For over 100 years trails have been carefully created and maintained for our recreational enjoyment. In the 1970s the need increased as more and more people took to the great outdoors. Some national and local programs over the years have helped otherwise short-staffed forest crews. Local communities and non-profit groups also do their part by recruiting help during the short summer season, attempting to get as much accomplished as possible. Without these efforts there simply would not be any trails to enjoy. The Sawtooth Society is one of those groups the USFS relies upon to complete essential trail maintenance for about 150 miles of the 900 miles of trail.
Volunteers have become a critical component in this effort to keep trail systems in Idaho forests safe and looking their best. Ideally, a team of 4-6 volunteers are needed per trail. Types of work can include inspecting, repairing and stabilizing water bars and trails. This often involves removing downed wood, debris, sediment and adding in materials as required. Fence removal, repair, rerouting trails and other types of work can also be needed depending on the trail project.
To learn how to volunteer for Idaho trails in the SNRA visit Volunteer. Look through the list of projects available and send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org to reserve your spot on a project. Covid-19 protocols and a volunteer checklist are available for your review.
In addition to individual volunteer opportunities, the Sawtooth Society also has the Adopt a Trail Program. The program allows a business, organization, or family to adopt a trail and perform annual trail maintenance and improvements. All trails require annual and sometimes bi-annual maintenance. Learn how to help Idaho trails at Adopt a Trail. We look forward to seeing you on the trail!