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Stream line hiking

From: Mike
Sent on: Saturday, March 8, 2008 9:23 AM



There are two longish but very interesting (I always claim that) hikes coming up the next two Saturdays. Both will uncover surprising beauty (I always claim that) within the suburban and urban environment in which you probably live. Here is a longish but very interesting email to tell you about it. If you uncover surprising beauty in it, let me know; I know several good therapists on whom their failure with me is no reflection.


(Note that the August 4-day hiking trip to eastern West Virginia is now posted at and is filling up fast. There are only about 10 places left. Pix from last year are at


1) Saturday, March 15, Northwest Branch Trail (Rachel Carson Greenway) and Sligo Creek Trail: This is a circuit hike of 15 or 21 miles (you choose) that will take you along two of the prettiest suburban (Montgomery & PG Counties) stream parks in this area. The hike includes natural-surface and paved trails, with a few stretches of sidewalk, and even some rock scrambling and sandy beaches. The short version is 3.4 blisters (moderate) and the long version is 4.5 blisters (ouch).


We’ll meet at 8:30 am at the athletic fields’ parking lot of Wheaton Regional Park, near the restrooms and soda machines, across from the indoor ice arena; use Orebaugh Av off of Arcola Av to get there. Contact me if you need directions or a pickup from the Wheaton Metro station. Russ Norfleet and I will co-lead.


2) Saturday, March 22, Parade of Parks: This is also a circuit hike of 14 or 23 miles (you choose) on natural- and unnatural-surface trails in DC and MD (long hike) parklands, with some gentle elevation change. The short version is 3.2 blisters (moderate) and the long version is 4.7 blisters (ouch).


Parks/trails trod upon will include (believe it or not) the C&O Canal National Historical Park, Capital Crescent Trail, Glover-Archibold Park, Whitehaven Park, Dumbarton Oaks Park, Rock Creek Park, National Zoological Park, and either the Melvin C. Hazen Park (short version) or the Georgetown Branch Trail (long version)—a veritable parade.


We’ll meet at 8 am at Fletcher’s Boat House lower parking lot, off Canal Rd. (For directions, see Contact me if you need a ride from Metro. Frank Wodarczyk, Mike Gingerich, and I will co-lead. (With two Mikes, you’ll have stereo.)


Bring food and drink, or $ to buy. These hikes are rain, shine, or hell and high water, so dress appropriately. Dogs must check with me first. (OK, I mean the owners, but if a dog emails me, it would certainly give me paws.)


Both of these hikes are Sierra Club Metropolitan Washington Regional Outings Program (MWROP) events, and are part of a series of training hikes leading up to MWROP’s One Day Hike (ODH;, Saturday, April 26. The ODH is a two-in-one, staggered-start, supported, one-way hike of 50km (6.2 blisters) or 100 km (I don’t want to think about it) along C&O Canal towpath to Harpers Ferry. Registration closes April 14. If you do not do the ODH, consider volunteering for it (pretty please!)—let me know if interested.


Shorter hikes & email messages are coming up in early April. (I always claim that.)





Free (i.e., not worth much) pun thrown in: I bit on a stale, very hard French fry. It was an ouch potato. (This one would be below my standards if I had any. Aren’t you glad you read the whole message?)

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