We were able to give away several of our 90-mile patches for the North River District challenge this month. Many of the participants completing this month did so through their trail maintenance. Thank you so much for keeping these trails looking great!
We have two opportunities this month to help you with the challenge.
*Saturday February 3rd: Trimble Mountain Trail Hike and Blowdown Removal Demonstration
*Saturday February 17th: Monthly Shenandoah Mountain Trail Crew Work Trip Upper Georgia Camp Trail
Check our February schedule for more information on these events.
You can also get out and hike the trails on your own. Hikes do not need to be on organized PATC outings.
For more information on our challenge, click on the link below.
Here they are helping to clear a blowdown!
Pictured below with other North River Trail Maintainers: Tim Hupp (first on the left) and Gary Flynn (second on the right).
The Shenandoah Mountain Trail Crew recently started scheduling regular monthly work trips to provide additional support for PATC North River District maintainers and trails. A team of trail maintainers, led by Judy Bartlett, is organizing these monthly work trips to address things like erosion, trail slippage, invasive plants, brushing, and signage. An email message went out last month asking NRD maintainers where they could use a few extra helping hands. Trails without an assigned maintainer are being inspected for potential work. The worktrips will be announced as they are scheduled in the monthly SSVC hike schedule along with contact information. Training will be provided and all PATC members are welcome.
PATC North River District and Shenandoah Mountain are located in the George Washington National Forest west of Harrisonburg and Staunton. PATC currently maintains about ninety-five miles of trails there. They offer a change of experience and surroundings to the much more crowded Shenandoah National Park, requiring neither an entrance fee nor back country camping registration or fee. Much of the area is included in the proposed Shenandoah Mountain National Scenic Area, now awaiting approval in Congress, and offers a wealth of recreational opportunities in an area with diverse wildlife. For more information about the area, visit the Friends of Shenandoah Mountain web page at https://www.friendsofshenandoahmountain.org/
To learn more about the Shenandoah Mountain Trail Crew, the trails they maintain, and to sign up for SMTC activity notifications, visit
Tony Hedlesky is the winner of our toboggan for the January Winter Hike Challenge. Tony joined us on our Chimney Hollow Trail hike on January 21. Tony can wear his hat on his Appalachian Trail thru-hike that he plans to begin near the end of February.
Our next drawing will be at the end of February.
All you need to do is join us for a hike or walkabout this month to enter. We will have one winner each month through March and a grand prize winner at the end of winter.
Hope to see everyone on the trail.
Thanks to everyone that participated in our hiking survey. The results have been shared with our hike leaders as we prepare for future hikes. We appreciate your feedback and suggestions. Here are some of the results:
* the most popular length of hike is between 4-7 miles
* the most popular difficulty of trail is those with typical 10-12% moderate grade followed closely by a rolling trail
*the most popular speed of hiking is a moderate pace between 2.1 and 2.5 mph
*more people preferred to take a little break every 30 minutes or so
*we love hiking in Shenandoah National Park's south district
*the most popular day for hiking was Saturday, but it was a close competition for all days
*most everyone likes to start hiking in the morning with times in/around 9:00 am
*thank you to those that are willing to help carpool :-)
*lots of us live in the Harrisonburg area
*we had a few new people interested in leading hikes for us. Yay!!!
* Some of your suggested hikes appeared on our February schedule
If you would like to see the complete survey results or if you have other suggestions for hikes, please email us at email@example.com
Russ Eanes joined us on our December walkabout in Staunton. He asked if we might be able to advertise a walk he is leading in Italy this spring.
Here is a link to the walk on Pilgrim Paths.
Here's a short write-up from Russ:
Join me April 27-May 9, on a trekking tour from Rieti to Assisi, a wonderful introduction to the Way of St. Francis, a new pilgrim pathway in Italy.
This tour is designed as an excellent introduction to this beautiful and spiritual pathway. Encompassing hilltop towns, thrilling views and charming villages and cities, it winds its way from the Rieti Valley into Umbria, the "Green Heart of Italy," ending up in Assisi, the birthplace of St. Francis.
Over thirteen days of walking, discover some of the best delights that Italy has to offer. Lodging, breakfasts and dinners are all included in this package, along with an expert Italian tour guide, luggage transfer and a support van, and stories of St. Francis, told by Russ Eanes, author of Pilgrim Pathways to Assisi.
Russ Eanes: firstname.lastname@example.org