BELFAST — A cold, November rain failed to dampen the spirits of students from the Outdoor Leadership program at Waldo County Technical Center when they invited their Tech Center classmates and teachers to walk the newly constructed trail in the woods alongside WCTCI. These students have been breaking trail, hauling rocks, constructing bridges and creating handrails since school started in September, all while being conscious to respect the wildlife around them and using the resources found in nature.
Buck O’Herin and Maury Hepner of the Waldo County Trails Coalition, along with WCTC program instructor, Nicole Caruso, assisted with the design of the trail and supported the students’ vision during the construction phase. The class serves as volunteer stewards of the section of Hills to Sea Trail that runs by WCTC’s property. The ultimate goal of this project is to link the school’s trail with the Hills To Sea trail.
When asked what they were most proud of in working on this project, student Marley Carlson immediately pointed out the handrails they built on one of trickier bits of trail. These handrails incorporated the natural curve of the tree used as a railing and this shape helped inform the direction of the trail. Jessica Webber pointed out that this unique construction adds personality and creativity to the trail.
The bridgework along the trail required the commitment of entering freezing cold water. Jaylee Dakin was often up to her knees while constructing the Bog Bridge. Josh Campbell and Jacob Nelson worked together to create stone steps along the trail and discussed the teamwork involved in moving these heavy pieces. Jacob said he hopes their hard work will be here for a long time for other Tech Center classes and the public to enjoy.