Volunteers pulled into Mud Creek trailhead parking at 8:30 AM, Wednesday morning. USFS employees greeted the readied crew with hefty sacks of softwood cuttings and all the tools they needed to dig. Our enthusiastic volunteers eagerly grabbed their tools, listened to the day’s plan, and then began the trek up scenic Mud Creek Trail.
Currently, several areas along the trail are being compromised by erosion from spring and stream runoff, a problem exacerbated by the severe flooding event that occurred in the area a decade ago. When these 1st through 3rd order tributaries intersect the trail, they erode the trail at those crossings, deteriorating the trail conditions, and eventually leading to tread loss.
Previously this season, USFS personnel surveyed Mud Creek trail and decided on those locations most in need of bank stabiliztion. The USFS Botany crew gathered softwood cuttings (Snowberry, Thimbleberry, and Red Osier Dogwood) this May that they handed over to their greenhouse operations in Coeur d’Alene to condition throughout the summer.
Wednesday, those cuttings found a new purpose along this scenic trail in the Lightning Creek Treasured Landscape.
Thanks so much to volunteers Mary Franzel, Phil Deegens, Carol Wilburn, Shane Sater, John Harbuck and Deb Dickerson for the grit and grind they smiled through knowing they have made a difference for the Scotchman Peaks Roadless Area. Your commitment and energy are moving this landscape forward into a positive future. And thanks as always to the USFS Hydrology and Botany Team for the relentless effort they pursue in managing North Idaho’s priceless natural resources.