Do you enjoy spending time on Waterville Valley’s extensive hiking trails? Ever wonder who maintains the trails? Is there a group of trail fairies who magically do the work while you’re sleeping at night? Is it some governmental agency with a big budget and lots of laborers? Do the trails even need any maintenance work done to them?
Our hiking trails are maintained by a group of dedicated, hardworking, passionate and community-spirited volunteers – people like you and me – most of whom are members of the Waterville Valley Athletic & Improvement Association (WVAIA), a 129-year-old organization that was formed by Waterville Valley visitors and residents way back in 1888. WVAIA’s mission then and now is to “…encourage all healthful exercise and afford facilities thereto.”
WVAIA has since become a 501(c)3 non-profit historical organization with a focus on the stewardship and enjoyment of Waterville Valley’s extensive hiking trail system. WVAIA volunteers maintain Waterville Valley’s hiking trails through a series of trail work days, as well as with a paid crew. The job of clearing blow downs, cleaning out waterbars that drain the trails, cutting back the relentless forest, building bog bridges and timber ladders, and constructing stone steps for erosion control are just some of what the organization is responsible for. The hiking trails in and around Waterville Valley are regarded as the oldest trail system in the country. The trails are filled with interesting features: magnificent views, slides, a chimney, a flume, the largest glacial erratic in the state, spectacular cascades, as well as a plethora of brooks and streams to enjoy (this is where the “Waterville” part of name comes in). Like anything else, the trails need to be cared for.
Saturday, June 3rd is National Trails Day. WVAIA will be cutting back the forest growth on the Cascade Path in North Waterville. You are invited to help … no special skills are needed … just your time and energy!
Meet at the Waterville Valley Town Square gazebo at 8 a.m. on Saturday, June 3. Bring a lunch and loppers if you have them. Work will wrap-up by noon.
Questions? Email WVAIA at firstname.lastname@example.org.