Because of the 3 hour time zone difference with the east coast, the Middle Fork Trail got off to a slow start, but as word spread on local hiking sites and social media the votes started coming in at a brisk pace. Ultimately, the Middle Fork trail got the 5th highest vote total, just 3,242 votes shy of the maximum 15,000. After the voting was done REI added a $10,000 bonus to each of the 10 trails, raising the total to $68,790.
The funds will help repair multiple washouts on the Middle Fork Trail from the severe November 2006 and January 2009 floods and reroute a section located on a rapidly migrating river bend to higher ground. The project also includes removing approximately 0.5 miles of washed-out trail segments to promote natural re-vegetation and repairing portions of the damaged wood boardwalks. Unfortunately, it’s not enough money to add a badly needed bridge at the Thunder Creek crossing. The work will be done through a partnership with the Mountains to Sound Greenway Trust and Washington Trails Association.
The unfunded 2012 PRISM Project #12-1743 details much of the work that has been deferred due to lack of funds. The plans for the reroute were published by the USFS as SOPA Project 94062 in July, 2013.