Sitka Trail Works releases weekend guided hike schedule for the 2017 summer

Sitka Trail Works will kick off its 2017 summer series of weekend hikes on Saturday, May 13, with a easy to moderate three-mile hike on the Starrigavan Loop. Meet at the Old Sitka Boat Launch Parking Lot at 9 a.m. That will be followed on Saturday, May 20, by a lesson on geocaching taught by volunteers. After a short tutorial at 8:30 a.m. at the Sitka High School entrance to the Cross Trail, participants will go discover some local geocaches (bring a smartphone or GPS device, if you have one).

The series of weekend hikes are led by various members of Sitka Trail Works, and there also are occasional bike rides and kayak trips on the schedule. Most of the hikes near town are free (donations are accepted), but some of the hikes require a boat trip and those have fees. The schedule runs through the end of August.

(Click image to enlarge)

In other news, Sitka Trail Works recently received funding for Phase 6 of the Cross Trail, and construction is expected to start in FY 2019, after the next reauthorization of the federal transportation bill in 2018. Sitka Trail Works also received funding for Phase II of the Mosquito Cove Trail Repairs Project, which repairs trail damage done by August 2015 and January 2017 storms.

On National Trails Day (Saturday, June 3), Sitka Trail Works and other groups will do repair work to trails TBA. Tools will be available, but you should bring gloves, pruners and toppers, if you have them.

Don’t forget to check the Sitka Trail Works website for current trail condition reports.

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Sitka to host First Day Hike on Sunday, Jan. 1, at the Starrigavan trailhead parking lot

 

Mosquito Cove Trail photo by Matt Goff of SitkaTrails.org

Mosquito Cove Trail photo by Matt Goff of SitkaTrails.org

first-day-hikes1Sitka will have a First Day Hike, meeting at 9:30 a.m. on Sunday, Jan. 1, at the Starrigavan trailhead parking lot.

First Day Hikes are part of a nationwide initiative led by America’s State Parks, in partnership with Alaska State Parks, to encourage people to get outdoors. Kids and adults all across America will be participating in First Day Hikes, getting their hearts pumping and enjoying the beauty of a state park.

Last year nearly 28,000 people rang in the New Year, collectively hiking more than 66,000 miles throughout the country. First Day Hikes are led by knowledgeable volunteers.

We will hike the 1 1/2-mile Mosquito Cove loop, and if hikers are interested, hike the 1 1/2-mile Muskeg loop as well. If it is very windy or very, very rainy the hike will be canceled. Walking/hiking poles and YakTrax or similar ice cleats are recommended if the trails are icy.

For more information, call Jeff Budd at 747-4821.

Mosquito Cove Trail to be closed for trail maintenance on July 21

Mosquito Cove Trail photo by Matt Goff of SitkaTrails.org

Mosquito Cove Trail (photo by Matt Goff of SitkaTrails.org)

SitkaTrailWorksLogoThe Old Sitka State Historical Interpretive site parking lot and the Mosquito Cove Trail will be closed Thursday, July 21, so that Sitka Trail Works can helicopter transport gravel for a trail maintenance project.

Additional trail maintenance work is scheduled later this summer and is being funded by a Recreational Trail grant. Sitka Trail Works apologizes for any inconvenience.

For questions, please call Sitka Trail Works at 747-7244.

State parks closure prompts National Trails Day maintenance by Sitka Trail Works

Mosquito Cove Trail photo by Matt Goff of SitkaTrails.org

Mosquito Cove Trail photo by Matt Goff of SitkaTrails.org

SitkaTrailWorksLogoDo you ever visit Halibut Point Recreation Area, Mosquito Cove Trail, the Forest and Muskeg Trail, Old Sitka, Castle Hill or Fort Rousseau? These are Sitka’s Alaska State Parks and their future is threatened.

Proposed budget cuts this year zero out all support for the Sitka parks in the Alaska State Parks system, and local state park ranger Nick True will be moved out of Sitka. In addition, the plan is to close the local Alaska State Parks office, and eliminate the part-time staff and campground hosts who help maintain these sites.

Sitka will still have state parks, but there will be no garbage pick-up, bear control, reservations for picnic sites, trail maintenance, or brush control.

ntd_2013_copyright2_rgb-1024x1019As part of the American Hiking Society’s 23rd annual National Trails Day on Saturday, June 6, Sitka Trail Works will host a trail maintenance event at the Mosquito Cove Trail. This volunteer work party will be led by the Sitka Trail Works board of directors.

All volunteers are encouraged to meet at the Mosquito Cove Trailhead at 9:15 a.m. (the trailhead is located seven miles from downtown Sitka on Halibut Point Road and is three-quarters of a mile beyond the ferry terminal, past Starrigavan Campground). The Mosquito Cove Trail is part of the Old Sitka State Historical Park.

“National Trails Day encourages Americans to connect with local outdoor clubs, businesses, community groups, and parks and recreation departments, as well as federal land managing agencies, to experience, appreciate, and share the natural places we cherish,” Sitka Trail Works said.

Sitka Trail Works releases weekend guided hike schedule for the 2015 summer

CrossTrail

SitkaTrailWorksLogoSitka Trail Works will kick off its 2015 summer series of weekend hikes on Saturday, May 9, with a a lesson on geocaching taught by new board members Gio Villanueva and Jeff Cranson. After a short tutorial at 8:30 a.m. at the Sitka High School entrance to the Cross Trail, participants will go discover some local geocaches (bring a smartphone or GPS device, if you have one).

The series of weekend hikes are led by various members of Sitka Trail Works, and there also are occasional bike rides and kayak trips on the schedule. Most of the hikes near town are free, but some of the hikes require a boat trip and those have fees. The schedule runs through the end of August.

The City and Borough of Sitka and Sitka Trail Works recently announced the completion of one section of reconstruction of the Sitka Cross Trail, and a new section now is under reconstruction. The Cross Trail will be open during the work, which is expected to be finished by November 2015, but hikers should use caution in that area. In addition, Sitka Trail Works recently received a grant to help repair extensive trail damage caused last fall by a Sept. 18 landslide on the Herring Cove Trail.

On National Trails Day (Saturday, June 6), Sitka Trail Works and other groups will work on several Sitka state parks, which had their support zeroed out in this year’s state budget. Volunteers are needed for this work party at the Mosquito Cove Trail on National Trails Day. People also are encouraged to write letters to Gov. Bill Walker about the funding cut, which should be dropped off at the Alaska Department of Parks office on Halibut Point Road near the Halibut Point Recreation Area.

Don’t forget to check the Sitka Trail Works website for current trail condition reports.