In celebration of
While taking a break to snack beneath a shady canopy of trees, other volunteers remarked about the progress made on the Pratt River Connector Trail during the past year. Through arduous work and laughter, groups of WTA volunteers have restored the 3.5 mile-long segment of trail. They shared stories of working in miserable weather conditions, and proudly pointed out trail features they played a key role in constructing. Their stories, as well as the work we were engaging in, made me pause to think about the forces that coalesce so that hikers, fishers, horseback riders and outdoor enthusiasts can partake in various recreational activities in the stunning old-growth forest along the
As we were scooping dirt and collecting rocks to construct a rock wall, numerous people enjoying the Middle Fork scenery stopped to thank us for the trail work we were performing. It felt great to give back some of my time and labor in return for the revival of a popular trail that had been downtrodden by time and weather. The Pratt River Connector trail weaves through lush forest, spotted with ferns and lively undergrowth. Once restored, the trail will provide users with access to both the
The WTA trail work crews are one force that foster outdoor recreation activities and access to wild lands. This access, and the continued stewardship and preservation, is a combined effort with a variety of different organizations and actors. Over the past few years Washington Wilderness Coalition has led coalition efforts by conservation and recreation groups to expand the Alpine Lakes Wilderness boundary down the hill to include lower elevation forest along the river and designate the Middle Fork Snoqualmie and
Sarah Gruen is WWC's summer wildlands research intern. Last year, she graduated with a degree in geography from the University of Washington. Sarah has helped to conduct crucial research for WWC on wilderness policies and their use around the state. For information, contact Sarah at email@example.com.