163 volunteers, including 16 from CORBA, built 3/4 miles of new trail, and an alternate access to the bottom of the Lizard Rock Trail in Wildwood Park in Thousand Oaks, for the COSCA (Conejo Open Space Conservation Agency) Annual Trailwork Day. The new trail bypasses the steepest segment and has a better view because it faces more to the west, away from the Hill Canyon water treatment plant.
Volunteers started arriving at Santa Rosa Valley County Park shortly before 7:30, registered and picked up their package of goodies before getting on one of the shuttles that took them 1.3 miles to the trailhead. There they formed into crews of ten or so, each with it’s own experienced crew leader, grabbed tools and hiked up the trail to the work area. Once there, the crew leaders explained to the other volunteers what the work would be, how to use the tools effectively to accomplish that, and above all, how to work safely so there wouldn’t be any injuries.
Most of the new trail was across a steep slope so our job was to dig out the dirt to form a nearly level trail tread. The brush had previously been cut back and the exact path of the trail marked by bright orange flags so we would know where to dig. The area that my crew was working happened to have relatively few rocks mixed in with the dirt so the work went very quickly, but most of the other crews had a lot of rocks to dig out. The most time-consuming part of the work was pushing the excavated dirt far enough down the hill from the trail so that it would be clear to visitors that it wasn’t part of the firm trail tread.
My crew finished our section in about an hour and a half, so we moved down to the bottom of the trail to help there. The work was the same but went quite a bit more slowly because we had a lot more rocks to deal with and we weren’t as fresh as at the start. But as other crews finished their sections, they came down and pitched in too. Overall, we got the trail finished about a half hour sooner than planned for.
Everybody headed back to Santa Rosa Valley County Park, either by shuttle bus or on foot, for the barbecue that the COSCA rangers famously prepare for the volunteers every year. The lunch was followed by a give-away of trail-related items, the most significant being a new mountain bike donated by Giant Bicycles in Newbury Park. Both the lunch and gifts were to thank the volunteers for their hard work.
All the volunteers did a great job! Besides CORBA, there was a strong representation from the Santa Monica Mountains Trails Council, high-school mountain bike teams from Newbury Park and Calabasas, several Meetup groups, geocachers and others organizations. It takes the support of these organizations and the participation from the volunteers to make the trailwork day the success that it always is. I know COSCA appreciates their effort and we at CORBA heartily thank everybody for their contributions!
You can find more photos of the event at our photo gallery of the 2015 trailwork day.