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2021 Annual Report

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1200+ Miles of Trail

Impact / Partnership

The White Mountain Trail Collective fills a unique leadership role within the trail stewardship community. Our inception in 2017 was based on an identified need for coordination of efforts; while there are several private and public agencies and organizations committed to the values WMTC holds, no one entity had been tasked to unite various constituents to move trail work forward prior to the WMTC’s formation.

WMTC is orchestrating project and volunteer management for on-the-ground efforts, streamlining communication to keep all trail maintainers connected and informed, establishing fundraising messaging, overseeing administrative functions and promoting collaboration to increase efficiencies and results.

We are grateful that partners such as the US FOREST SERVICE (WMNF), NH STATE PARKS, NORTHWOODS STEWARDSHIP CENTER, and APPALACHIAN MOUNTAIN CLUB, as well as local clubs such as the RANDOLPH MOUNTAIN CLUB, CHOCORUA MOUNTAIN CLUB, and WONALANCET OUTDOOR CLUB have joined with us to achieve the following objectives in recent years.

ACCOMPLISHMENTS TO DATE

  • Trained and deployed 29 military veterans to help with trail maintenance and workforce capacity
  • Completed over 35,000 hours of critical backlog maintenance
  • Worked with partners to add capacity to their missions and organizations
  • Engaged and trained volunteers, including certifications in level 1 maintenance
  • Completed 100+ miles of level 1 maintenance
  • Completed 50 miles of level 2 and level 3 maintenance
  • Supported more than 21 partners
  • Increased partner capacity in trail maintenance, administration, employment, and funding

Looking Forward: 2022

Rumney Rocks

PARTNERS: White Mountain National Forest, The Access Fund, Rumney Climbing Association and the National Forest Foundation

Smarts Brook

PARTNERS: White Mountain National Forest, the Mad River Trail Collective, International Mountain Bike Association

Androscoggin Area Trails Restoration Project

PARTNERS: White Mountain National Forest and the National Forest Foundation

Old Bridle Path to West Rattlesnake Summit

PARTNERS: Squam Lakes Association and the University of New Hampshire

Level 1 Maintenance

Work will continue with partners to support ongoing annual maintenance. Without this critical work, the backlog of more serious maintenance needs will continue to grow.

WMTC remains committed to helping our partners maintain the trail systems in and around the White Mountains. This commitment includes addressing a declining workforce and working toward providing sustainable and rewarding careers to anyone interested in maintaining and building trails. With trail stewards “aging out” and a decline in volunteers, it is more important than ever that we focus on training, educating and employing a solid workforce.

As we work to help partners grow and succeed, we are also addressing the challenges that prevent efficient and effective trail management. In partnership with the USFS - WMNF, we are working to standardize how trail assessments are done and to provide critical data to the WMNF. As part of the National Trail Strategy, it is important that all partners work together to achieve collaborative goals. These efforts will help to align partners and relieve the burdens that slow down boots-on-the-ground efforts.

Your financial support enables the WMTC to coordinate these efforts and complete these projects. With your investment in the trails, the network in the WMNF will receive the care and maintenance required to ensure safe and sustainable use by all of us that enjoy recreating here. With immense appreciation and gratitude, we THANK YOU!

Project Expenses by Project

[January 2019 to Date]

Expenses include staffing / contractors / supplies / materials and all other project related expenses.

2019

CRAWFORD PATH - $175,000

2020

GLEN ELLIS FALLS - $150,000
CATHEDRAL LEDGE - $100,000
CRANMORE CONNECTOR/HURRICANE MTN - $175,000

2021

SANDWICH RANGE WILDERNESS - $150,000
IRON MOUNTAIN - $85,000
WHITEHORSE LEDGE - $100,000
RAVINE TRAIL PROJECT - $80,000
CRANMORE CONNECTOR/HURRICANE MTN - $80,000
LEVEL 1 MAINTENANCE - $50,000

Funding Allocated to Partners

[January 2019 to Date]

Funding allocated to partner crew salaries for trail work and training.

AMC - $200,000
ACCESS FUND - $50,000
NORTHWOODS STEWARDSHIP CENTER - $200,000
OBP TRAILWORKS - $78,000
RECON TRAILS - $98,000
VERMONT YOUTH CONSERVATION CORPS - $30,000 STUDENT CONSERVATION ASSOCIATION - $31,000 HISTORICORPS - $10,000
SOUTHERN APPALACHIAN WILDERNESS STEWARDS - $7,500
THE STONE TRUST - $9,000
LAKES REGION CONSERVATION CORPS - $5,000

CREW HOUSING COSTS - $25,000

Expenses by Percentage

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Funding Received

[January 2019 to Date]

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2021 Project Completed

Ravine Trail

PARTNERS - Upper Saco Valley Land Trust / Recon Trail Designs / Tin Mountain Conservation Center / Kennett High School

Construction of the Ravine Trail occurred from June through August and was officially completed on September 2, 2021, with a ribbon cutting ceremony. The Ravine Trail consists of a compact gravel surface appropriate for all non-motorized recreational uses. It provides connectivity to the existing Conway Rec Path and better access to the back ball fields of the Kennett High School campus.

PROJECT STATS
> New multi-use trail, 0.83-mile in length
> 5 to 6-foot wide gravel tread
> 300-foot granite retaining wall
> 30-foot x 4-foot wide fiberglass bridge
> Tread slope on northern section at or below 5% grade
> Tread slope in "ravine" section averages at or below 10% grade, with two sections at 12% grade for less than 30 feet

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Completed footbridge

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Treadway graded to meet accessibility standards

Sandwich Range Wilderness

Paugus Beeline, Bolles, Dicey Mill, South Moat

PARTNERS: White Mountain National Forest, Chocorua Mountain Club, Wonalancet Outdoor Club, Northwoods Stewardship Center, Southern Appalachian Wilderness Stewards, OBP Trail Works

8.5 Miles of Wilderness trail was restored, including relocating sections of eroded trail and installing new drainages, tread, and rock steps to ensure sustainability of the trail. The first week of the project was used to provide wilderness-specific trail skills training. WMTC worked with the Southern Appalachian Wilderness Stewards from North Carolina to provide this training, a first-of-its-kind offering to all partners.

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BEFORE: Damaged tread due to erosion (Dicey Mill)

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AFTER: New stone checksteps (Dicey Mill)

Whitehorse Ledge

PARTNERS: NH State Parks, Access Fund, Appalachian Mountain Club, Lakes Region Conservation Corps, Friends of the Ledges

Granite steps were built to replace rotted wood retaining structures. A sustainable staircase and retaining wall were built using native granite, mined from the surrounding area. This project included a rock splitting training for the newly-hired AMC White Mountain Crew as well as other partners.

PROJECT STATS: 47 steps installed / 76 linear feet of scree wall / 183 linear feet of retaining wall

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Drilling holes to split granite boulders for steps at Whitehorse Ledge

Cranmore Connector/Hurricane
Mtn/Black Cap Mountain

PARTNERS: Ride NoCo, Cranmore Mountain, The Nature Conservancy, Northwoods Stewardship Center, Tulip Trails

A continuation of the work started last year, this year’s focus was on repairing the Cranmore Connector Hiking Trail, which was severely damaged and eroded. The work included two relocations, one at the very beginning of the trail on the Cranmore side, and the other longer one uptrail a few hundred feet (installed to provide more sustainable terrain around a steep gully). Checksteps and water bars were also installed in an area of poor drainage. The crew also removed blowdowns and completed sections of treadwork including benching a slide slope.

Iron Mountain

PARTNERS: White Mountain National Forest, Appalachian Mountain Club, Upper Saco Valley Land Trust, National Forest Foundation

A half-mile of severely eroded fall line trail was relocated/replaced with a new one-mile, moderately graded trail. WMTC hired the AMC White Mountain Crew to work on this project for six weeks. Together the WMTC and AMC crew completed 1500 feet of tread construction, 161 feet of downhill log retaining structure, 105 feet of downhill rock retaining wall, and built three rock staircases and one log ladder. The work will result in a more sustainable trail for many years to come.

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Timber steps at Iron Mountain

Level 1 Maintenance

PARTNERS: White Mountain National Forest, NH State Parks, WMNF Trail Adopters, Veterans on the 48, and individual volunteers

In an effort to help partners keep up with ongoing annual maintenance, WMTC funded training and volunteer days for over 100+ miles of trails. A huge part of this effort was working with 29 members from Veterans on the 48 who put in 320 hours maintaining 20+ miles of trails. WMTC also employed three Lakes Region Conservation Corps crew members who primarily focused on trails in the Saco district of the White Mountain National Forest. LRCC also helped NH State Parks in a project that protected fragile plant vegetation on the top of Mt Willard.