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Copyright 2012 Rocky Mountain Rider. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Reproduction of any editorial material, artwork and photos is strictly forbidden without express written permission of the publisher. For information about reprint rights, please contact the editor; editor@rockymountainrider.com.

 

Packing Timbers for the Waukena Lake Trail

 

October 2012 issue  

 

Packing Timbers for the Waukena Lake Trail

Above: Un-assembled bridge. Larry Feight and his pack mules carrying the timbers. Left: Tandem mules pack extra-long timbers.

 

 

     Larry Feight of Whitehall , Montana , sent us this collection of photos. He was hired to use his mule string to pack in timbers and supplies for a trail being re-built on the east slope of the Pioneer Mountains northwest of Dillon , MT.

     The Waukena Trail Project goes 8.5 miles from the Rock Creek trailhead to Waukena Lake , and over the divide to Tahepia Lake . The Rock Creek trailhead is eight miles from Exit 85 off of I-15.

 

Above: Assembled bridge. Left: Mules take a break after a few miles of rough trail.

 

     The trail has been completed as far as Waukena Lake , with 2.5 miles remaining to Tahepia Lake . Tahepia Lake on the western slope, may also be accessed from the Mono Creek Trailhead, south of Wise River , MT. The trail, which has been in existence for years, was too rough and rocky for stock, so the decision was made by the Beaverhead-Deerlodge National Forest to make the trail suitable for horseback riders.

     Trail contractor, Darren Pfeifle of Montana Made Trails has used a mini-excavator to do much of the heavy lifting on the trail over the course of this three-year project. The excavator was allowed because this project is in the national forest, not in a wilderness area. This year, he and his two-man crew camped out at Waukena Lake while constructing the trail.

 

Left: Mules carry in timbers for a retaining wall on the trail. Also pictured is the mini-excavator. Below: Steep and rocky terrain lies ahead.

 

     The project from Waukena Lake will continue over the divide, where the trail is very steep and treacherous. Excavation for that trail will include blasting.

     Photos include those of timbers packed for a bridge constructed two miles from the trailhead, and timbers to be used for a retaining wall on the steep slope above Waukena Lake .

 

  

Copyright 2012 Rocky Mountain Rider. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Reproduction of any editorial material, artwork and photos is strictly forbidden without express written permission of the publisher. For information about reprint rights, please contact the editor; editor@rockymountainrider.com.

 

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