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New Meetup: A Walk in the Clouds...Old Rag Mountain – Shenandoah Nat’l Park, Etlan, VA

From: albert
Sent on: Thursday, September 16, 2010 8:56 PM
When: Saturday, October 23,[masked]:00 AM

Where: Vienna/Fairfax-GMU Metro Station (North Parking Garage) - Orange Line
2900 Nutley St.
Fairfax, VA 22031

Hey Super Troopers!!!

Well, this isn?t exactly a leisurely, romantic walk in the clouds?it?s more of a strenuous, uphill, physical hike. We'll have to get physical. So, as my childhood crush Olivia Newton-John would say: Let's get physical, physical?I wanna get physical, let's get into physical?Let me hear your body talk...Your body talk, let me hear your body talk! (oh the ?80s?I love that song!)

With its challenging ascent and gorgeous, sweeping 360-degree views at its summit (3,291 feet), Old Rag is the best hike in Shenandoah National Park! As a bonus, we?ll be going during the peak fall foliage season!!

This is a very challenging hike with an elevation gain of 2200 ft. It should take us about 4-5 hours (8.8-miles of smiles) to complete. To make this hike more enjoyable, we?ll take our time going up and down the mountain. Here's a map of our route: Old Rag Circuit Hike.

Our hike will start with a 2-mile ascent along the Ridge Trail. The first mile is pretty simple - a winding trail that pushes us upwards. At about mile 1.2, the real fun begins, when we run into a .9-mile stretch of rock scramble with a consistent incline. The rock scrambling isn?t easy, but isn?t incredibly tough either. But it?s definitely a total-body workout (it?ll be a great way to firm up your gluteus maximus!).

At the top, we'll stay a while to relax, to have lunch, to gaze across the horizon in wonder, and to enjoy the beautiful colors of the autumn. The summit is a cool place with its huge granite boulders that will lend an air of adventure to our lunch break.

Our relatively easy decent will take us down the backside of the mountain via the Saddle Trail (2 miles) and the Fire Road (2.5 miles). At the end of the hike, you?ll be happy to say, ?I hiked the Old Rag!? or you'll be unhappy and want to hurt me (I hope it's the former).

As you know--we care about you! We don?t want you to get hurt or get yourself into any trouble, but it?s ultimately up to you to keep yourself safe up there. You can do this by knowing your limits, so make sure you are physically able to do this hike. If you have doubts about your physical ability, you might want to try one of our less strenuous walks/hikes (Susan has a beautiful walk along Burke Lake lined up!). --That being said, as your fearless (and favorite) assistant organizer, I know you can do it if you do three things: believe you can, believe you can, and believe you can. And don?t worry?you?ll be fine, as I will see you through.

I already know some of you, my fellow dating machines, who have hot dates lined up every Saturday night are going to ask?we?ll be back around 6:00pm.

Driving: We?ll meet up at 9:00am at the Vienna Metro Station-NORTH parking garage, first level(Orange Line) for carpooling purposes. From here, we'll head west towards the mountains (75 miles, 90 minutes). If you're running late, please call me...we'll wait for you! No worries. I'm always late myself.

What to bring: yourself, plenty of water (2 liters), a good lunch, some fruit, a granola bar or two, $8.00 for the park entrance fee, comfy hiking shoes, and cool sunglasses. As always, if you have questions, need a ride, going to be late, or just want to say hello, my number is (301) 712-5880.

Hope you'll come to the dance!

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