October is the best trail-making month in the year, as the ground is just moistened by a couple of rains at the most, but not muddy. I have been doing a lot of walking in the woods, both with and without knitting, always with Emma, and we have staked out where we want it to go, our ‘knitting and sniffing track’ !
Oh! But I have left you a little lesson on how to make a knitting trail in the woods for yourself, if you have handy … a bit of woods.
First, stake the trail out with sticks and walk it for a few weeks, or months, refining path to contour the land well, satisfied that it is a pleasure to walk , perhaps even while knitting. Be sure you love walking your trail as it is, before you disturb the soil and take tools to it!
I go ahead with the long-handled pruners and bow saw, clear debris in the way that causes tripping, etc. during the first walks. Then walk some more weeks.
When you’re ready to commit, begin!
Rake aside duff, sticks, fir cones, remove big rocks, etc.
Scrape aside the composting layer gently, (to be raked back over) to expose dirt.
Pick, hoe, and scrape, loosening soil beneath the compost layer, and leveling side-to-side by eye. Or , if you want a really level path as this one will be…
use a level straight edge to check that it is roughly level side-to-side (not fore & aft). Tamp earth down, firming walking area only.
Finally, lightly rake compost layer back over tamped, leveled trail. It should look like the original forest ground, essential to replace plenty of compost over raw soil, and even a sprinkle of the raked-aside debris of small sticks and little cones.
I have worked out a method whereby I am working both start and finish in a 20-foot section which moves along as I work, then finishing my work by covering the soil as I close up the gap so that there is no more raw dirt, and lay my tools down for next work session, whenever that can be.
There is a lot to do yet before I will take out the measuring wheel and see how it measures up in distance. It will look like this for many weeks , perhaps through the whole Autumn it will be a work in progress.
And now if you will excuse me, my coffee break is over, and time for me to go back out. I am so very excited that I am finally making the Knitting Trail ~~~ joy of joys!!