We take a walk every day from our house. Often it is up Pilot Butte along a semi-wilderness trail starting along the small mountain’s base. As we walk and talk there are often little things to be done to maintain the trail. Fortunately the local hikers are very good about not leaving litter along the trail, and there are not a lot of people, about one per quarter-hour, but they are clean.

What hasn’t been done very consistently is what might be termed professional park maintenance. I haven’t seen any sign of any maintenance for about a year, not that a wilderness trail should be maintained very much, but at some point there was a laying down of some small gravel along the occasionally low places in the trail to prevent excess muddiness. There is a moderate size pile of this gravel near one entrance to this half mile of trail so when we pass that pile we scoop a small can full of this gravel and sprinkle it along places that appear to need it and leave the can, out of sight, at the other end. This takes almost no time at all, and after some time the trail is noticeably improved and it adds to our pleasure of walking along this trail.

There are ways that it might be made easy for the occasional passer by to participate in this procedure. Perhaps just leaving an inexpensive hand tool at the trail head with a small sign saying, You may participate in trail maintenance, if you wish. Please leave the tools at the work site after a few minutes of work, or at the trail head. The tools themselves might be marked with a sign saying, Please return these tools to the public trail maintenance site.

The small tools themselves might be casually donated by local users. The object is to get people involved and to make our local environment more beautiful.