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Volunteer News

Washington Trails Association news about volunteers and trail maintenance on The Signpost Blog.

Washington Trails Association news about volunteers and trail maintenance on The Signpost Blog.

You can also meet our hardworking crew leaders, and see standout volunteers at the Rock Wall of Fame.

Rebooting Popular Trails and the Pacific Crest Trail in the Central Cascades

Dec 22, 2020

WTA crews worked all summer to restore and maintain trails across the state. Part of that work included improving trails in the Cle Elum Ranger District of the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest.

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Snow Lake Trail: Helping an Iconic Trail Step Up Sustainability

Dec 22, 2020

How WTA trail crews, volunteers and member support are helping one of Washington's most popular and iconic trails carry increased boot traffic while protecting the beauty that makes it so special.

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Your Favorite Volunteer Memories of 2020

Dec 11, 2020

You and other volunteers have accomplished a lot in 2020. Here are some of your favorite memories.

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Hiker Headlines: Volunteers Rock, Winter Trails, Merging Planets, Boost for Everest

Dec 10, 2020

It’s December 10. Thank you to all the volunteers who supported WTA through an especially challenging year. Summer trails don’t always translate into safe winter trails. Jupiter and Saturn will appear closer than they have since 1226. And, Mount Everest just got a little taller. Here’s some news you might have missed while out on trail this week.

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Trail Volunteers: Thank You from a Blue Hat

Dec 07, 2020

2020 was hard, but volunteers have shown up for trails in a big way.

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Small But Mighty: Backcountry Crews Make Big Strides on Lost Trails

Dec 09, 2020

Our pint-size backcountry crews were able to get a lot of work done — donating over 6,000 hours of work to lost trails across the state! We want to share a few highlights from our 2020 season to give you a peek at everything these crews accomplished.

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Mica Peak Traverse: Completing A New Trail Near Spokane

Nov 25, 2020

This fall, WTA volunteers and partners celebrated another win for trails in the Spokane-area, this time in the form of a trail connecting two of the region’s largest swaths of public land. The California Creek Trail, completed in mid-October, now officially connects Liberty Lake Regional Park and Mica Peak Conservation Area.

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Grateful for the Wins: Some Good in a Tough Year

Nov 18, 2020

A moment of gratitude to our community for continuing to make so much possible. Together, helped hikers get outside, helped keep each other safe and even advanced some critical work for our mission.

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Trail Planning Takes Time: Scouting Trails in the Teanaway Community Forest

Oct 13, 2020

WTA is helping bring the Teanaway Community Forest trail plan to life, scouting an existing web of unofficial trails for the ones that will be able to sustain hikers, bikers and riders for years to come.

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How Powerful Partnerships Help WTA Build a Better Future for Trails

Aug 13, 2020

WTA has been bringing people together for years. By building connections, finding middle ground and creating shared goals, we are moving toward our vision of trails for everyone, forever. Here are a few recent examples of how, when we come together, we can do more for trails and the hiking community.

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Masks On, Hands Off (My Tools): Trail Work in the Time of COVID-19

Aug 13, 2020

COVID messed everything up. But despite the whirlwind of changing safety requirements, WTA has adapted our work parties so our volunteer crews can continue to do the work public land managers rely on to keep trails clear and safe for hikers.

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Problem-Solving in a Pandemic: Connecting Youth to the Outdoors in the Time of COVID

Aug 13, 2020

Navigating a pandemic has forced all of us to approach work in a new way. If you can do your job online, tech makes it relatively easy, but in-person work is a puzzle: how do you offer quality connections and complete trail projects when physical distance is the number one way to support public health right now?

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Rebooting a Trail for the Future

Jul 24, 2020

Sharpe Park is just one example of how we’re improving trails in popular areas.

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Excited to be Back to Work on Trails Rebooted

Jul 27, 2020

WTA staff and volunteers have begun a gradual return to the field under new guidelines for COVID-19. Work parties are small affairs these days, and we still have restrictions on experience required to participate (under normal circumstances we love to welcome new volunteers on our trips!). But we're continuing to work with our agency partners to assess additional projects and an expanded schedule.

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Caring for Trails, Caring for People

Jun 29, 2020

It’s hard to imagine what WTA would look like without the McKibben family, and even harder to overstate Craig’s impact. From volunteering with our trail maintenance program, to serving as our board president, and even filling in as interim executive director.

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Staying Busy During Stay at Home

May 20, 2020

How some volunteers are staying busy without trail work parties on the calendar.

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WTA Youth Ambassadors: Adaptable and Driven

Apr 13, 2020

It's been an interesting year for our latest cohort of youth ambassadors — but we've been immensely proud of everything these tireless teens have already been able to accomplish for trails.

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Celebrate National Park Week With a Look Back

Apr 22, 2020

This year, while many trails and public lands are undergoing temporary closures, the annual celebration will be taking a turn for more virtual programming. And at WTA, we wanted to play our part in finding ways to celebrate online.

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Virtual BCRTs and Sawyer Songs — Our Trail Maintenance Community Stays Connected

Apr 15, 2020

Friendships forged doing volunteer trail work find a way to endure and thrive online.

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Our Community & Coronavirus

Mar 13, 2020

How we're working to keep our community safe. Updates on cancelled and rescheduled trail work parties and workshops. We are here for you: how we hope to be a source for moments of joy and inspiration.

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HOV Lanes, Drains, and Automobiles: Carpool to Your Next Work Party

Jul 20, 2021

You don’t have to go it alone: consider carpooling to your next work party. Carpooling is a great way to cut down on congestion on the road and at the trailhead, curb emissions and build community.

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Trail Work 101: An Easy Intro for New Volunteers

Feb 18, 2020

Curious what trail work is about? Come join us to learn how to maintain trails in a low-key supportive environment.

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Hiker Headlines: Backcountry Trips, Restored Woodlands, Snow Safety, Have Your Say

Feb 06, 2020

It's Feb. 6, 2020. Registration opens Saturday for our backcountry volunteer trips. An oak woodland is being restored — along with a trail system. The recent weather is a good time to remind folks about safety. And that state would like to hear your thoughts on Ginkgo Petrified Forest State Park and Wanapum Recreation Area.

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Get Ready to Sign Up for Backcountry Trips

Jan 28, 2020

Our volunteer trail maintenance trips will be released on Jan. 31, and will open for registration on Feb. 8. Here's the low-down for a great summer vacation trip with WTA.

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We Fix 'Em, You Hike 'Em: 8 Trails WTA Has Already Refreshed in 2020

Jan 21, 2020

WTA's trail maintenance program has been busy this month. We kicked off 2020 by breaking ground on brand new trails and continuing work on dozens of other trails. We even had a ribbon-cutting — broadening a trail network trail that hikers already loved.

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The Wild Nearby: Hikers Benefit from Investments in Southwest Washington

Nov 11, 2019

Since 1993, we've been working towards a sustainable trail system in the Columbia River Gorge. Thanks to dedication, partnerships, member support and the hard work of volunteers, we can claim these successes in 2019.

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Energy, Purpose, Excitement: Coming Full Circle At Hidden Lake

Oct 18, 2019

In 2018, a group of friends attended a work party at Hidden Lake to help with a major construction project. A year later, two of that group returned to finish the task as a thank you to the woman who introduced them the trail work.

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Share Your Passion: Help WTA Do More for Trails

Sep 30, 2019

WTA is looking for volunteer ambassadors to be champions for trails and public lands all across the state. Can you help? Apply now!

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Get Outside to Celebrate on Public Lands Day

Sep 26, 2019

Earlier this year, Washington’s legislature officially recognized Public Lands Day. It’s coming up on Saturday. Here’s everything you need to know about the day and how you can celebrate.

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Hiker Headlines: Celebrating Public Lands with Fee-Free Day, Hike-a-Thon Wins

Sep 19, 2019

There’s a fee-free day coming to our national — and state! — public lands. A new federal transit policy might make it easier for everyone to get outside. The U.S. Forest Service is hiring. The ranger station in Forks is limiting its hours. And WTA's annual Hike-a-Thon wraps up another successful season of fundraising for trails.

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