Landmark staff, volunteers, and partners have been busy with improvements on the Brownstone Trail this fall!
Using funding from a Land Trust Alliance grant, Landmark hired Dan Maki and his crew to improve drainage along a particularly wet part of the trail, below South 7th Street. Over the years, the ditch that existed along this part of the trail has filled in with sediment and invasive reed canary grass. That, along with the significant amount of groundwater and runoff from the street has contributed to permanently wet conditions and increased the likelihood of further slumping events.
Dan and his crew excavated a swale (a wide and shallow ditch) alongside the Brownstone to direct water to a large culvert below the trail. They also removed as much of the reed canary grass as possible from the site. Landmark staff used native wetland seeds collected from sites in the area to attempt to establish more beneficial vegetation and allow for continued drainage and covered the site with erosion control fabric.
Several other volunteer efforts are taking place on the Brownstone Trail this fall. Volunteers with the Bayfield Area Trails have added gravel to sites near Blue Wing Bay and near the turnaround at the end of Chequamegon Road. Landmark staff and volunteers will also be constructing new box steps from the trail to South 7th Street, to replace the old ramp that could be especially treacherous in the winter.
This work is part of overall efforts to proactively steward the Brownstone Trail. We seek to address issues along the trail before they become major problems. All of this is being done while we continue to focus on the major restoration of the slope and trail. Many thanks to everyone involved in this work!