September 2014 Dispatch

Ice Age Trail Alliance

Chippewa Moraine Chapter

Ice Age Trail Dispatch

September 2014

See The Forest By Moonlight: Members, Volunteers, and Friends Appreciation Event, Saturday Sept. 6

The forest sprites have cooked up a special event for our Ice Age Trail members, volunteers, and friends, and it’s happening on Saturday, Sept. 6 in the Chippewa Moraine’s newest section. Come join us for a full moon hike during the last of the three super moons. A two mile circle trail will be marked for a self-guided hike, or, there will be two guided hikes (6:30 PM and 7:30 PM) for those who prefer the group experience. There is also a shorter hike for those shorter-legged family members who still want to be out in the deep, dark woods! Please start self-guided hikes no later than 8:00 PM. It’s a great chance to explore a section of the recently-acquired “Old Girl Scout Camp” section of the Chippewa Moraine, and get great views of Hodge Lake in the super-moonlight!

  • Date: Saturday, September 6, 6:00-9:00 PM
  • Where: "Old Girl Scout Camp”, northeast of the Chippewa Moraine Ice Age Visitor’s Center. 
    • Entrance is at 26900 145th Street, ½ mile north of County Highway M.
    • 145th St is 1.5 miles east of the main Chippewa Moraine entrance, and is marked with the Camp Manitou sign. 
    • Watch for yellow “Ice Age Trail Event” signs to guide your way once you get in the area. 
    • Here’s a map to get you there. 
    • Parking: Inside the camp. Follow the signs.
  • Bring: Flashlight, bug spray, and an adventurous spirit! (See if you can get by without using your light!)

When you finish your hike, join us for some light refreshments by fireside in the Recreation Building. We plan to roast marshmallows as well.

This special event is our “Thank You” to all the members and volunteers who make the Ice Age Trail possible. Event leaders Nancy Schuster and Kate Lindsay have planned a great celebration, so come and join the fun.

Take Note: This is at the Chippewa Moraine, NOT at Camp Nawakwa. Be sure to check the map, or plug 26900 145th St., New Auburn, into your GPS or phone.

Special Workday Thursday, Sept. 11: Getting Ready for the Fall Trailbuilding Event!

The Mobile Skills trailbuilding event, based out of Camp Nawakwa, is coming up quickly (see next article), and we’re going to get a head start on it! If you can join us on Thursday, Sept. 11, we will be working on the trail west of Camp Nawakwa, clearing brush to grease the skids for the big event. 

Meet and park at the trailhead on Hwy E, just south of the Camp Nawakwa entrance at 9 AM. If you can make it, please reply by email so we can plan for tools, and let you know if there is a change.

As usual, bring a lunch and water, and wear sturdy shoes, long pants and sleeves, and work gloves. No tools should be required.

Time to Register for Trail Building Event at Camp Nawakwa, Sept. 16 - 21

The IATA’s Mobile Skills Crew Trail Building Event at Camp Nawakwa begins in just over two weeks, so it’s time to register your plans to participate! Don’t miss this chance to experience trail building in the beautiful Chippewa County Forest near Picnic Lake this fall. 

The MSC team will return to Camp Nawakwa on September 16-21 and all the volunteers will pick up where they left off to complete the spectacular reroute through a gorgeous steep-sloped forest west of Picnic Lake. In addition, this year a team of volunteers will also work to establish an off-road segment of trail that will eliminate a portion of the road walk along Hwy CC near the Chippewa River.

Come for a day, or for as many days as you can. Plan to camp overnight if you don’t want to commute. Either way, join the volunteers for meals and hang around for the evening entertainment and camaraderie. No experience is necessary. The hallmark of the MSC is their patient, well-trained crew leaders who will guide you with whatever is to be done. It’s a great opportunity to learn some fun and useful skills from the experts, and learn the state-of-the-art in trail building and design. When you’re done, you get the satisfaction of having helped build a new section of Ice Age Trail, that you can be proud of, each time you walk it over the coming years (well-earned bragging rights).

As before, all hands are encouraged to take part in some way, and there are many ways to participate, from cooking to trail building and everything in between. In order to keep tabs on who’s coming when, you are encouraged to register on-line. The full site with information and registration link is here. Registering really helps the crew leaders manage what is going to happen, as well as helps the cooks determine food needs. 

Our own Jerry Sazama will be the event crew leader, so if you have questions about what is involved or are uncertain what you can do, feel free to contact him (email or 715-723-6955).

Volunteer Hours

If you’ve been contributing volunteer time to work on the trail or help out the organization in other ways, it’s time to polish up those reporting records you’ve been keeping and send them in. The reporting year ends on Sept. 30, and there’s a lot of work to be done to get the reports worked into shape. Whether your records show one afternoon or many, grab a form and fill it out, then send it to the chapter for tabulating. 

It’s worth the trouble: we all benefit in that your hours add to the big number we send to Congress to let them know how much volunteer labor is contributed to make the IAT happen. Last year, for example, IATA volunteers contributed 71,200 hours, which is worth about $1.5 million dollars. These facts influence how much funding the IAT receives from Congress in a big way!

Don’t sell your time short. Download a reporting form and send it in during September!

The Parade of Colors is Coming on Saturday, October 4

If you use all your senses, you might just hear the faint strains of the band in the distance warming up for the 2014 Parade of Colors on the Ice Age Trail. It is especially noticeable as the evenings cool and the first signs of fall color appear. Plan now to attend the 2014 Parade of Colors on the Ice Age Trail: Saturday, October 4, from 9-11 AM at the Chippewa Moraine’s Obey Interpretive Center, 7 miles east of New Auburn.

If you want to do more than just enjoy the hike, then plan to lend a hand! This is our big event to encourage people to discover the trail, and we want to make sure they have a great experience. There a lots of ways to help, including registering hikers, shuttling hikers, preparing or serving refreshments, sprucing up the trail, and putting out posters. If you want to lend a hand, please email the chapter!

See you on the trail,

Richard Smith

Chippewa Moraine Chapter Chair


The Ice Age Trail

A Walk Through Time