www.adventuring.org

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*Events and Announcements listed below are subject to change and/or cancellation. Check the web site or contact the trip leader for a trip to determine if it has been cancelled or rescheduled.

Adventuring is a not-for-profit, all-volunteer organization serving the gay and lesbian community in the Washington area. Its purpose is to encourage and publicize group outdoor activities. If you are a trip leader, please update your trip descriptions and announcements in the Adventuring web database for the upcoming month no later than the 20th of the previous month.

CALENDAR OF EVENTS

Date(s) Trip Title Leader Phone
May 27 (Sun) Rapidan (Hoover) Camp Hike Jerry C. (571) 241-3787
 

Important Information: Liability: Adventuring is a not-for-profit organization operated entirely by volunteers. The activities sponsored by Adventuring are cooperative in nature; individuals participate at their own risk and with the understanding that trip leaders are not experts. The Adventuring organization and its individual volunteers take no responsibility and disclaim any liability for accident or injury associated with its activities. Trip Fees: In order to support the operation of its program, Adventuring assesses a trip fee of $2 per participant for day trips and $4 for trips longer than a day. Trip fees are payable to the trip leader on or by the date of the activity. Transportation Fees: Trip leaders may assess a transportation fee to reimburse drivers for the expense of group carpools. This fee is calculated at the rate of 30 cents per mile per vehicle and is divided among the carpooling participants.


TRIP DETAILS

Rapidan (Hoover) Camp Hike
May 27 (Sun); Jerry C.(571) 241-3787
This moderately difficult 7.2-mile loop hike will take us to Rapidan Camp, President Herbert Hoover’s rustic retreat in the heart of Shenandoah National Park. From Milam Gap on Skyline Drive we will descend via the Mill Pond Trail to Rapidan Camp, passing by the base of Big Rock Falls en route. At the Camp we'll eat lunch and, if we've timed it right, take a Park Ranger-guided tour of the President's Brown House (as opposed to his White House). We'll climb back up to Skyline Drive by way of the Laurel Prong Trail and the Appalachian Trail. At Hazeltop we'll reach the maximum elevation of our hike, 3812 feet, and from there descend to our awaiting cars at Milam Gap. The estimated cost for transportation, Park admission, and trip fee should be about $23, not including a possible restaurant meal afterwards. Note that because of the time and distance involved in getting to the trailhead, no food or coffee stop is planned on the way to the hike, so bring a lunch and beverage with you. Meet at 9 AM at the Pentagon Hayes Street Parking Lot on Army-Navy Drive between S. Joyce and S. Hayes Street in Arlington. The Pentagon City Metro station is about a 6-minute walk from the meeting place.


ANNOUNCEMENTS

Team DC Promotes LGBT Sports in DC Area
Team DC is a charitable organization providing information on the many LGBT sports and recreation groups in the Washington DC area, educating the LGBT community on the benefits of individual and team sports participation, and working within the broader community to dispel discrimination against LGBT people participating in sports. You can subscribe to their Sportsgram or find out more about LGBT sports and recreation in the DC area by visiting the Team DC website: teamdc.org

Pick the Place—Set the Pace—Be the Face
Have you ever wanted to be the one who decides where Adventuring goes? Have you ever thought, “I would like to set the pace?” Have you thought, “More people like me should be on this trip.” Become a Trip Leader, and you can pick the place, set the pace AND be the new face of Adventuring!

Adventuring’s volunteer Trip Leaders hone leadership skills while having fun with friends. Trip Leaders share practical tips with each other while serving Adventuring’s unique mission—opening up the Great Outdoors to the LGBT community!

Becoming a Trip Leader is easy and free. Contact the Program Coordinator in your area of interest listed at http://www.adventuring.org/about.htm , or simply contact any one on our Program Coordinators (either Woods Coordinator or Other Coordinator) listed at http://www.adventuring.org/about.htm.

Adventuring will pair you with a current Trip Leader with similar interests, and the two of you will plan and conduct your first Adventure together. Once you are comfortable with the process—then you get to pick the place, set the pace and be the new face of Adventuring!

New Partnership with REI
Adventuring – LGBT Outdoors Club announced their decision to partner with recreational retailer REI for some joint special activities throughout 2016. Adventuring and REI kicked off their new partnership during the week after Capital Pride 2016 in Washington, DC with two great adventures right here in our Nation’s Capital. The DC BYOBike Tour was held on Wednesday, June 15th and the DC Monuments Sunset Kayak Tour was held on Friday, June 17th. More details and photos can be found on the Adventuring.org website or our Meetup and Facebook pages. Adventuring also held a Summer Happy Hour at the REI Community Space at Wunder Garden on Thursday, August 18th. We look forward to holding more of these co-promoted events in the future.

Capital Climbers
Adventuring continues it's partnership with the Capital Climbers (LGBT rock climbing group) http://www.capitalclimbers.com/ that began in 2015. One of the highlights of this partnership is the annual Big Meadows/Meteor Shower Weekend held in Shenandoah National Park in early August. The Capital Climbers reserve campground spaces while Adventuring reserves a block of rooms at Big Meadows Lodge which members from each group are welcome to stay at either location. Adventuring plans two days of hiking along the SNP trails while the Capital Climbers set out to scramble the face of Stony Man summit. In the evening they come together at the lodge for drinks at the Tap Room, dinner in the dining room and a late night hike to the meadows to view the annual Perseid meteor shower.


PREVIOUS TRIP REPORTS

Overall Run Falls Hike (Jeff)
Like a budding adolescent, spring has been reluctant to come out this year. But fortunately the hormones proved too much and eight Adventurers got to enjoy a one-day stand: A morning and afternoon of sun and warmth as we hiked the Overall Run Falls trail in northern Shenandoah National Park. The day started easily enough with a largely downward trek that eventually delivered us into the Overall Run Valley. But as experienced hikers know, what goes down must eventually come up. During the second half of the day we got to “enjoy” a steep 2900 foot climb back to our starting point, combined with a number of “interesting” stream crossings. Fortunately along the way we got to glory in stunning views of Shenandoah’s tallest waterfall along with an expansive vista that encompassed the entire Overall Run valley, the Massanutten Mountains to the west, and Great North Mountain beyond that. After all this effort, we thoroughly appreciated a calorie- and carb-laden dinner at the Jalisco Mexican Restaurant in Front Royal. And as a final grace note for the day, we got to watch the rising of a spectacular Blue Moon on our drive home.

Twilight Cherry Blossoms (Jeff)
In between recurring bouts of winter, Washington's Cherry Blossoms nevertheless made their glorious appearance. Eleven Adventurers (including one who arrived just as we were about to finish) did our annual stroll around the Tidal Basin and soaked in the beauty of this unique springtime treasure. Probably because of the colder temperatures, the crowds were smaller than normal (which suited us just fine). After circling the Tidal Basin, we next strolled down to DC’s newest attraction, The Wharf, stopping momentarily to warm ourselves at the bonfire near the end of the District Pier. After that, eight of our number stopped for a delicious dinner at the Station 4 restaurant and then called it a night.

Cherry Blossom Stroll (Elaine; Craig)
20 Adventurers were finally able to enjoy our annual cherry blossom trek, though the peak bloom was delayed quite a bit by the unseasonably cool weather. After meeting atop the Smithsonian Metro Station, Craig Howell and Elaine Rowley led the group around the Tidal Basin to enjoy the spectacle. The blustery winds and cold weather scared off a few tourists, allowing for a pleasant stroll. The smaller crowds and leisurely pace allowed us ample time to snap photos, take selfies and sniff petals. A stop at the Jefferson Memorial provided a sweeping postcard panorama, along with an informative talk by Craig on the history of the cherry blossom trees and their cultural significance. Next was the FDR memorial which provided more blossoms and some great history, followed by a long stop at the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial and a brief stop at the Lincoln Memorial. Each stop was illuminated by a great talk by our in-house historian Craig. The final leg of the stroll was along the Reflecting Pool, which currently has a moving and powerful display of Holocaust survivors and their stories. We finished where we started, at the Smithsonian Metro stop. Some of us then went to the Smithsonian Castle to warm up with coffee.

Bluff Trail-Mount Marshall Circuit Hike (Jeff)
Nine Adventurers got to enjoy a beautiful, sunny spring day as we trekked 15 miles in the northern section of Shenandoah National Park. Even though the Park was free that day, we had the trails pretty much to ourselves, and we took full advantage of them. The morning and early afternoon consisted of three steep ascents, two of which resulted in spectacular views from the tops of North and South Marshall Mountain. The afternoon provided an equally awesome vista from the Big Devil’s Stairs Overlook, as well as three stream crossings. Even though we were pretty tired as the afternoon wore on, we had to endure one long, final push uphill to return to our waiting cars. After that grueling climb, we had definitely built up an appetite, which was more than satisfied at Front Royal’s Jalisco Mexican Restaurant.

Doyles River Falls Circuit Hike (Craig)
Five Adventurers -- three grizzled veterans and a couple of relative rookies -- ventured out to the distant southern reaches of Shenandoah National Park on a chilly, cloudy, but still serviceable spring day. We got quite a shock in Madison, where we discovered their local Sheetz is closed for renovations. Luckily, we found a perfectly adequate Emergency Sheetz a few miles down the road at the Wolfville Country Store, where they made us some fine tasty sandwiches, thank you very much. The first leg of our hike was punctuated by a number of large trees evidently blown down by the gales of March 2; fortunately, most of them have moved off the fire road. Only one large fallen tree still remains to be removed. Crossing Doyles River is more interesting than it used to be, as the flat slabs of stone that formerly facilitated the crossing were apparently swept away in some flood and have been replaced by rocks of irregular size and stability. Our lunch next to the base of the Upper Doyles River Falls was a scenic delight, as there was more water crashing over the falls than we had expected. The climb up to Skyline Drive was a bit of a slog, but we took frequent breaks to catch our breath. The views from the two overlooks along the Drive were quite impressive and tempted us to return to explore more of this beautiful country. We made quick time along the AT back to our car at Browns Gap. Dinner at Giovanna's was a novel experience for most of us, but we all seemed well satisfied by both the quantity and quality of our meals.

Petworth Neighborhood Walking Tour (Craig)
24 Adventurers showed up on an unseasonably cool and blustery day inside the Petworth neighborhood Metro station. The group had lots of questions about President Lincoln's Cottage and the Soldiers Home in which it resides. Few of us had known about Henry Gerber, America's first gay activist, buried in the Soldiers Home National Cemetery. We spent a good deal of time in Rock Creek Church Cemetery, DC's oldest public burial ground, with much levity about gadflies Alice Roosevelt Longworth and Evelyn Davis but with much solemnity about the transcendent sculpture "Grief" at the Clover & Henry Adams Memorial. We swapped stories about Gore Vidal, who lies between "Grief" and the love of his life, Jimmie Trimble, a major-league baseball prospect tragically lost at Iowa Jima. We then made our way down Upshur Street to GA Avenue to see the impact of gentrification. Our lunch plans were disrupted by the appearance of a rat outside our intended eatery, whereupon we abruptly adjourned and scattered.

Miller Memorial Hike: Arboretum Azaleas ( Craig; Martin)
(By Trip Co-Leader Martin). 16 Adventurers gathered at the Visitor’s Center on a silent and grey Sunday morning for the inaugural Damon Miller Memorial Hike, also known as the Arboretum Azaleas Ramble. The azaleas were in full bloom, painting the hillside in a stunning array of colors with a palette that included deep luscious pinks, double pinks, whites, purples, reds, and hot pinks.

Traipsing along the slopes of Mount Hamilton, we had an opportunity to view the nest of the mated Bald Eagles. The nest was way up above in a Tulip Poplar tree and observable with the scope set up in the viewing area. Afterwards, we then headed over to the Capitol Columns overlook and across the park to the Dogwood collection.

A hidden overlook was discovered nestled in the Dogwood collection. The overlook provided a splendid view albeit a narrow one of the flowing water of the renewed Anacostia River and the drifting clouds above. Following a winding path down to the river through China Valley we had a very peaceful lunch on the banks of the Anacostia.

Trudging up from the river after lunch we encountered two additional Adventurers (Robert and Larry), one with a historic car. Next we stopped by the Capitol Columns which were surrounded in by an orange plastic safety barrier. Lastly we ended were we began at the Visitor’s Center.

In summary it was a great hike in full remembrance with memories fondly recounted.


ADVENTURING COMMITTEE CONTACTS
President Jeff Hughes (301) 775-9660
Secretary Jackson Tan (410) 422-9257
Treasurer Peter Redding (202) 352-4796
Membership Jireh Aki (562) 810-4411
Publicity Bill Horten (443) 244-5495
 
ADVENTURING PROGRAM COORDINATORS
These are the people who are chosen by the Trip Leaders to make Adventuring's activities tick. Please call them if you have any ideas, questions about our events, hikes, rides and splashes, or if you want to volunteer your skills.
     
Woods Coordinator: Other Coordinator:
Craig Howell (202) 462-0535 Jerry Cowden (703) 920-6871