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Backpacker Magazine – April 2008

Top 3 Trail-Building Trips

Want to boost your backcountry karma? Here are three places to hike–and give back.

by: Ann Wendland

Appalachian Trail, New York-New Jersey Trail Conference
Appalachian Trail, New York-New Jersey Trail Conference
Pacific Crest Trail, Ian Nelson/PCTA
Pacific Crest Trail, Ian Nelson/PCTA
Ice Age Trail, Robert Wojtowicz/
Ice Age Trail, Robert Wojtowicz/

AT | PCT | Ice Age

Ice Age Trail
Blaze new ground on a glacial moraine
The Ice Age National Scenic Trail snakes along the remains of an ancient glacier that once covered 66 percent of Wisconsin. Here, the terminal moraine mixes 200-foot-high, boulder-pocked foothills, grassy balds, and chiseled granite gorges. The Ice Age Park and Trail Foundation maintains the entire 650-mile trail and hosts volunteer events every weekend of the year. Organizers are focusing efforts on the trails' 5.5-mile Hemlock Creek Segment in northwest Wisconsin's Blue Hills region. You'll stack 1.6-billion-year-old quartzite into retaining walls, construct a 36-foot bridge, and cut switchbacks through basswood and white ash forests. Pack a pole to catch extra-large panfish in Hemlock Creek.

The Reward
After your shift, choose from 28 kinds of pie at the Norske Nook in Rice Lake. They've won 13 blue ribbons in the last five National Pie Championships.

The Way
From Rice Lake, go 9 miles east on WI 48 to 24th Avenue; continue 5 miles to County Road F, then 1.5 miles to Murphy Flowage picnic area.

AT | PCT | Ice Age

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andrew (bones)
Nov 08, 2010

Big Thanks to Fast Eddie for allowing me to be apart of the bear mountain project last fall. This project allowed me to hone my skills as a rock setter, and gave me insight into what rock shaping is all about. Couldn't have worked for a better crew, the leaders were on-point, never lazy, and the volunteers showed a level of pride in their work that Iv'e never seen.


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