38.367259, -79.164497, North River, VA
After much discussion I will be moving this to the spring. There are river crossings and with the cold weather and fire ban in GWNF until Feb 2017, this may be better in warmer weather. Date is subject to change - but I want to make this loop happen.
We will be doing the Wild Oak Loop in GWNF. The hike itself is moderate/difficult hike with long days. so it is good for those that have lots of hiking experience but not much intense long distance bp experience. A large chunk of the hike is on the ridge line where there is no water, so we will need to carry a few liters on those stretches. I will be scoping out campsites on the map near water, but be prepared to carry what you need depending upon where we sleep.
Arrive Friday - camp at trailhead near the water or hike in a few miles to another campsite. This would be best as we could knock out a few miles so that Sat wont be as long
Saturday - The bulk of the hiking will be done this day. There will be water along the way and near where we camp. We can camp at the bottom of the ridge at Camp Todd where there is a river, or climb up and sleep on top for the night. 12-16 miles
Sunday - hike along the ridge and get back to the car in the early afternoon 8-10
Here is a link to some of the route descriptions online, though I will be using a map so it may be different on the day of - Nat Geo # 791
http://www.backpacker.com/trips/district-of-columbia/washington-d-c/washington-dc-wild-oak-loop/#bp=0/img1 ( http://www.backpacker.com/trips/district-of-columbia/washington-d-c/washington-dc-wild-oak-loop/#bp=0/img1 )
The trail head is about 2 hr 40 min from the DC area. We can carpool for those that can leave a little earlier. The plan is to try and pull out by 3pm or so. Here are the directions from Centreville Park & Ride:
https://www.google.com/maps/dir/Centreville+Park+%26+Ride,+Early+Autumn+Drive,+Centreville,+VA/38.367259,-firstname.lastname@example.org,-78.8715505,9z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m8!4m7!1m5!1m1!1s0x89b6449119065775:0x3d3e139d818567f2!2m2!1d-77.4552205!2d38.835952!1m0?hl=en ( https://www.google.com/maps/dir/Centreville+Park+%26+Ride,+Early+Autumn+Drive,+Centreville,+VA/38.367259,-email@example.com,-78.8715505,9z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m8!4m7!1m5!1m1!1s0x89b6449119065775:0x3d3e139d818567f2!2m2!1d-77.4552205!2d38.835952!1m0?hl=en )
What you need - besides the basics, bring layers, water filters, plenty of food, at least a 30 degree bag and sleeping pad. Some suggestions are below.
If you have not been backpacking please let me know as I need to ensure you have the proper gear. Here are some sites on rei that help build a gear list