The Great Divide Trail

Hidden Creek 2014



Plans are coming together for our trail maintenance trip taking place from July 24 to 27 in the Hidden Creek area of the Great Divide but we need you!

GDTA Trail Maintenance Trip 2014

Where: Hidden Creek
When: July 24 to 27, 2014

Go outdoors. Play in the dirt. Sleep under the stars.

Make a difference. Get involved!


Trail Maintenance Trip - General Information:

  • This year our plan is to repair damage to the trail caused by last year's floods and re-establish the trail from Tornado Pass to Hidden Creek. We'll be repairing and building trail tread, removing brush and fallen trees, blazing and marking the trail, assessing damage to bridges and performing riparian restoration as required.
  • For those of you new to trail building and maintenance, this year's trip will include a tool use and safety orientation so even if you don't have previous experience please consider getting involved.
  • In order to make our trip a success each year, we seek volunteers to offer to lead or assist in one or more of the required tasks that need to get done on the trip. People can volunteer for a task that they feel skilled in leading or those they would be willing to learn/assist with. For example: first aid, kitchen set-up/take-down, camp set-up/take-down, latrine construction/take-down, food cache, fire pit & wood, tool manager, photographer.
  • The GDTA will provide all trail maintenance tools and safety gear (e.g. gloves, goggles, chainsaw pants, first aid kits) as well as all shared camp equipment (e.g. kitchen tent, stoves, sink, tables, tarps). Volunteers are expected to bring their own personal clothing and camping gear (e.g. tent, sleeping bag). For those joining us on the trip, I will be sending out a Trail Crew Volunteer Guide including a detailed list of what you should bring.
  • The GDTA will be providing food for the meals at a nominal cost to each participant. Once the number of trail crew volunteers is confirmed, I will inform everyone of the cost.
  • Everyone participating in the trip will be required to complete a liability waiver.
  • As there is no cell phone reception in the area, we will have a satellite phone with us for emergency situations.
  • The itinerary:
    • DAY 1 (Thursday, July 24): Meet in Calgary (location TBD) early on July 24 where we pack up all of gear into the GDTA trucks and carpool to the Hidden Creek trailhead, about 3 hours away. Bring your own bag lunch for the road trip. From the trailhead we load up all of our gear onto the ATV trailer to transport it to our base camp. The trail crew will walk to our base camp approximately 7km away (2 hour walk). Once at base camp we will set up camp; lead jobs will be assigned to experienced people with others asked to assist with the various camp set-up tasks. We'll talk about our plans for the next 4 days. We will do tool orientation and safety training and possibly a late afternoon hike on the GDT.  Then it will be time for dinner and relaxation around the campfire.
    • DAY 2 (Friday): Breakfast in the morning followed by a full day of trail maintenance on the Great Divide. Bag lunches will be packed in the morning and eaten on the trail. We will probably break into groups and do trail maintenance in both directions from camp. The trail along South Hidden Creek is overgrown with some deadfall and requires clearing. Trail crews return to camp for dinner and evening debrief and relaxation around the campfire.
    • DAY 3 (Saturday): Another full day of trail maintenance on the Great Divide. The bridges and log crossings of Hidden Creek will be assessed and repaired as required. Hopefully we will finish the work we need to do on the trail and have some time to 'play' on Saturday afternoon. Play could include (but not limited too) the following: hike to Tornado Saddle (one of the highest points on the GDT), working with the GPS, map and compass use, plant identification, etc. Let me know if you have any other ideas and if you are willing to 'lead' any of these activities so that we can plan accordingly.
    • DAY 4 (Sunday): Morning hike or additional trail maintenance followed by lunch and packing up, take-down and clean up of our camp - 'leave no trace'. And then drive back to Calgary by 6:00pm.

Please let me know by June 1, 2014 if you are planning to come with us. We need to know numbers for meal planning purposes and for work planning.

Thank you,

Brad Vaillancourt
President, Great Divide Trail Association