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Improvements at Taylor and Taft (10/02)

By Chris Hanna

While the shelters committee had no lodges to rebuild this season, we continued to work on existing structures. For our first outing in June, we built a tent platform at Taylor Lodge. Over the years, hikers have used a clearing just off the Lake Mansfield Trail to pitch their tents. We chose this spot, which had become muddy over time, as the best place for a platform.

We obtained all the necessary permits, bought environmentally friendly pressure-treated ACQ lumber

and pre-built the platform in a generous member’s garage. On the work day, seven volunteers and numerous willing hikers carried the lumber from the Trout Club to the site. Under tight supervision and with much humor, we screwed screws, pounded nails and hoped for the best. Many thanks to Matt Gutt, Sebastian Gordon, Francis Lennon, Mary Lou Recor, Tom Neu, Forrest White and the anonymous hikers who lightened our loads.

Our second outing took us to Taft Lodge by way of the Stowe Mountain Resort gondola and the now defunct Fern Trail. We hauled a steel snow grate, lumber, caulk, screw guns and hammers. While one group dismantled the old drying rack and screwed together the new one for the “beyond the bin” waste management system, another installed the grate on the landing in front of the lodge door. Other work included sealing upward facing cracks in some of the logs and applying a clear preservative of linseed oil and turpentine to the exterior of the entire building. We replaced a broken window.

Thank you to Will who is the Taft caretaker, GMC staff member Val Stori, Tom Neu, Mike Klupa, Phil Schlosser and Chris Bird.

The third outing of the season will be to dismantle the rotting tent platform at Buchanan Shelter and replace it with a new one, again using ACQ lumber. See the current outings schedule for details.

The section owes much gratitude to this year’s shelter adopters for their vigilance and work throughout the season. From south to north, they are:

  • Duck Brook Shelter - Kirsten Lange
  • Buchanan Shelter - Clem Holden and Gardiner Lane
  • Puffer Shelter - Jeff Bostwick
  • Taylor Lodge - Leo Leach
  • Twin Brooks Tenting Area - Steve Magoon
  • Butler Lodge - Gary Sawyer
  • Taft Lodge - John Bennett

We also thank the caretakers at Taft and Butler Lodges for the great job they do.