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Trail maintenance

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  • Trail maintenance

    How do you maintain your trails in wooded areas? Any suggestions for the best tools/equipment?

    Any tips on how to fix areas of the trail that have deep ruts from ATVs?

    Anyone use mulch or other footing on your trails to keep the grass/weeds from growing?

    Thanks.
    Jigga:
    Why must you chastise my brilliant idea with facts and logic? **picks up toys (and wine) and goes home**

  • #2
    My trails are in a State Park, so there are limits on what kind of work can be done. As a general rule, we will chain saw out a section of any large tree that blocks a trail (assuming it is in an area we can get to while carrying a chain saw). For those places where cutting is not practical, we make a by-pass trail. Same with the ruts created by either the illegal ATVs or by run-off ... we make a by-pass trail to avoid that area.

    *star*
    "Avoid loud and aggressive persons, they are vexations to the spirit."
    - Desiderata, (c) Max Ehrman, 1926

    Comment


    • #3
      We've just barely started making a trail around the wooded property here, but the plan is to run the disc harrow around it periodically, then amend muddy spots with M10 (crushed granite) to firm them up.
      --
      Wendy
      ... and Patrick

      Comment


      • #4
        I bushhog a couple times a year... but dread what still needs to be done this year. I've got about 8 trees and a bunch of debris from the Derecho that needs to be chainsawed out of the way and york-raked off the path. ATV's not allowed.
        Nudging "Almost Heaven" a little closer still...
        http://www.wvhorsetrainer.com

        Comment


        • #5
          Anyone use mulch or other footing on your trails to keep the grass/weeds from growing?
          mulch or wood chips will degrade and turn into the most awful mud. If you have the time and money to build trails up front, laying down a proper trail with weed-block fabric over coarse stone with a topping of fine crushed stone will save endless hours of maintenance later on. The trail itself will stay nice and mud- and weed- free and you'll just have to periodically cut back the woods on either side, and of course remove the occasional downed tree.

          Comment


          • #6
            I cut ours with a 7' bushog. It lets the cutter stick out a little bit past the tractor tires on each side. Late fall, I drag it clear of leaves, pinestraw, and pine cones with a landscape rake. A Stihl HT75 keeps limbs from hitting you in the face. I'd fill the ruts with a box blade, but I don't think I'd had to put it on our trails since I first built them. No ATVs allowed in here.
            www.HistoricHousePreservation.com

            Comment


            • #7
              That HT75 looks downright useful.
              Nudging "Almost Heaven" a little closer still...
              http://www.wvhorsetrainer.com

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Belg View Post
                That HT75 looks downright useful.
                I had to look it up, and... yes, it *is* useful! That is referred to around here as "the chainsaw on a stick".

                It also has a brush cutter attachment, which turns it into a sort of weed whacker with a circular metal blade.
                --
                Wendy
                ... and Patrick

                Comment


                • #9
                  The HT is not one of the multiple attachment things. It's a dedicated chainsaw. It does telescope out to about 12' long. There's probably a later model than the 75 now. I bought ours back in the '90s. Also called on once in a while for trails is an HL75 and an FS450K. The 450 does have a circular blade, and also a compression release so you can pull the starter cord.
                  www.HistoricHousePreservation.com

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Brushcutter, or chainsaw on a stick, is very useful. People always forget about cutting the limbs that are about 8' in the air. Other than that a regular chainsaw and brush hog.
                    A person is smart. People are dumb, panicky dangerous animals and you know it.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      So not to resurrect this, but on the same line of thinking, whats a good stihl of a deal for a strait chainsaw? is the ms290 "most popular" becuase it works well or because it's under 500$?
                      Nudging "Almost Heaven" a little closer still...
                      http://www.wvhorsetrainer.com

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        ms290 is kind of heavy for its power. I also don't have much use for the mid-sized chain. I have one that someone gave me, but it gets the least use. We also have an 036 (limbing), an 066 (stumping) , and an ms180 (climbing and easy to grab). The little 180 will cut about as fast as the 290 with much less fatigue from using it and toting it around. Learn to sharpen the chain, and any size will do a lot of work. Here, the 180 gets grabbed most often. It's the one I recommend new saw owners get, and they are only a couple of hundred dollars. If you can't sharpen a chain, you might as well not have a chainsaw. Get someone to show you how that is good at it-few people are.
                        www.HistoricHousePreservation.com

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I've got an older 007 or 008... not sure which. But I do get alternately frustrated with running with it and impressed with what you can actually do with it.

                          Actually, part of my problem is that I never really picked up small engine maintenance as a skill... I can bust down a motorcycle or a ford tractor to the pavement and put it back together(ok, I draw the line at preloaded tractor axles...), but small engines confuse & frustrate me to no end.

                          In fact, I just tried to resurrect a... has to be at least 30 years old, it's not even in the model sheet anymore... FS410-AV brushcutter. The engine was siezed (lack of use, thing is HEAVY), I got that broken free, got it started, got the mud dauber nest out of the muffler, and pretty much like evey other small engine I've got... when it gets up to full operating temp, I can't get it to stay running at speed/power. Squeeze the trigger, lugs down to a fast idle. Runs great for about the first 10 minutes then time to start fighting tools.

                          ETA: My other weeder is a homeowner job that seems to not be able to run for very long... needs to get replaced with something for farm use. I tried resurrecting the 410 to save some $$$ (and hey, if I can ressurect it fully, it'd be a nice coup... cost of replacement on that turkey is impressive.)
                          Nudging "Almost Heaven" a little closer still...
                          http://www.wvhorsetrainer.com

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Sounds like the cylinder on the 410 is worn out. By the time it heats up, the cylinder expands, and it can't hold compression. It may be too old for anyone to offer a replacement cylinder for it anymore. We're on the third cylinder for the 036, and it's running better than a new one with the new cylinder. Also, the older ones, like all our "0" series stuff, doesn't like ethanol. I was taking the ethanol out of gas for the 2-stroke stuff by adding water, agitating, letting it sit for days, and then siphoning the pure gas off the top. That worked good, but someone close by started selling ethanol free gas again, so we are using that.
                            www.HistoricHousePreservation.com

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Hmmm... Could well be, especially since it was seized. Yeah, we were told a couple years ago that parts were unavailable anymore for it. Kirsten said she used it as a kid lol; its got to be as old as we are though! Not so sure about picking up stuff on eBay... saw some but not much out there.
                              Nudging "Almost Heaven" a little closer still...
                              http://www.wvhorsetrainer.com

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                I am tempted to quote Andy Griffith on you tho:

                                Call the man!

                                (in case you don't get the reference, Aunt Be is dealing with an antiquated freezer...)
                                Originally posted by BigMama1
                                Facts don't have versions. If they do, they are opinions
                                GNU Terry Prachett

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by Alagirl View Post
                                  I am tempted to quote Andy Griffith on you tho:

                                  Call the man!

                                  (in case you don't get the reference, Aunt Be is dealing with an antiquated freezer...)
                                  Butbutbut... that costs money and I'm trying really, really hard not to spend any on it :=) Certainly not the 60-80$ we paid last time I felt like my time was best served elsewhere than small engine repairs.... A few times of that and you may as well have bought a new one!
                                  Nudging "Almost Heaven" a little closer still...
                                  http://www.wvhorsetrainer.com

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by Belg View Post
                                    Butbutbut... that costs money and I'm trying really, really hard not to spend any on it :=) Certainly not the 60-80$ we paid last time I felt like my time was best served elsewhere than small engine repairs.... A few times of that and you may as well have bought a new one!

                                    CALL THE MAN!

                                    Originally posted by BigMama1
                                    Facts don't have versions. If they do, they are opinions
                                    GNU Terry Prachett

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Butbutbut!!!!
                                      Nudging "Almost Heaven" a little closer still...
                                      http://www.wvhorsetrainer.com

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by Tom King View Post
                                        If you can't sharpen a chain, you might as well not have a chainsaw. Get someone to show you how that is good at it-few people are.
                                        Got that set up... Thanks for the tip!
                                        Nudging "Almost Heaven" a little closer still...
                                        http://www.wvhorsetrainer.com

                                        Comment

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