BONDVILLE - The Mountain School at Winhall's Middle School students have once again begun their fall "maintenance" on the school's adopted, 1.6 mile stretch of the Long Trail, the oldest long distance hiking trail in the US.

The school has maintained this stretch twice a year, in fall and spring, since June of 2009.

Because the school's section of the trail is designated as Wilderness, only hand tools can be used for trail work (blowdowns must be removed with handsaws, no chainsaws, in other words). It's rigorous work and with the increased size of the current Middle School, the classes are able to tend to the trail over several days.

"Many of our Middle School students have been working on this patch of trail for several years. They are very familiar with the landscape and learn firsthand how the seasons and our New England weather can wreak havoc on the trail in only a few months. It's great watching them feel a sense of pride and ownership as they come back twice a year to take care of their stretch," said 8th grade teacher and Athletic Director Tony Kasulinous. Begun in 1910 and completed in 1930, the Long Trail is 272 miles long with 185 miles of side trails, 99 percent of which is maintained by volunteers. Most years there are about 800 volunteers working on the trail and the Mountain School students - ably assisted by teachers, staff members, parents and community volunteers - are proud to be among this elite group of outdoors men and women who "pay it forward" with sweat equity.


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The Mountain School at Winhall is a state approved Pre-K-8 independent day school located in Bondville.

For more information on the school or any of its programs, call the office at 297-2662, or visit online at www.themountainschool.org