Perhaps you have heard of Sum.It For the Forest. Perhaps, this is the first time. Regardless, our goal is reciprocity for the White Mountain National Forest.
There are multiple guide services and commercial operations that work in the White Mountains annually. There are also over 20,000 hikers, thousands of bikers, fisherman, trail runners, skiers, snowshoers, and outdoor enthusiasts that use this valuable resource for recreation and commerce. Leave No Trace teaches us to leave only footprints. We don’t think that is enough. We are on a mission to give back financially to the resource that has given so much through the years.
We have set lofty goals – because the work never ends in the White Mountain National Forest. The National Forest Foundation does a tremendous job funding and organizing these projects. Currently in the works or on the docket are the following projects.
SABBADAY FALLS (2017)
Sabbaday Falls is a highly visited day hike supporting generations of visitors. The safety railings along the trail, built in the CCC era, are beginning to fail and present a serious safety hazard. If the funding for this project does not come through, the site will be closed for the 2017 season and is currently vulnerable to any large water event. Replacement of the railings would provide safety measures for the families visiting this site and ensure the site would remain open.
GLEN ELLIS FALLS (Likely 2018)
This project entails the renovation of one of the Forest’s most popular developed recreation sites. The last investment in this site was in the 1960s and over the last 50 plus years, it has been heavily visited and loved. Originally built in the CCC era, protection of the trail, construction style, and historical interpretation and protection is a key part of this project. Renovation will include modernizing the site – such as toilet facilities, upgrading the parking lot to accommodate the number and size of vehicles visiting in the 21st century, and cleaning up the picnic area and building a barrier between the site and route 16. Finally, the project will address accessibility, creating an accessible portion of the CCC trail to the waterfalls and an additional trail to a scenic overlook. There has been much public support for this project and we look forward to begin renovations.
TUCKERMAN RAVINE- BOOTT SPUR BRIDGE (2017)
Following reconstruction of bridge 2 in 2016, bridge 4 is a similar project. Delays in funding and contract details pushed work on bridge 2 into the winter, and parts of the project will need to be finished in the spring. These are delays that we hope to avoid in 2017. The bridge is of high importance, being the gateway to one of the most iconic places in the Northeast. It presents access to the Ravine and the summit of Mt. Washington for hikers, backcountry skiers, rock climbers, ice climbers, mountaineers, and rescue crews. If not repaired, it could present access issues particularly to the snowcat used by rescue crews, which could have consequences for backcountry skiing on Mt. Washington.
CRAWFORD PATH (2018-2019)
This would be a kick-off project tied to new collaboration within the trail maintenance community as well as a fantastic promotional opportunity celebrating 200 years of the Crawford Path itself (2019), and 100 years of the Forest (2018). Contribution would support the concept that united as trail maintainers we are stronger and could include using portions of trail rock work as skill building/training for clubs. The work on Crawford Path is well suited to considerable community engagement and volunteer involvement, being mostly traditional trail maintenance and restoration. As a trail of considerably high-traffic (and growing), its maintenance is of paramount importance.
Through small acts of kindness and dedicated efforts to fundraise, we can complete these projects over the coming years. This is where you come in. When we Sum.It all up, we believe that each small contribution is part of a larger sum. A total that will create a real and lasting impact in the National Forest so that we can continue to enjoy it’s beauty. As users of this space, it is our responsibility to give back. Please consider joining us on August 19, 2017 on one of three hikes. If you cannot or do not have the desire to hike, we are hosting a killer afterparty at Theater In The Woods.
To participate choose one of the many options below.
1. Register to hike and fundraise
2. Make a financial donation
3. Purchase A Raffle Ticket – You could win $1000 cash
4. Become a sponsor
5. Join us at the Afterparty
About one year ago, Austen Bernier of the National Forest Foundation approached Brett and Corey Fitzgerald [of Northeast Mountaineering] to discuss potential partnership to raise money for the NFF through NEM. Together we decided that a $1 opt in donation at checkout wasn’t enough. “Let’s go big,” we decided. It was the beginning of Sum.It For The Forest. Here we are one month out and we understand now, as we did back then, that without you – the participants – this event doesn’t work. For this reason, we ask for your support. Please consider one of the options above and join us as we Sum.It all up and hike toward a positive impact.
-Austen Bernier, Brett and Corey Fitzgerald, and the entire volunteer team!