We have a very large turn out expected so I am providing the following reminders.
PREPARE FOR THE WEATHER:
The forecast is for a chilly morning. Suggest you bring layered clothing for comfort.
Parking is free on most Saturdays. Suggest you park in lot # 100 which is on the right hand side of UNF Drive approx. 1/3 of a mile east of 9A next to Eco Adventure Outfitters Center. This is at the corner of UNF Drive and North South Rd. If this lot fills up, then you can turn left on North South Rd and park in the large lot # 14 located only 250 yards away.
I plan to arrive by 9:15 AM and will be standing in Lot # 100 next to a red table with our sign up sheets and maps for everyone. Due to the large attendance, I suggest you try to arrive by 9:30 - 9:45 AM so you have time to park, sign in, use the facilities, and meet many new friends. The two individual rest rooms and the trail heads are located at this parking area.
Our hike begins at the trail head with everyone walking the first half mile of the trail that curves around the beautiful Lake Oneida where there are several scenic observation points to stop and view. After this 1/2 mile walk around the lake, you have your choice of two trails to take. a) Many will proceed on the Goldenrod trail which is an additional 2.5 miles and traverses the gambit of UNF habitats; from swamp to sandhill, flatwoods to seepage slope and can include a trail spur to see the 500 year old Cypress. b) For those wanting a shorter hike, you can proceed on the blueberry trail which goes one mile from the decision point and takes you through pine flat woods and swamp. Both trails end at our initial starting point. After either walk, feel free to go back to the first scenic view of Lake Oneida which is only 250 yards from the starting point where you can enjoy a relaxing view from the bridge or find a comfortable table with a view on the small island.
For those interested, we have reserved some large tables at Bahama Breeze Island Grill at approx. 12:15 PM - 12:30 PM. This restaurant is only 1.6 miles west of UNF in the St. John's Town Center (in front of Dillards and next to Mimis Cafe). Suggest the early arrivals start filling up the large tables reserved for the Sidetrackers. When filled, the rest of us can form groups of four or six people each and be seated at nearby open tables. Separate checks have been requested.
We welcome everyone and suggest you contact me if you have any questions.
SIDETRACKERS is an outdoor activities club for single people in Jacksonville and Northeast Florida. We've been around for over 15 years and offer high-quality experiences for singles who genuinely enjoy outdoor activities and who would like to meet like-minded single activity partners. Club events are mostly oriented towards outdoor activities and may include camping, canoeing, kayaking, hiking, cycling, sightseeing, ziplines, hang gliding, marksmanship, and horseback riding. Activities are varied and provide opportunities for a wide range of interests, abilities, and skill levels. Membership and participation in our singles club also provides opportunities to develop and refine outdoor leadership skills. SIDETRACKERS in Jacksonville is the place for active singles!
Even if you don't live in or around Jacksonville and are looking for high-quality singles activities, you can still participate with us. Use our web site to view our calendar of events and activities, find out how to sign up for trips and events, and even apply to become a member. It's easy, and it's all online at our main web site - http://www.sidetrackers.com. We would love to have you visit or join our club.
ABOUT "MEMBERSHIP" IN OUR GROUP: Meetup membership is free and open to all, however some Meetup members elect to "join" the Sidetrackers club in order to help defray the costs involved in running Sidetrackers. For example, we incur expenses to maintain our web site and we also buy and pay for a supplemental medical insurance policy. Club membership is ridiculously cheap for one year - $15 - and in exchange (and also as a reward) for helping pay for our expenses, club members are invited to a few special "members only" events where the club may pay for some of the food. If you elect not to join the club, you're welcome to participate with us, but please respect and understand this arrangement within our club when you see two or three "members only" events each year. This way of running things has been in place for many years and it has worked very well for everyone.