Patrick Maloney of Medford, Ore., said the Scouts' volunteer workday began at 5 a.m., with a wake-up call and an early breakfast, before boarding buses for the 15-mile drive from the Jamboree site in Glen Jean to the National Park Service's Glade Creek recreation area.
"The Jamboree's been phenomenal," he said. "All the activities are more than satisfactory, and everything is ready when you want it to be. It's really well planned and organized. But I enjoy getting out and doing this kind of work, too."
The 40,000 Scouts attending the Jamboree are donating more than 300,000 hours of community service over a five-day period to projects in nine West Virginia counties as part of their Reaching for the Summit Community Service Initiative. It is the largest community-service project of its kind in U.S. history.
Volunteer work being done by the Scouts in the New River Gorge National River "will help us get some of the things that we've planned to get done sooner than initially expected," said National Park Service Ranger Leah Perkowski-Sisk. "This whole area will benefit from the work the Scouts are doing."
Other work being done by Scouts in the Glade Creek area of the Gorge includes building 300 feet of accessible trail leading from the Glade Creek Trailhead parking lot to a scenic pool. Scouts also are helping to enlarge and refurbish an existing handicap-accessible campsite and are building an accessible picnic area near the New River boat launch ramp near the mouth of Glade Creek.
At the launch ramp, a stair-stepped series of rock and concrete transfer seats is being installed to allow those with leg disabilities to gradually lower themselves to river level and self-board boats and rafts.
Reach Rick Steelhammer at rsteelham...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-5169.