Two weeks ago, on a drizzly Saturday morning, I awaited our crew for this year’s Trail Maintenance Weekend here in southern West Virginia. It occurred to me that people love adventure vacations, especially the West Virginia kind. But when most folks plan them they don’t usually think to marry work and play. Each year ACE hosts a trail maintenance weekend and invites our guests to do just that.
Definitely not your typical adventure vacation.
With a property spanning 1500 acres, we are constantly working to expand the hiking and biking options for our guests by creating new trails and maintaining existing ones.
But trails don’t build themselves. They require clearing, leveling, benching and grooming. It takes years of up-keep and thousands of footsteps and mountain bike tracks to establish a great trail. And so it goes. In order to have good trails, we need a little help from our guests.
When the crew arrived, I was pleasantly surprised to find that our age range spanned more than 75 years.
Jeannie brought her two young boys so they could learn to work trails and maybe begin a life long passion for the outdoors. Olive, with seven decades of living under her belt, was not shy about digging and doing her share.
The coolest part? Everyone is excited to help make the trails better so when others vacation to West Virginia, they have the best time possible.
For their hard work — roughly 12 hours trail maintenance work — we put them up for two nights at one of our Cozy Park Cabins. We’re talking hot tub and all (among other perks)!
Each participant had a unique story and each inspired me in different ways. I could relate to my peers for the desire to have a challenging weekend, to work hard and to earn two free nights of lodging in a cabin. But really, I was mostly inspired by those who had a bit more life experience than me. They were the most prepared and stayed positive despite the rain.
On behalf of the entire ACE Adventure Resort family, we thank our AWESOME guests for their hard work, their smiles and reminding us that real adventures are what you make out of them. Rain or shine, adventure vacations are a state of mind.