Matt Coughlan is showing the students (from left) Davon DeGruttola, Lucas Yates (hidden) and Kaiden Manjourides pointers to consider when designing an accessible trail. Submitted

BETHEL  — Telstar Freshmen with the Pay It Forward project worked with Matt Coughlan, trail designer for the accessible trail on Buck’s Ledge, to initially lay out the design. Lukas Yates, Davon DeGruttola, and Kaiden Manjourides chose to work on the accessible trail at Buck’s Ledge Community Forest as their Pay It Forward program.

They met with Matt Coughlan, hired by the Woodstock Conservation Commission, to prepare a detailed plan that will be used to create this trail at the former logging yard on Buck’s Ledge. Coughlan reviewed requirements for wheelchair users. He taught the boys how to evaluate slope, dimensions needed for wheelchairs, natural barriers to avoid, and natural landmarks to include. One goal in managing Buck’s Ledge is to allow more people to access the outdoors.

These teens will clear brush and small trees from the site of the new trail after it has been laid out, saving money in creating this trail. The planned nearly 1-mile loop will include the scenic overlook on Buck’s Ledge with views of Mt. Abram, Mt. Washington, North Pond, and the Buck’s Ledge cliff face. Woodstock Conservation Commission is currently fundraising, as accessible trails are expensive.

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