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BC Skiers Hogback ski trail cleanup the Friday after T-Day November 24th 2023
Join us for the traditional ski trail cleanup day at the Hogback Mountain Conservation Area the Friday after Thanksgiving. That’s Nov 24 this year. We’ll meet at 1:00 in the parking lot between the distillery and the gift shop on Route 100 in Marlboro, at the 100-mile view, and split into teams to tackle various projects. Let us know at email@example.com if you plan to join us so that we can organize enough team leaders. Please consider parking in the big lot on the north side of the highway even though we’ll be meeting and working on the south side at the defunct ski area. If you enjoy backcountry or XC skiing at Hogback, this is the day to earn your turns by helping us keep the skiable lines open.
Bring your favorite tool for this kind of work. We’ll have a few tools of various kinds available to loan out. We can use some people with brush cutters or scythes to knock back the hardhack and others with loppers or hand saws to trim back face-slapping branches that are growing into the trails. We’ll need one or two folks with chainsaws to deal with any big blowdowns we find, but keep in mind that you MUST have a full set of safety gear (chaps, safety-toe boots, ear/eye/hearing protection and a helmet) in order to use a chainsaw in the conservation area.
This will be the final weekend of rifle (deer) season, so wear something bright orange or safety yellow. It’s not unusual to have a light layer of snow on the ground for this workday. That doesn’t stop us. If it’s raining or snowing heavily, assume the event is cancelled. Otherwise, dress for the weather and come on out and get ready to ski!
FALL 2023 BIRD BANDING PROJECT
Yes it is definitely still summer, but migrating birds are well into their post breeding molt and getting ready to fly south back toward the equator. So we will be out on Hogback Mountain once again during parts of September and October mist netting and banding birds. If you would like to find out more information or sign up please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. No experience is needed. Hope to see you out there!
Photo By Bob Anderson
Tuning up the trails is in progress - cutting fallen trees blocking the trails, lopping overhanging branches, and weed whacking the weeds and new shoots on the trails. We are happy to report that the north side kiosks are once again visible, thanks to the trail crew. A side benefit to this work can be the discovery of useful or interesting information–an invasive plant that requires removal, moose scat reaffirming their presence in the conservation area, perhaps a jack-in-the pulpit.
WANT TO HELP CLEAR & TRIM TRAILS? OR HIKE AT LEISURE TO MONITOR AND REPORT CONDITION OF TRAILS? Get in touch by email at email@example.com.
MANAGEMENT PLAN UPDATE FOR THE CONSERVATION AREA NOW UNDERWAY
It’s been thirteen years since the conservation area was created and the first plan for managing the use of the nearly 600 acres was drafted. In that time, people of all ages and with a wide variety of different interests have enjoyed the trails and slopes. Wildlife seems to be thriving, and the forest is healthy. The existing approach to managing the land seems to be working. Why the update? One reason is that just before covid, we had a year-long study done by naturalist Charley Eiseman, who produced a Biodiversity Inventory covering both flora and fauna. This report gives us new insight into questions such as “Are there any special plants or animals in the conservation area that deserve special protection?” Another reason is the development of new technologies, such as drones and e-bikes, that hadn’t been considered when the first plan was written. The Hogback Management Plan Update Committee (HMPUC) is currently working on collecting questions, concepts and ideas to consider during the update. Public input will be formally sought later this year via surveys and public presentations, but in the meantime, members of the public are welcome at all HMPUC meetings, which are held in hybrid Zoom/in-person format, meeting at the Marlboro Town Office on the 2ndand 4th Wednesday of the month, at 7:30 pm. Agendas and Minutes can be found on the town website on the Hogback Preservation Commission page. The Zoom link is in the Agenda.