Posted by: SC Trails at 3:48PM PST on May 26, 2009
If you're an Ohio hiker, we hope you're up for the 2009 Cuyahoga Challenge
. This novel event just came to our attention and we think it's a great idea. If you don't live in Ohio, it's the kind of challenge you might want to replicate in your own neck of the woods (or desert, or coast range...).
Participants register for the Challenge, and then have from June 1 to September 20 to hike at least 10 of 12 designated trails. Some folks hike the trails, some run them all, and others walk their dogs.
Forms, which can be downloaded from the Cuyahoga Valley National Park Association's website, can be validated at the Association's Trail Mix store, or by park rangers. Those who are successful will receive a commemorative patch designed by Akron artist Chuck Ayers.
If you're familiar with these trails or others in Ohio, please add them to our Sierra Club Trails collection!
Posted by: SC Trails at 4:42PM PST on May 22, 2009
If you click on "Find a Trail" and search on the great state of Pennsylvania, you'll discover more than a dozen gorgeous trails -- all of which (at this writing, at least) were posted by David Meiser
As a traveler who's been to Pennsylvania just once (on a family trip when I was in third grade), I had no idea the state was so lush, with so many beautiful places to explore. Many of Dave's trails include photos of the area in the trail's photo gallery. My favorite one is the Ringing Rocks Trail, which includes a great video of people banging on rocks with hammers. Some ring, some don't -- who knew?
Take a look at Dave's trails, then click on his profile on one of his trail pages and ask him to be your friend. He's a Trails rock star!
We've got some outdoor gear that we'll be sending off to super-active community members, and Dave will receive something soon.
Posted by: SC Trails at 3:57PM PST on May 22, 2009
My eagerness to please my camping companions got me into a little trouble last weekend.
We were on an overnight river trip on the East Fork of the Carson in the Sierra Nevada. It's a gorgeous stretch of river -- Class 2, snow-covered peaks in the distance, crystal clear water -- and we'd spent the night on a wide beach that easily accommodated our group of 10.
As everyone packed their gear on Sunday morning and began loading boats, I thought I'd provide the helpful service of filtering river water and filling bottles. I poked around the camp, snagging every water bottle I found. Filled the empties and topped off those that were partially filled.
I was packing up the last of my stuff when I got the news.
"Remember how Deb made those fabulous gin and tonics last night?" someone asked. Why, yes I did!
"Well, you topped off her water bottle full of Bombay Sapphire Gin with river water....."
Big mistake. Huge. Looks like I'm bringing the gin on the next river trip.
Posted by: SC Trails at 2:16PM PST on May 15, 2009
Bill Vanderberg, a school administrator in Los Angeles, loves to introduce inner city kids to something they've never seen before: nature. Some have never stuck a toe in the ocean, or walked a trail, or looked straight up at a massive rock face like those in Yosemite. That is, until they joined Bill's Eco Club at Crenshaw High School. And that changed their lives forever.
This morning on the CBS Early Show, Bill was honored as one of "Early's Angels," and that's exactly what he is. You've got to watch the 10-minute clip -- it's amazing, inspiring, tears-inducing stuff.
We at the Sierra Club already knew about Bill because he's one of the lead volunteer working with our Building Bridges to the Outdoors program. Sierra magazine featured Bill and some of his students in an article a couple of years ago.
Watch the CBS clip and you'll meet Leo Morazan, who got caught in an act of vandalism three years and was given a second chance by joining Bill's Eco Club. Leo went on to be president of the club, is on the honor roll, and is college-bound with the dream of being a park ranger. "I probably wouldn't even be able to graduate if it weren't for him," he says of Bill.
And Cynthia Rivas, who'd never spent time in nature, and had no plans to go to college -- until Angel Bill came into her life. Now she's at U.C. Berkeley, double-majoring in Conservation Resource Studies and Forestry. She hopes to get a master's degree in Environmental Management at Yale.
You want to feel some hope for the future? Watch the clip. And next time you get outside--take a teenager with you!
Posted by: SC Trails at 9:37AM PST on May 15, 2009
If you love birds, there's a thread going in our Forums about favorite birdwatching books. Some great suggestions have been made, if I do say so myself. I suggested "Birding Babylon," written by Jonathan Trouern-Trend, a birder who made observations and blogged about birds while he was a soldier in Iraq.
Check out the conversation!
Posted by: SC Trails at 9:24AM PST on May 15, 2009
If you love Yosemite National Park, here's a great volunteer opportunity for you. LeConte Memorial Lodge is a 105-year-old
visitor center, environmental education center, and library operated by the
Sierra Club in Yosemite
National Park. We are
looking for Sierra Club members who have visited Yosemite
at least once within the last five years and are interested in volunteering
for one week between May 2nd and September 26th.
operation are from 10 am - 4 pm, Weds.-Sun, and 7:30 - 10 pm for weekend
evening programs on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. All volunteers arrive
on Saturday by 3:00 pm and volunteer at the lodge that evening, and depart the
following Saturday between 1 and 4 pm, after volunteering.
place on Sunday morning at 9:00 am. Volunteers enjoy free entrance to Yosemite National Park, free camping at the
campsite during the time they volunteer, and Monday and Tuesday to spend at
their leisure. To provide the best opportunity for visitors, excellent
communication skills are essential. For more information, click here or contact Bonnie Gisel, the LeConte Lodge curator, at firstname.lastname@example.org or
If you go, join the Yosemite Lovers Group here on Sierra Club Trails, and share your experience!