Signs of Spring: Volunteer Vacations
The first sign of spring at WTA is the beginning of our Volunteer Vacations. An intrepid (and eager) crew of 11 volunteers hiked into the Hoh Rainforest in Olympic National Park on Saturday. They're working this week on a reroute of the trail about 4 miles in and tackling a couple of the big blowdowns a half-mile further up the trail.
Spring is here! And while the weather hasn't yet satiated our desire and need for Vitamin D, there are sure signs that spring is in bloom. To get us in the mood, all week we'll be featuring a new sign of spring in this space.
The biggest sign of spring at WTA is our first Volunteer Vacation of the 2011. An intrepid (and eager) crew of 11 volunteers hiked into the Hoh Rainforest in Olympic National Park on Saturday. They're working this week on a reroute of the trail about 4 miles in and tackling a couple of the big blowdowns a half-mile further up the trail.
It was raining at the trailhead on Saturday, of course. But most of these volunteers are returnees and know what to expect. Last year, crew leader Janice O'Connor delivered this ode to her volunteers: "Amidst the deluge of rain, sleet and hail we had seven wonderful days on the Hoh. Amazing volunteers with the patience of old growth, the strength of bull elk, and the attitude of a gaggle of ravens."
Yes. Springtime along the Hoh River means lots of rain. There is no escape from the water (though fortunately these volunteers will be staying the bunkhouse at the Visitor Center and will be able to dry off each night). But it does make identifying drainage problems on the trail pretty easy. Fixing them is another matter, but we hope that this group can improve a perennial trouble spot.
And when the sun shines, ever so briefly, there is no comparison. "Rain drips off the moss, sunbeams dapple through to the understory and there are so many shades of green you cannot believe it," reports WTA Trail Project Coordinator Tim Van Beek. "Then three minutes later it starts to rain again."
Does a Volunteer Vacation sound like fun? We can't promise it won't rain, but trips this summer are much more likely to be drier than this one. Imagine seven days in a beautiful place, good hard work making the trail smooth for hikers, and some new friends. If you're interested, we still have space available - especially in August and September. Check out our schedule for more information.