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Upcoming Events    Trip Checklists     

HIKE RATINGS

DISTANCE

TERRAIN

A = More than 13 miles 1 = Very Strenuous
B = 9-13 miles 2 = Strenuous
C = 5-9 miles 3 = Average
D = Under 5 miles 4 = Easy
bulletHiking boots are strongly encouraged for all hikes!
bulletHikers must be properly equipped, be aware of their limitations, and hike within their ability.
bulletIn the interest of safety, activity leaders may refuse to allow participation by club members or their guests.

Please contact Catherine (359-1066) for information about these activities.

MARCH HIKES

March 1 (Friday) Slide Show - Mount Everest...................................................................................................................................N/A

Ed Webster will give a 60-99 minute long slide presentation on his five "storm years" on Mount Everest.  Ed has written numerous books on outdoor adventures and will be available to autograph his "Snow in the Kingdom".  This presentation is part of Chesterfield Parks and Recreation Winter Lecture Series 2002 and is held in Monacan High School, 11501 Smoketree Drive from 7:30 to 9 P.M.  Free.

 

March 2 (Saturday) York River State Park...........................................................................................................................................C/3 

This will be a moderate hike along the shore of the York River.  Plan to bring water and lunch.  We'll picnic at the park.  Park Admission is $2 per person.

 

March 3 (Sunday) Buck Ridge-Pass Mountain Day Hike................................................................................................................B/1 

This is an 11-mile circuit hike in the central and north section of the Shenandoah National Park.  THIS IS AN EXTREMELY CHALLENGING HIKE with a 3000 foot elevation change.  Lunch stop atop Mary's Rock has spectacular views to the west.  A mid-afternoon rest stop will be at the Pass Mountain Shelter.

 

March 5 (Tuesday) Board Meeting...........................................7:30 P.M............................................................................................N/A 

Board meetings aren't just for board members!  Members and their guests are always welcome.

   

March 6 (Wednesday) Maymont Park...................................................................................................................................................D/4

Maymont Park should be beautiful in the spring and the bears are always happy to see us.  Meet at 10 A.M. at the Spotswood's entrance parking lot, near Dogwood Dell, to enjoy a brisk 3-4 mile walk through Richmond's loveliest park.

 

March 7 (Thursday) The Adventures of Jon Bowermaster..............................................................................................................N/A

Jon Bowermaster, the author of six books, has chronicled his own worldwide adventures as well as that of others.  Bowermaster's books (three of which have been a collaborative effort with polar explorer Will Steger) feature his travels via dogsled through the Arctic, Antarctica, Greenland, and the Northwest Territories.  His books also profile rafting trips down rivers in South America and China.  An ardent sea kayaker, Bowermaster had paddled the Atlantic, Pacific, Arctic, and Indian Oceans braving Labradorean icebergs, Patagonian gales, and Alaskan whales.  This presentation is part of Chesterfield Parks and Recreation Winter Lecture Series 2002 and is held in Monocan High School, 11501 Smoketree Drive from 7:30 to 9 P.M.  Free.

 

March 8 (Friday) Singles Pot Luck Dinner..........................................................................................................................................N/A

The Singles first pot luck dinner at Claudia's house begins at 7 P.M.  Call to confirm attendance, get directions and guidance on what to bring.  A nominal charge will be made for incidentals.  We expect a big turnout so call well in advance.

 

March 9 (Saturday) Patterson Ridge...................................................................................................................................................B/2

This infrequently hiked trail traverses the Big Run/Rocky Run area within the Shenandoah National Park.  Expect great views and a good deal of up and down.

 

March 9 (Saturday) Torrey Ridge...........................................................................................................................................................C/2

This will be a strenuous but scenic hike from Torrey Furnace to Bald Mountain in the Sherando area.  A 1900-foot elevation change makes this a challenge.  Note:  This hike previously scheduled for January was snowed out!

 

March 16-17 (Saturday and Sunday) Jarman Gap-Moormans River Backpack............................................................................B/3

This hike will proceed north on the AT spending the night at Black Rock Shelter returning on the Moormans River trail with several fordings.  Bring alternative footwear.  Call John Donovan at 524-7124 between 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

 

March 16 (Saturday) Work Trip.............................................................................................................................................................N/A

We are not out of the cold weather!  Please call Fran for information.

 

March 16 (Saturday) Banff Film Festival.............................................................................................................................................N/A

Now in its 26th year, this prestigious festival is held in Banff, Canada, and showcases films on mountain themes, rock climbing, paragliding, unique mountain environments and wildlife.  THIS IS A MUST TO SEE!  This presentation is part of Chesterfield Parks and Recreation Winter Lecture Series 2002 and is held in Monacan High School, 11501 Smoketree Drive from 6:30 to 9 P.M.  Note the earlier start time.  The event is free.

 

March 17 (Sunday) Easy Bike Tour......................................................................................................................................................N/A

Join with RABA for a leisurely 27-mile bike trip leaving from Battlefield Park at 1 P.M.  Plan to stop at a store 1/2 way into the trip for snacks.  Wear green for St. Patrick's Day.

 

March 17 (Sunday) Willis River and Bear Creek Lake......................................................................................................................C/3

Join us for a Sunday walk in the winter woods.  This will be an 8-mile hike including part of the Willis River Trail along the river and around Bear Creek Lake.  No dogs please.  Expect a leisurely lunch.  Bear Creek State Park is located 50 miles west of Richmond off US 60.  Meet at Chesterfield Town Center, Hecht's Huguenot Road entrance at 9 A.M.

 

March 19 (Tuesday) General Meeting......................................7:30 PM.............................................................................................N/A

This meeting's program will be presented by our fellow member John Farmer.  Last year John took an absolutely fabulous train journey through the Canadian Rocky Mountains and is going to show us the slides he took along the way to prove it.  Please don't forget to bring a canned food item for the church charity.  New members and first time visitors are encouraged to arrive 30 minutes early (7 P.M.) for a very brief and informal orientation provided by several board members.

 

March 20 (Wednesday) Henricus and Dutch Gap Area Hike...........................................................................................................D/4

This three-mile hike will include both the natural and cultural history of this interesting area on the James River.  The hike should be timed so that the baby Great Blue Heron should be in their rookery.  To reach the trailhead, leave I-95 at exit 61, follow Virginia route 10 east 0.2 miles, then go left two miles on Virginia route 732 (Old Stage Road).  Follow signs into the park.  Meet at the Henricus Village parking lot.  Hike begins at 10 a.m.

 

March 22 (Friday) Robert DeLoss Film................................................................................................................................................N/A

Robert DeLoss films typically capture beautiful birds, big game, and panoramic vistas full of environmental adventure.  Mr. DeLoss was for six years a speaker on the Audubon Society Lecture circuit.  This presentation is the last in Chesterfield Parks and Recreation Winter Lecture Series 2002.  It is held in Monacan High School, 11501 Smoketree drive from 7:30 to 9 P.M.  Free.

 

March 23 (Saturday) AT - South of the James #1................................................................................................................................A/1

This is the first of three long day hikes covering the AT from the James River south to Troutville.  This first leg takes us up 3500 feet in 17.2 miles from the James to the top of Apple Orchard Mountain through the scenic James River Face Wilderness Area.  

 

March 29 (Friday) Hoover Camp Day Hike..........................................................................................................................................B/3

This moderate hike of 10 miles starts from Big Meadows and follows the fire road gently down to President Hoover's summer trout fishing camp on the Rapidan River.  Return through the woods to the Appalachian Trail and Big Meadows.

 

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APRIL HIKES

April 2 (Tuesday) Board Meeting...............................................7:30 P.M...........................................................................................N/A

Board Meetings aren't just for board members!  Members and their guests are always welcome.

 

April 3 (Wednesday) Downtown Richmond Canal and Historical Walk......................................................................................D/4

At 10:00 a.m. we will meet at the parking lot just west of Tredegar Iron Works and follow Canal Walk.  We will continue east to the Great Ship Lock, climb to Libby Hill Park on Church Hill and return via St. John's Church.  The many types of spring flowers on Church Hill are beautiful this time of year.

 

April 4 (Thursday) Singles Dinner at Charley's at Stony Point......................................................................................................N/A

Join the Singles Group for a nice dinner, socializing and help plan future activities.  Attend, bring your ideas, a friend, and meet fellow members.  Call Eden if interested in attending a concert at The Barns of Wolftrap.

 

April 6 (Saturday) AT-South of the James #2.......................................................................................................................................A/1

This is the second of three long day hikes covering the AT from the James River south to Troutville.  This second leg takes us down 3200 feet in 17.8 miles from the Parkers Gap Road to Bearwallow Gap.

 

April 6 (Saturday) Cole Mountain..........................................................................................................................................................C/3

This is a five-mile circuit hike that includes a section of the AT near its crossing of Route 60.  We'll take it at an easy pace so it will be appropriate for someone with limited hiking experience.

 

April 6 (Saturday) Gloucester Day Hike...............................................................................................................................................C/4

This will be an easy 6-mile walk sponsored by a local AVA walking club.  A $2.00 donation will help support this club in their effort to bring families together in the outdoors.

 

April 6 (Saturday) ODATC Section Day Hike.....................................................................................................................................A/1

Yes, the plan really is to hike our entire 19.4-mile portion of the AT in a single day.  This hike will definitely be a workout, but your reward includes breaks at several impressive overlooks, viewing some historical artifacts, and paying homage to one of the best shelters on the AT, which we'll also use for a rest spot before tackling the last five miles of the day's trek.  

April 6 & 7 (Saturday and Sunday) False Cape State Park Paddle, Camp, and Hike.................................................................N/A

Great chance to paddle your kayak/canoe about six miles along the shore line of Back Bay, camp at Barbour Hill primitive campsite, and day-hike 6 to 8 miles to points of interest in the State Park.

April 6 & 7 (Saturday and Sunday) Shenandoah National Park Backpack Trip..........................................................................A/2

This will be a circuit hike in the central district using the Nicholson Hollow and adjacent trails.  Expect 10 to 15 miles each day with tenting Saturday night.  Call John Donovan at 524-7124 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m.



April 13 (Saturday) Singles Canoe Trip...............................................................................................................................................N/A

Beginner level canoe trip on the Chickahominy swamp for Club Singles.  Bring your canoe (!) or call John.

                                                                 

April 13 (Saturday) Brandywine Valley................................................................................................................................................A/3

This 36-mile, one-day, end-to-end hike sponsored by the Wilmington Trail Club starts in Ludwig Corner, PA (after a one-hour bus ride from the Brandywine Creek State Park near Wilmington, DE) and follows a well-marked trail down the valley on roads, paths along the river, fields, some hills (no mountains).  $14 entry fee.  Call Catherine early for application.  Five-hour drive to Wilmington, DE and a motel stay Friday night required.

April 13 & 14 (Saturday and Sunday) Cole Mountain to Crabtree Meadows...............................................................................C/2

Backpacking from Cole Mountain north to Crabtree Meadows.  Camp at Spy Rock and walk down Crabtree Falls on Sunday.  Approximately 6 to 9 miles per day.

 

April 17 (Wednesday) Richmond Floodwall Day Hike.....................................................................................................................D/4

We are honored to have as guest hike leader the James River Park Superintendent and Naturalist Ralph White.  Meet at the Floodwall Parking Lot, 7th and Semmes at 10:00 a.m.  The hike will follow the floodwall and riverbank downstream for about two miles and then return.  Part of this hike follows closely along the trail on which slaves were forced to walk after being unloaded from ships.  The hike is timed to match the shad run and we should see many Great Blue Heron feeding on the shad.  Bring water and a $2 per person contribution to the James River foundation.

 

April 20 (Saturday) Work Trip...............................................................................................................................................................N/A

Hopefully Spring has sprung.  Please call Fran for work trip details.

 

April 20 (Saturday) Dogwood Half Hundred.......................................................................................................................................A/1

This marvelously strenuous day hike is 50K (31 miles) up and down, over and across, up and down some more in the George Washington National Forest.  Cost is $25 and includes a light breakfast, a hot dinner, and a patch to all finishers.  Early registration is a must as the sponsor PATC cuts off registration when max is reached.  The hike is very well supported with four check points along the way.  Views are superb.

 

April 20 (Saturday) The Priest.................................................................................................................................................................C/2

This strenuous hike will climb up Crabtree Falls Trail to the Appalachian Trail then proceed north with lunch stop at the Priest Shelter. After lunch there is a long 3,000 feet descent to the Tye River with beautiful views at every turn.

 

April 21 (Sunday) Staunton River - Bear Church Rock.....................................................................................................................C/3

The topo maps say "marginally passable" but the trail has been restored and is very interesting.  Evidence of flood damage is extensive.  The trail elevation is fairly gradual until the final push towards Bear Church Rock.  Fairly steep the last mile.  Good views, quiet and solitude.

 

April 21 (Sunday) Furnace Mountain Hike for Singles.....................................................................................................................C/3

Enjoy a nice trip along the nine-mile trail in the South District of the Shenandoah National Park.  Expect elevation change of only 1500 feet.

 

April 27 (Saturday) Three Ridges - Bee Mountain - MauHar...........................................................................................................A/1

This is one of the more demanding hikes in the Blue Ridge.  Lots of miles, lots of ups and downs, this classic is not for the faint of heart.

 

April 27 (Saturday) Singles Trip to Washington Smithsonian Area..............................................................................................N/A

Our trip hopefully coincides with the cherry blossoms so join us for a great day of sightseeing.  Plan to leave Richmond at 7 a.m.  Visit the Tidal Basin, the White House, Zoo, Arlington, Capitol, Portrait Gallery, National Art Gallery, and the Postal Museum.  They are all within walking or Metro connection distance.  Pack a lunch, plan on a group dinner at a nice restaurant on the return trip.

 

April 27 (Saturday) Mount Pleasant-Cold Mountain Loops.................................................................................................C/3 or B/2

We hope to do two moderately paced loop hikes consisting of 5&1/2 miles each. Weather permitting, great views will be had from the summits of each mountain. Cold mountain is one of the most northern of the “southern balds”.  Participants may choose to wimp out after one hike since both hikes begin and end at the same parking area. Unlike my previous hikes, all 11 miles will be on a trail. No bushwhacking this time – I promise. Unless we get lost………

 

April 27 & 28 (Saturday and Sunday) Great Dismal Swamp National Wildlife Refuge Canoe Camping.............................N/A

Paddle your own canoe (kayak) around Lake Drummond and the various ditches through the forested wetlands of the Great Dismal Swamp.  Mid-April to mid-May is the peak of the spring bird migration.  Camp Saturday night at the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers campground.  Call John Donovan at 524-7124 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m.

 

April 28 (Sunday) Fredericksburg..........................................................................................................................................................C/4

This easy six-mile city walk will go through the historic old town (complete with a fantastic array of antique shops), through William and Mary campus and along the Rappahanock River.  A $2.00 donation to the sponsoring AVA club will help them continue to provide outdoor recreation in a relaxed setting.

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Upcoming Events

May 4 (Saturday) C&O Canal Long Distance Hikes..........................................................................................................................A/3

This event sponsored by the Sierra Clubs Metropolitan Washington Regional Outings Program is an annual endurance event.  This year there are three options: 

1.  100K(62&1/2 miles) one day hike from Washington DC to Harpers Ferry  
80K (50 miles) one day hike from Carderock to Harpers Ferry  
3.  50K (31&14 miles) one day hike from Edwards Ferry to Harpers Ferry.  

These events require preregistration and extensive training but are very rewarding. Essentially they follow the tow path up river to the destination at Sandy Hook Youth Hostel.

 

May 4 (Saturday) AT - South of the James #3......................................................................................................................................A/1

This is the last of the three long day-hikes covering the AT from the James River south to Troutville.  This last leg is the 19.6 miles from Bearwallow Gap to Troutville.  

 

May 17 & 18 (Friday night & Saturday) Tour de Chesapeake.........................................................................................................N/A

This is an annual bicycling event using flat back roads in Matthews County. Routes of 15,18,34,48,and 62 miles in length. Camp Friday night and bike Saturday. Tour de Chesapeake requires advance registration and $$.  Call Catherine for info or get application and details from your local bike shop.

 

May 18 & 19 (Saturday & Sunday) Wilderness First Aid.................................................................................................................N/A

An 18-hour class in Wilderness First Aid.  Ideal for trail workers, trip leaders, and the general enthusiast, this class includes classroom study, hands-on practice, and results in a two-year certification.  A program of the Wilderness Safety Council, Wilderness First Aid is recognized by the American Camping Association, Girl Scouts USA, and others.  Cost is $140.  For additional information visit http://wfa.net or phone 703-836-8905.

June 15-22 (Saturday thru Saturday) James River Batteau Festival................................................................................................N/A

Join the Batteau crews as they ply the rapids of the mighty James.  We will be observing living history from our canoes or kayaks beginning in Lynchburg and finishing at Maidens.  Participants will camp along the river at pre-determined sites and enjoy the planned festivities at each of these ports of call.  Participants may choose to do the whole trip, several days, or just one day.  There are outfitters available in Scottsville where you can rent a canoe or kayak.

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Basic Day Hiking Checklist

bulletBackpack
bulletWater (2 quarts)        
bulletInsect repellent
bulletSmall first-aid kit
bulletWhistle
bulletHat                                    
bulletSun block
bulletSnack or lunch
bulletPersonal Identification
bulletPrescription medicines
bulletSpecial medical information
bulletHealth insurance card
bulletEmergency contact
bulletHiking boots
bulletExtra socks
bulletRain gear
bulletTrail map
bulletToilet paper
bulletSunglasses
bulletZip-top bags (for trash)
bulletOptional:  Compass, flashlight/headlamp, pocket knife, waterproof matches or lighter, fire starter, water filter or tablets

SUGGESTED CHECKLIST FOR HIKE/TRIP LEADER

I.  Pre Activity Tips

bullet

As much as possible, judge the participant's ability via phone screening. Consider such things as their most recent hike, experience, physical condition, etc.  You have the authority, and duty, to refuse any participant that may harm themselves or others.

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Remind hikers to wear proper clothing, bring food/water and necessary equipment.

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 Be familiar with the trails, trail head location and have a planned lunch site.

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Prepare to carry appropriate maps, flashlight, first aid kit, whistle, knife, and compass.

bullet

 Consider adjusting or canceling the activity during inclement weather and/or unsafe driving conditions.  Call destination to ensure availability. 

II.  At the Meeting Place

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Examine clothing, equipment, footwear, food, and water of participants. Again, you have the authority to refuse any participant.

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Have a list of all the participants’ names with their emergency phone numbers.  If possible, this list should be left with someone who knows the details of the hike.

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If possible, provide all drivers with written instructions to the trailhead in case of travel separation.

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Maximize car-pooling and remind everyone to share expenses with the driver (for most trips, $5.00/person is reasonable to cover gasoline costs, auto wear-and-tear, and the nuisance of driving).

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Inform participants of planned comfort and snack/meal stops both to and from the destination.

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Try to assign a co-leader and go over their duties.

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Have everyone introduce him or herself.

III.  At the Trail Head

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Assign a leader and a sweep (the designated last person throughout the entire hike) and inform the group of their responsibilities.

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Remind those that might hike ahead to always wait for the entire group at any trail crossing/intersection.

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Inform hikers to leave their packs in the middle of the trail anytime they leave the path (i.e., pit stop) so that the sweep will know to wait for them.

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Remind participants to practice low impact hiking (packing out everything, staying on the trail, minimal noise, etc.).

IV.  During the Hike

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If a problem occurs, keep the group calm and under control.

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Never leave a tired, sick, or injured person alone.

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If someone becomes lost - 3 whistle blasts by a lost hiker and two blasts by a searcher.

V.  The Return Trip

bullet

Again, remind everyone to contribute funds to their driver.

bullet

Ensure that all drivers have started their cars (including yours!) and are able to safely exit.

 

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