Trails are designed to hold up under a lot of hard use and abuse . However, when they are not used properly they can fall apart. A common problem us trail maintenance groups face is when people decide to "cut switchbacks" to save a little time and or make the journey more challenging.
This particular switchback shown below(Jesusita Trail) has been a favorite of hikers to cut for years. Tree limbs have been placed to discourage cutting but they have all been pushed aside in order to cut. In the last six months this trail has gone from about a foot of usable tread to non-existent. It is going to be a major repair to fix this section of trail and probably cost in the thousands of dollars.
The trail is now a dangerous and has a six foot drop to the trail below. If on this trail, be careful and NEVER CUT A SWITCHBACK!
Evidence of cutting, Jesusita Trail - Feb 2014
July 2014, Same area