Trail Boss Training Day


A big thanks goes out to Dave Ledford, along with his sidekick, John Horton, who patiently walked a group of approx 15 people through the ins and outs of trail building. All skill and experience levels were represented. Among them were a few folks from the LA Conservancy Corp, Kate Allen from the Sierra Club, several leaders from various Boy Scouts of America Troops,  Matt Lay from Pasadena Cyclery, Martin Gomez, President of PMBC, our local mountain bike club, Jenny Johnson from MWBA and individuals who are interested in learning the proper techniques of trail conservation.

The day started bright and early at the entrance of Red Box off of Angeles Crest Highway, home of the Haramokngna American Indian Cultural Center. Dave began the training session with a introduction of trail tools, what they are used for and how to safely handle the tools while using them as well as while traveling with them.  We were able to practically apply our tool knowledge later that morning. The class focused on 2 areas that were in need of repair. The first location was just a few hundred feet from the trailhead. This section of the trail had been eroded by water and needed to be buttressed with a containment wall. We learned how to use backing plates, mesh, wiring and posts that will provide longevity to the trail for decades to come. We also learned how to reinforce our containment wall by installing “deadmen” lines that run underground. These deadmen will help to keep the containment wall steady and will prevent the wall from buckling out from the pressure of erosion due to weather, use and time.

The second section we worked on was above the trailhead. It was in dire need of repair as the asphalt had been eroded and diverted water to flow down on the trail section we just fixed instead of flowing into the culvert that sat next to it. This work will insure the work we did earlier will not be in vain, as the water will flow into the culvert and down the side of the mountain so it won’t damage our trails. We again created a containment wall, reinforcing it with a deadman to support the asphalt we added.

All in all, it was not only a great day of effective trail work, it was a fantastic opportunity for all of us who came out to learn a thing or two about trail conservation.