Passage 36 – Coconino Rim
A recent section-hike outing revealed several substantial deadfall and a gate in need of repair on this passage, so as much to escape the Phoenix heat as to tend to trail work, four volunteers ventured north to Grandview Trailhead July 9, 10 & 11. The signs that the ATA replaced over the past few years also received a coat of preservative, in hopes of extending their lives.
Monday the group gathered at the TH at 12 and drove south to the FR 310 and 317 junction, then made their way short cross-country a few hundred yards to the trail. The lumber gods had graciously grouped the fallen trees and malfunctioning gate all within less than a mile along the trail. Many hands made light(er) work and the trees were cut and pried off the trail in a few short hours.
Tuesday the group headed south again to the FR 310/AZT junction and began treating the signs. Some of the signs had a varnish that did not like the AZ sun very much, so what remained of it was sanded off and an oil-based preservative applied. The dry redwood seemed quite thirsty; it really soaked it up. The group worked out an efficient system and worked through the numerous signs down to the Babbitt Ranch. Joe and Richard caught the last deadfall just north of Moqui TH.
The rain hit on the way back north, cutting the day short and postponing the work on the signs between Grandview and Tusayan till Wednesday. As dry as the forests have been no one complained as the sky opened up and left water standing everywhere.
Wednesday the group made quick work of the four remaining signs, all the while hoping there was enough preservative. Fate was with us and all 17 signs were treated.
Then nothing left but the long drive home, where the rains were soaking the very dry country putting an end to the forest closures and ATA’s forced break from trail work.
Thanks to Richard, Joe and Roger for a very pleasant and productive three days in the cool country on the AZT.
Crew starts on a big one.