Teaming Up with Northwest Youth Corps Up in the Pasayten
Thanks to WTA supporters and new partnerships, a Lost Trails Youth Corps crew will spend five weeks fixing hard-to-reach sections of trail in the Pasayten Wilderness.
Our annual volunteer trips get incredible amounts of work done, but some deeper portions of the backcountry remain hard to reach in only a week’s time. To help address the backcountry trail maintenance backlog in a key area, WTA has teamed up for the first time with the Northwest Youth Corps (NYC) to send a crew of nine hardworking teens on a 5-week trail maintenance trip deep into Washington’s backcountry.
The Lost Trails Northwest Youth Corps
The crew will be headed out to the Boundary Trail in the Pasayten Wilderness, a priority area in our Lost Trails Found campaign. The Boundary Trail is a challenging area to access, as most of the work requires a 16-mile hike in, warranting a lengthy first day or a multiday hike to and from the project site for a weeklong trip. This leaves limited time to get trail work done and puts strenuous physical demands on our volunteers. By hiring a crew, we will be able to deploy a crew farther onto the trail for an extended period of time, allowing us to tackle big projects in a hard-to-reach area.
Funding for this crew was made possible in part by the Ira Spring Trail Fund, along with additional funds from our Lost Trails Found campaign. The Methow Valley Ranger District will be another key asset on this project, packing in the crew’s gear and hauling in resupplies throughout their stay.
We are excited to partner with Northwest Youth Corps, an organization with a history of great work and a strong focus on leadership development and getting youth outdoors — qualities that align with WTA’s values.
Experience and leadership
This will be the first time WTA is hosting a paid youth crew, which we hope will help encourage more youth to get outdoors. It's a partnership model aimed at addressing a real need in a hard-to-reach area. What we learn from this year’s project will most certainly help us improve our volunteer program model and inform future working partnerships with organizations like Northwest Youth Corps.
Learn more about our Lost Trails Found campaign and our work on the Boundary Trail at wta.org/losttrails.