It Was a Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood

30 January 2005

...on Sunday, January 30th, as a hearty crew of 10 turned up in Nisene Marks for some drainage work and tree clearing on Loma Prieta grade and the trail up towards Hoffman's. Most were seasoned trail work veterans, with the exception of one "newbie" and he came equipped with camera to capture the day's activities. After the usual coffee and pastries, we split into two crews to start from opposite ends of Loma Prieta grade with the plan to meet in the middle and go up from there.

The Crew works on drainage along the Loma Prieta grade.
The Crew works on drainage
along the Loma Prieta grade.

More drainage work near the installed boardwalks.
More drainage work
near the installed boardwalks.

Removing one of several downed trees along the trail.
Removing one of several downed trees
along the trail.

Eating beats working!
Eating beats working!

Chris Foster took a crew consisting of Tanya Larson, Mike Hammes, Barbi Barry (from State Parks) and drove up to the Buddha Bridge to come in from that end and clear some downed trees. Greg Weaver took the other crew consisting of Tim and Anita Couchman, Jeff Thomson, Harvey Hartman (racking up the points in the volunteer contest) and Carol Cuminal. Our plan was to park at the base of Loma Prieta and work on drainage until we met up with the other crew. Loma is notorious for standing water on the trail in serious rains, so we had our work cut out for us! Not only with the drainage, but for some reason, Loma trail seemed to be the most popular trail in the park on Sunday, and with several large groups of runners and hikers passing through and everyone really grateful for the work we were doing, but none willing to take a turn with a Pulaski or McCleod!

The worst section we had to deal with was in the area of the boardwalks that were installed several years ago - the hillside there just seeps water in the rainy season, creating a real mud bog in the areas leading up to the boardwalks. We knocked down the berme on both the inside and out slope of that section, providing better drainage and hopefully taking care of the problem, and I guess we'll see how successful we were when it rains again.

That being done, we all moved on up the hill, working on more drainage, until we decided it was time for lunch? planning the next workday. All in all, Nisene Marks has fared well this winter, with only a few downed trees? we made pretty short work of those - have chainsaw, will travel! But with the general plan in limbo at the moment, our workdays will be mostly just maintaining the work we've already done&while we wait to see what happens next!

Thanks to our crew for all the hard work? to Tim for the photos, and we really do make a difference!