Reflecting on a Remarkable Season

Wow — what a summer! The Northern Forest Canoe Trail stewardship crew and volunteers had an incredibly successful season, completing over a dozen stewardship projects. I am so thankful for the positive energy and enthusiasm of our field coordinator, Phineas Peake, and our stewardship interns: Adam Blachly, Rachel Hatheway and MacKenzie Michaels. What an incredible team to work with! We saw a record number of volunteers join us on our waterway work trips; thank you for giving back. Enjoy this recap of some highlights.

Thirty stone steps were added to eroding informal trails at the West Greenway Access, a fantastic swimming hole and canoe launch along the Mad River in Waitsfield, Vt. It was great to give back to the community where our organization is headquartered.

Interns teaching kids from the nearby Hen of the Woods day care how to build with stone.

Six benches, two tables, 10 routered signs and an ADA accessible mouldering privy were installed at the North Branch Cascades Trail in Elmore, Vt., an increasingly popular summer recreational destination. Along the Lamoille, we installed 10 stone steps and a 20-foot retaining wall along the Crossing Falls portage, making the carry easier for all.

ADA Accessible Privy

Eight stone steps were installed at Lawyers Landing on the Missisquoi River, replacing an outdated set of timber stairs, and the East Berkshire landing was enhanced  with a floating dock, just in time for a series of community events, including our Missisquoi Paddle-Pedal.

New landing… at Lawyers Landing
New dock for the East Berkshire Landing










Ten stone steps were installed along an eroding access path at the north end of Union Falls Pond, NY. The two nearby Bear Point campsites were enhanced with tent pads, stone steps and privies, and are now ready for your next adventure.

Volunteer Glenda Celestino putting the final touches on a new tent pad for your sleeping pleasure!

Along Vermont’s Clyde River, we overhauled four portage trails, adding over a dozen steps and geo-grid and gravel walkways. The crew and volunteers also hauled out several boatloads of trash from the waterway.

The Connecticut River Samuel Benton campsite was expanded with a new tenting area, privy and stone steps to handle increased use. In  partnership with the Vermont River Conservancy, we also secure a easement guaranteeing future public access, thanks to the generosity of the landowner, Ray Lovell. Thank you Ray!

Volunteers helping build new steps during a waterway work trip.

The same week, along the Upper Ammonoosuc, the Frizzel campsite site was equipped with a more user-friendly set of cedar stairs.

And finally – still the same week (!) – the  crew built a new access to the upper Nulhegan, just below Nulhegan Pond. Previously, paddlers had to park along side a busy road shoulder and tromp through alders!

We returned to Maine’s Grand Falls to improve a quarter-mile of portage trail, spreading 36 yards — over 100,000 pounds — of gravel to make the portage more durable and canoe cart friendly.

Before, this section was a jumble of rocks!

Also in Maine, we relocated three privies along Holeb and Attean Ponds that were at capacity, digging new pits and using teamwork to maneuver the hefty outhouses to their new homes.

Finally, we built two sets of access steps for the Winooski River’s Hidden Dam Access, and built a 32-foot trail bridge for paddlers to access the Winooski River during the annual Fiddlehead Slalom Canoe Race.

Behind the scenes, we had dozens of volunteer trail stewards working to keep the corridor in good shape for all. Thank you! Wishing everyone a restful “offseason” — see you next year!

The NFCT thanks the partners and landowners who made our 2021 stewardship work possible:

  • Maine AMC
  • Maine Huts and Trails Brookfield Power
  • Lake Champlain Basin Program
  • UMATR Wild & Scenic Program
  • Cross Vermont Trail
  • Mad River Path
  • Vermont River Conservancy
  • Gravity Renewables
  • Vermont Fish and Wildlife
  • Vermont Watershed Grant Program
  • Maine Outdoor Heritage Fund
  • Maine Bureau of Public Lands
  • New York DEC

2021 Waterway Work Trip Volunteers

  • Courtney Fiala
  • Chip Kimball
  • Jeffrey Krisko
  • Mike Zimmerman
  • Kristen Grant
  • Peter Roderick
  • Peter Kaurup
  • Casey Walsh Cady
  • William Eiseman
  • Anne Eiseman
  • Philip Gregor
  • Tim Hille
  • Glenda Celestino
  • Eric Hanson
  • Tom Bebee
  • Kathy Bebee
  • Thomas Huxtable
  • D.J. Kitzel
  • Hannah Wigginton
  • Griff Keating
  • Stephen Magneson
  • Cassandra Burdyshaw
  • Gretchen Whitteberry
  • Justin Illuzzi
  • Mackenzie Todd
  • Molly Blake-Michaels
  • Cindy Heath
  • William Kenyon
  • Candace Blasé
  • Bree Carlson
  • Eric Diven
  • Jan Reimers
  • Brett Simpson
  • Joshua Wright
  • Sam Nijensohn
  • Asa Nijensohn

2021 Waterway Stewards

  • Alan Flint
  • Alex Strong
  • Andy Bartleet
  • Andy Capello
  • Beth Barnes
  • Bill Wright
  • Brian Castler
  • Brian McDonnell
  • Chip Kimball
  • Craig Vonbargen
  • Erik Townsend
  • Frank Torqutte
  • Gail Lynch
  • Jason Smith
  • Jim O’Malley
  • John Cary
  • Margaret Curtis
  • Mary Jean Bland
  • Mike Bartolotti
  • Mike Lynch
  • Nick Brainered
  • Pam Mitchell
  • Peter Macfarland
  • Ray Danforth
  • Russ Collett
  • Russ Ford
  • Sean Klutz
  • Stacey McCluskey
  • Thomas Huxtable
  • Tyler Merriam
  • Walter Opuszinksi
  • Whit Whitney
  • Will Kenyon
  • Will Robens

Questions? Comments? Email