Community Service: Deluxe Edition

The Ansel Adams Wilderness Project brought six volunteers into the Shadow Lake area for five days of backcountry trail restoration. Youth volunteer Thomas Zentmyer came along for the community service hours, but went home with an experience he’ll remember forever. Check out his words below, and stay tuned for more stories and photos from the trip.

“I’m a frequent visitor to the backcountry, but this trip had scenery like I had never seen before. I would come back from a hard day of work and settle down for dinner, all the while surrounded by the sound of gushing water, golden light from the setting sun, the gentle whisper of the trees, and the impressive mountains of the Ritter Range. Even in the midst of arduous labor, the place felt beautifully alive,with the soft swaying of the ferns, the occasional animal or birdsong, or the sunlight sifting through the trees and casting itself on the dust stirred up by our work boots. The place was truly beautiful, and had this immense power to drag me out of what I was doing and cause me to stare around in wonder.” –Thomas Zentmyer, 15

Thomas manning the crosscut saw to remove a downed log from the trail. Photo by Ken Miller.
Not a bad place to put in a hard day’s work! Photo by Julia Runcie.