This hike is officially full from being cross-posted to other sites, but wait-listed and other non-prepaid folks are welcome to show up at the carpool or hike location if they want to brave the weather since we'll have an extra instructor/guide or two joining us to split the group in half. The weather is going to be "fun" but it's a good chance to test rain gear and work on navigational skills without the benefit of being able to see the sun, etc.
Join the first official Northwest Nature Hike into the UW Pack Experimental Forest with Kim & Chris Chisholm, specialists in survival, birding, wildlife tracking, wild edible and medicinal plants, and other outdoors skills they've gained from years as volunteers for King County Search & Rescue, as students of various schools and universities, as directors of the Wolf College since 1997.
Stump The Chump: Have you ever wondered about the identity of plants and trees while you've been hiking, let alone their gifts of food, medicine and other uses? Have you ever noticed all the scratch marks on the ground and trees and wondered if they were made by bear, cougar, squirrel or porcupine? Have you ever gotten lost and wished you could remember how to use map and compass to find your way? Do you want to ensure greater health, safety and success on the trail with skills of wilderness survival and seasoned backcountry guides? See if you can "stump the chump" by asking Chris & Kim all the questions you can think of during today's hike, and you might come away with one of the best hiking experiences of your life.
Hike Description: http://www.packforest.org/about/
Difficulty Level: Easy-Moderate with Differently-Abled Option Available. Should normally be able to walk or wheelchair 2 miles with a day pack.
Required Gear: The 10 Essentials including rain gear, comfortable but good hiking boots, and a headlamp among the other items.
Rules: Registration form with liability waiver must be signed at start of hike. Dogs must be on leash at all times.
Hike Focus: If the weather is cold and/or rainy, we will focus this hike mostly on map/compass navigation in order to keep moving toward the top before looping through the Old Growth Forest before circling around to our starting point. If the weather is decent, we will stop more frequently to learn about the edible and medicinal plants of the Pack Forest, tracks and other sign of animals big and small, plus geologic features useful for crafts like making stone knives, arrowheads and other crafts. If there are enough participants to separate into 2 groups, you can choose whether to hike at a more vigorous pace with Chris, or at a more leisurely pace with Kim, both of whom will have an assistant guide from the Wolf College in that case. If we have 10 or fewer participants, then we will stay together and move only as fast as is safe for the slowest in the group. If we have a differently-abled participant, we will separate into 2 groups with Kim leading on the handicapped-accessible path, and Chris leading on the switchback hiking trail.
Discounted Fee, Payments & Refund Policy: This is a professionally-guided hike, and permits/permissions have been secured from regulating agencies. Our Sunday Afternoon Hikes will normally cost $45 per adult, and $25 per accompanied youth, but as part of our Northwest Nature Hikes kick-off, we are offering this hike at half the adult price. You can cancel with full refund up until 24 hours before the hiking start time. After that, you can receive 50% refund from the full rate, and a 50% one-time credit toward a future hike, in case you cannot begin the hike with us due to illness, injury, emergency, our we determine you have inadequate gear or another issue that disallows you to begin the hike with us. There is no refund after the hike start time.
Carpooling: Either meet at the parking lot next to the the Pack Forest Conference Center by 1:00, or carpool with us leaving at 12:00 noon from Panera Bread at South Hill Mall in Puyallup with $5 to drivers.