Friday, July 28, 2017

North Lake Trail Work Party Update

On Wednesday July 19th Bennet and Cathy Upper, DK Williams, Mark Brantner, Dave Johnston, Joe Hebert, and Betty Wagoner finished cutting out the North Lake Trail from the creek crossing. (We discovered the meadow at the “tarn” lake before North Lake is just beautiful!) Washington Trails workers had cleared to the creek earlier, but snow prevented them from going further, and MVBCH members had cut out to the wilderness boundary with chain saws. After a lunch break, we worked on widening the sloughed off area and remaining part of the rocks in the trail below. 


Williams Creek Trail Work Update

On July 16th Bill and Jan Ford went about 1 1/2 miles on Williams Creek Trail and cut out 20 or so trees by hand. They could have used a chainsaw, but reckoned there would not be many trees outside the wilderness so opted to ride and carry the cross cut and smaller hand saws -  wrong guess! Bill had a cross cut saw that is half of a long one, and Ted Lindsey made a scabbard for it so it could be carried under the saddle fender. 
First log down and nearly out
Log along length of trail, lower branches removed
Log along lower length of trail, torqued over the side and off the trail
Now for the top half of the tree...
Logs laying on switchback need to be cut on upper and lower trail


Wednesday, July 26, 2017

2017 BCHW Hot Shot Crew in the Pasayten Wilderness and Crystal Lake Trail

BCHW’s Jason Ridlon organized a very ambitious work party ("Hot Shot" crew) of over 30 workers to work on Pasayten wilderness trails.
(Pasayten Hot Shot crew--Photo courtesy of
Meanwhile, Betsy Devin-Smith and Cathy Upper joined 4 others to work on Betsy’s project of the Crystal Lake trail. Two years ago she and her son Casey started with the 4+ miles of trail outside the wilderness. She figures she and Casey had cut out around 500 trees. We had around 70 left to go outside the wilderness. The packers brought in our tools and gear and most of us hiked in to this area where there is a pass with water before the trails heads over to Disaster creek.
Crystal Lake Trail (Source:
Crystal Lake Trail (Source:

Crystal Lake Trail "before" (Source:

Crystal Lake Trail "after" (Source:

We worked for 4 days and logged out the next 3 1/2 miles, brushing as we went because the trail was hidden in the brush. Lots of lodge pole pines. We made it to the last Disaster creek crossing with 8 trees at the crossing and then another 10+ as the trail heads up the last mile and 1,000 feet to the lakes. The rest can be gotten around the trees and brush as it thins out, but it would be nice to log out the trail. 

NOTE: Many photos of the Hot Shot Crew working in the Andrews Creek/Pasayten wilderness area are featured on the web site. You are encouraged to view them to understand the complex project that was undertaken for just a few days.

Great people and fun to camp in the back country for 4 days.(Source:

"Welcome" BBQ For The 2017 BCHW Hot Shot Crew

Cathy was the Chef for the entire crew!
On July 1st President Cathy Upper brought (and cooked) 45 steaks for the arriving Hot Shot crew, and club members Betty Wagoner, Joe and Carol Hebert, Mark Brantner, Jill Calvert, Marian Webster, Jackie Iddings, and Bill and Jan Ford also brought pot luck dishes and helped with the BBQ. It was held at Darwood’s camp/corrals far up the Chewuch River near the Andrews Creek area.
The BBQ was a fun event before lots of hard work
Forest Service trails crew member Clark Simpson was also there, and he said their crew had gotten the huge Andrews Creek Trail avalanche tree slide cut out using chain saws with special permission from the FS Supervisor office in Wenatchee for this hazardous project.
Opening up this slide section for stock was essential for the Hot Shot crew to access areas on the trail that required attention.   
Andrews Creek Tree avalanche (Source: Methow Valley News)

4th of July Celebration at Twisp River Horse Camp

The 4th of July BBQ at the Twisp River Horse Camp was attended by 23 people—lots of visiting and, of course, great food! MVBCH member Carol Hebert took care of the BBQ’d hot dogs along with her husband Joe, and there was a full spread of food brought by the other attendees. The camp’s doe population noticed the group and thought there might be a sweet handout here or there, so they joined in the camaraderie!
Some of the folks had already arrived the day before and brought their rigs and horses, camping at the TRHC for a couple of days over the holiday. They were having a good time riding and fording the Twisp River. BCHW member and our LNT Chair also joined the group. It was a great afternoon spent relaxing and enjoying the company of all; and, many thanks go to Carol and Joe who brought the club BBQ and picnic supplies!