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4-mile hike, including "12 essentials" discussion, night hike, and dinner!

  • Mar 29, 2013 · 5:00 PM
  • This location is shown only to members

This hike is designed for anyone that is still not sure what they shoud be carrying whenever they venture into the backwoods. I led a similar hike this past Spring and I've gotten lots of requests to repeat it, so here it is!

We'll carpool from the rendezvous spot (leaving at 5:15 sharp!) to the Lookout Trailhead in Montreat. We'll take the trail to the top of Lookout Mountain, then follow the East Ridge trail north to the Buck Gap hiking shelter. We'll stop at the shelter for a discussion of the "12 essential systems" (yeah...there used to be only 10 essentials but I have my own version.) Even though this is not a huge hike you might want to bring the pack and gear that you usually take on longer treks so you can show-and-tell the items you carry. Everyone has tips and tricks worth sharing.

We'll stay at the shelter until it's "good and dark", then use the Trestle Trail to complete our loop back to the parking area. Bring your head lights (check the batteries!). If you haven't gotten around to purchasing a head light yet, here is the excuse you've been looking for! We'll then drive back to Black Mountain for refreshments/dinner at The Trailhead(http://thetrailheadrestaurant.com)

Please don't sign up if you were with me for this one last Spring or if you are already confident in your bush skills. Doggies welcomed with leash handy (assuming that they are well-behaved enough to not create a distraction during the discussion portion of the hike). Bring water and a snack. There is a drinkable spring at the shelter. A packable chair would make your time at the shelter more comfortable as there are no chairs or benches there.

Important note: this is not an "easy" hike! There are some easy sections, but there are several moderately strenuous sections and some open rock scrambles. Good boots are strongly recommended. Don't forget to pack some extra layers for our "sit down" time and hiking after sunset. Current Montreat trail map can be downloaded here (http://www.montreatlandcare.org/)

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  • Ivan D.

    Enjoyed the group...and learned alot from many of you. In addition, Bill's knowledge of trail history, wildlife etc etc answered many of the questions I had about Montreat's nature, mining and logging history. Fr those who want to know about where they are hiking and what to look for, he is your Trail Guy.

    1 · March 30, 2013

  • Calvin A.

    Even though it was snowing on the higher peaks, and we all knew we risked sucking chest wounds and hypothermia from the elements, we also knew that our fearless leader Bill "Zombie Slayer" Sanderson had enough survival systems (at least 12) in his pack to save us all from any calamity. We hiked up to Lookout, then along the East Ridge trail to Buck Gap, down Buck Gap trail to the shelter, where we realized that drinking beer in a warm bar seemed preferable to shivering in the cold, damp wind. Hence to the Trail Head, where Bill shared his 12 essentials for hiking survival, including but not limited to: 3,000 degree magnesium fire starters, barely legal switchblades, enough paracord to weave a hammock, strobe lights visible from outer space, and humble Shabbat candles, 12 for 79 cents at Ingles. Bill's sense of humor and obvious love for the outdoors was contagious, and Quin immediately began to think about a cross-country bicycle adventure. It was a fun, memorable night!

    1 · March 30, 2013

  • Cynthia G.

    Many thanks to Bill for generously sharing his time and expertise with our little group, despite the fact he repeatedly harassed me about my skinny jeans. Pretty sure I won't be wearing those pants to another one of his hikes. :-) It was a fun evening.

    1 · March 30, 2013

  • Susan C.

    Thanx to Bill for a nice new hike and informative dining experience...oh yes...and some good ole fun.

    1 · March 30, 2013

  • Bill

    A small but excellent group of hikers defied the threatening weather. Great dinner at the Trailhead capped a fun evening. And we didn't even get wet!

    March 29, 2013

  • Joanna

    having to work late, will not make it on time :-(

    March 29, 2013

  • Ivan D.

    Heads Up! Open rock scramples just before top of Lookout Mountain can be risky for large/giant dogs if the rock is moist. I usually wait until the dry season to take him on a route with this kind of vertical challenge

    March 25, 2013

    • Bill

      Tough on old and short-legged dogs too. The last time I led a Meetup group on this trail I ended up carrying an overweight old trooper across the top of Lookout. I hope I never have to do that again. :-)

      March 25, 2013

    • Ivan D.

      Amen to that brother! Last time I had my Wolfhound on this rock scrample,the rock was wet, I was coming down this time and...I don't know how this 175 lber defied gravity. I swore....nevermore! and haven't since.

      March 25, 2013

  • Bill

    For folks that are wait-listed or who are interested and can't attend...I will definitely do this one again, maybe several times if the interest is there.

    March 25, 2013

  • Rich

    What a great contribution to the meet-up. Thank you. Wish I could make it. Hoping for future night hikes too.

    March 24, 2013

    • Bill

      I'll offer this one again later in the Spring, Rich, and you can definitely bring your buddy. :-)

      March 24, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    I'm a little confused. Is this a hike for beginners or not? Starts out sounding simple and then gets complicated. Who shouldn't attend this hike?

    March 24, 2013

    • Bill

      This is a hike for "beginners" in the gear and skills sense, but it definitely not a hike for beginners in the physical condition sense. If you can't walk uphill for 1.5 miles, and aren't certain that you can maintain a decent pace for 2.5 miles over varying terrain, then it isn't for you.

      March 24, 2013

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