The 2019 Mobile Skills Crew season came to-a-close with not one, but TWO, curtain calls! Crews fanned out between two project areas to stage the last act in the “Building for the 23rd Century” tour.
Ringle Segment, Marathon County
A picture from the Trail around 2:30 p.m. on an overcast, brisk Saturday afternoon would show an array of scenes: A yellow carpet of soggy leaves blanketing the forest floor; Faded section markers still hugging the trees they were wrapped around last spring; Rain-soaked volunteers torn between calling it a day – or season, rather – and continuing to work; A pile of wet, muddy tools lying on the bed of a trailer, begging to be brushed and oiled.
Thank you to the 85 volunteers who gave 2,130 hours contributing to the effort to continue pushing north of currently open Trail.
To better prepare us for success, volunteers:
- constructed 2,000 feet of sustainable tread,
- shaped several drainage features,
- built 6 stone steps,
- built 17 retaining walls totaling 106 feet,
- drafted dozens of blazes, waiting to be painted next year
Summit Moraine Segment, Langlade County
Over three days, 9 volunteers spent 242 hours clearing storm damage from more than three miles of the Summit Moraine Segment. Their labor amplified previous efforts by Langlade County Chapter members.
Relying on the collective wisdom, experience, and strength of the crew, hazard trees were safely removed and the jumble of trees along the Trail were dissected and tossed farther into the woods. For good measure, a crew took care of a nagging snag buried deep within the Kettlebowl Segment. Its size and difficulty had thwarted earlier attempts to tame it.
The Summit Moraine Segment, like many segments affected by wind storms, is open, but the gnarled remnants of Mother Nature’s wrath remain, reminding hikers of forces we cannot control.
Special THANKS to:
- Marathon County Solid Waste Department for providing base camp, tables, chairs, and a tent;
- Central Moraines Chapter for the engaging entertainment, energetic representation, and large spread of baked goodies;
- Dolly McNulty, Debbie Krogwold, and the kitchen crew for the tasty hearty meals each day;
- All Crew Leaders who shared their knowledge and expertise with their crews each day;
- Northland College students for devoting their weekend to trailbuilding and tool maintenance;
- David Manteufel for use of a tractor and trailer to transport materials and enable access to the worksite;
- Rachel Riehle for pumpkins and pumpkin carving materials;
- Rick and Karla Larson for providing firewood;
- Timekeeper Distillery & Great Dane Brew Pub for the eclectic sampling of beers and spirits;
- Jennie-O, and Pine River Pre-Pack for filling our bellies;
- Zastrow the Beer Man for the donation of Alaskan beer;
- DNR staff for ongoing assistance;
- Langlade County for providing base camp for the Summit Moraine wildcard;
- Our generous donors: Pine River Cheese, Sitka Salmon, Jones Dairy, National Park Foundation, National Park Service, REI, and the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.
Generous Sponsors of the 2019 Mobile Skills Crew Trailbuilding Season include:
Sitka Salmon Shares is offering all Ice Age Trail enthusiasts and trailbuilders a $25.00 discount on your purchase of a salmon or seafood share. They’ll donate $25.00 to our award-winning Mobile Skills Crew program.