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Volunteer News

Washington Trails Association news about volunteers and trail maintenance on The Signpost Blog.

Washington Trails Association news about volunteers and trail maintenance on The Signpost Blog.

You can also meet our hardworking crew leaders, and see standout volunteers at the Rock Wall of Fame.

How Powerful Partnerships Help WTA Build a Better Future for Trails

Aug 13, 2020

WTA has been bringing people together for years. By building connections, finding middle ground and creating shared goals, we are moving toward our vision of trails for everyone, forever. Here are a few recent examples of how, when we come together, we can do more for trails and the hiking community.

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Masks On, Hands Off (My Tools): Trail Work in the Time of COVID-19

Aug 13, 2020

COVID messed everything up. But despite the whirlwind of changing safety requirements, WTA has adapted our work parties so our volunteer crews can continue to do the work public land managers rely on to keep trails clear and safe for hikers.

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Problem-Solving in a Pandemic: Connecting Youth to the Outdoors in the Time of COVID

Aug 13, 2020

Navigating a pandemic has forced all of us to approach work in a new way. If you can do your job online, tech makes it relatively easy, but in-person work is a puzzle: how do you offer quality connections and complete trail projects when physical distance is the number one way to support public health right now?

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Rebooting a Trail for the Future

Jul 24, 2020

Sharpe Park is just one example of how we’re improving trails in popular areas.

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Excited to be Back to Work on Trails Rebooted

Jul 27, 2020

WTA staff and volunteers have begun a gradual return to the field under new guidelines for COVID-19. Work parties are small affairs these days, and we still have restrictions on experience required to participate (under normal circumstances we love to welcome new volunteers on our trips!). But we're continuing to work with our agency partners to assess additional projects and an expanded schedule.

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Caring for Trails, Caring for People

Jun 29, 2020

It’s hard to imagine what WTA would look like without the McKibben family, and even harder to overstate Craig’s impact. From volunteering with our trail maintenance program, to serving as our board president, and even filling in as interim executive director.

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Staying Busy During Stay at Home

May 20, 2020

How some volunteers are staying busy without trail work parties on the calendar.

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WTA Youth Ambassadors: Adaptable and Driven

Apr 13, 2020

It's been an interesting year for our latest cohort of youth ambassadors — but we've been immensely proud of everything these tireless teens have already been able to accomplish for trails.

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Celebrate National Park Week With a Look Back

Apr 22, 2020

This year, while many trails and public lands are undergoing temporary closures, the annual celebration will be taking a turn for more virtual programming. And at WTA, we wanted to play our part in finding ways to celebrate online.

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Virtual BCRTs and Sawyer Songs — Our Trail Maintenance Community Stays Connected

Apr 15, 2020

Friendships forged doing volunteer trail work find a way to endure and thrive online.

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Our Community & Coronavirus

Mar 13, 2020

How we're working to keep our community safe. Updates on cancelled and rescheduled trail work parties and workshops. We are here for you: how we hope to be a source for moments of joy and inspiration.

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HOV Lanes, Drains, and Automobiles: Carpool to Your Next Work Party

Jul 20, 2021

You don’t have to go it alone: consider carpooling to your next work party. Carpooling is a great way to cut down on congestion on the road and at the trailhead, curb emissions and build community.

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Trail Work 101: An Easy Intro for New Volunteers

Feb 18, 2020

Curious what trail work is about? Come join us to learn how to maintain trails in a low-key supportive environment.

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Hiker Headlines: Backcountry Trips, Restored Woodlands, Snow Safety, Have Your Say

Feb 06, 2020

It's Feb. 6, 2020. Registration opens Saturday for our backcountry volunteer trips. An oak woodland is being restored — along with a trail system. The recent weather is a good time to remind folks about safety. And that state would like to hear your thoughts on Ginkgo Petrified Forest State Park and Wanapum Recreation Area.

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Get Ready to Sign Up for Backcountry Trips

Jan 28, 2020

Our volunteer trail maintenance trips will be released on Jan. 31, and will open for registration on Feb. 8. Here's the low-down for a great summer vacation trip with WTA.

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We Fix 'Em, You Hike 'Em: 8 Trails WTA Has Already Refreshed in 2020

Jan 21, 2020

WTA's trail maintenance program has been busy this month. We kicked off 2020 by breaking ground on brand new trails and continuing work on dozens of other trails. We even had a ribbon-cutting — broadening a trail network trail that hikers already loved.

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The Wild Nearby: Hikers Benefit from Investments in Southwest Washington

Nov 11, 2019

Since 1993, we've been working towards a sustainable trail system in the Columbia River Gorge. Thanks to dedication, partnerships, member support and the hard work of volunteers, we can claim these successes in 2019.

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Energy, Purpose, Excitement: Coming Full Circle At Hidden Lake

Oct 18, 2019

In 2018, a group of friends attended a work party at Hidden Lake to help with a major construction project. A year later, two of that group returned to finish the task as a thank you to the woman who introduced them the trail work.

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Share Your Passion: Help WTA Do More for Trails

Sep 30, 2019

WTA is looking for volunteer ambassadors to be champions for trails and public lands all across the state. Can you help? Apply now!

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Get Outside to Celebrate on Public Lands Day

Sep 26, 2019

Earlier this year, Washington’s legislature officially recognized Public Lands Day. It’s coming up on Saturday. Here’s everything you need to know about the day and how you can celebrate.

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Hiker Headlines: Celebrating Public Lands with Fee-Free Day, Hike-a-Thon Wins

Sep 19, 2019

There’s a fee-free day coming to our national — and state! — public lands. A new federal transit policy might make it easier for everyone to get outside. The U.S. Forest Service is hiring. The ranger station in Forks is limiting its hours. And WTA's annual Hike-a-Thon wraps up another successful season of fundraising for trails.

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How Youth are Building Trails and Community — Now and For the Future

Sep 19, 2019

Here's a look at what WTA's youth crews accomplished this summer.

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Young Stewards Explore and Lend a Hand on Washington Trails

Sep 09, 2019

The power of partnerships helps the Deaf T-Birds, a high school group, get out to explore and clean up Olympic beaches.

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A Year in the Life of a WTA Superstar

Jul 31, 2019

Jaime Weber, a WTA member and volunteer, looks forward to the start of her personal trail work season. She saves her summers for hiking, and turns to trail work as fall shifts to winter. But that doesn’t mean she sits on her laurels during her trail-maintenance off-months.

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Hiker Headlines: Latina Trail Crew Works at Rainier, Libraries Help Hikers, Road Conditions

Jul 25, 2019

It’s Thursday, July 25. An all Latina crew got outside to give Rainier trails some much needed love. Look to your local library or your next hiking adventure. And WTA needs your help reporting on road conditions!

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Making Trails and Mentoring Leaders at Little Mountain Park

Jun 11, 2019

Partnerships and mentoring are making this Mount Vernon trail system stronger.

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Hiker Headlines: Lots of Trail Work, Lots of Smoke, Free Days and More

Jun 06, 2019

It’s June 6. WTA volunteers gave back to trails in a big way on National Trails Day. A large fire has meant terrible air quality in Eastern Washington. A emergency drill is planned out at the Big Four Ice Caves. This weekend, lots of public lands won't require a pass to park. And avalanche forecasting season is over, but snow lingers in the high country.

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Rebooting Washington's Trails on National Trails Day

Jun 05, 2019

WTA's delivering on our goal to support Washington's trails at every turn.

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Hiker Headlines: National Trails Day, Unlikely Hikers, Climate Crisis, So Much Hiking

May 30, 2019

It's May 30. This weekend, we celebrate National Trails Day. State Parks will be free Saturday. The New York Times told the story of folks working to expand the narrative around who is a hiker. The climate crisis will be visible to people visiting national parks this summer. And you all have been doing so much hiking! Here's some hiker news you may have missed while out on trail.

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Building More Than Trails in the Columbia River Gorge

May 16, 2019

How WTA and our partners are shaping the future of the Columbia River Gorge.

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