How many of you have been to Mizpah Hut? How many of you
knew that there was a tentsite that can fit 40 people in the immediate
For those of you who already knew, yes that tentsite is
Nauman tentsite. Nauman is the fourth-busiest site in the AMC White Mountain
campsite fleet, located at the edge of the Dry River Wilderness. It is best
described as a string of platforms amidst green moss and spruce-fir. It is also
described as ‘that site next to Mizpah.’ It is the only AMC campsite in the
Presidential Range (Hermit Lake shelters are a different entity and indeed a
different kind of structure), and is often a starting point (or ending point)
for groups traversing the Range.
Nauman got a little facelift recently with the replacement
of two double platforms. The two platforms we replaced were a minimum of 25
years old, and partially constructed with creosote-treated lumber. One of them
was relying on the decking for structural integrity, which is the reasons why
we requested capital funding through AMC to replace the platforms this year.
Of course the simple act of replacing a platform is, well,
not so simple once the project is happening in the boreal forest and in the
backcountry. It involves pre-cutting all lumber to length in April so it can be
airlifted in May. It involves the labor time of three to four staff working as a crew. It involves
hiking in a generator and rock drill, as well as the heavy hardware this
project manager forgot to airlift in (don’t worry, I was the one who hiked the
dozen base plates in, and I will never forget to airlift the base plates
again). It involves careful measuring and squaring and leveling. It also
involves weather that varied from cold, to clear, to cold, to unbearably hot.
The attention to detail meant that the crew did not have to
leave the woods to pick up any forgotten supplies, and also that the only waste
produced was the old lumber from the old platforms. Some of that old lumber
will be re-used by the caretaker to repair their home-made furniture, and the
rest will be airlifted out in the fall.
|The second platform replaced. Downed branches were only there temporarily! |
It took roughly two days per platform to deconstruct, set
the foundation, and then finish the framing. And at the end, the caretaker
eagerly welcomed the first visitors to christen the new platform, and eagerly
bid goodbye to the creosote sills.
Labels: Backcountry Campsites Projects, Backcountry Caretaker