Lassen Volcanic National Park Partners with Pacific Crest Trail Association to Clear Trees from Pacific Crest Trail

NPS Trail Worker Ben Darnell and PCTA volunteer Robert Parks  using a freshly sharpened saw to clear a large lodgepole pine.

NPS Trail Worker Ben Darnell and PCTA volunteer Robert Parks using a freshly sharpened saw to clear a large lodgepole pine.

MINERAL, CA – Due to a major wind event this past February, Lassen Volcanic National Park experienced an unprecedented number of downed trees along the park’s 150 miles of hiking trails. Especially hard hit was an eight- mile stretch of the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) at Lassen’s northern boundary near Badger Flats and Soap Lake. “This was an extremely productive project, which was safely accomplished through our partnership with the Pacific Crest Trail Association,” stated Superintendent Steve Gibbons.

 The PCT traverses about 17 miles of Lassen’s designated wilderness, necessitating the use of cross cut saws to clear trails. Eight volunteer Pacific Crest Trail Association (PCTA) cross cut sawyers worked with six members of Lassen’s trail crew for four days to buck out the downed trees along the trail.  Crews cleared 368 trees from the park’s northern boundary to the Nobles Emigrant Trail junction with an additional 50 trees cleared south to the Rainbow Lake area. The 17 mile section of the PCT running through Lassen Volcanic National Park is now clear of fallen trees, in time for the influx of thru-hikers currently making their way from Mexico to Canada.   

PCTA volunteers John LePouvoir and Javier Nieves cross cut bucking a fallen tree on the Pacific Crest National Scenic Trail within Lassen Volcanic Park near Soap Lake on June 16th.

PCTA volunteers John LePouvoir and Javier Nieves cross cut bucking a fallen tree on the Pacific Crest National Scenic Trail within Lassen Volcanic Park near Soap Lake on June 16th.

The project attracted some of the most skilled volunteers and cross cut saw aficionados from across northern California due to the sheer number of trees that needed to be removed. The project was proof positive that no blow down event is too big for a team of cross cut sawyers to handle efficiently and safely. “We are fortunate to have a dedicated trail crew and willing volunteers with specialty cross cut saw training under their belts to help take care of our park,” stated Gibbons.

For trail information, campground openings, and current conditions to plan your trip, please visit the park website at www.nps.gov/lavo or contact the visitor center at 530-595-4480 or lavo_information@nps.gov.

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-from press release
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2 Responses

  1. Avatar Peggy Elwood says:

    Interesting..didn’t know about the cross cut saw folks…thanks for your hard work!

  2. Trails work. I love it! I wish I could still do it!