Palisades Crew at Sterling Forest State Park

 

First you helped us save Sterling Forest…now help us restore its trails.

Pal Crew 2014

 

In 1998, the effort to protect Sterling Forest from development lead a coalition of over 30 organizations to purchase and permanently protect 14,500 acres of unbroken deep-forest habitat. Subsequent acquisition efforts have increased the size to nearly 22,000 acres.

Now the Trail Conference invites your participation to enhance the trail system in this special park. 

Recognizing our expertise in developing trails and volunteers, New York State Parks has asked the Trail Conference to develop an expanded corps of volunteers and to assess, inventory, design, build, and restore the trails in this forest. This crew of volunteers, ranging over Sterling Forest  and parks and NYNJTC trails in the region, is thus known as the Palisades Region Trail Crew.

In order to restore existing trails, volunteers will be trained how to identify unsustainable problem areas and how to repair trail structures. A series of both entry-level and advanced hands-on workshops will teach volunteers to layout and design sustainable user-friendly trails, and build, restore, remediate, and maintain trails. There will be opportunities and training for all levels of ability and interest. Details on how to repair and install crib wall, tread hardening by rock paving, stairs, trail bridges, drainage structures, stepping stones, and turnpikes will be taught as needed. 

(The Palisades Region Trails Project at Sterling Forest will not involve advanced rock work; training in those techniques is available at our Bear Mountain Trails Project.)

Visit our Trail U schedule to find upcoming training opportunities at Sterling Forest.

Link to Map to purchase

 

Come be a part of the next step of the protection of Sterling Forest State Park

 Trail Crew Trips 

 


Join our Americorps members building trails for the rest of the season Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from 8:45pm til 5pm, including the popular Thursday evenings ‘build trail after work’. Join them Thursdays at 11:45am or at 5pm til sunset.

Sign up on individual crew days here, or email [email protected] or contact Sona at 201-512-9348 ext. 16. 

 

 

Calling all volunteers! This summer, we'll be creating new trail on the Doris Duke project. Sidehilling a loop trail in the north-eastern reaches of the park with a view of New York City! 

 


 

Trail-U Workshops!


For more in-depth training on aspects of trail-building, sign up for our upcoming workshops:

July 26: Armoring a stream -trail crossing

Discover how to build a trail that people enjoy walking on: Learn trail restoration, building and design techniques. Our skilled trail builders will be using stone to teach sustainable methods of mitigating soil erosion in a watershed setting.

We will begin with the ergonomics of how to use tools safely in a group setting, and continue to a hands-on workshop which will inncorporate both theory and practice in the art of sustainable trail building.


Aug 16: How to build a stream crossing

Discover how to build a trail that people enjoy walking on: Learn trail restoration, building and design techniques. Our trail builders will be using stone to teach sustainable methods of mitigating soil erosion in a watershed setting.

We will begin with the ergonomics of how to use tools safely in a group setting, and continue to a hands-on workshop which will inncorporate both theory and practice in the art of sustainable trail building.


Sept 20:  Intro to Trail-Building


Discover how to build a trail that people enjoy walking on: Learn trail restoration, building and design techniques. Our skilled trail builders will be using stone to teach sustainable methods of mitigating soil erosion in a watershed setting.

We will begin with the ergonomics of how to use tools safely in a group setting, and continue to a hands-on workshop which will inncorporate both theory and practice in the art of sustainable trail building.


October 5: Intro to trail Building techniques


Discover how to build a trail that people enjoy walking on: Learn trail restoration, building and design techniques,  how to mitigate soil erosion in a watershed setting, and to make your trail last for many years.

 

We will begin with the ergonomics of how to use tools safely in a group setting, and continue to a hands-on workshop which will incorporate both theory and practice in the art of sustainable trail building.

Special Events


 

 Cookout coming up soon!

 

 

Previous Events

Bug hike July 13th:

 

Hike leaders Peter and Tina  uncoveredhe underworld of one of the largest groups of living beings in the park.

buckeye bfly


Jun 6 Trail progress Update

Wow! 800 Feet of New Trail at Sterling Forest and We’re Just Getting Started

Memorial Day  kicked off the start of summer, and we’re heating up on the Doris Duke side-hilling project! A big hearty thank-you to our awesome volunteers who helped us complete around 800 feet of new trail since the start of this season’s project.

Palisades Trail Crew at work on new trail

Looking forward to the next couple of weeks, we’ll continue to bench-cut our way through the park’s Doris Duke Loop Trail to create a scenic, sustainable side-hilled trail up Sterling Mountain, and eventually to a great new view of NYC in the distance. We hope to open the trail to hikers by hunting season this year, and could use all the help we can muster. (The Doris Duke Wildlife Sanctuary is off limits for hunting.) Even if you have only a few hours, you will be most welcome.

Remember we’re also continuing our Thursday evening  program, ending around 7:30pm. So if you would like to get some outdoor time in the forest with us, let us know.

by Charlotte Rutherford, AmeriCorps member of the Palisades Trail Crew

 

Saturday April the 19th

More parking at the new trailhead! The park has enlarged the trailhead parking for the Doris Duke Trail by

removing a derelict building on site, and the ground needed some debris removal before the surface can be smoothed and hardened for cars.

A bunch of stalwart volunteers  (including little ones) cleared the area in no time at all. Now we will have room for more hikers to enjoy this new trail-in-progress!

 

Thank you everybody for the cheery smiles, amazing fast work, and good company!
 
 
 

Sidehilling Party on Sunday April the 27th  


It's amazing how much a few volunteers can accomplish together. A large section of new trail was side-hilled within a few hours on the Doris Duke Trail, and with the help of our indeispensible volunteers, we hope to complete the entire loop this year. Thank you Ed, Joe & Bob!


This section of the Doris Duke trail will link up with the Allis trail, which joins up with the Appalachian trail in the north, and the Sterling Ridge Trail to the south, all the way to Ringwood State Forest in New Jersey.

Let us know you're coming, or email [email protected]