Author Topic: Logging Activity on the Jerusalem Trail  (Read 6539 times)

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Rough

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Logging Activity on the Jerusalem Trail
« on: March 11, 2011, 06:11:10 PM »
When I hiked down the Jerusalem Trail in late September there was extensive and ongoing logging activity.  Trees had been cut in large areas on both sides of the lower portion of the trail and a wide swath of loose dirt had been created by heavy construction equipment. In some areas the existing footpath was completely replaced by this new logging "road" and blue-blazed trees had been removed.

The Green Mountain Club reported this trail closed for a time this winter.  The trail runs across private land. Does anyone have an update?  Will the trail be hike-able this coming season?

I'd hate to see the loss of this beautiful approach trail.

Long Trail end-to-end 2003

Rough

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Re: Logging Activity on the Jerusalem Trail
« Reply #1 on: June 23, 2011, 01:28:31 PM »
I hiked down the Jerusalem Trail from the LT on June 21 and was very disappointed and unhappy about what has happened to this trail.  The descent starts from the LT at 3400' elevation and until you descend to 2500' the trail is as it always was: a beautiful, well-defined trail through balsams and then paper birches.  At 2500' feet down to approximately 1900' in elevation you encounter what is now an ugly stretch of defiled forest.  This trail passes through privately owned property and, starting last fall, there has been extensive tree cutting on both sides with wide dirt roads now intersecting the trail and the trail itself has been converted to a 2-lane wide dirt trough.  Maple sap  collection tubing has been installed on both sides of this "trail" (now road) and, after any spell of rain, the "road" becomes a sea of mud.  As you look across the tubing you gaze on what must be hundreds and hundreds of tree stumps and cleared forest.  Most of the blue-blazed trees in this section are gone and a couple of times I wasn't sure that I was still on the trail. Below 2000' feet to the trailhead at Jim Dwire Road the trail is still as it was, although there are several blowdowns across the pathway and it is clear that there has been no trail maintenance performed this year. There is a new paper sign at the trailhead advising hikers of foresting and sap collection activity in the area but it should say "Don't bother."

Clearly, someone has made a significant investment with the use of heavy equipment and the installation of a large sap collection system.  But apparently no effort was made to preserve the hiking trail.

This trail was one of my favorite routes up to the LT (south to Mount Ellen or north to Stark Mountain).  I no longer consider it worth trying to hike. A sad loss indeed.


« Last Edit: June 23, 2011, 01:37:15 PM by Rough »
Long Trail end-to-end 2003

Rough

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Re: Logging Activity on the Jerusalem Trail
« Reply #2 on: July 02, 2011, 07:59:26 AM »
Here's a response I received from the GMC about the Jerusalem Trail:

"Thank you for the report.
We were aware that there would be logging on this stretch of private forest, and posted signage to make hikers aware of conditions during the harvest last winter.
Efforts are underway to reblaze the route through the work zone. It’s been a tough wet spring this year and it will take time for the forest to heal. It will.
In the meantime we will note that the Jerusalem Trail is difficult to follow this summer on our website.
I hope your next visit is better."

Long Trail end-to-end 2003

Rough

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Re: Logging Activity on the Jerusalem Trail - Update
« Reply #3 on: October 14, 2011, 12:32:42 PM »
Good news here.  In late September I hiked the Jerusalem Trail from the Jim Dwire Road trailead to the junction at the Long Trail.  The logging and clearing activity appears to be completed and new maple sap collection tubing and equipment has been installed on both sides of the trail for about one-half mile. A hiking trail through the disturbed section has been defined and there are new blue blazes.

Thanks to the Green Mountain Club for their work in preserving and reestablishing this great approach trail.  I had a great hike in the fall foliage and now enthusiastically recommend this trail.
Long Trail end-to-end 2003