November 18, 2012 · 8:30 AM
Join us for an exploration of the region’s flora with a walk on top of Wildcat Mountain. With expert guidance from Ms Carrie Blair of the Virginia Native Plant Society, we’ll explore the local plant communities in a mountain habitat and discuss ecological stresses such as invasives, climate change, diseases and pests, and also learn a little about the history of the place.
A large portion of Wildcat Mountain was donated to The Nature Conservancy in the 1960’s by the Arundel family. The land is now administered as a natural area available for public use (http://tinyurl.com/8vp9yvc). Access to the top normally requires a somewhat strenuous climb. However, we have obtained special permission from the family to drive to the top via a private road.
With frequent stops, the hike itself will be fairly short (2-3 miles) with gentle elevation change (about 1 blister). The hike is limited to 20 participants, so you must register directly with me ([masked]). Bring a bag lunch and a bottle of water. The trails are wooded, so hiking shoes are recommended; you may also want to wear gaiters as we will be walking on a lot of fallen leaves. Dress for the weather, rain or shine. I also recommend insect repellent. If you have them, bring binoculars, a hand lens, and your favorite guide book(s). We will carpool at 8:30 am from Vienna Metro’s north Park & Ride lot (not the south side and not the Kiss & Ride) since the number of vehicles is also limited.