Sat, May 19 2012 - Green Ridge! by 15-mile Creek (View Original Event Details)|
All I can say is that this was a perfect little camping trip for a perfect little weekend. The closures at nearby Catoctin Mountain Park and Cunningham Falls SP due to the G8 crowded the Green Ridge Visitor’s Center office with weekenders reserving many a campsites, but that didn’t seem to impact the trails at all. We pretty much had the place to ourselves! Colin and I took a gamble with Paula that sites #9 and 10 would be good—and they were. They were the perfect place to access our jaunt down the steep slopes to the blue trail as it meandered along the rich floodplains Pine Lick, a small tributary of Fifteen Mile Creek.
Newcomer Kendra was exited to lend her driving skills (and speed) to the carpool. Kendra was getting back into hiking and camping after many, many years away. She and Shannon shared a tent I loaned them. But suddenly she had second thoughts when Shannon discovered a small black widow spider at the entrance to the tent just before bedtime. Well, needless to say, it was off to sleep in the car. But before too long she realized that there were at least a few daddy long legs inside there, too (like I told her, LOL). After the mild scare and freezing to death, she decided the tent was the place to be.
The hike itself was great. Recent rains had refreshed the dry forests of this low-elevation sector of the ridge and valley mountains. Water levels were high enough to force everyone to make many, many stream crossings along Pine Lick and Fifteen Mile Creek. The abandoned “cutback” trail up the mountain where Fifteen Mile Creek creates a gap was easily found this time. We took a brief brake in the hike to cool off in the deep pools, before I made everyone do a wet stream crossing (I guess I get a kick out of making people cross rivers). Hey, at least everyone remembered his or her hiking boots….And no one else nearly fell down a 50 foot cliff and made everyone wait as an attempt was made to retrieve his map…not that it was found or anything….
Fajitas satisfied more than satisfactorily for dinner and Shannon prepped everyone with smores. First-timer Erik Tesnau made lots of tea. No one will forget the place of Cringer and Panthor in the place of 1980’s kid pantheon again. We should also never forget Rob’s role in removing the World of Warcraft obsessed student from UMCP facilities well past semester’s end. Nor will anyone else challenge James Petersen’s true inner self: the Terminator/Total Recall version of Arnold. Quote of the weekend: “…and here I’m on Mars, it looks my eyes are about to pop out, but they don’t pop out…”