Blue Hills Trail CONDITIONS
Hiking: There's good hiking despite rain November 9th, and now snow topping the trails. If the ground isn't frozen, probably avoid two areas: 1)East Side trails with logging activity; 2)West Side trails between Y & Z.
Biking: please don't bike now, the trail surface is soft and unfrozen. We need to protect the surface of the trail so it's smooth when it freezes and we start grooming for x-country skiing.
Loggers have been working two separate timber sales on the East Side: 1)the vicinity of the Otter Slide and Far East trails (those trails are the furthest 'east' trails), and 2)the 'Red Pine' timber sale (north of the warming house). Click here for a map showing trails the loggers may be using.
November 20: dusting
November 19: 1.5" fluffy, wind blown snow
grooming & MOWING
If the weather is favorable, we'll consider grooming the ski trails as the gun deer hunts wind down in early/mid December.
Rusk County Trail Association
April 14, 2005 8:15 PM
Meeting called to order
by Dave Olsen, president, at 7:15 p.m. at the Warming Hut
Officers: Carolyn Chatterton, Dave Olsen, Jan Paulsen.
Members: Howard Chatterton, Tom Paulsen, Dick Pebler, Jonathan Stanley, Al Sykes, John Ziemer. Jonathan Stanley, Al Sykes.
Non-members: Bill Pearson (Northroads Bike Club).
Motion by Dick Pebler, second by Jonathan Stanley, to dispense with reading of the prior minutes. Unanimously carried.
Presented by Carolyn Chatterton. Income exceeded expenses. This was a good year for receipts from the donation pole in the parking lot. Discussion held. Motion by Al Sykes, seconded by John Ziemer, to approve the Treasurer's report as presented. Unanimously carried.
- Old Business
- New Business
- Designate committee members for the upcoming year
- Election of officers
501C3 status discussed. Bjorn Hansen has worked on finalizing the details for the 501C3 application. This will be forwarded to RCTA President for signature.
Blue Hills Ascent: race report was supplied by Tom Paulsen. The race was canceled two days before the race due to unsafe conditions because of the previous day's rains followed by a hard overnight freeze. In exchange for an agreement to utilize their professional services again in 2006, White River Timing agreed to drop their 50% cancellation fee ($375) for the 2005 race. We also were able to recover the insurance fee from K&K Insurance ($240). The trophies and race bibs will remain available for the 2006 race. After discussing a possible 50% race refund if the race is canceled, all in attendance agreed that we can no longer offer a race refund – we have too many fixed expenses to take into consideration. Bjorn Hansen has volunteered to assume the role of race director for the 2006 race. Tom Paulsen will provide assistance with online registration, Dave Olsen will head the registration on race day, Howard Chatterton will again assume responsibility for the race trophies / medallions. Race fees will remain $10 for youth, $20 for adult racers (discounts for pre-registration) – although the final decision will remain in the hands of the race director.
Mowing: we again expect Rusk County will mow the West Side trails. They need to be reminded to NOT go over bridges! The County will do side arm mowing on the gravel road and West Side. Discussion implied the goal of mowing before the 4th of July and Labor Day.
- Carolyn Chatterton recommended some hand work 1) on the short cut at the warming house between the gravel road and the pit toilets; and 2) section 9–5.
- At the far end of the gravel road, one area will need some minor dozing to overcome a tendency for that cut to drop rocks onto the trail when sun-exposed in the winter.
- The 7–30 section (the long way) will be logged by the County in the winter of 05-06 or 06-07, and will be approached from a direction that will not impact the trail system.
- The West Side lollipop loop (letter E) will be logged in 05-06 or 06-07, using summer access via A–B–C–D–E, and winter access that will not use the trail system. In exchange, a culvert will be placed on that section, and Carolyn has requested improvements to the parking area adjacent to the gate at letter A that will also create an area for the snowmobile to reverse directions.
- Grass seed needs to be spread in sections on the West Side that were 'rearranged' following logging this past winter.
- The beavers residing near #25 have been busy, with resultant washout of the trail at the outlet of the beavers' homestead.
- To enhance mowing during damp conditions, Carolyn recommended purchase of a $180 'wetlands package' – motion by Dick Pebler, seconded by Tom Paulsen to purchase this wetlands package.
- Solar lighting of a portion of the trail (to allow night skiing) was discussed.
Banquet: Al Sykes has volunteered to head the banquet committee. He selected a date (October 29), and has plans for the meal at the Blue Hills Inn, with a ticket price again of $25. Tom and Jan Paulsen will again spearhead the fall fundraising, with plans to focus their appeals toward supportive individuals and businesses, and RCTA members. A major prize for the banquet was not discussed.
New members: discussion held on ways to attract new members, especially younger skiers. Dick Pebler will contact Dale Zuzek (Rice Lake) regarding methods to encourage youth participants. Marshfield Clinic has a 'Healthy Lifestyles' movement that could possibly align with usage of the Blue Hills Trail. John Ziemer will follow this possibility ('Healthy Lifestyles').
Skinny Ski website: Dick Pebler moved, seconded by Jonathan Stanley, to continue the web link with Skinny Ski (annual cost of $60). Unanimously approved.
Road signs: painting is needed for signs on Hwy 8 and County O.
Warming house: sealing the exterior was last done September 2001. This will be repeated September of this year (plans to seek recommendations from Bjorn Hansen re: power washing followed by sealing). Interior care (repairing the chinking, door repair, etc) needs attention – some of this should be discussed with the builders.
Work Day: to be selected this fall.
Discussion held regarding trailhead and membership fees. Motion by Al Sykes, unanimously passed, to raise the requested trailhead donation to $5, and the annual membership (still considered a great bargain) to $25 (individual) and $45 (family). RCTA wants to continue the affordability of membership, while encouraging generous donation to help meet our expenses.
Website: the website remains a popular way to follow trail conditions. Tom Paulsen welcomes input in the form of pictures to add to the photo gallery. Suggestions for improvement included 1) adding periodic polls of interest; and 2) adding information with instructions for individuals interested in assisting with trail maintenance.
To be carried over with additions as highlighted in bold
- Banquet Committee: Howard Chatterton, Al Sykes (chair)
- Blue Hills Ascent Committee: Bjorn Hansen (chair), Dave Olsen, Tom Paulsen
- Equipment Committee: Carolyn Chatterton, Howard Chatterton
- Fundraising: Jan Paulsen, Tom Paulsen
- Grooming and Trail Maintenance Committee: Carolyn Chatterton, Frank Lowry, Dick Pebler
- Snowshoe Trail: Howard Chatterton to offer this committee to Gwen Westlund, Jim Jenkins, Mary Jenkins
- Website: Tom Paulsen
Election of Officers
Jan Paulsen nominated Howard Chatterton for president, Dick Pebler for vice president, Carolyn Chatterton nominated Tom Paulsen for secretary/treasurer. These motions were seconded by Al Sykes. Unanimously carried.
Motion to adjourn by Dick Pebler, second by John Ziemer. Adjourned at 9:02 p.m.
Taken by Tom Paulsen, Secretary
A Listing of Active Committees
- Banquet Committee
- Blue Hills Ascent Committee
- Equipment Committee
- Fundraising Committee
- Grooming and Trail Maintenance Committee
- Website Committee