A Phenomenal Kick Off to the 2017 MSC Season!

Ice Age Trail Alliance, Soul Shakedown MSC event, Ice Age National Scenic Trail

Brand new trail under construction on the Walla Hi Segment. Photo by Brad Crary

Whew! That’s one way to kick off the trailbuilding season.  2 days, 3 events, 146 volunteers, and 1,994 hours dedicated to enhancing the Ice Age National Scenic Trail.

Thank you to everyone who came out for the first Soul Shakedown of the year!

Ice Age Trail Alliance, Ice Age National Scenic Trail, Walla Hi Segment, Soul Shakedown MSC

Ground work has been laid for ongoing tread construction on the Walla Hi Segment.  Photo by Brad Crary

Walla Hi, Manitowoc County

The rolling hills and steep slopes of Walla Hi County Park provided an inspiring back drop to two productive days of corridor clearing and tread construction. Volunteers, over the course of 913 hours, eradicated 43,000+ square feet of prickly ash, constructed 400 feet of sustainable sidehill tread, staged rocks for use in September. We even called in a farm tractor to make quick work of rocky terrain in a 15’ wide easement providing access to the Park.

In all, the crew of 63 volunteers made monumental strides in prepping the corridor for our return in September. In addition to the work in the field, 16 participants successfully completed chainsaw safety training.

Special Thanks:

  • Dennis Salzman for mechanical advantage (i.e. farm tractor)
  • Dave Gramling for pre-project field help
  • Tim Ryan and Pete Tarnowski from Manitowoc County Parks
  • The West Foundation for providing continuing support throughout 2017 to open the new section of Trail in Walla Hi County Park
Ice Age National Scenic Trail, Ice Age Trail Alliance, MSC 2017, Soul Shakedown

Prepping new trail by grubbing stump on the Ringle Segment. Photo by Tim Malzhan

Ringle Segment, Marathon County

Thanks to 45 volunteers over 649 hours, the seal has been broken on a 6.7 mile reimagining of the Ringle Segment. Volunteers cleared over 1.3 miles of corridor, installed 10 trail signage posts and had chainsaws revved up to open the entire route. The table has been set for the May MSC event.

Special Thanks:

  • Gail Piotrowski for being the point person with the Marathon County Chapter
  • Meleesa Johnson and the Marathon County Solid Waste Department for use of base camp and providing strong support for the Ice Age Trail
Ice Age National Scenic Trail, Ice Age Trail Alliance, Soul Shakedown, MSC 2017 event

Stumping on a steep hillside slope on future Firth Lake Segment.  Photo by Dave Caliebe

Firth Lake Segment, Chippewa County

Steep slopes and thick brush did not slow 38 voracious volunteers. Clearing crews grubbed and prepped a half-mile of trail for tread construction while chainsaws crews worked through the entire 1.7-mile project area.

Special Thanks:

  • Tony Schuster for help before and during the event
  • Mike Dahlby and Art Kunstmann from the Chippewa County Forestry Department
  • Members of the Chippewa Valley ATV Council for lending a hand
  • This event was made possible by a grant from the generosity of the Field of Interest, Unrestricted Funds and Board Grant Fund in the Community Foundation of Chippewa County

For more photos of the three MSC events, head over to Facebook.

Next Up

The Ice Age Trail Alliance Annual Conference takes place April 27-29 in Chippewa Falls.

The first blockbuster trailbuilding event shakes into town, May 17-21 on the Ringle Segment in Marathon County. Join us as we work to open a brand new 1.7-mile section of Ice Age Trail.

 2017 Mobile Skills Crew Sponsors

This project was made possible in part by a grant from the National Park Foundation through the generous support of The Coca-Cola Company and The Coca-Cola Foundation




The Alliance is happy to have Wigwam Socks as a corporate sponsor in 2017.

Special thanks to Wigwam for supporting MSC trailbuilders all season-long.