Project Schedule: Southeast

Project Descriptions

Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Pick Up Time: 2018-05-07 07:00:00

Crew Leader: Jess Coffee-Johnson & Charlotte Tate

Project Description: Great Smoky Mountains National Park is the most visited park in the National Park system. It is comprised of 800 square miles of mixed hardwood forest less than a day's drive from over half of the country's population. Visitors come to the Smokies to see one of the park's blackbears, appreciate panoramic views of the Southern Appalachian mountains, tube Deep Creek, and hike the more than 800 miles of backcountry trails. This year the crew will be assisting the GRSM Trails Forever crew to rebuild and restore the Rainbow Falls Trail. The work will include cyclic maintenance, rock harvesting and shaping, and some carving trails out of bedrock. More info at: https://www.nps.gov/grsm/index.htm

Duration: M-Th

Camping and Weather: The crew will be front country camping at Greenbrier Campground.

Project Specific Notes: The crew will be working in close proximity to the NPS Trails Forever Crew. This crew expects a high degree of professionalism and efficient work on the job site. Remember to stay moving and take initiative to find tasks. The work will include a significant amount of griphoisting (level 2 tool) and hand tool work.

Daniel Boone National Forest

Pick Up Time: 2018-04-16 07:00:00

Crew Leader: Corey Harrison & Dylan Empson

Project Description: Our project in Daniel Boone National Forest is divided into 4 distinct parts this summer. The crew will be spending 4 weeks in each of the four districts doing cyclic maintenance on the trails there. The work will primarily involve corridor, tread and drainage, and some structure work. Next hitch, the crew will be working in the Cumberland Ranger District, home to Red River Gorge Geologic Area. The Gorge is a internationally known climbing area and is heavily visited for both day trips and backcountry use. More info at: https://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/dbnf/specialplaces/?cid=stelprdb5345319. The work will likely be repairing a timber staircase.

Duration: The standard 2-week schedule will involve traveling on a Monday, then working Tuesday through Friday of that week. After a weekend off in the field, the crew will work M-W and a half day on Thursday followed by travel back to Asheville. The cycle then repeats.

Camping and Weather: The crew will be frontcountry at either the Koomer Ridge Campground or Zilpo Campground.

Project Specific Notes: Weather during shoulder seasons is variable, please be prepared with good rain gear and both cold and warm weather clothing. Chainsaws will be on site, level 3 tool. Carpentry tools will be in use building a mitered staircase.

BLRI Parkway Humpback Rock Farms

Pick Up Time: 2018-05-14 07:00:00

Crew Leader: Mat Landis

Project Description: The Parkway’s north end is scenic hardwood forest and sweeping valley vistas. Just five miles in, Humpback Rocks illustrates the blend of cultural and natural features that defines the rest of the Parkway. Hike to high rock outcroppings or explore 1890s farm buildings relocated during Parkway construction. Start your trip at the visitor center and learn about the many aspects of mountain life that defy stereotypes. For work, the crew on this project will be working closely with park staff to restore 19th century structures. For more info: https://www.nps.gov/blri/planyourvisit/humpback-rocks-mp-5-8.htm

Duration: The crew will stay on project for two weeks at a time for the first month of the project and then stay out for 4 weeks for the last month. We will work a 5-4-9 schedule to match park service employees.

Camping and Weather: The crew will camp at a parkway "comfort station" near the job site. The site will have bathrooms and running water and will be occupied solely by ACE.

Project Specific Notes: The crew will be highly visible while working, remember your elevator speeches and good PR. Also, strive to be efficient on site and stay busy. Tools will include hand carpentry tools. All level 1 training.

Monongahela National Forest Trails

Pick Up Time: 2018-05-07 07:00:00

Crew Leader: Jeremy Eckert

Project Description: ACE is excited to partner with Monongahela National Forest for a second year of new trail construction and maintenance in West Virginia! For the first few weeks of this project the crew will be using power and hand tools to clear trail corridor and build brand new class 2 hiker/biker trail. There will be a lot of dirt moving! In future weeks the crew will conduct cyclic maintenance on a couple of other established trails with in the forest. Explore the mountains of Appalachia and enjoy your time taking advantage of camping and working in this beautiful, unique and diverse National Forest. Check it out! https://www.fs.usda.gov/mnf

Duration: This project will run as a month long. The crew will spend four weeks and three weekends at a time in West Virginia, returning to Asheville,NC on the 4th weekend for de-rig, to resupply on food/tools/etc. Working days will run Monday to Thursday as 4-10’s (four, ten hour days), with 3 days off (Fri, Sat, Sun).

Camping and Weather: This will be a primitive camping situation. Bring your tent!! You will be camping within Monongahela National Forest, very near to your work site. There are no bathroom amenities. You will supplement drinking water from the nearest USFS ranger station (about a 20 minute drive) in Bartow, WV and the crew will be packed with solar showers for bathing. To dispose of human and food waste the crew will utilize a cat-hole system, digging a hole at least 6 inches in depth and re-filling back in with dirt. Remember your leave no trace ethics! There are bears in the area so we must be diligent in picking up after ourselves and not leaving scented items in our tents. Cell phone service is VERY limited in this region, but I suggest bringing a solar charger if you have one. The crew will have a USFS radio for emergencies. The nearest “large” town is Elkins, WV. Come prepared for all types of weather, pack layers and rain gear for wet days and cooler nights.

Project Specific Notes: Summer is fast approaching and days are getting longer and hotter. Remember to pack/drink LOTS of water during the work day, apply sunscreen, eat salty snacks and pace yourself. The insects are getting more active as well, utilize bug spray and check yourself for ticks regularly. Most importantly, be safe, have fun and take care of each other!

Nantahala/Pisgah NF Restoration

Pick Up Time: 2018-05-09 07:00:00

Crew Leader: Mike Santiago & Krishun Karau (just this hitch)

Project Description: For the next few months an ACE crew will work to restore habitat within the Nantahala and Pisgah National Forests. A small ACE crew will help to survey for and control exotic plant species that have invaded both forests. Most of the areas to be surveyed and treated have burned during recent wildfires. Exotic plants can be very opportunistic and will invade heavily impacted natural areas. Both forests have partnered with ACE to help protect these critical habitats for the benefit of native fauna and flora. Once identified, crew members will treat exotic plants with herbicide to help reduce their numbers. For this hitch, the crew will find and treat Coltsfoot along accessed areas at the highly popular Roan Mountain. It will take approximately 3 days to complete. The crew will switch gears, and locations using brushcutters to cut down invasive Japanese Knotweed along a 2.5 mile section of the Wilson’s Creek. Japanese Knotweed is extremely aggressive and these dense infestations pose a serious threat to riparian (river) habitat because when left unchecked they will exclude all other plants and animals. Wilson’s Creek is designated as a National Wild and Scenic River area and is managed by and located with in Pisgah National Forest in western North Carolina. This creek is a popular swimming and angling location, and provides excellent wildlife habitat, especially for native trout species. This project is going to be an adventure, it’s remote, rugged, physically challenging and there will be LOTS OF HIKING. The terrain isn't steep but it's rocky, slippery and you will definitely get wet in the creek during the work day. The crew will be provided with footwear for getting wet in the creek and will return these to ACE after the hitch. Please email project manager Krish at kkarau@usaconservation.org with your boot size by Monday May 21st.

Duration: This is an 8 day project, meaning 8 straight 10 hour days. Crew members will have 6 days off following the hitch ** IF** they are placed back on this project or another Wednesday to Wednesday hitch project.

Camping and Weather: For the first half of the hitch the crew will be front country camping at the top of Roan Mountain (very close to the Appalachian Trail!) There are bathrooms with flush toilets and running water, but no showers. Solar showers will be provided to bathe after using pesticide. The second half of the hitch the crew will travel to the Wilson’s Creek area within Pisgah and will backcountry camp. The vehicle will be parked on a Forest Service gravel road and the hike down to the camp/work area is approximately 1 mile from the vehicle but as time goes on the work area will be further and further from the vehicle. This area is remote but there is a trail accessible to the public that the runs parallel to the creek. Be weary of leaving any expensive personal items unattended at camp during the work day. Cell service is VERY limited. The crew will have radios and a “spot device” to use in the event of an emergency. Water will be supplemented from Wilsons Creek and filtered/treated for safe drinking. The crew will have o

Project Specific Notes: Bring all of your long sleeve shirts for pesticide use days. Watch your footing, be weary swift moving water, and on the look out for bees and ticks. Be safe and have fun!!

Gettysburg National Military Park Vegetation and Battlefield Management

Pick Up Time: 2018-05-14 07:00:00

Crew Leader: Caroline Lower

Project Description: May 14th, 2018 will mark the third year of ACE's partnership with Gettysburg National Military Park in Pennsylvania. Previous crews have helped our NPS partners to restore and maintain areas of the historic battlefield along with important wildlife habitat. This current crew will focus on exotic plant control throughout the Park, including within the many orchards within its boundaries. Using backpack sprayers, crew members will treat Canada thistle and mile-a-minute weeds with an herbicide that will be applied directly to the leaves of each plant. The work is extremely important for preserving both the historic nature of the Park and its role as a natural area for native flora and fauna. Crew members will also have plenty of free time to explore one of America's most important National Parks. The crew will work a regular 5 day week, with each day being 8 hours long. This is a 4 WEEK project, with off-days being in the field. Please bring extra clothes for your weekend off-days. Please also bring all of your ACE shirts and at least two pairs of work pants.

Duration: This is a 4 WEEK project with off-days in the field. The crew will return on Friday, June 8th.

Camping and Weather: The crew will be staying in an historic house within the Park, so tents are not necessary. You are free to bring your tent if you would like to camp on your off-days outside of the Park's boundaries.

Project Specific Notes: Remember the rain gear!!! It is still spring, and it gets rainy in Pennsylvania. Daytime temps will be in the mid 60s to upper 70s. Nighttime temps will be in the upper 50s to mid 60s.

Conserving Carolina Habitat Restoration

Pick Up Time: 2018-05-22 07:00:00

Crew Leader: Jason Rannow

Project Description: Conserving Carolina is a local non-profit of Western North Carolina. Their mission is “dedication to protecting and stewarding land and water resources vital to our natural heritage and quality of life and to fostering appreciation and understanding of the natural world”. ACE has been collaborating with Conserving Carolina since 2014 by managing the spread of non-native invasive plant species in order to protect the natural communities and scenic beauty of an area known as the Hickory Nut Gorge. Conserving Carolina’s protection area hosts some of the world’s most beautiful, ancient mountains and historic rural landscapes. This project is unique in that the work sites, camping situations, tools being used, treatment methods and invasive species being managed for change from week to week. There is lots of variety! Some weeks this project will commute from the ACE house, some weeks this project will front country camp, and some weeks there will be backcountry camping. One week the terrain may be more flat, another week the terrain will be very steep and physically demanding. ALWAYS CHECK this project description ahead of time to note changes. THIS WEEK 05/22/18 – 05/25/18 The crew will be working in the local community of Three Creeks near Lake Lure, North Carolina. The crew will work from high to low elevations across the property to find and treat the invasive Tree of Heaven and Kudzu vine. Both of these invasive species wreak havoc on our native ecosystems, suffocating native plants and immensely decreasing biodiversity. Mature Tree of Heaven is treated by using hatchets, hand saws and herbicide. Kudzu vines are treated by foliar spraying the leaves with a backpack sprayer and a solution of herbicide. Be ready to hike off trail! The terrain has the potential to be steep in some areas.

Duration: This is a four, 10 hour day working week. The crew will work Tuesday to Friday, returning to the ACE office Friday afternoon for de-rig

Camping and Weather: CHECK THIS WEEKLY. Camping situation and location will change every week. THIS WEEK 05/22/18 – 05/25/18 The crew will be commuting each day from the ACE house to the worksite. Be ready to depart the house each morning at 7am with your day pack ready to go, all your PPE, water and lunch already packed.

Project Specific Notes: Long sleeves are required for any project using pesticides. Shower at the end of the day and wash your hands regularly throughout the day. Be weary of ticks and bees this time of year! Be safe and have fun!

Daniel Boone Crew #2

Pick Up Time: 2018-05-28 10:00:00

Crew Leader: Corey Harrison, Dylan Empson, Brandon Sadur

Project Description: Please see Daniel Boone

Duration: The crew will leave the Caribou House Monday May 28 at 10 am. They will be camping at the Koomer Ridge Campground in the Red River Gorge for one week, traveling back on Friday.

Camping and Weather: Frontcountry at Koomer Ridge

Project Specific Notes: See primary description.