The OHIO RIVER FOUR WHEELERS off-road club, based in Cincinnati, OH performed trail repairs to a severe washout on Old Fincastle Road, part of the Daniel Boone Back Country Byway, on Saturday August 8th.
The team assembled at 7:30 a.m. just south of Cincinnati, OH and caravan down to the Natural Bridge area of Red River Gorge. We were on location at the work-site by 10:00. After reviewing the damaged area with the team we broke up into smaller groups to begin preparation of materials and the area to be repaired.
Concrete and pressure treated lumber were prepared a week before to act as foundation piers for a retaining wall. The retaining wall allowed us to fill the washout with locally collected rocks to act as a water break which would diffuse the rush of water into this area, yet allow it to drain through. We attached horizontal lumber ties to the vertical lumber piers with galvanized bolts. These allowed us to tie the retaining wall into the surrounding hillside for support.
Approximately 8-10 tons of local field stone was collected and dropped into the washout behind our fabricated retaining wall.
We built a water bar across the trail at approximately 60 degrees from parallel, and then a second water bar in parallel with the trail into a natural drainage channel that empties out behind our retaining wall. We felt these modifications would divert water from the damaged area and work naturally with the path water tends to take in this section.
In a couple of years time the pressure treated lumber will gray down and take on a natural look with its surroundings. The ties off the piers have been anchored into the surrounding hillside with 4 foot long pieces of ½” re-bar.
The loose field-stone acts as a break to rushing water, which will allow it to pass through the retaining wall without building so much pressure as to challenge the integrity of the retaining wall. We expect silt from water runoff to fill in some of the gaps in our field-stone and settle our water bars into place.
We feel this is a sustainable repair and should last for many years.
* Update - After three months trail repair is still in good shape and it looks like the water is running in the direction that it was directed toward. Water bars have settle in good into the ground.