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Wilderness Volunteers

Red River Gorge, Daniel Boone National Forest, KY (Sep 19th - Sep 25th 2021)

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Daniel Boone National Forest is the only national forest completely within the boundary of Kentucky. Originally named the Cumberland NF in 1937, the current proclamation boundary is nearly 2,100,000 acres, but private land tracts are littered throughout the forest and the Forest Service manages 706,000 acres. The forest remains a jewel in the bluegrass state with something for everyone. The Forest has lush forests, steep mountains, abundant flora and fauna, sandstone arches and towering cliffs, wild and scenic rivers, picturesque lakes, sites with significant archaeological interest, and one of the world’s largest concentrations of caves!

The Red River Gorge is designated a Geological Area, National Natural Landmark and National Archaeological District and placed on the National Register of Historic Places. Spectacular rock features and the Wild & Scenic Red River are just part of the attraction. Outdoor enthusiasts come to the gorge year-round to enjoy hiking, camping, canoeing, wildlife viewing and other recreation opportunities. Recent scientific excavations of rock shelters in the gorge and surrounding areas uncovered seeds that showed evidence of early plant domestication. The dry, sandy soils in rock shelters of the gorge contain a wealth of information about the origins of agriculture. The unique dry, nitrate-rich soils of rock shelters in the gorge provide excellent preservation of normally perishable artifacts and make this area extremely valuable for archaeological interest.

Our project will be assisting the Cumberland Ranger District in the Red River Gorge on trail work, invasive removal and campsite restoration, including the 12,646 acre rugged Clifty Wilderness that supports an unusual array of plant and animal life. 750 kinds of flowering plants and 170 species of moss thrive in this area. A significant number of endangered, threatened, sensitive, and rare species of plants and animals exist in this area as well. We will camp in the designated campground Koomer Ridge and make short hikes and drives to the work sites each day. Free day opportunities may include a guided ranger tour of nearby archeological sites, hiking, rock climbing, rafting, photography or relaxing.

Please note: Due to COVID-19, Wilderness Volunteers is operating our 2021 project schedule under our Modified Project Procedures for Volunteers. These project guidelines will be revised as needed. Please check back often for the latest version.

Due to additional COVID-19 precautions, we are prohibiting mixed household volunteer carpooling (with volunteers outside of the same household traveling in the same vehicle) to projects until further notice. Exceptions to this policy (eg close friends traveling together) will need to be discussed with/pre-approved by the office and will require additional precautionary steps for the individuals involved.  Thank you for your understanding and cooperation.

This project is rated as a active project.

Check out photos of last year's trip and come join us on our return adventure in the Daniel Boone National Forest!


Sep 19th - Sep 25th 2021

Service Project

Tread repair, building drainage structures, moving rock, brushing, campsite naturalization

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Free Days

Archaeological tour with a Ranger, rafting, hiking, photography, fishing or relaxing.


Tent and car camping

Project Difficulty

Active : Hiking, digging, bending, shoveling, lifting.


Ashely Northcutt
Matt Williams

Equipment List