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Fredericksburg Battlefield Hike

(NOTE: Metro has changed its weekend plans; see the end of this paragraph.) We just passed the 150th anniversary of the Civil War Battle of Fredericksburg (VA), a lopsided Confederate victory won on December 13, 1862. While it's still appropriately wintry, we'll hike two key parts of the battlefield. First we'll do a loop through the city itself, marching in the footsteps of the doomed Yankee soldiers who assaulted the Rebels' impregnable stone wall at the base of Marye's Heights. Much of our focus will be on the experience of Walt Whitman's brother George, a soldier in a New York regiment whose wounding here led directly to Walt's 10-year stay in the Washington area. After lunch in the cozy warmth of an Irish pub downtown, we'll move to the southern section of the battlefield. Here we'll walk along Confederate lines commanded by Stonewall Jackson that were briefly penetrated by a Union assault led by future Gettysburg hero George Meade. Total length of our two-part hike (largely on pavements) will not exceed 7 miles, mostly level but with one short but steep climb of a few hundred feet. Bring beverages, snacks and about $12 for transportation and trip fees, plus lunch money. Carpool at 9 a.m. from the King Street Metro Station in Alexandria. (Contrary to its originally announced plans, Metro will not close any portion of the Red Line this weekend. There will be single-tracking downtown, so allow extra time if you're coming to King Street by Metro.)

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  • Lindsay E.

    Lots of relaxed fun! I second the sentiment from Jeff and Debora.

    1 · January 27, 2013

  • Jeff H.

    Another adventure into the 19th century led by the ultimate Civil War tour guide. Thanks again Craig. Look forward to our next trip into the events of 1863.

    January 27, 2013

  • Debora

    A very educational event. Great company. Thanks Craig and everyone.

    January 27, 2013

  • Craig H.

    The weather was appropriately wintry for our 8 Adventurers, but it was actually better than expected because the wind never kicked up, temperatures actually got well above freezing for the first time in nearly a week, and the footing on the sidewalks and paved roads was not slippery at all. We walked in the footsteps of the attacking Yankees up Hanover Street to the killing fields at the base of Marye's Heights and then retreated to the warm & friendly confines of the Blarney Stone pub downtown for a good Irish lunch. We climbed Lee's Hill and drove to Prospect Hill at the far end of the Rebel lines to discuss the one Union breakthrough of the day, however aborted it turned out. We finished right on schedule so we were all able to keep our evening appointments.

    January 26, 2013

  • Tom

    Always outstanding when Maestro Supremo is in charge.

    January 26, 2013

  • Craig H.

    Lorie, we have plenty of drivers, so sure. See you tomorrow at 9 inside King Street Metro station.

    January 25, 2013

  • Craig H.

    I just spoke with the National Park Service staff at Fredericksburg Battlefield, and they assure me the battlefield roads and trails are open. I trust this evening's dusting of snow won't make things much worse. There are currently about a dozen of us signed up for this outing, including plenty of potential drivers. For our carpool, I hope to use the cars with the most room and the best winter-worthy tires. We should all be heavily padded for the cold with winter-worthy footwear. Most of our walking will be on sidewalks or other pavement, but such surfaces can be tricky when ice and snow are around.

    Since we'll be lunching at an Irish pub downtown, you needn't bring a lunch, but bring beverages and any snacks you'll need to boost your energy in the cold.

    I hope to finish between 4 and 4:30, which would put us back at King Street NLT 6.

    January 25, 2013

  • Craig H.

    Contrary to its originally announced plans, Metro will not close any portion of the Red Line this weekend. There will be single-tracking downtown, so allow extra time if you're coming to King Street by Metro.

    January 24, 2013

  • Craig H.

    Debora, meet us inside the Visitor Center at 706 Caroline Street at 10:15.

    January 22, 2013

  • Debora

    Hi Craig: At what time should I meet you at the Visitor Center?

    January 22, 2013

  • Craig H.

    Yes, Stephanie, the hike is in Fredericksburg, in two parts. The first part will go through the heart of Downtown, from the Rappahannock to Marye's Heights. After lunch we'll drive just outside of town for the second part of the hike. You can meet us inside the Visitor Center, 706 Caroline Street, around 10:15. Please RSVP if that will work for you.

    January 14, 2013

  • stephanie

    I'm a bit confused .. Is the hike in Fredericksburg? If so, It would be more convenient to meet there. Where / what time would you be getting there?

    January 14, 2013

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