The Gila National Forest has spectacular scenery ranging from high cool mountains with aspen and douglas fir to warm semi-arid lowlands with juniper, oak and cactus. It is one of the more remote and least developed National Forests in the southwest. Covering 3.3 million acres of publicly owned forest and range land, the Forest is the sixth largest National Forest in the continental United States. It boasts a rich history of the Mogollon and Apache people, Spaniards, Mexicans, ranchers, prospectors and miners. Mangas Coloradas, Geronimo, Victorio, and Aldo Leopold (conservationist, ecologist and author of the Sand County Almanac) are but a few of the personalities from the past that have left their mark in the Gila. Colorful names like Raw Meat Canyon, Tepee Canyon and Grave Canyon tell the tales of the past.
Our continuing service project is construction of the Continental Divide Trail, a long-distance trail running from Canada to Mexico along the U.S. portion of the Great Continental Divide. Many organizations, volunteers, government agency staff and others have been working on the trail for years and our project is one of many currently active to see it to completion. This is a continuation of a project in the same area that a Wilderness Volunteers crew has worked for the last six years. We'll establish a camp next to our vehicles between 8,000'-9,000' and make daily hikes of between 1-2 miles to the new section of divide trail to work on the project. Currently in this area, the Continental Divide Trail runs along some roads, so our project establishes the actual trail as a non-motorized foot trail, which will ultimately be its purpose when completed.
This project features a vegetarian menu with optional meat ingredients on many meals.
Check out more photos from previous years' Gila National Forest, Continental Divide Trail project in our gallery.
Sep 10th - Sep 16th 2017
Continental Divide Trail construction
Day hiking to John Kerr Peak, photography, wildflower viewing
Car and tent camping
Strenuous : Digging, bending, hauling, shoveling. 1-2 mile daily hikes to project.