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Click here for a printable 2013 season schedule for your refrigerator or bulletin board. Click here to see a YouTube slide show. Then watch for updates and detailed project information in the newsletter or by checking back to this page. If you're new to NMVFO, be sure to visit our FAQ page to learn more about what to expect on a project. And Project Leaders are always happy to answer your questions. Have a non-project related question? Send us a message from our Contact page.
What better place to be in July than the high (and cool) mountain meadows of northern New Mexico! Our camp will be at 9,100 feet next to the Rio Chiquito amidst pine and aspen. Beginning with Friday dinner our project cook, Gary Holcomb, will provide hearty and delicious breakfasts and dinners to trail workers. Evening activities will include the usual conviviality and enjoyment of our scenic environs with the special bonus option of beaver observation - beaver ponds abound on the Rio Chiquito. This will be backcountry camping - NMVFO will supply the latrine.
During the day we will rejuvenate Trail 121 (also known as the Rio Chiquito and Jarocita Trails) with the guidance of Craig Saum, Carson National Forest Trails & Wilderness Project Manager. Work will include brushing and clearing, tread work, signage and whatever else needs to be done. If time permits we will also work on the trail from FR 438 up to Quintana Pass. Distance on foot to the work site will not exceed 2.5 miles. There will be a variety of tasks suitable to varying energy levels - something for everyone!
This project runs Friday, July 12 through Monday, July 15. Come for as many days as you choose but since the Forest Service has limited us to 10 volunteers preference will be given to volunteers who can work 2 days or more. You are also welcome to come before the project begins or to stay after our work is completed.
What to bring. Camping gear - tent, bag, pad, camp chair, insect repellent, sunblock, eating dishes and utensils, day pack, water bottles, binoculars. Clothing - long-sleeved shirt, long pants, work boots, hat, eye protection (sunglasses are OK) and gloves for work. Bring clothing suitable for all kinds of weather - hot, cool and (dare we to hope?) wet. Food and drink - bring your own lunches and beverages - it's BYOB. Also bring water for your personal use as well as some to share for the kitchen if possible. Water can be filtered from Rio Chiquito if you have a water filter.
If you would like to sign up or just want more information, contact the project leader, Deborah Radcliffe, at email@example.com or (505) 255-4960. Please sign up by Sunday, July 7, 2013.
Directions. Our camp will be at Mexican Canyon on the Rio Chiquito. Mexican Canyon is accessed via FR 437. The turnoff to Mexican Canyon is 11 miles from either end of FR 437. FR 437 is a well-maintained but narrow dirt road with blind corners. Caution is advised. I consider the road to be suitable for passenger cars.
Directions from 518. FR 437 can be accessed from NM 518, 2 miles south from the junction of NM 518 and NM 64 or 14 miles north of the junction of NM 518 and NM 75. Turn east on FR 437 from NM 518. The road is also signed as Rio Chiquito Road. Proceed 10 miles to the junction of FR 437 and FR 438 (to the right) . Look for the green NMVFO sign; continue on FR 437. Check out the beaver pond with lodge on the right. After less than 1 mile turn right onto FR 437CG. Look for the NMVFO sign. This road has some potholes but take heart - our camp is just 1 mile in.
Directions from NM 64. FR 437 can also be accessed from US 64, 11 miles east from the junction of NM 585 and NM 64. Contact the project leader for these directions.
Return with us on July 20 to this scenic spot overlooking the Rio Grande to build adobe walls marking the outline of unexcavated kivas. We will need three crews working concurrently throughout the day Saturday. One crew will run the mixer and supply mortar to a second crew of wall builders. The third crew will groom the trail we built along the river in 2010 and extend that trail up the river to a new overlook. Our sponsor, Scott Smith, will jump start us with coffee and pastries in the morning and reinvigorate us with pizza at noon. Sunday morning will be optional depending on our Saturday accomplishments and your interest in devoting another half day to this project. Work for crews 1 & 2 are rated at one Pulaski (easiest) for crews 1 & 2, with a rwo-Pulaski (moderate) rating for the trail crew. No experience is necessary; training & tools will be provided. For planning purposes please pre-register for this project by Saturday, July 13.
This being a “family friendly” project, we will have a special program for youngsters 8-14 years of age who want to plaster adobe walls and take a field trip within the boundaries of this beautiful state monument. Minors must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.
Volunteers from outside the Albuquerque area, and anyone looking for an excuse to camp in a beautiful place, may pitch a tent in the north campsite of the Coronado Campground. The project will be any easy stroll from your campsite in the morning.
Meet us between 0800 and 0830 at Coronado State Monument. Coffee will be served on the south veranda of the museum where crew leaders will be designated and work assignments made. To get to Coronado State Monument, travel north on NM 550 through the town of Bernalillo, cross the Rio Grande, pass the abandoned Jackalope trading post, and look for the well-marked right turn. Once in the parking lot, follow the signs to the museum.
Sorry, but no dogs please. We can’t have them on the project, and there is no shade in the parking lot. Couples who are camping in the adjacent campground are welcome to split up while one tends the dog and the other plays in the mud.
The Project Cook/Meal Coordinator is a valuable member of the project team that helps to make a project memorable. It can be a respite from grueling trail work and is a great way to get to know other volunteers. While elementary kitchen skills are needed, you don't need to be a chef to be a Project Cook - menues can include items that don't need to be cooked or are already prepared. This lively and informative class will give you the tools and tips to make your experience a success. Mark your calendar and join us on Sunday morning, July 21 at 9:00 AM. The location will be announced in the near future. For more information contact Barbara Hoehne, firstname.lastname@example.org or 227-1673. Pre-registration is requested but not required.
Enjoy trails that lead through several different habitats and plant zones ranging from meadows to Ponderosa Pine forests and even a wetland area. We will undertake one of two possible projects, to be determined by agency preference and priority—or maybe both depending on the size of our volunteer force. For project #1 we will construct 3 to 4 rock stairs and a 50 foot trail re-route on the two spur section that tie into Bear Canyon Trail (upper end of trail system), make improvements (materials pending) to the bridge half-way along the center transect trail, and there were several locations where drainage needs improvement, cleanout, etc. The alternative, project #2, we will be cleaning up and improving the Children's Garden, picnic area, and the wetlands and pond areas, plus we will tie these areas together with a defined trail network joining existing and building new trail as needed. The Randall Davey Audubon Center & Sanctuary needs both, so whichever project gets the “go ahead” will be greatly appreciated and of great benefit to RDAC. Click here to learn more about the Randall Davey Audubon Center.
From St. Francis Drive (US84/285), take Alameda east (towards the mountains). You will pass through several stoplights and 4-way stops, but keep going. Eventually you will come to a light at Paseo de Peralta. Go straight, the road turns more residential at this point, and the Santa Fe River is on your right. You will meet 4-way stops at Delgado St. and Palace Avenue, and then the road will curve sharply to the right, and go over the river. At the next 4-way stop, which is the intersection with Upper Canyon Road, turn left. Follow this road until it ends; it dead-ends in the Center's parking lot. The last mile is a curvy dirt road. You may feel like you are lost, but most likely you are not.
If this is your first NMVFO project, you can find more information about what to expect at http://nmvfo.org/volunteer/volunteer-faq or email or contact project leader Chris Fritzsche, email@example.com or (505) 504-3768.
The views are, gulp, breathtaking. No wonder, since we’ll be working and camping at a cool 8,600 feet with vistas of the plains and the Rio Grande River some 3,000 feet below. Our job will be to tackle a section of the Crest Trail which runs a total of 22 miles from north to south. We’ll be improving tread, clearing blowdown and building cairns. There’s plenty of work for first-timers and veterans. Julia Child award-winning chef, Gary Holcomb, will be providing Saturday and Sunday breakfast along with Saturday dinner. And to give you a sneak preview, dinner will be Plow Disk Chicken Stir Fry, Steamed Broccoli, Dinner Rolls with Honey and a Peach Cobbler dessert.
There will be water available for cooking and washing, but please bring enough for your own needs. Also include for yourself Friday dinner and Saturday lunch along with snacks, adult beverages if you like, work boots, hat, gloves, sunscreen and clothing for just about any weather.
DIRECTIONS: To reach the campsite at Capilla Peak, from Albuquerque take I-40 east and exit onto Hwy 337 at Tijeras. Drive south 29 miles to a T which is the junction with Hwy 55. Turn right and follow 55 about 12 miles to the town of Manzano. Turn right on Forest Road 245 signed for New Canyon and Capilla Peak (coming from the north the sign will be just after the turn. Look for our green signs). Follow the well-graded dirt road as it climbs about 9 miles to the Capilla Peak Camground. Those coming from Santa Fe can take scenic route 14 to Tijeras or take I-25 to I-40. If you’re coming from another direction, please contact the project leader for directions.
If you would like to sign up or just want more information, contact Jim Scanlon at firstname.lastname@example.org or 505-385-0517. Please sign-up by Sunday, June 23. See you on the crest of the Manzanos.
UPDATE: Pecos XX is rescheduled for August 3 through August 11, provided the Pecos Wilderness restrictions are lifted prior to the project. The hike in to the campsite is now 3 miles. Contact Kevin Balciar, (505) 293-1477 or email@example.com, for more information.
Trail 251 in the Pecos Wilderness encircles the headwaters of the Pecos River. Appropriately named the "Skyline Trail," it offers majestic views of north central New Mexico, and if you have the time - several days, of course - the entire wilderness can be viewed from Trail 251. However, a section of the eastern Skyline is no longer passable to hikers and equestrians. Hundreds of blow downs and new tree growth have obscured the trail from Cebolla Peak to the junction with Trail 250. Our task this year is to open up the trail by removing the blow downs and cutting a path through the new growth. There will be plenty of cross-cut saw work on this project, an excellent opportunity to tone the upper body.
All food, tools and cooking gear will be delivered to our campsite by the Back Country Horsemen. Volunteers will be required to bring their personal gear and be able to hike 10 to 12 miles to arrive at the campsite. Daily hikes from the campsite to the worksite may be three miles. We will be working above 11,500' elevation, so altitude acclimation prior to the project commencement is essential. All meals will be provided as well as a group water filter.and latrine facilities.
June 26 (Wednesday) is a non-work day to allow volunteers to rest or explore this wonderful wilderness. Volunteers can come for a weekend, a few days or the entire nine days. Allow one day for the hike in and one day for the hike out. If you are interested, contact Kevin Balciar, firstname.lastname@example.org or (505) 293-1477 for more information. Detailed project information will be available after May 15. The deadline to sign-up for this once in a lifetime experience is July 27.
Enjoy great scenery and look for wildlife at this park on the Colorado border near Raton while helping to restore a trail damaged in the 2011 fire that ravaged the park. Check back closer to the date of the project for more information.
This riparian area close to Albuquerque needs trails restored, signs added, and kiosks constructed on this one-day project. Check back closer to the date of the project for more information.
The Valle Vidal in northern NM has been called the Yellowstone of the Southwest. Return with us to bask in magnificent scenery and improve several trails near Shuree Ponds and Lodge. Check back closer to the date of the project for more information.
Join us for our annual maintenance of NMVFO's Adopt-A-Trail in the Sandia Wilderness. Check back closer to the date for more information on this project.
We will be constructing a new interpretive trail through the Ponderosa that overlook the Mora Valley. Check back closer to the date of the project for more information.
Enjoy a dip in the lake after a day maintaining trails and rehabbing a bridge. This will be our first project at this state park in east central NM. Check back closer to the date of the project for more information.
Fall is the best season in New Mexico and one of the best places to enjoy autumn is at Chaco Culture National Historic Park. The NMVFO will be working on erosion control along the trail to Upper Alto on the north rim of the canyon. Our task over the weekend is to repair erosion damage and eliminate any social trails.
Since this is a popular project that usually fills up quickly, we are limiting the project to 20 volunteers. The volunteers must be able to work all day Saturday, October 5 and until noon on Sunday, October 6. Those who can commit to this schedule will be awarded with gratifying work in the shadow of 1100 year old masonry structures. Additionally volunteers will be given a Saturday night dinner and Sunday breakfast. Sorry, but there will be no prizes or give-aways.
Personal Protective Equipment: all volunteers must wear long sleeve shirts and pants, work gloves, sturdy work boots or shoes, and eye wear (sun glasses are acceptable). Dogs are not allowed on NMVFO projects. The evenings at Chaco offer clear night skies, excellent for viewing stars, meteors, and hearing the cacophonous vipes of coyotes.
We will be staying at the VIP campground which is west of the visitor campground, but east of the visitor center. Green NMVFO signs will delineate the location of our campground and will be in place by 3:00 p.m. on October 4. Volunteers may opt for the visitor campground, but must pay the entrance fee and campground fee. The VIP campground is free of charge to our group and includes toilets and showers.
Please sign up for the project by September 30 by contacting the project leader, Kevin Balciar at 505-293-1477 or email@example.com.
Enjoy stunning views of the Organ Mountains near Las Cruces while helping to construct a new trail from Park Headquarters at one of NM's newest state parks to the town of Mesilla. Check back closer to the date of the project for more information.
Enjoy fall weather while working on trails and other projects at the Refuge in preparation for the annual Festival of the Cranes. Check back closer to the date of the project for more information.