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North Country Trail Crew Leader Handbook

A Comprehensive Guide for NCTA Crew Leaders

The Crew Leader Handbook is designed to provide information for Crew Leaders organizing and overseeing projects on the North Country National Scenic Trail. This Handbook is intended as a compliment to the in-person North Country Trail Association Crew Leader training program, which is available to all volunteers looking to expand their skills sets and gain new leadership skills.

by North Country Trail Association

Crew Leaders are a vital part of the North Country Trail team. This manual is intended as a framework for all of the tasks and procedures that one might encounter in this role. The roles of an individual Crew Leader will vary across the trail and from project to project but a Crew Leader’s
primary role is to lead, support and manage a team of volunteers, not to know all of the answers all of the time. As always, Chapter Leaders, Regional Trail Coordinators, NCTA staff and Agency Partners will provide support and guidance as necessary.

The Crew Leader is responsible for organizing and leading crews in the field. In addition to knowledge about NCNST trail construction standards, the Crew Leader should be able to safely lead and motivate volunteers and have a good understanding of successful project planning and implementation. Crew Leaders must have a strong commitment to building sustainable trails and get satisfaction out of helping others have a good time while doing good work. Leading trail work volunteers entails teaching and supervising the technical tasks of a particular project while managing a team of people who typically bring a wide range of skills, experience and physical stamina to the crew.

Attached document published January 2019

About the Author


The day-to-day operations of the North Country Trail Association provide valuable administrative, planning, and volunteer resources to build, maintain, protect and promote the North Country National Scenic Trail. Guided by a Board of Directors who set policy and program direction and provide fiduciary oversight, staff members provide direct support to Chapter volunteers so they can more effectively and safely accomplish their work.

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