Volunteer

TRTC is a state chartered, non-profit organization that accomplishes much of it's work through volunteer efforts. While we have received a few small grants to support trail building and maintenance, these funds generally are spent for equipment, supplies and for specialized services such as preparing site development plans. The on-the-ground efforts to build and improve trails is done almost exclusively by our volunteers. Since 1998, TRTC volunteers have put in over 8,800 hours in cleaning up, resurfacing and maintaining the American Tobacco Trail (ATT) in Durham, Chatham and Wake Counties. Most of this work has been done during our Saturday workdays although members of our Board and a few volunteers are also active during the week as their schedules allow. Our work varies in intensity; we often use shovels and rakes for moving dirt and rocks; we also have easier, less physical tasks such as pruning limbs and trash pick up on a frequent basis. We work year 'round but tend to use the cooler months for projects involving heavier efforts.

How to Volunteer: Volunteering with TRTC is easy. We maintain a TRTC Volunteers List on MailChimp and we'll be glad to add you to our list. If you would like to be added to our list email us at: info@triangletrails.org with a subject of "Subscribe Me to Volunteers List"

If you need more information or want to discuss upcoming workdays or possible week day opportunities, feel free to contact one of the following Board members:

Current Projects: Currently, many of our volunteer efforts are focused on the American Tobacco Trail but we also do projects on nearby parks and on smaller trails connecting to the ATT and on the Eagle Spur Trail.

In Durham County our efforts from 2001 through early in 2012 were key to opening and maintaining a 3+ mile, natural surface section of the ATT from south of Massey Chapel Road to the Chatham County line. From 2004 through 2007 we undertook a major effort in Durham to construct a new trailhead parking area where the ATT crosses Fayetteville Road. This involved tearing down and removing a small house cutting and burning trees and brush, and in general preparing the area for grading. During the Fall of 2005 we completed efforts to grade the parking area, construct the connector trail and pour slabs for an information structure and porta-jon. In the Winter and Spring of 2006 we focused on erecting the information shelter, installing control bollards and continuing general clean-up efforts of the site. During the Fall of 2006 we constructed water bars on the connecting trail and since then we have continued periodic clean-up and trimming and constructed a brick patio in the area by the kiosk. In the Fall of 2010 we arranged for a 1 year rental of a Porta-John at this trailhead and continued this rental service until May 2012 when the area was closed due to the start of Phase E construction. (Porta-jon service was re-started in July 2013 and was shifted to Herndon Park later that year to better serve ATT users. In other work on the Durham section, in May 2010 we built a 120' connector trail at Lawson Street and in May 2011 we built a 330' connector trail at Herndon Park to facilitate ATT users access to the parking, restrooms and seasonal water at the Park.

In Chatham County, TRTC conducted over 50 workdays to cut and remove fallen trees and brush from ATT sections that were impassable and to correct minor drainage and surface problems during the 5+ years that this section was unofficially open for use. Since the Chatham section paving was completed, we continue to do smaller clean-up tasks periodically. In the Fall of 2011 we began efforts to address a critical need for accessing the Chatham section: off-road parking. We did minor clean-up and site planning and acquisition of permits in late 2011 and early 2012. In the Fall of 2012 we removed about 30 trees and completed all clearing and grading for a new parking area at Pittard Sears Road. We had a wide asphalt driveway installed late in November and opened the lot to the public on December 15th 2012. During the December '12 to March 2013 period we worked on projects to support a seasonal water fountain at the north end of the Pittard Sears lot. In April 2013 we laid the water line and opened the fountain for use. This fountain was quickly discovered and has been a popular amenity during the four seasons it has been in operation. Typically, this fountain is shut for the Winter in late November. In 2017 we'll have several workdays to put in improvements at the Pittard Sears lot to bring it into ADA (access for the disabled) compliance.

Stay tuned for updates to be reported as News items and through our Emails to those on our TRTC Volunteers list.

Our Workday Meeting Schedules: Our workdays are scheduled as we determine areas needing attention. The specific site and start times are included in periodic emails to those on our Volunteers list.

  • For work on the trail near Herndon Park (south Durham section of the ATT) we meet at the intersection of the ATT and Scott-King Road (with parking at Herndon Park) at 9:00AM.
  • For work on the Fayetteville Rd. trailhead or nearby areas of the trail we meet at the Fayetteville Road parking area at 9:00AM.

Please see our Directions Page for driving directions to these locations.