Managing and maintaining the 445-mile Long Trail System is a complex task. Over the years, as use of the trail has risen and outside pressures such as development have increased, management of the Long Trail has evolved from merely trail building and maintenance into a comprehensive program. Here at the Green Mountain Club, we are committed to responsibly managing GMC conservation lands and easements by working with our neighbors and trail landowners to maintain a high-quality hiking experience across high mountain summits and working forest lands, while protecting the natural resources that make the Long Trail such a unique hiking experience.
The Green Mountain Club hires seasonal staff every summer to live and work on the Long Trail System in Vermont. Below are the programs in place to ensure the Long Trail System is protected and maintained:
Long Trail Patrol (Trail Crew)
Since its establishment in 1931 as a roving crew, the Long Trail Patrol has been the official trail crew of the GMC. These crews no longer rove or patrol the trail for problems, instead tackling the Long Trail System’s most difficult, technically challenging, and hard-to-reach projects. With a focus on working with native rock, these highly skilled crews consist of one or two leaders, and three to five crew members.
For more information, and to apply, see our Seasonal Employment Opportunities.
The GMC established the Backcountry Caretaker program in the 1960s to address the adverse impacts of the rising popularity of hiking and backpacking upon the trail environment. Caretakers employ hiker education and backcountry stewardship in order to minimize and counteract the effects of trail overuse. During the months of greatest hiking activity, caretakers are stationed at overnight campsites associated with vulnerable natural areas. Caretakers utilize a low-key, one-to-one educational approach to educate visitors on how to minimize their impacts. For more information, and to apply, see our Seasonal Employment Opportunities.
Volunteer Long Trail Patrol (Trail Crew)
Volunteers are integral to GMC’s work to maintain and protect the Long Trail System. Our volunteer crews consist of people of all ages and backgrounds spending 1-8 weeks learning how to build and maintain trails (or practicing their skills). Learn more about volunteering on a trail crew!
Volunteer Corridor Monitors
Volunteer Corridor Monitors regularly walk protected lands to ensure that conservation restrictions are being upheld and the Long Trail system is protected. Monitors wander off the beaten path into the woods of Vermont to help maintain boundaries, gather natural history information, map property features, and keep an eye out for illegal encroachments and violations. For more information, and to apply, see our Volunteer Opportunities.