October 30 - November 3, 2017
Chris Dussault and Jessica Bakowski
This was the third and final week of the Outdoor Recreation unit. While the first two weeks focused on the various impacts of recreation, this week included aspects of sustainable trail development, how recreation (hunting) can be used as a means of wildlife management, and further examination of how soils are an important consideration when developing trails. \
On Monday and Tuesday students were introduced to a number of trail building concepts and techniques which they immediately put into practice on a new rerouted section of the Rank n’ Roll trail in Danville. Here they employed a bench-cutting technique that created a five-degree outslope that maximizes sheet flow over what will become a hardened trail surface, minimizing the possibility of channeling and pooling.
On Wednesday students visited the Victory Basin Wildlife Management Area to learn about how hunting is used to manage wildlife population. They also learned about how wildlife viewing in the area, aka birding, is a low impact recreational pursuit that draws birders from throughout the northeast.
On Thursday we concluded our soils lab research by measuring the quantity of differently sized soil particles in samples taken in the field last week. By measuring the amount of clay, silt, and sand in each sample, we were able to determine soil texture, which informs its suitability for supporting different activities such as trails, agriculture, and roads, and how prone it is to compaction and drainage issues.