Brushing with the gas powered equipment is a huge necessity when the canopy of trees overhead has died from one pass of the gypsy moth. Many people thought that it would take a few passes of the leave eating gypsy moth to kill these tree's in the George Washington National Forest. They were wrong. The average tree in your backyard can take a few devastations, 3 to 4 so I have been told, before they die. These ridge top beauties are not as resistant to these repeated devastations. It must be a hard world for trees on the ridge tops with excessive winds, thin soils, cold winters and direct sunlight from all sides all year long. The ground is now erupting with saplings', briars, invasive vines and stripped maples that are swallowing the trails and closing them off to hikers, bicyclists and equestrians. Back to the theme of the post. Thank goodness we are allowed to use mechanized devices to keep these trails open. Mechanized devices are not allowed to be used in Wilderness Area in National Forests to keep the trails open. Right now a crew of workers are spending over $100,000 clearing trails in the Ramsey's Draft Wilderness Area because they have not been properly maintained. We cleared Wolf Ridge Trail in the Little River Potential Wilderness Area for free. Volunteerism at its best. Thanks Shenandoah Valley Bicycle Coalition for all the countless hours and dedication to keeping trails open for bicycles, hikers and equestrians in the George Washington National Forest for the last decade.