I like the intense nature of trail building. Our whole days are spent outside, and we are subjected to both the lovely mountain air and the rough weather. The work involves sweat, labor, and lots of dirt! Spending the whole day using hand tools to carve out a sustainable path through the wilderness is exhausting, but rewarding, and I feel alive when I'm working on the trail. The trail you build and the friendships you make while working on the AT will last a lifetime.
What I wish was different
We got hit with some pretty bad rain a few times, but what can you do about the weather?
There's no way to know what you're getting into when doing trail crew for the first time, so keep an open mind. The weather is unpredictable, and sometimes the landscape isn't cooperative with our efforts, so improvising is key, and the ability to roll with the punches is essential. Also, this involves days of manual labor outdoors, so if that's not your cup of tea, maybe this isn't the project for you. However, if you like that kind of thing or are interested in field conservation field work, it's an experience you won't want to miss.