This is a badge bit (BB) that is part of the PEP curriculum. Completing this BB is part of getting the sand badge in earthworks.
For this BB, you will be performing trail maintenance for at least two hundred feet of trail.
This maintenance might include doing some of the following:
- adding sand (make the trail barefoot friendly, and generally more stable)
- removing rocks, leaves, pinecones, trees, branches, etc.
- altering how steep the trail is
- making the trail wider (at least 18 inches wide)
- repair potholes and muddy spots
- any sign of water damage needs a shift in trail design
- remove branches that might require people on the trail to duck
- adding seeds on the sides of the trail to improve stability of the trail, provide food and/or medicine, and make it more beautiful
An example of trail maintenance might be what this guy did to care for an old switchback trail. He cleared away a lot of leaves on the trail, and he took down a fallen tree.
Another example of what trail maintenance could be is this video, where a trail has leaves and muck scooped out of and gets recompacted in a few spots.
A broader overview of trail maintenance is discussed in this US Forest Service video:
To get certified for this BB, post one video about two minutes long showing
- the trail before the maintenance with a walking measuring wheel - highlighting the issues
- the same trail highlighting the improvements
A question on this BB: my parents have a trail through the woods behind their house which needs clearing; it has sticks and branches way out in the way, some requiring chainsaw. If the branches don't get trimmed back then the path closes up. The path itself hasn't been swept away and little would need to be done to the mossy floor of the path. Would clearing this path count for the bb, or is it important that the floor of the trail be improved?
"Be a treasure to the poor, an admonisher to the rich, an answerer to the cry of the needy... Be as a lamp unto them that walk in darkness..." - Baha'u'llah, Epistle to the Son of the Wolf
Ok, I reclaimed an old trail today. It had been used a decade or two ago and had grown up a bit. I have a pile of firewood in there that I need to get out so it was time to brush it out. The goal is not a narrow walking trail, just a 6' wide path that my garden tractor and trailer can navigate.
The main tasks were to:
Nip off the ferns to visually define the trail and so I could see the branches I needed to pick up
Remove fallen branches and tree tops
Trim off eye poking spruce branches
Remove a dozen small spruce that had grown up in the trail
I don't have a walking measuring wheel but I do have a 100' tape. So I marked the 0', 100' and 200' points with reflective driveway markers. I took video before and after and cobbled it together into a crappy video. Enjoy!
I didn't rake the trail so that it wouldn't erode. I'll drive the mower down there in the summer when the ferns come back to keep them under control. It's plenty good enough to get the wood out for the next 5 years.
(Edited to remove photos and post video)
"Hundreds of years from now it will not matter what my bank account was, the sort of house I lived in or the type of car I drove... But the world may be different because I did something so bafflingly crazy that it becomes a tourist destination"