Adventuring has long dedicated the Saturday after Thanksgiving to doing one final hike in Shenandoah National Park before winter sets in. This year our destination will be Compton Peak, with two outstanding attractions. One is an excellent overlook, where we'll lunch with a northwestward vista. The other is one of Shenandoah's most spectacular examples of a geological feature known as columnar jointing; looking up at this singular basalt formation from below is like looking up the bottom of a Saturn rocket. Few have ever seen this formation because the trail to its base has long been poorly maintained if not downright perilous; but volunteer maintenance crews from the Potomac Appalachian Trail Club have vastly improved the trail this year, and they have invited our reviews of their handiwork. We'll start our approach to Compton Peak from outside the Park via Chester Gap and the Appalachian Trail. Total length of our moderate round-trip hike will be 4.5 miles with 1000 feet of elevation gain. Bring beverages, lunch, and about $8 for transportation and trip fees. Meet at 9 a.m. at the East Falls Church Metro Kiss & Ride lot. For further details, contact Craig, (202)[masked], or: [masked].