Who we are: We are a group of friends with similar interests - the primary one being hiking. It doesn't matter if it's a one-day trip or a multi-day backpack; we like climbing up and down the tallest mountains throughout the Northeast (and beyond) and having other people along with us. Other activities on our calendar include biking (rail trail, road, & off-road), kayaking (rivers, lakes, & ocean), skiing (downhill & cross country), and various adventure races.
Our approach is simple – the strength of a cohesive group with similar skills and abilities is greater than the sum of its individual parts. We start as a group, stay as a group, and finish as a group. Our pace will be that of the slowest hiker. We travel in small groups (10-15 people) to lessen our impact on the environment and the others who are also out there enjoying the peace and solitude of the outdoors.
While our goal is to have events that are fun and exciting, your safety, and the safety of others, is the most important thing. If you underestimate the demands, overestimate your skills and abilities, or come unprepared you may put yourself and/or others at risk – consider this before you decide to participate. Read the write-up but do your own research since your safety is ultimately your responsibility. The organizer of an event may contact you for more information or suggest an event that may be better matched to your skills and abilities.
You need to be honest with yourself. Recently we have been getting more situations where people who would be considered beginning hikers have been signing-up for intermediate, advanced, and even extreme hikes. While running or lifting weights can help keep you in shape it doesn’t mean that you are ready to hike 14 miles and climb 5,000 feet with a 20 pound pack on your back. A trip like this would take about 10 – 12 hours to complete while moving at a moderate pace with minimal breaks. It is best to start with an easier hike and then work your way up to the more advanced hikes.
All of our organizers are volunteers – we like to be active and we like to have people come along with us. It takes time to properly research a trip, write-up a summary, and list the type of clothing and equipment that will help ensure everyone has a safe and fun experience – please take the time to read what is written and answer any questions that may be part of the RSVP process. This information helps us ensure there is a good match between the skills and abilities of the participants and the demands of the event. While the objective of any trip is to enjoy ourselves, your safety, and the safety of the others in our group, is the most important thing. To quote a famous mountaineer, "Reaching the summit is optional, getting down is mandatory."
All we ask is that you read what we write and agree to “play by our rules”. If there are requirements or expectations to participate in an event – follow them. If there are questions about you and your experience – answer them. If you don’t agree with this and want to do your own thing then do that – hit the trails on your own. If you are going to participate in a Random event realize that you are part of a group. You are still responsible for your own safety but the strength of a group is that you can rely on other for help, and they can rely on you.
You will notice that some trips start with everyone being put on a waiting list (this allows us to screen participants based on their experience and responses to the questions) while other trips get full and then people get added to a waiting list. Because we limit the number of participants events can fill up fast so putting your name on the waiting list will allow you to continue getting updates about that event in case space becomes available. There are two “settings” (neither is perfect) and each organizer is able to choose the one they think works best for their events.
- Automatic: If a member is first in line on an automatic waiting list, they're moved into a spot automatically as soon as one opens up, and are notified by email. Pro – people who have been on the waiting list the longest get the spot first. Con – people who have been on the waiting list may no longer be able to participate but they get a spot they will never use.
- Manual: Members on a manual waiting list receive an email whenever a spot opens up. Whoever responds first gets in. Pro – only people who are still interested in participating will reply. Con – people interested in participating may not have access to email and the Internet when a spot opens up and thus miss out.
The following (or similar) disclaimer applies to all events organized and run by the Random Group of Hikers.
- As a condition of your voluntary participation in this activity you and your guests acknowledge and agree to the following: this activity involves inherent risks that can cause property damage, injury, illness, disability, and/or death to participants and/or others; you assume all risk associated with this activity; you are responsible for having the necessary knowledge, skills, abilities, clothing, and equipment to safely participate in this activity; you know and will follow the Hiker Responsibility Code described at www.hikesafe.com; the organizer(s) of this activity are volunteers; and you release, hold harmless, and indemnify the organizer(s) and all members of this group from any and all claims for property damage, injury, illness, disability, and/or death - including those caused by negligence and/or other reasons.
Please contact the organizer if you have any questions.