Next Meetup

Map and Compass Workshop
Our hands-on training will focus on using a topographic map, extracting the gold mine of information it holds about the land you are on, whether you are hiking, skiing, or otherwise enjoying the outdoors. You will see how to recognize mountains and valleys, streams and ridges, steep slopes and gradual slopes. Whether you use GPS or compass the topo map is essential if you lose the trail, or if you wish to explore places the trails don’t go. After briefly discussing GPS, we will concentrate on the magnetic compass— cheaper, lighter, less likely to break down, and it needs neither batteries nor a clear view of the sky. It is an essential addition to the map—alone, or as a backup for the GPS. After discussing the basics we will climb 400 feet to get a better view of the terrain. Then there will be a search-for-the-markers exercise, starting back at the parking lot, involving some off-trail travel. We recommend long pants and full tick prevention for this last part. There will be an opportunity to change clothes before the search exercise, if you want to wear shorts up until then. We will have some maps and compasses, but bring a compass and the USGS topo map of the Upperville, VA quadrangle if you have them. Take I-66 West 41 miles from the Washington beltway, past the exit for US 17 South, then take exit for Delaplane and US-17 North, go about 6.5 miles, past Route 710 on your right, then take the entrance road for Sky Meadows State Park, route 710 on your left. There is no charge for the workshop, but pay the $5 parking fee at the entrance station, drive up the hill and park by the Stone House and visitor center. Questions? [masked] Meet at 9:45, start at 10:00.

Sky Meadows State Park

11012 Edmonds Lane · Delaplane, VA

Respond by: 7/22/2018

What we're about

The Potomac Chapter of the Appalachian Mountain Club (AMC) ( ( was established in 1984. It is the southernmost of 12 regional AMC chapters. Its 2,000 members live mainly in Maryland and northern Virginia, as well as in the District of Columbia. Members are encouraged to participate in and assist in the management of the chapter’s activities.

Chapter activities include day-hiking, backpacking, paddling, biking and social get-togethers. In addition, the chapter organizes various conservation initiatives and work-days, engages in non-partisan conservation activism, and offers education and leadership opportunities. Our chapter’s outings are open to the public. Almost all chapter outings do not require AMC membership, although it is encouraged.

Chapter members receive the award-winning “AMC Outdoors” magazine 10 times per year, a chapter newsletter, and other AMC benefits including discounts at AMC facilities and events. For more information about the AMC, go to ; click here ( to join.

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