Park News 6

Trail work begins on lower end of First Creek Trail
MAMMOTH CAVE, Ky., April 3, 2014    Its time to
work on First Creek Trail, said Russell Runge, Acting
Superintendent at Mammoth Cave National Park,
following a planning meeting.  As a result, 1.5 miles of
First Creek Trail, from Temple Hill Trailhead to the
bridge near First Creek Lake, will be closed for the
next six weeks while an American Conservation
Experience work crew repairs and rebuilds the trail.
This section of trail has needed attention for some
time, said Runge, who is filling in for Superintendent
Sarah Craighead while she is on a three-month detail
in Atlanta.  It is rocky and steep, with many exposed
roots and washouts.  In its present condition, the trail
causes erosion problems and negatively impacts a
visitors hiking or horseback riding experience. 
The trail will close for six weeks beginning April 9. 
Workers will install water bars and elevate the trail in
some places to improve drainage.  The crew will stage
their equipment, supplies and vehicles at Temple Hill
Trailhead, but there will still be room for visitor
parking.  Trail users may travel the upper end of First
Creek Trail from the First Creek Trailhead, or McCoy
Hollow Trail that heads out from Temple Hill Trailhead.
The American Conservation Experience is a youth
organization modeled after the Civilian Conservation
Corps of the 1930s, that recruits, coordinates, and
trains volunteers to undertake practical environmental
restoration projects in America's national parks,
forests, wildlife refuges and other public lands. 
(http://usaconservation.org/)
In the 1930s, four Civilian Conservation Corps camps
were stationed here at Mammoth Cave to transform
the property from farmland into a park, added
Runge.  They built roads and cave trail, and planted
2 million trees to help control erosion.  Today, we
appreciate the American Conservation Experience, a
new generation of young people who are here to help
us preserve and protect park resources, while they
build a personal conservation ethic.