Notice: I've taken a part-time job, and it's definitely affecting my blogging time. I'll continue to add content here as often as possible. Pertinent guest posts are always welcome.


Thursday, December 11, 2008

Kekekabic Trail Clearing Dec 6 2008

winter trail clearing
work crew after a productive day
from Martin Kubik, see all the pictures at BWAC on Smugmug

Saturday, December 6, 2008. Our crew is optimistic about the mission to clear near Bingshick Lake. At this point we are about 1/2 mile from the Gunflint trail head. Visible in winter, the trail is overgrown with raspberries in summer.

drying out
drying out after breaking
through the ice
I broke through ice near beaver lodge. Falling into icy water is a adrenalin rush you don't want to experience very often. Temperature? Somewhere around 10 deg F. This was deepest ever. I was in water up to just below the waist. My sorel boots filled with water. Next I pulled myself up by grabbing a frozen-in branch sticking out of the beaver lodge. I knew fire wood supply was plentiful at the Bingshick campsite and chose to hike. When we reached it, my pants were ice outside. Scenes from the movie Stalingrad where everyone dies from cold flashed in my mind. Remedy: Drinking hot jello that Art brought in a thermos and drying next to a emergency fire. Thank you guys! Surprisingly, we dried wet clothing in about one hour and were able to start clearing by noon.

It was quite apparent that no hikers passed through where the trail was obstructed by blowdowns. Backpackers bypass this segment by hiking on the ridge above and some have turned back unable to find the path. The obstacles were dispatched to sawdust. Trail is safe again for backpackers.

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