Moffat Road 2016 - Passport in Time

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Colorado - Arapaho and Roosevelt NF/ Pawnee NG
Closed! Survey & Discovery along the United States' Highest Standard Gauge Railroad: Moffat Road

Slide1.jpg by USDA Forest Service/Abe Thompson
Join Us on Top of Moffat Road!!!

July 17-22, 2016 (including weekends)

Must commit to entire session

Have an adventurous spirit? Do you enjoy hiking in breathtaking areas? Do you possess a general interest in History and Archaeology? If any or all of these things apply, then this is the project for you! For thousands of years, humans have traversed the Continental Divide by way of Rollins Pass, which connects the portions of Northern Colorado’s Front Range to its high neighbors to the west. Complicated and unique prehistoric landscape utilization systems included game drives and hunting blinds, and sites, both historic and prehistoric crisscross the high elevations. More recently (geologically speaking), locals witnessed railcars chug up, up, up, over, and through the domineering peaks along what is now considered “the highest standard gauge railroad built in the United States:” the 19th-century Moffat Road. Though much of the history behind Moffat Road is known, the railway itself has yet to be fully documented. The goal of this PIT project is to investigate the areas surrounding the railway and discover features that will fully illuminate and better preserve the route’s historic legacy.
Volunteers will join Heritage Program staff from the Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forests/Pawnee National Grassland (ARP) for an archaeological survey along the known trajectory of Moffat road. We will search for features and artifacts that will help to tell its story, and we’ll take photos, make maps, and take detailed notes as we “hike through the past.” This is an important project amid some of the grandest scenery in the country, so we hope you’ll join us this summer!

Number of openings: 10

Special skills: Participants must be physically capable of sustained, strenuous activity, such as walking/hiking over often steep and rough terrain, in isolated areas in a forest environment, at high elevations, and in a variety of weather conditions (climate ranges from extremely dry to extremely wet, and from hot to cold; rain, wind, dust, and even snow are not uncommon even in July!); work may require the use of protective clothing and will require sturdy (and broken in) footwear; previous archaeological survey, mapping, photography, artifact identification (particularly historic), hiking/packing, and/or related experience helpful, but not required

Minimum age: 18 years old

Facilities: Tent and RV camping available at no charge at Midland Campground, just down the road from the project area and Winter Park; group site can host up to 36 people; no potable water (though volunteers may fill water containers at Idlewild Campground at the base of Moffat Road); pit toilets; no hook-ups; Winter Park has a small store where some items may be purchased; volunteers responsible for own camping equipment, food, water/water containers, and transportation to base camp

Nearest towns: Winter Park, 2 miles; Fraser, 7 miles; Tabernash, 11 miles

Applications due: May 16, 2016
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