Improved paths and tracks: Part 3
Recommended spacing of water bars (metres)
Type of soil
Clay – sand
Clay or clay-gravel
longitudinal gradient %
2 4 6 8 10
100 50 30 20 15
150 100 60 50 30
– . 150 90 60 50
– . – . 230 150 100
* gradient not recommended in this soil type
– water bars not usually required
References and further reading
Improving Paths and Tracks Part 2 Practical Action Technical Brief,
Improving Paths and Tracks Part 1 Practical Action Technical Brief,
Dry Stone Causeways Practical Action Technical Brief,
Rural Transport Services Beenhakker, H., with S. Carapetis and others, IT Publishing,
Roads are not Enough, Dawson, Jonathan and Ian Barwell Practical Action Publishing,1993.
Earth Roads: Their construction and maintenance, Hindson, J., revised by J. Howe and G.
Hathway, Practical Action Publshing, 1983.
Low-cost Vehicles: Options for moving people and goods, Gordon Hathway. Practical Action
Low-cost Load-carrying Devices: The design and manufacture of some basic transport
technologies, Ron Dennis, Practical Action Publishing,1995.
Labour-based Road Construction: A state of the art review, Paul Larcher (Ed.), Practical Action
Road Maintenance and Regravelling (ROMAR) Using Labour-Based Methods: Handbook,
Claes-Axel Andersson et al, Practical Action Publishing, 1996,
Footpaths and Tracks: A field manual for their construction and improvement, Ron Dennis et
al, I.T. Transport Ltd., March 2002,
Upland Pathwork Construction Standards for Scotland, Upland Path Advisory Group,
IT Transport Ltd.
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