Downeast Maine, Part 4 (Final) – Oceanarium, and Points East

This is the last installment of our summer Maine adventure.  (Hooray, the crowd goes wild!) At this point, I was facing a little bit of mutiny from the boys.  "No hiking today".  Well, we all have our limits.  So instead, we went to the Oceanarium, home of the US's only lobster hatchery, and some good…Read more Downeast Maine, Part 4 (Final) – Oceanarium, and Points East

Downeast Maine, Part 3 – Schoodic Peninsula and Jordan Pond

On our third excursion, we found a quiet corner of Acadia.  The Schoodic Peninsula lies about 20 miles east of Mount Desert Island, where Bar Harbor and the primary chunk of Acadia National Park are located.  Schoodic is a quieter place, without the height and drama of large mountains and freshwater ponds, but with the…Read more Downeast Maine, Part 3 – Schoodic Peninsula and Jordan Pond

Downeast Maine, Part 1 – Acadia

Back in August, I posted a quick synopsis of a trip we took to the Bar Harbor, ME area.  I'm finally getting around to reviewing footage from that trip and sharing some of the highlights via YouTube. Here's the first installment - a quick hit at some Acadia highlights: Thunder Hole, Otter Creek, Cadillac Mountain, …Read more Downeast Maine, Part 1 – Acadia

Orienteering – Step Up Your Navigation Game

What does this little snippet of a map mean to you? If you're familiar with topographical maps, it may be relatively easy to see a creek valley (blue line) with a wide bottom and intermittent flooding (blue shading, also known as a marsh).  Brown lines show elevation contours that indicate changes in elevation, and close…Read more Orienteering – Step Up Your Navigation Game

Dayhike: Hawksbill, Shenandoah National Park, VA

Rising above the very deep valley of East Hawksbill Creek, Hawksbill is the tallest mountain in Shenandoah National Park, standing at 4,049 ft above sea level, and beating out neighboring Stony Man by 38 feet.  Aside from its superlative height within the park, its dramatic prominence over its namesake creek (over 2,000 feet) makes Hawksbill…Read more Dayhike: Hawksbill, Shenandoah National Park, VA

Dayhike: Bearfence Mountain, Shenandoah National Park, Virginia

A short, but extremely scenic and exhilarating scramble over boulders and cliffs to the rocky ridgeline of Bearfence Mountain at 3,545 feet. From the Bearfence Parking area on Skyline Drive (Mile 55.5), take the blue-blazed Bearfence trail up and over the cliffs.  Keep your hands free, and be ready to climb.  The view on top…Read more Dayhike: Bearfence Mountain, Shenandoah National Park, Virginia

White Oak River, NC

Far off among the trees, a pileated woodpecker drums on a dead snag.  Turtles abandon their sunny logs and disappear into the dark water.  Butterflies flit over a half-acre of pickerelweed, marsh mallow, and cardinal flower blooms, while a great blue heron stands in the shallows, looking to catch its next meal.  The water, stained…Read more White Oak River, NC