For the last two weeks, TAT has been working and camping with the Bastrop crew in Bastrop State Park. We’ve been assisting with their season long project of re-routing the 9 mile long Lost Pines Loop. Week one picked up where we had left off the previous week, clearing out corridor for a brand new section of trail. It works like this, the general direction the trail will take is flagged with a blue flag hanged on the up slope of the grade. Everything within 3.5 feet of the flag is cut out with a chainsaw, a task well received by TAT since chainsaw operation has been a seldom occurrence for the trail crew thus far. The difference between the first week of this hitch and the last week of the last hitch was that, after instruction of Bastrop and our Field Coordinator Nate, we were also removing potentially hazardous dead trees from the path of the trail. Once the path is cleared, pin flags are laid by Nate or the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department outlining the specific path the trail will take through the cleared area. Half of the members of each crew will then cut, grub, shape, and detail the new trail, while the other half of each crew bumps up ahead and begins to clear the next area. By week two the areas were all cleared! So, the half of the crew that wasn’t cutting trail went back to areas cut early on and cleared corridor that may has since been overgrown, and felling hazard trees we may have missed or were not yet comfortable felling at that point in the season. On the last day of the hitch, we were joined by YouthBuild who assisted us as we taught them to cut and shape trail! We will miss our brother and sisters in the Bastrop Crew, but we are excited to go back on our own time at the end of the summer and experience the fruits of their labor as we walk the finished Lost Pines Loop through 9 miles of Bastrop State Park!
Mikey Thomas – Trails Across Texas