Local State Parks seek volunteers

Hannah Myers | Jefferson Post Mt. Jefferson State Natural Area

ASHE COUNTY—New River State Park will be hosting a “Volunteer Trail Day” on Saturday, June 27 from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m.

Volunteers will be doing regular maintenance of one of New River State Park’s most popular trails.

Rangers will cover topics of trail work including: erosion control, implementation of a self-sustainable trail and how to keep a hiking trail safe for hikers of all ages.

Those interested in volunteering should meet the ranger at the 221 Access Visitor Center.

It is recommended that volunteers bring work gloves, sturdy work shoes and plenty of water and snacks in a backpack. All tools will be supplied.

Mtn. Ridge Trail

Mount Jefferson State Natural Area will also be hosting two trail work days this summer.

On Saturday, July 18, staff and volunteers will work on the new Mtn. Ridge trail from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Construction on the trail began last summer and just recently resumed this summer.

The two-mile long trail will begin at the park office and ascend Mount Jefferson to the upper parking area and connect to the upper trail system. The extension will make the entire trail system five miles in length and become one of the longest trail systems in Ashe County.

The second trail work day will take place on Saturday, August 22, from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

The organization AmeriCorps will also assist with the trail’s construction in August. In the meantime, volunteers and the public are invited to help with the process.

According to Park Ranger Jeff Matheson, the goal is to complete the trail by the end of the summer.

Participants should bring water, gloves and sturdy shoes and meet at Mount Jefferson.

Upcoming programs at Mt. Jefferson State Natural Area

•Trees and Tees, Wednesday, June 24 at 2 p.m.

•Animal Sounds, Friday, June 26 at 7 p.m.

•Campfire Stories and S’Mores, Friday, June 26 at 8:30 p.m.

•Amphibian Tube Ride, Saturday, June 27 at 2 p.m.

•Underground Railroad Hike, Saturday, June 27 at 2 p.m.

•Fairies and Gnomes House Building, Sunday, June 28 at 10 a.m.

•Animal Sounds, Sunday, July 19 at 10 a.m.

Upcoming programs at New River State Park

•The Tall Tales of Ranger Tall, Thursday, June 25 at 10 a.m.

•Forest Scavenger Hunt, Friday, June 26 at 10 a.m.

•Aquatic Insect Scientific Sampling, Saturday, June 27 at 1 p.m.

•Fishing Table Talk, Saturday, June 27 at 4 p.m.

•Summer Spooky Hay Ride, Saturday, June 27 at 8 p.m.

•New River History Hike, Sunday, June 28 at 1 p.m.

•Wildflower Hike, Sunday, June 28 at 8:30 a.m.

•River Life, Saturday, July 4 at 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

•The Tall Tales of Range Tall, Saturday, July 4 at 2:00 p.m.

•Way Back When, Saturday, July 4 at 7 p.m.

•Aquatic Insect Scientific Sampling, Sunday, July 5 at 1 p.m.

•Frog Find, Saturday, July 11 at 8 p.m.

•Guided Canoe Trip, Sunday, July 12 at 1 p.m.

•New River History Hike, Saturday, July 18 at 1 p.m.

For meeting locations and additional information for any of these programs or events, call the Mount Jefferson park office at 336-246-9653 or the New River park office at 336-982-2587.

Hannah Myers can be reached at 336-846-7164 or on Twitter @cmedia_hmyers.

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