Traditional Arts in Upstate New York. Traditional Arts of Upstate New York
53 Main Street
Canton, NY 13617
(315) 386-4289

Sacred Tools

Have you ever been hiking along an Adirondack trail and wondered who built the stone steps into a stretch of steep trail, or who cleared the blowdown from the path since your last visit?  The answer is Adirondack Mountain trail crews.

In the summer of 2009 cultural anthropologist Carolyn Schwarz set out to learn more about Adirondack Mountain Club (ADK) professional trail crews—who these trail workers are, and how they get the job done. She discovered teams of strong, tough individuals who brave black flies, storms, and miles of hiking over difficult terrain with heavy backpacks to keep routes open for public use in both the Adirondack Park and the Catskill Mountains.

Spending time on the job with the Trail Crew, Schwarz found that they form a tight occupational group, connected through shared hardship and skills with tools that many people today have never used. Sacred Tools is a photographic display of the work life of the Adirondack Trail Crew, from leaving headquarters to setting up camp miles from civilization.

The exhibit and related programs are possible thanks to generous underwriting support from Heritage Homes, Inc., C.W. Augustine, Inc. and The Wood Chop Shop.

Visit the Sacred Tools gallery to see exhibit panels.

Note: All images, text and other material found in this website © 2024 TAUNY. All rights reserved.