RANGELEY  — Rangeley Lakes Heritage Trust and Rangeley Health and Wellness have partnered to create a greater variety of after-school activities for the youth in the region.

The first endeavor was the creation of the Children’s Trail behind Rangeley Family Medicine. Heritage Trust staff members Alyssa Andrews and Amanda Laliberte worked with 12 children for six weeks from conception to completion to create a trail.

“First the children walked the woods, identified property boundaries and learned about game trails, and paths of least resistance,” Laliberte said. “They loved swamping around in the woods choosing the best path. It took us two weeks to determine the route of our proposed trail and then they really went to work.”

Children donned hard hats, safety glasses and gloves to lop and move the tree branches and rake debris on their route. Along the way, they identified several unique features they wanted to share with the public: natural benches, standing dead trees. They also wanted to remind visitors to look up through the canopy and breathe deeply while on the trail. Children collected the shorter log lengths to create a “classroom” in the woods and each week showed off the progress to their parents.

The Children’s Trail is complete and totals just over 0.2 of a mile. Open to the community, it is available for exploration. Solid shoes and special care should be used when walking on the root-covered trails.

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