2010 Field Season - Northern Forest Canoe Trail

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Northern Forest Canoe Trail

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Waitsfield, VT 05673

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NFCT Stewardship Field Season > 2010 Field Season

2010 NFCT Field Season-Celebrating 10 Years in Style

What a season! Once again we were able to expand our program thanks our generous Trail Fund donors, and to the continued support of the Adirondack Watershed Alliance, the Maine Outdoor Heritage Fund, several grant sources (noted below), and support from the following businesses:

• Cache Lake Camping Foods
• Delorme
• Eureka
• Green Mountain Coffee
• Katadyn
• Kelty
• L.L. Bean
• Malone Auto Racks
• Old Town Canoes & Kayaks

Summer Interns 

Our summer intern force was one to be reckoned with. We were able to expand our Summer Intern Crew from 6 weeks to 9, we added an additional Waterway Work Trip (WWT) for a total of 5, and were fortunate to have our Program Intern devote many hours to further developing our GIS program. We were also fortunate to once again have Noah Pollack back as our Field Coordinator. All of these piece came together to make a banner season

NFCT Interns flank Trail Director Walter Opuszynski (in blue jacket and shades in center).  Interns (from left to right):  Brianna Baker, Sam Brakeley, Kevin Large, Walter, Brendan Jackson, Allison Waring, Erin Quigley, and Field Program Coordinator Noah Pollock

It all started with two weeks of training covering the leadership and trail skills needed to prepare our Stewardship Crew for the rigors of a very intense expedition starting in the heart of the Adirondacks and ending at Spencer Rips in Maine. Many came together to share their knowledge. Mark Moore from Outdoor Mentors taught paddle skill and river rescue, the VT Department of Environmental Conservation taught us about Wetlands, Flood Plains, Aquatic and Riparian Invasives, the Hilles shared their cooking knowledge, and the representatives of the Winter Center taught us how to interact with areas of historic significance.

Mark Moore of Outdoor Mentors with the intern crew on the Missisquoi River.

Then off to the races......

Eighth Lake Take-out, NY

We worked with the NY Department of Environmental Conservation (NY DEC) to build a stone and earth causeway at the Eighth Lake Take-out. This work created a stable walking surface while controlling erosion. Brian McDonnell from Mac's Canoe Livery rallied the troops to help us put the finishing touches on the project. Mike from the Adirondack Daily Enterprise also came out to show his support. The beginning of the carry now matches the quality of the end at Brown's Tract.


Building the stone retainer wall.

The Eighth Lake Chain Gang

Buttermilk Falls and Deerland Carries, NY

Once again working with the support of the NY DEC we made it our goal to make the Buttermilk Carry more appealing than the road option to increase safety. We harnessed the use of some technical rock working methods to build a stone staircase in a crack in the bedrock. You won't see too many stone staircases like this, so if you have the opportunity stop and check it out on your way through the Raquette River please do so. This along with many other trail projects greatly increased the easy of travel.

Franklin Falls, NY

After two seasons of sweating over boulders we now have a 42 step stone staircase at the Permanent Rapids Carry. This staircase will sure the footing for those making the carry as well as those accessing the camping area, or walking down to the river to wet a line. Once again we worked with the NY DEC to perform other bank stabilization, erosion control, and campsite rehabilitation projects in the area.

Transporting tree across Franklin Falls Pond.


Rangeley, Maine. Rangeley Lakes Regional Logging Museum

We departed from our usually linear course of travel across the NFCT to high tail it to Rangeley for a trail project and to help celebrate our organizations 10th year of existence. We worked with the great folks at the Logging museum to clear ¼ mile of corridor so we can begin planning work for the new Gull Pond Stream Portage Trail. This new trail will lead you from Haley Pond right to the Logging Museum cutting off some travel on Route 16. After finishing the project we had just enough time to create what was officially the "most entertaining" float in the Logging Museum Parade.

It doesn't get more entertaining than this!


Highgate Falls, VT

We capped off another project we have been chipping away at for the past three seasons. After installing a 12 foot log ladder we now have a stable walking surface up the steepest section of the Highgate Falls Portage trail. We also have a Wet Willie Privy, sign-in box, and a little less graffiti at the put-in.

Taking a nice sit-down after a long day of log ladder construction.

Dorothy paddling into the sunset at the Highgate Falls WWT.

Lake Umbagog, NH

We worked with the Lake Umbagog National Wildlife Refuge to close access areas that have developed erosion problems due to use.

Making saw dust the old fashioned way.


Spencer Rips, ME

We capped this season off at an absolutely beautiful location. Working with the Maine Bureau of Public Lands we accessed money from the Land for Maine's Future Fund to improve the access to the Moose River at Spencer Rips. Thanks to everyone's efforts we now have two 12 foot log ladders, two retainer walls, and a seven step stone staircase at the rips helping people access the portage, campsites, and river.


All hands on deck. Working together to build one of the 12 foot log ladders.


Once again a HUGE "thanks" to everyone that made this season possible. It truly is one for the books.