Park dedicates new trail
Tar Kiln Trail dedicated in honor of Trevathians
By DAN PARSONS, Staff Writer
Visitors to Goose Creek State Park have a new, 1.4-mile trail to explore on their next excursion to the park.
The Tar Kiln Trail was dedicated and officially opened Saturday with brief remarks and an inaugural hike in cool weather under gray skies by a tight-knit group of volunteers that helped make the trail a reality.
The trail was named after six tar kilns found during a surveying process. In the 18th and 19th centuries, producers of ships stores would pile pine stumps and burn them to extract the tar, pitch and turpentine used to seal wooden ships’ hulls. Six large mounds left over from this process were found while mapping out the route the trail would take through the northern section of the park, east of the park’s visitors center.
It took 750 man-hours worked over 37 months to complete the trail.
It was Fambrough, then not yet a ranger, who took over the Tar Kiln project. With the help of prison labor from the Hyde County Correctional Institute and more than 100 volunteers, she and her husband, David, laid the path and built the trail, keeping in mind not to disturb the migratory routes of any “critters” in the process.
At least 20 members of the Cypress Sierra Group, a local chapter of the Sierra Club, helped Fambrough throughout the construction of the trail, which meanders through a pine forest and wetlands.
Earl Trevathian, president of the Cypress Sierra Group, cut the ribbon at the entrance to the new trail, which he helped build and was dedicated to him and the memory of his wife, Ruth.
During the trail’s construction, a small contingent of the Cypress Sierra Group hauled load after load of “crush and run,” a gravel-like mixture from the parking lot at the beginning of the trail to low spots along its route. The mixture is designed to not disperse in rain. Volunteers moved the mixture by wheelbarrow, using about a wheelbarrow’s amount of mixture per yard of trail. Then, foot by foot, they stomped on the mixture to compact it.