Tuesday, January 22, 2013
Since nearly losing Tim to exposure during our cold weather camping trip to Spy Rock, our ragtag crew has not officially taken a trip together. This year, however, Jeremy assembled the boys for a trip to his new hometown - Blacksburg, VA.
John and I set out in my Jeep while Ellis drove from Richmond to Charlottesville, where he retrieved Tristan. Our final two members, Andrew and Brian, made the drive from DC.
After a night at Jeremy's house, we studied the Nat'l Geo maps and decided to try to reach the White Rocks Campground within the George Washington National Forest. The drive was snowy and we left vehicles parked at varying "depths" along the way. Brian's Honda met its match early on, so we parked it at Mountain Lake Hotel, the location of Dirty Dancing.
Ellis muscled his Honda through snow, mud, and a few streams before finally succumbing to the elements. His Honda threw in the towel about two miles from the campsite. I continued in my Jeep to the campsite, dropped off Jeremy and John, then returned for the rest of the group. It was a lot of driving, but sliding along the snowy roads was great fun.
Once assembled at the campsite, we set ourselves to the task of building a fire and setting up tents. Jeremy set himself to the task of drinking, and subsequently passed out around 7pm! Luckily, however, Jeremy did begin his famous beef stew before retiring. We tended the stew and promptly devoured it as we sat by the fire.
After the stew, we hiked along the camp road, placing the first footprints in the snow. The next morning we played on dual slack lines before packing up and transporting members to their respective vehicles. One last meal in Blacksburg was our jumping-off point, from which we headed home. >br>
Thursday, January 10, 2013
When I heard the deal that the VCU Outdoor Adventure Program (OAP) had secured for their winter trip, I hurried to sign up. The five day, six night trip included everything, including four days of lift access at Keystone, Breckenridge, Vail, and Beaver Creek.
Conditions weren't phenomenal, but despite the few bare spots the riding was great!