The Complete Guide to Trail Building and Maintenance

Demrow, Carl
Year Published: 

"AMC's classic manual for trail building, used by both Forest and Park Services, has been updated and expanded to fine-tune the skills of professionals and beginners alike. You'll learn new techniques and be introduced to new tools, environmentally sound erosion control, and naturalizing trails with minimum impact on the backcountry. This is the how-to-do-it reference book, intended for anyone, anywhere who is responsible for trail work.

This is one of the best books on the subject and very good value as a guide and as a text for future reference. Good use of photos and diagrams with an emphasis on the construction and use of public hiking trails in the northeast U.S. I bought it for information and ideas to use for trail building on my own property,(with similar forest conditions) but still enjoyed reading the parts of the book intended for public trail acquisition.

There are few trail maintenance books around, just lots of little pamphlets such as those put out by IMBA. This book is worth the money for the many ideas and pictures even for those thinking about designing and/or maintaining mountain bike trails. The opening chapter, which discusses safety, should be a must-read for those needing Emergency Action Plan info for work days. The tool list is quite good for most areas where you would likely ever be constructing trails. Although some sections (constructing steps and moving rocks around using rope sling set-ups for instance) are not relevant, I found many good ideas in here for designing mountain bike trails. The section on drainage techniques is excellent and the whole section discussing proper trail design is a must-read. A good book and hopefully the mountain bike community will have one of its own (IMBA, are you listening?) soon."

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