Tuesday, April 12, 2016

"Next Time We Should Bring a Rope"

One of the unique pleasures of hiking the Paugussett Trail are getting views of the Housatonic River Valley.  You put that effort into hiking the hills, so you should get a payoff with some nice views.  Trouble is, unlike some of the nice tall trap rock ridges in the center of the state with spectacular views from sharp cliffs, we have these hills covered with these things called trees; which tend to grow and obstruct some of the views.

This is the "Before" picture from the Overlook at Birchbank Mountain.  Some of the trees below this knob had been cleared decades before, but over time things grown. Not much of a view.

So a group of volunteers continued some enhancement clearing of the Overlook on Saturday.  Rain and possibly snow had been forecast but we decided to go ahead with the work party.  Luckily the weather was overcast, but it stayed dry.

Cleared brush was removed off the steep hillside with a conveyor belt of teamwork.  Jim had a excellent idea: "Next time we should bring a rope." This would've been impossible to do if the rocks were wet.

Anthony and Luke were working like mountain goats on the slope below the Overlook.

We also cleaned up blowdowns below the Overlook on the Paugussett Trail.  This red oak log is at a stream crossing where multiple work parties are taking place this Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday during School Break (see the Events Page if you want to help).  Later in the week the City's Tree Warden and volunteers will be taking down some larger trees to help with the enhancements.

Here's the "After" picture.  There's more to do, but now you can say " Hey, I can see the Housatonic River".  Now there's a reward for hiking up to the top of Birchbank Mountain.  We even ended up with the same number of volunteers that we started with, so it was a success.  Thanks to Anthony, Dan, John, Luke, Rich, Jim, and Terry.  

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