Heavy lifting and successful trail building

The Conover-Phelps Trail is now almost 9 miles long.

Behind that great news are these key people:

Carlton Schroeder, PE, designed the newest 5.5 mile section working with Gary Meister to do the groundwork and take the project from the conceptual stage to a Certified for Construction design package, with the help of Tiffiney Kleczewski of Flambeau Engineering; Quita Sheehan handled the DNR applications for necessary wetland and storm water permits; Ann Currie wrote grant applications that secured $186,000 in Knowles-Nelson Stewardship and Recreational Trails Act funding and helped prepare bid documents; project manager Rollie Alger worked with project contractor Pitlik & Wick and the Town of Phelps to attend to the details of building, signing and gating the new section; and Brian Blank worked closely with Phelps town clerk Marge Hiller to account for every penny as they’d paid the bills.

Carlton had estimated the project at $500,000, the bid came in at $461,000, and this summer’s work cost $401,000. (In the photo above, Rollie (pointing), Gary (far left) and Carlton are with the county’s Highway Superintendent Nick Sholte in the safety yellow coat.)

The new trail cost Conover and Phelps taxpayers nothing. Since September, GHT treasurer Chris Brunner has written four checks averaging a little over $50,000 each to provide the $215,000 not covered by the $186,000 of DNR grant money. Those funds came from a community of over 300 people – Yard & Mile Club members all – whose contributions were the essential ingredient to making the trail happen. When the final two miles are added and the trail is complete, a weather proof listing of all members of the Yard & Mile Club will be installed at trailheads in Phelps and Conover. Watch for news in January about how the Complete the Trail campaign is going. The last section of trail is now 21% funded!

Submitted by Jeff Currie