an incredibly mindful and thoughtful group to spend a few work days with."
The six-day trip consisted of three work days, a day off to fish and explore the Wilderness and one day for hiking in and one for hiking out. In addition to the delicious food packed in by the mules, the group enjoyed some freshly caught cutthroat trout cooked over the fire and treated themselves to some ripe huckleberries along the trails.
"Strangers had become friends, many laughs were shared, and plans were being made for future adventures," said Montana BHA member Mike Clingan, who worked double time on the trip to capture some fantastic photos.
Cheers to our friends at the Bob Marshall Wilderness Foundation for planning this work trip and hosting us. And to the volunteers and packers: we can't thank you enough!