A total of nine Trailwrights turned out in the rain to tackle the erosion problem near the two tunnels of the Parkway. Fortunately it was only some 1/2 mile from the parking lot that allowed us to wheel in a wheelbarrow to aid in bringing back a lot of the gravel that had washed from the trail revealing some 90 feet of textile fabric. The days project included installing a rock waterbar above the granite steps to protect them and at the same time stop some of the water from washing below the granite steps and gullying and exposing the fabric cover.
A little further down we installed another water bar just above the steeper section where the fabric was uncovered, then a rock step to cut the grade some. We installed another earth water bar and two more rock steps in this same section. We hauled gravel to fill in the washed out part and regraded the entire section covering the 100 feet of fabric back over. Cleaned some 100 linear feet of ditching on each side of the trail where the waterbars empty into ending in the man holes.
Below the second tunnel we cleaned out some 80 feet of trail side ditch into a culvert that was completely blocked with silt and debris. We discovered two large 4ft.dia. steel manholes that were under 8” of silt built up since the parkway was finished, along with two more further up from that site and 2 steel culverts also plugged up from neglect. We cleaned all of them but discovered another man hole that we partially cleaned but is working. Ran out of time discovered as we were leaving the site. Meanwhile a second crew was setting 12 step stones down lower in the ground that were being ignored by hikers and had the soil around them washed away over the years or were never down to start with. Installed two more waterbars in this same section removed decayed matter that was holding water and replaced with good gravel.
We did not have time to complete the entire fabric section but for now it is recovered and protected until it can be finished. It needs more steps to cut the grade. If only we could obtain more of the granite we used previously for more steps. We were wet by this time (3pm) and we all moved up the notch to our Bald mt. /Bluff trail where we proceeded to take out a 2 foot large blowdown across the trail some 200 feet up from the jct. of Bald towards the Bluff. Considering the conditions we had a great time, not too wet but we did get a little muddy doing all the things our mothers would tell us not to do. Totals for the day Mt.Pemi. Trail 9 Trailwrights X 6.5 hours = 58.5 hours. Bald Mtn./ Artist Bluff Loop 7 Trailwrights 3 working 4 watching and helping clean up (why should we be different?) 7 X 1 hrs. – 7 hours 2 Trailwrights cleaned waterbars on Bald /Mtn. Trail 2 X 1 hrs. = 2 hours Total = 9 hours