Taylor Mountain, near Hobart, WA --
Elk Ridge and Carey Creek Trails -- King County
October 12, 2013 found the WTA work groups closed out of
Forest Service Lands by the Government Shutdown
(for best text viewing,
size margins several spaces to the right of the title and
CAVEAT - This is only a partial report, based on photos
we have. Much work was done by many during the day and
not pictured below.
Map source: http://your.kingcounty.gov/ftp/gis/Web/VMC/recreation/BCT_TaylorMtn_brochure.pdf
John Hultquist participated Friday (10/11)-no photos- and Saturday
(10/12) on new trail work noted on the map above with a blue
Nineteen workers were there Friday, 29 Saturday, and Sunday
(10/13) hosted 20 willing workers.
A group went back on Sunday, but John is not going over for that
work crew. It's a 206 mile round trip, and takes 12.5 hours
of his day.
As John described to me, the trail starts out through a forest all
overgrown with ferns and moss-covered trees.
He took the first few photos on my camera to explain to me what
was done today. Apologies for the lack of crispness in the
Then a King County worker (Jack there Saturday) comes in and marks
the source of the trail to be, with purple flags (left below) --
and cuts some trees with a chainsaw to be removed later by the
crew. On the right below shows the clearing up the trail,
and the flags on uncleared trail ahead.
Below on the left is a trail with a worker at the top. The
next photo is taken to show the type of digging that occurs on a
new trail. Note the big rock (WTA calls this a single-person
= meaning, one person can dig it out of the trail and
roll it). It's in the foreground of the right photo and will
be visible in the next shot looking back uphill from the
roots. Meanwhile, you are looking downhill at the trail
development, and the exposed roots (dark) poking out into the
trail in the top middle of the picture. The work crew worked
hard to dig those out and decided the tree unseen behind the
orange hat off to the right was too majestic to damage further,
and so they will re-cover the roots previously exposed and move
the trail to the left, cutting out instead the smaller tree on the
left of the trail seen at the top of the right picture
below. This was getting near the end of lunch, hence the
hard hats are sitting alone on the rocks. The single-person
rock in the foreground will be used for part of a rock wall, and
the smaller (throw-able) rocks stacked to the right that have been
dug out of the trail will be used for fill projects elsewhere in
the trail maintenance construction..
The next picture below on the left is looking
uphill to the workers who are standing just beyond the big rock
in the previous picture. Note the sun peeking through the
unfocused shot, which has been added here to show that the
dug-out roots on the left have been about 80% re-buried.
The tree they help support is showing in the ferns on the
left. Ferns (in this wet environment) take easily to being
moved successfully, and therefore the crew members, after making
a mess, will re-vegetate by moving ferns
from the advancing diggers, and carrying them back to the
After lunch and before work really started back, fellow
worker Christie Tackett took the picture (below on the right) of
John Hultquist (ACL), at Evonne's request,
and Christie emailed it to me from her I-phone, while still in the
Very cool. Thanks, Christie.
John being the cynic he is, thinks I-phones add bulk to human
One small salamander was found in this process and, after being
viewed by many questioning its heritage, was repatriated among the
ferns. Meanwhile, a report back from Evonne told me she
received a message from Todd W. that the salamander he had found
is called an Ensatina,
and it is a lung-less salamander
that breathes through the pores of its skin. I found several
images on the web, but decided this might be the closest to what
the crew saw. This picture was taken on the Olympic
Now late Saturday night, I see that Evonne has shared all of Big
Rock Jonnie's photos for the day, and later Sunday I will grab a
few of those to add to this story.
There is one of particular interest to me -- John in his new hair
People on the trail commented on his nice-looking "mullet"
haircut. As he was walking down the trail, one of the crew
placed it on his hard hat.
He's been telling me for weeks he needs a haircut, but this
cinches it. I hope to cut his hair tomorrow !!
Sunday morning, John has been going through Big Rock Jonnie's
photos that Evonne posted on Picasa, and I will describe some of
the day's activities below, from John's comments. I always
feel as if I have been there without the hard work, when I get a
photographic tour from him upon his return with a few pictures
on my camera and then following with the neat captures from Jon
Nishimura. I am sure our other friends who read my web
creations will likewise enjoy the education shown by the awesome
volunteer crews in their worker-bee efforts for Washington
Trails Association and the regional hikers, bikers, and
riders. For those readers who are not WTA volunteers, I
will explain the color of the hats. The only blue hat worn
is by the Crew Leader, on one trip. If other blue hats are
along, they will instead wear their orange hats as an ACL.
Only one for this trip below is in the next to the last picture
on the front right bottom of the photo, Evonne Ellis. The
blue sort of blends in with the greens. Note the other
Blue hat photo in this report is added, and explained below, as
being a Crew Leader from a different trip the following weekend
to demonstrate a the McLeod tool). The orange hats belong
to Assistant Crew Leaders (ACLs). The green hats are on
all other workers. For those who haven't yet worked on 4
trips, WTA provides a green hat, with a blue tape across the
front with the person's first name. At the start of the
fifth work crew day, new green hats with a first name and
nickname on the sides is presented to the person. See
So, here we start below with the arrival of the working crew for
the day -- congregating in the parking lot near the trail
In the left photo, Orange hat (ACL) Jim Springbert talks to ACL
Bob Evans, Evonne behind heading toward tools, with ACL Cliff
Cantor and Ivory F. behind Tyler. B..
In the middle photo, Evonne is at her truck with Tyler near Monty
M. eating one of the donuts brought by Big Rock Jonnie.
Right: Breshi is talking to Donnie.
Below, Ben Mayberry displays his WTA saw with his name engraved on
the handle. These awards are given after a person
50 WTA trips. Evonne presents Ivory Fish with his own green
hat (normally given at the beginning of a person's 5th WTA trip),
and Julie Watkins-Jarvie (Chipper) on the right, who also received
hers this day.
Below, the group gives their attention while Evonne discusses the
safe handling of work tools. The beginning of all work days
start with this introduction, and the ACLs help describe the
tools and hold each one up to talk about various characteristics,
including funny stories, such as mentioned below about the McLeod
The main goals of all trips include SAFETY
first, then FUN
third. In the right photo more of
the group stand behind the
WTA work in progress sign announcing their presence at the
trail. Personally, I think that's a nice touch and great
statement for the public and trail users.
The left picture shows Evonne in her Banana Costume (provided by
Big Rock Jonnie) to honor her as leader of the Banana dance.
John H. looks on appreciatively as the workers follow suit with
her guidance through interpretive dance exercise about pealing,
eating, and otherwise handling a banana. He's been known to
More on the banana dance to enhance warm-up muscle exercise for
shoulders, arms, and wrist movements along with body motion.
AND BELOW -- A SPECIAL ADDITION to the banana story.
Update from Nov 1, 2013 WTA Volunteer Appreciation Dinner.
After seeing and enjoying these warm-up exercise pictures, and
others of people dancing on the trail to tap down trail bed on
another Evonne trip, I (Nancy) decided to retrieve my over 30 year
old stuffed banana and figure a way to present it to Evonne at the
WTA Volunteer Appreciation Dinner. I won it in a raffle at
the Banana Belt Bowling Tournament (Lewiston, ID) by rolling
strikes in the 3rd, 6th, and 9th frames of the 3 games of a
series. It sat in an east-facing window for over 20 years in
my office, so that it would greet students coming in to meet with
me, encouraging them to be in a good, happy mood. It
We worked through Alan Mortimer, sending him the picture of me
& the happy banana on the right below, to request his
presenting the award;
it was a nice and well-deserved surprise for Evonne Ellis, at the
WTA Volunteer Appreciation Dinner.
In the picture with Evonne, John is holding his Carharrt Award
this year --a nice hooded heavy jacket (with an embroidered
WTA emblem) along with a set of double thick pants, called
Weathered Duck 5-pocket pants. I managed to get him to pose
in Ellensburg, at our home, with his new jacket and a vesicular
basalt rock atop a post.
Below crew members are marching to the work spots carrying some
implements. Note at the left front Erin W. is carrying a
brand new grub hoe.
Behind her, Monty M. and John H. are carrying shovels and older
used grub hoes. Tools in the middle photo, clippers, more
shovels, and a McLeod.
The McLeod is jokingly called the supervisor's tool because, when
propped on its handle, it makes a little table shelf (to
lean on or put coffee on).
Oct 18, '13 on a WTA trip to the O'Grady Trail, John carried his
camera and photographed the Crew Leader, Jen Gradisher, posing
with a McLeod.
Here below are several of the crew in the woods, with yellow vine
maple leaves creating some surrounding autumn colors.
Christie Tackett is the digger on the right below, and she is the
one I (Nancy) thanked for taking John's picture (above) and
emailing to me.
On the left below is James R. with whom John and Christie worked a
lot. Middle is Breshi. Tess to the right was
replanting ferns removed while creating trail.
More at work in the woods -- Tyler B.,
Jared and Suzanne A.
Sarah working uncovering and exposing roots.
Todd W. shoveling.
Two new Green Hatters: Julie (Chipper)
Lady in Blue, Erin W.
Springberg and Bob Evans
Moa L.'s lunch location is more picturesque than John
Parting shot of most of today's crew
And the real final shot of wrap-up memories of the day with
Evonne, John, and Ben
Thank you to Jon Nishimura for all the photos of the crew.
We apologize for the quality of the first 6 photos John took on my
camera with low lighting.
COMMENT about names of pictured volunteers. I have put in
only the first names and maybe a last name initial of Green Hats,
until I hear from each one, that it's okay to print your entire
name, or just the initial. I did add the last names of the
ACLs and Green hat recipients this trip. Hope this is okay
with everyone. Please let me know if you want a change in
your last name, and remind me what your whole name is.
Remember this is a private page accessible only to those with a
It should not be picked up from Bing or Google on a search
of your name.
ALSO -- for those of you unidentified in the Banana Dance or
elsewhere on the trail, if you want your name added, please notify
me; see bottom of the page.
above is the link you can give to your friends
COME BACK LATER - today is 11/4/13
Send me any information changes,
created by Nancy B. Hultquist. Thanks for your
Comments to Nancy (John's wife) and submissions
appreciated. Send to firstname.lastname@example.org