Forum Index > Trip Reports > North 20 Mile Trail Logout, May 13 and May 30, 2022
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KarlK
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KarlK
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PostSat Nov 12, 2022 6:24 pm 
In 2019, former Methow Valley District Ranger Mike Liu enlisted DonH and KarlK to help log out the North 20 Mile trail (https://www.nwhikers.net/forums/viewtopic.php?t=8029671; https://www.nwhikers.net/forums/viewtopic.php?t=8029795). This has become an annual thing, each year requiring the need to buck hundreds of fire killed snags. Don and I have maintained our commitment to clearing this trail in part because we like fire lookouts; in part because Mike Liu is a teriffic guy to work with; in part because we share a peculiar need for combining hiking with heavy loads with inhaling chainsaw exhaust; and in part because it's curiously satisfying to solve complex real-world physics problems that are sometimes freighted with the potential to summon the grim reaper from his other job as the Director of Programming at Fox News. Regrettably, Don didn't participate in this session of trail work owing to a significant ankle injury incurred while felling hazard trees on Thompson Ridge. The trailhead is some 18 air miles North of Winthrop, elevation 3040'. The trail reaches two historic lookouts, a D-6 cupola first constructed in 1923 and a L-4 tower built in 1947. It does so in about 6.5 often steep miles involving 4400 feet of elevation gain through a lot of forest charred by the massive 2006 Tripod Fire and then re-nuked in 2021's Cub Creek 2 fire. Here's a nice write-up on the lookout's history, including some information on pioneering female lookouts, and a mention of Mike Liu's involvement in maintaining the trail and lookouts: https://storymaps.arcgis.com/stories/23429a32ed9c4b2dbc0ed13bf2fd0a38 Here's another write-up featuring Christine Estrada, a modern-day female lookout on Goat Peak above Mazama and a participant in this year's N20 Mile trail work: https://www.filson.com/blog/profiles/female-fire-lookout-christine-estrada/ By the way, Chris is AKA as Trail Chick (Trail Chick https://www.trailchick.com/). On May 13th, Mike Liu, KarlK, and The Other Mike commenced 2022's logout of this trail.
First job before shot, May 13, 2022
First job before shot, May 13, 2022
First job after shot, looking down
First job after shot, looking down
Trail section that re-burned in the 2021 Cub Creek 2 fire
Trail section that re-burned in the 2021 Cub Creek 2 fire
Old N20 Mile Lookout comms line
Old N20 Mile Lookout comms line
A before shot
A before shot
Mike Liu and The Other Mike enjoying lunch break
Mike Liu and The Other Mike enjoying lunch break
View of forest re-burned by the Cub Creek 2 fire in 2021
View of forest re-burned by the Cub Creek 2 fire in 2021
Mike Liu in the thick of it
Mike Liu in the thick of it
On June 30, the logout was completed by Mike Liu, Daniel Liu, Allen Jircik (Trails Manager for Methow Valley Trails Collaborative https://trailscollaborative.org/), KarlK, Christine Estrada, Hudson the Australian Wonder Dog, and Emily Amos (student in the Sustainability Pathways Program at Western Washington University (https://sustain.wwu.edu/pathways).
Allen Jircik working on a big blowdown
Allen Jircik working on a big blowdown
Allen making progress
Allen making progress
Done!
Done!
L-R: Allen Jircik, Chris Estrada, Emily Amos and Mike Liu
L-R: Allen Jircik, Chris Estrada, Emily Amos and Mike Liu
Mike Liu, always upbeat
Mike Liu, always upbeat
Emily Amos, student in WWU's Sustainability Program
Emily Amos, student in WWU's Sustainability Program
Daniel Liu making room to clear a jumble
Daniel Liu making room to clear a jumble
Cleared jumble
Cleared jumble
Restored D6 cuppola, orginally built in 1923
Restored D6 cuppola, orginally built in 1923
L4 tower, built in 1947
L4 tower, built in 1947
Well, next year will surely bring another big job on the N20 mile, so join us then, won't you?

Karl J Kaiyala

trailchick, Now I Fly, Brushbuffalo, Chief Joseph, jstern, HitTheTrail, Bramble_Scramble, fourteen410, Pyrites, RichP
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HitTheTrail
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HitTheTrail
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PostSun Nov 13, 2022 6:44 am 
We hiked that trail not long after your logging effort. Also met Chris (Hiker Chick) up doing work on the lookout. Thanks so much to all of you for your dedication and commitment to that trail/lookout)! up.gif

trailchick, dave allyn
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Stefan
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Stefan
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PostSun Nov 13, 2022 8:42 pm 
Awesome! Thank you so much!!!!

Art is an adventure.
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Brushbuffalo
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Brushbuffalo
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PostMon Nov 14, 2022 9:28 am 
I ran the trail in Sept. 1986 mainly to see the cupola lookout. At that time there were no trees down, being pre-fire and still staffed. I would like to help with trail work there, Karl, if you have a use for an old broken down shadow of former fitness.☹️

Passing rocks and trees like they were standing still

trailchick
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KarlK
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KarlK
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PostWed Nov 16, 2022 5:25 pm 
Hey Brushbuffalo -- sure thing!

Karl J Kaiyala
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Blowdown
Sawin' Logs ...



Joined: 24 Aug 2011
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Blowdown
Sawin' Logs ...
PostWed Nov 23, 2022 11:56 am 
Awesome, awesome work! up.gif up.gif I guess I'll have to pursue my chainsaw cert after all. Huge thanks to all y'all. borank.gif

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trailchick
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PostThu Nov 24, 2022 5:29 pm 
I don't post on this site these days nearly enough, but thanks for the great report Karl. It was a fantastic day working with everyone and it's amazing what three sawyers and three swampers can accomplish! The N20 cupola will be celebrating a big milestone next year: 100 years old! There will no doubt be a need for trail work, tread work, lookout maintenance and painting next year. Mike Liu and I formed a new Methow Valley chapter of the Forest Fire Lookout Association in partnership with the Forest Service and will definitely be posting more information on work parties for next year. Brushbuffalo, I believe we met at a lookout dinner some years past. It would be fantastic to get your help! There will shortly be a new Methow Valley FFLA website (as soon as I get it done this winter) and I do post fire lookout info and updates on my own site. N20 is a really special lookout site and I'm so grateful for everyone's continued efforts to maintain it.

Brushbuffalo, HitTheTrail, RichP
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KarlK
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KarlK
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PostThu Nov 24, 2022 8:27 pm 
Hey Blowdown yep I sense s chainsaw cert in your future. We'd love to enlist your help in our efforts to make some trails a little better for folks. It's curiously satisfying.

Karl J Kaiyala
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Blowdown
Sawin' Logs ...



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Blowdown
Sawin' Logs ...
PostThu Nov 24, 2022 9:57 pm 
Okay I'll get to work on it! I offered to carry Gary Zink's pack if he'd sign me off on my cert but he turned me down embarassedlaugh.gif

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Brushbuffalo
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Brushbuffalo
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PostFri Nov 25, 2022 10:27 pm 
Trailchick, yes, we met about 3 years ago at the lookout aficionado meeting at Eric's home in Bonney Lake. I would like to join the 20 Mile trail work party if it works out. I have helped on Mebee Pass, Shriner Peak, and Green Mountain lookout restoration and repair projects. It would be fun to labor and swap stories, such as when I scrambled up the north slope of Old Baldy at night in high wind and bivied just below the summit.

Passing rocks and trees like they were standing still
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