DIXVILLE — Volunteers with the Cohos Trail Association, builders of the 165-mile hiking trail that threads from the White Mountains to the Canadian border, will be holding a work weekend in northern Dixville in order to construct a new state of the art composting privy at Panorama lean-to shelter, install 100 feet of bog bridging to the north of the shelter, and improve a nearby spring so hikers and wildlife watchers may have a better source of water.
The work weekend will commence on August 11 through the 12th at 8 a.m. Those interested are asked to meet at that time directly behind the Balsams Grant Resort Hotel. Look for a red Toyota Tacoma truck with a tow trailer behind filled with prefabricated materials.
To reach the Balsams hotel, travel Route 26 to Dixville Notch and look for the main entrance to the hotel. Travel along Lake Gloriette and pass the hotel and its tall western wing. Just beyond the wing there are two drives on the right. Look for the second drive, which is an access road to the backcountry. Cohos Trail members will be there awaiting volunteers.
The composting privy needs only to be assembled, as it is fully prefabricated. It will replace a poor system behind Panorama shelter.
All materials for the privy and the bog bridging must be hand carried about 600 to 800 feet to the lean-to and bog bridging sites. More hands make light work, of course.
Once the day is done, volunteers are invited to a barbeque at the home of Dana and Cynthia Bartlett who live close by the Balsams. All volunteers are welcome to attend.
These projects are the second of four substantial projects and half a dozen lesser ones that the Cohos Trail Association is undertaking in 2012 to try to improve the Cohos Trail in Jefferson, Stratford, Dixville and Stewartstown, as well as Pittsburg. In June, the association completed the new Old Hermit Shelter on the Sugarloaf Arm near Nash Stream Bog in the Nash Stream Forest. Nearly 500 feet of bog bridging is scheduled to be built in the Pondicherry Wildlife Refuge later this summer, and a restoration/rebuild of the Deer Mountain Trail (old firetower access trail) is scheduled, as well, near the Canadian border.
To date in 2012, more people are hiking the trail than at any time in its history. Dozens of hikers are attempting the entire trail this year, and day hiking is up all over the North Country due to substantial Cohos Trail publicity over the last year and to the publishing of a new book, 50 Hikes North of the White Mountains by the association’s founder.
For additional information go to Friends of the Cohos Trail on Facebook.