Calendar of Activities

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Activities – September 2016

Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate,  “M” Limited to FTA members only/“L” Leisurely,  “M” Moderately difficult,  “S” Strenuous.

Sept. 2 Fri. M/L Walkabout – Thomasville. We often drive through the city on our way to another designation and want to stop to “smell the roses.” Now is the time to actually discover or get reconnected with this quaint historic town known as the “City of Roses” just a short drive north of Tallahassee. Enjoy a leisurely late afternoon stroll through the historic parts of Thomasville, paying tribute to the oldest live oak, viewing outside architecture/gardens of the Victorian homes and churches then stopping to grab a bite to eat at one of our favorite places – George and Louie’s! Wear comfortable shoes, casual clothing and bring water. After dinner at 7:30 PM, enjoy the First Friday Concert featuring “The Roy Baker Band.” The concert is FREE! Go to www.thomasvillega.com for more information. For the concert, bring your lawn chair or blanket and spend a fun evening in Downtown Thomasville. FTA MEMBERS ONLY. LIMIT 12 PEOPLE. Contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 Griffindd@aol.com

Sep. 5, 7, 12, 14, 19, 21, 26, 28 Mon. & Wed. P/M Stress Buster Brisk Walks! Join us on our quest to get a bit healthier and slow down the muffin tops! We have been walking 2X a week for 3+ years to burn calories, de-stress and socialize. All information is at “meetup”. Check out date and meeting locations and any last minute announcements before starting out. Mondays we will walk along the Miccosukee Greenway (4-8 miles) and Wednesdays we walk (4 miles) on one of the Lafayette Heritage trails. Meet near the restroom. Come at 5:15 and be ready to hike at 5:30 SHARP. Bring flashlight/ headlamp, snack (if needed), and water. Dress in layers. We will attempt to maintain a pace of 3.0 – 3.2 mph. Come hydrated. Distance and speed is up to you and how you feel that particular day! Walk your own walk. Before starting out, check for dates, meeting location, map, last-minute instructions, and RSVP on our Meetup site http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking  Contact: Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 griffindd@aol.com

Sept. 13 Tue. P/L Chapter Meeting: USED GEAR SALE, VOLUNTEER AWARDS, “TRAIN FOR THE TRAIL.” 6:30 p.m.–If you have used gear for sale, arrive early to get it displayed. 6:00 p.m.–Annual used gear sale–gear for hiking, backpacking, camping, cycling, and paddling! 7:00 p.m.–Presentation of our annual Volunteer Recognition Awards. 7:30 p.m.–PROGRAM: What can you do off the trail, in the way of exercise, to enhance your hiking experience? In this interactive session, exercise physiologist and hiker, David Wheeler, will help you develop a fitness strategy to train for the trail. This program will combine lecture and discussion with active participation. Come dressed and prepared to exercise. Mats will be provided. David is Wellness & Health Recovery Coordinator at Premier Health & Fitness Center and provides fitness training & health coaching for those contending with health challenges and for healthy adults who want to stay that way. Location TBA.

Sep. 16  Fri. P/L Moon Over Miccosukee Night Hike! See a 7-mile section of Miccosukee Greenway in unique way, cast in shadows and moonlight. We may meet at 5:30 for dinner before heading over to meet the group at 7:30 PM at the Crump Road trailhead (across the street from the brick house at 4955 Crump Road) and carpool to the  Fleischman Road trailhead to begin our hike. The first 1.5 miles of the trail are natural path. The remainder of the pathway is broad level gravel. The white stones will make following the path an easy task. Wear comfortable closed shoes and bring water, a flashlight or headlamp, and bug spray. Before starting out, check for dates, meeting location, map, last-minute instructions, and RSVP on our Meetup site http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-HikingContact: Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 griffindd@aol.com

Sep. 23-25 Fri-Sun. M/M 4th Annual Trail Skills Training. The Florida Trail Association is hosting its 4th annual Trail Skills Training from 6 p.m. Friday to 6 p.m. Sunday at Camp LaNoChe, 41940 Boy Scout Rd., Paisley, FL, which is located north of Orlando, adjacent to the Ocala National Forest. Join us to learn  a variety of trail skills, through hands-on training and practical scenarios, that will better prepare you for volunteering on the Florida Trail (FNST)! We will provide food, housing, and instruction. This training is provided at no cost to you! At this event, you’ll have the opportunity to meet and connect with the Florida Trail Association staff and other volunteers from across the state. It’s a great opportunity to network, learn, and have some fun! Sessions include: crew leader training; how to provide food for your trail maintainers; practical trail maintenance training; how to respond to emergency situations; and effective tools and methods for community outreach and fundraising. There will also be sessions on preventative maintenance for your mechanized equipment, and how to report the work that you do on the trail and why it’s important! Feel free to bring your favorite blazing tools and personal protection equipment (hard hats, gloves, etc.) to show us what you use to make the perfect blaze! Meals are provided. Camping Type: Tent sites, bunkhouses (single-gender), and RV (no hookup) sites are available, and the camp has public shower and bathroom facilities. Please register based on whether or not you are staying in a bunkhouse, RV camping, tent camping, or sharing someone’s RV or tent. Please Note: RV camping with hookups (water, sewage, electric) is available at the Clearwater Lake Recreation Area, Ocala National Forest. You are responsible for making your own reservations, and space is limited to first-come, first-served. This type of RV camping is not included in our event package, and is provided to you at an additional cost. To register for this type of RV camping visit Recreation.gov. This is a 18+ event. Check http://www.floridatrail.org/volunteer/volunteeropportunities for registration link when it becomes available.

Activities – August 2016

Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate,  “M” Limited to FTA members only/“L” Leisurely,  “M” Moderately difficult,  “S” Strenuous.

Aug 1, 3, 10, 15, 17, 22, 24, 29, 31 Mon. & Wed. P/M Stress Buster Brisk Walks! Join us on our quest to get a bit healthier and slow down the muffin tops! We have been walking 2X a week for 3+ years to burn calories, de-stress and socialize. All information is at “meetup”. Check out date and meeting locations and any last minute announcements before starting out. Mondays we will walk along the Miccosukee Greenway (4-8 miles) and Wednesdays we walk (4 miles) on one of the Lafayette Heritage trails. Meet near the restroom. Come at 5:15 and be ready to hike at 5:30 SHARP. Bring flashlight/headlamp, snack (if needed), and water. Dress in layers. We will attempt to maintain a pace of 3.0 – 3.2 mph. Come hydrated. Distance and speed is up to you and how you feel that particular day! Walk your own walk. Before starting out, check for dates, meeting location, map, last-minute instructions, and RSVP on our Meetup site http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking Contact: Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 griffindd@aol.com

Aug. 5 Fri. P/L Spring Creek/Chipola River Paddle. Leisurely 4.5-mile paddle down the crystalline waterways of Spring Creek into the Chipola River through floodplain and cypress-lined shoreline seeing lot of birds and fish along the way. What a way to escape the summer heat! Plan to enjoy a late lunch/early dinner at a restaurant in Marianna before returning to Tallahassee. Limit=None canoes/kayaks. Contact: Gary Sisco (850) 545-4776 gsisco42@yahoo.com or Gwen Beatty (850) 539-6027 gfbeatty@yahoo.com

Aug. 19 Fri. P/L Wine, Women and Walking! Downtown Tallahassee. Start off the weekend with a leisurely 3-mile stroll downtown walking past historical places and through Cascades Park. Bring your favorite wine (or other beverage of choice), chair/blanket and an appetizer to share after the walk. Meet other fabulous women who like to walk-hike-backpack too. Meet 5:30 PM at the DOT Credit Union Parking Lot adjacent to Cascades Park (corner of Myers Park Road and Suwannee). Wear comfortable walking shoes/light colored clothes. Contact: Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 griffindd@aol.com

Activities – July 2016

Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate,  “M” Limited to FTA members only/“L” Leisurely,  “M” Moderately difficult,  “S” Strenuous.

July 12 P/L “SOCIAL MEETING and TRAIL TALK.” Come meet fellow trail enthusiasts who want to share their experiences. Meet others who share your dream to explore and want to plan a future event but don’t want to go it alone. Share your favorite hike/paddle trails by bringing your guidebooks / maps / scrapbooks and any upcoming backpacking/hiking/paddling plans. Help others working on their bucket list of trails like the FNST, AT, PCT, Santiago de Compostela, other European trails, or perhaps a paddle down the Apalachicola River. Want to take your first day hike or backpacking trip, or paddle our rivers? Start planning your adventures! Grab dinner and a beer/wine and meet in a relaxed atmosphere on the patio at Milano’s Pizzeria located at 514 W. Tharpe St. (in the SW corner of Northwood Centre), Tallahassee at 6:30 p.m

July 13, 18, 20, 25, and 27 Mon. & Wed. P/M Stress Buster Brisk Walks! Join us on our quest to get a bit healthier and slow down the muffin tops! We have been walking 2X a week for 3+ years to burn calories, de-stress and socialize. All information is at “meetup”. Check out date and meeting locations and any last minute announcements before starting out. Mondays we will walk along the Miccosukee Greenway (4-8 miles) and Wednesdays we walk (4 miles) on one of the Lafayette Heritage trails. Meet near the restroom. Come at 5:15 and be ready to hike at 5:30 SHARP. Bring flashlight/headlamp, snack (if needed), and water. Dress in layers. We will attempt to maintain a pace of 3.0 – 3.2 mph. Come hydrated. Distance and speed is up to you and how you feel that particular day! Walk your own walk. Before starting out, check for dates, meeting location, map, last-minute instructions, and RSVP on our Meetup site http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking Contact: Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 griffindd@aol.com

July 16 Sat. M/L FTA Board of Directors Meeting. 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Hampton Inn and Suites, 20 Summit Oak Place, Deland, FL. Open to all FTA members. Observe the governing process of our organization. Attend and get a broader picture of FTA and the FNST.

July 22 Fri. P/L Econfina Creek Day Paddle. Leisurely 6 mile section paddle of beautiful Econfina creek in Bay County. The creek is highlighted by high limestone bluffs, cascades of ferns & crystal clear springs. We’ll enjoy a late lunch at a local restaurant before returning to Tallahassee. Limit 12 canoes/kayaks. Contact: Gary Sisco (850) 545-4776 gsisco42@yahoo.com or Gwen Beatty (850) 539-6027 gfbeatty@yahoo.com

July 30 Sat. P/M Wacissa River and Slave Canal Paddle. A wilderness paddle on the Wacissa River and Slave Canal. Expect many pullovers and low trees on this float through bottomland hardwood forest. Limit 15 canoes/kayaks. Contact: Kent Wimmer (850) 528-5261 klwimmer2@gmail.com

Activities – June 2016

Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate,  “M” Limited to FTA members only/“L” Leisurely,  “M” Moderately difficult,  “S” Strenuous.

Jun. 2 Thur. P/L Triple-S Hike: Slow, Short, Stroll. See April 7 for details.

Jun. 4 Sat. P/M NATIONAL TRAILS DAY –Celebrate the Day at Ft Braden Trails where we will host our annual National Trails Day.  A long hike, a short interpretative hike. Exhibits, refreshments and more. Enjoy the morning starting at 8:30 am at the Ft Braden Trailhead on Highway 20 – a mile west of Coe Landing Rd.  Dress for the weather, wear hiking shoes and bring water, your medications, snacks, bug spray and sun screen.  More detailed information to be provided as the event evolves. Contact Howard Pardue (850) 386-1494 hpardue@comcast.net

Jun. 12 Sun. P/M Apalachicola National Forest – West Trail Care. Clearing brush, limbs and repainting blazes. Contact Al Ingle 850-509-1162 al@captalavionics.com

Jun. 14 Tue. P/L Chapter Meeting: New Guide to Old Florida Attractions. Many of Florida’s classic attractions still exist–and even thrive–in the shadow of mega- theme parks and interstate highways. A New Guide to Old Florida Attractions, Doug Alderson’s newest book, takes you to these places and more on an unforgettable journey across the Sunshine State. In this program, discover what Florida’s golden age of tourism was, and still is, all about–magical, beautiful and fun! Leroy Collins main library, Tallahassee. Parking/entrance are in the 200 block of CALL STREET. Enter building, turn left, and go down the hallway to Program Room A. Contact: Liz Sparks (850) 570 5950 liz.aparks57@gmail.com

Jun. 15 Wed. P/L Triple-S Hike: Slow, Short, Stroll. See April 7 for details.

Jun. 26 Sun. P/L Junior Trail Trekker Family Hike and Nature Journaling at Phipps Park. On this family and child friendly hike, participants will be introduced to an element of native Floridian ecology. Subject is dependent on what will be seasonally appropriate but can range from plant and bird identification to wildlife habitats. All ages welcome (activity can be catered to suit multiple ages), parent or guardian required to accompany child. The hike will be between 1-2 miles and take 1-2 hours. Please bring a sketchbook or blank paper for yourself and your child, as well as water and snacks. Trail is not stroller suitable–babywearing is encouraged. LIMIT 10 FAMILIES. To sign up, contact Ashley Hopkins (850) 339-3488 hello.kiddo@gmail.com

Activities – May 2016

Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate,  “M” Limited to FTA members only/“L” Leisurely,  “M” Moderately difficult,  “S” Strenuous.

May 1 Sun. P/L-M “Urban Walk: Red Hills Ramble.” Enjoy up to a 12 mile ramble along Old Centerville Road to the state line (canopied road, half on paved road and half on hard packed clay.) You can choose to walk the distance/speed you choose then turn around and head back to your car! Wear comfortable clothes, walking shoes and bring water/trail snacks for several hours. Meet at 9:30 a.m., at Bradley’s Country Store (park on west side of store under oaks with swing) where we will begin/end our walk. Enjoy a sausage dog at Bradley’s, moon pie and an RC cola at the picnic tables under the oaks – you earned it! No limit. Contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 griffindd@aol.com

May 2, 4, 9, 11, 16 Mon. & Wed. P/M Stress Buster Brisk Walks! Join us on our quest to get a bit healthier and slow down the muffin tops!We have been walking 2X a week for three years to burn calories, destress and socialize.   All information is at meetup – check out dates and meeting locations and any last minute announcements before starting out! Mondays we walk along the Miccosukee Greenway (4-8 miles) and Wednesdays we walk (4 miles) on one of the Lafayette Heritage trails. Come at 5:15 and be ready to hike at 5:30 SHARP. Bring flashlight/headlight, snack (if needed) and water, dress in layers for these brisk walks. We will attempt to maintain a brisk pace (3.0 – 3.2 mph). Distance and speed is up to you and how you feel that particular day! Walk Your Own Walk! No limit. Visit http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking/ for trailhead meeting location (map), and to RSVP or contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 griffindd@aol.com. Note: No Walks scheduled for the end of May – July at this time. Look for announcements of any scheduled summer walks on http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking/

May 5 Thur. P/L Triple-S Hike: Slow, Short, Stroll. See Apr. 7 for details.

May 7 Sat. P/M Line’s Tract Hike Hike 5-6 miles at Line’s Tract in Lake Talquin State Forest. Moderate pace. Bring water, snacks/lunch; dress in layers for the weather. $2.00 per person entry fee or buy an annual  pass for a vehicle and 6 passengers for $45 at https://www.floridastateforests.org/annual-day-pass. Leader: Barry Haber, co-leader: Cindy Haber (850) 284-5615 barryjhaber@hotmail.com

May 10 Tue. P/L FTA Chapter Meeting: The Many Facets of the Suwannee River. Edwin McCook, Land Manager for Suwannee River Water Management District, will discuss the changes in the river as you travel downstream from the Okeefenokee Swamp to the Gulf of Mexico. In addition, hiking, bicycling and other recreation opportunities will be covered. McCook is an avid paddler and has traveled most of the river by watercraft. He is a professional conservation photographer, member of the Suwannee Chapter of the Florida Trail Association and Suwannee Bicycle Associationwhere he leads trips. Many of his photographs are used by the SRWMD for their publications. Leroy Collins main library, Tallahassee. Parking/entrance are in the 200 block of CALL STREET. Enter building, turn left, and go down the hallway to Program Room A. Contact: Liz Sparks (850) 570 5950 liz.aparks57@gmail.com

May 15 Sun. P/L Junior Trail Trekker Family Hike and Nature Journaling at Phipps Park. On this family and child friendly hike, participants will be introduced to an element of native Floridian ecology. Subject is dependent on what will be seasonally appropriate but can range from plant and bird identification to wildlife habitats. All ages welcome (activity can be catered to suit multiple ages), parent or guardian required to accompany child. The hike will be between 1-2 miles and take 1-2 hours. Please bring a sketchbook or blank paper for yourself and your child, as well as water and snacks. Trail is not stroller suitable–babywearing is encouraged. LIMIT 10 FAMILIES. To sign up, contact Ashley Hopkins (850) 339-3488 hello.kiddo@gmail.com

May 15 Sun. P/M Apalachicola National Forest – West Trail Care. Clearing brush, limbs and repainting blazes. No limit. Contact Al Ingle 850-509-1162 al@captalavionics.com.

May 18 Wed. P/L Triple-S Hike: Slow, Short, Stroll. See April 7 for details.

May 28 Sat. P/L Hike the Florida Folk Festival. The Florida Folk Festival, said to be the longest continuously running Folk Festival in the US, is to be held Friday May 27 through Sunday May 29 (Memorial Day Weekend). It provides music, dance, storytelling, regional foodways, crafts, and more. With some 12 stages, there is a phenomenal richness of activity to enjoy. At 10 am on Saturday, Howard, long time participant in the Festival, will lead “Hike the Festival”.  He intends to provide a copy of the Festival program, hike the Florida Trail, show/locate stages-craft and food areas, and provide a glimpse of the inner workings of the Festival. Contact Howard Pardue (850) 386-1494 hpardue@comcast.net

Activities – April 2016

Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate,  “M” Limited to FTA members only/“L” Leisurely,  “M” Moderately difficult,  “S” Strenuous.

Apr. 1 Fri. M/L Wine, Women and Walking! This is no April Fools! What better way
to end the work week/start the weekend then with a leisurely 3-mile stroll downtown. Bring your favorite wine (or other beverage of choice) and an appetizer to share after the walk. Meet other fabulous women who like to walk-hike-backpack too! Meet 5:15 PM at Cascade Park parking lot (corner of Franklin, Lafayette and Suwannee across from DOT) wear comfortable walking shoes/clothes. FTA Women MEMBERS ONLY. To sign up, contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 griffindd@aol.com

Apr. 2 Sat. P/L St. George Island Spring Stroll (Hike & Beach Walk). Explore St. George Island with a short coastal scrub hike along the bay followed with an interpretive beach walk on the Gulf with a Certified Green Guide. Afterwards enjoy oysters and beverage at a restaurant on the island. LIMIT 12 PEOPLE. To sign up, contact Lori Gilbertson (850) 420-0132 FTA_trails4u.lori@aol.com

Apr. 2 Sat. P/M Bear Creek Hike. Hike 5 miles at Bear Creek Tract in Lake Talquin State Forest. Moderate pace. Bring water, snacks/lunch; dress in layers for the weather. $2.00 per person entry fee or buy an annual pass for a vehicle and 6 passengers for $45 at https://www.floridastateforests.org/ annual-day-pass. Leader: Barry Haber, co-leader Cindy Haber (850) 284-5615 barryjhaber@hotmail. com

Apr. 2 Sat. M/L FTA Annual Business Meeting with Election of Board Officers AND Chapter Council Meeting. 9 am at United Church of Gainesville, 1624 NW 5th Ave., Gainesville. Open to all Florida Trail Association members. Council members from chapters around the state discuss issues that are common to us all. These meetings give us a broader picture of FTA and the Florida National Scenic Trail. Also: Annual Business meeting and election of officers. Information: FTA office 1-877-445-3352.

Apr. 3 Sun. M/L FTA Board of Directors Meeting. 9 am at the Wyndham Garden Hotel (Formerly the Paramount Plaza Hotel), 2900 SW 13th St., Gainesville. Open to all Florida Trail Association members. Observe the governing process of our organization. These meetings give us a broader picture of FTA and the Florida National Scenic Trail.

Apr. 3 Sun. P/L Junior Trail Trekker Family Hike and Nature Journaling at Phipps Park. On this family and child friendly hike, participants will be introduced to an element of native Floridian ecology. Subject is dependent on what will be seasonally appropriate but can range from plant and bird identification to wildlife habitats. All ages welcome (activity can be catered to suit multiple ages), parent or guardian required to accompany child. The hike will be between 1-2 miles and take 1-2 hours. Please bring a sketchbook or blank paper for yourself and your child, as well as water and snacks. Trail is not stroller suitable–babywearing is encouraged. LIMIT 10 FAMILIES. To sign up, contact Ashley Hopkins (850) 339-3488 hello.kiddo@gmail.com

Apr. 3 Sun. P/M Aucilla Wildlife Management Area River Hike. Hike about 3 miles on the FNST along the Aucilla River from Walker Bridge (Burnt Bridge) to Lost Dog Rapids with return to Walker Bridge. LIMIT 20 PEOPLE. To sign up,contact James Kimbrel (850) 524-0773 Jameskimbrel@hotmail.com

Apr. 4, 6, 11, 13, 18, 20, 25, 27 Mon. & Wed. P/M Stress Buster Brisk Walks! Join us on our quest to get a bit healthier and slow down the muffin tops!We have been walking 2X a week for three years to burn calories, destress and socialize.   All information is at meetup – check out dates and meeting locations and any last minute announcements before starting out! Mondays we walk along the Miccosukee Greenway (4-8 miles) and Wednesdays we walk (4 miles) on one of the Lafayette Heritage trails. Come at 5:15 and be ready to hike at 5:30 SHARP. Bring flashlight/headlight, snack (if needed) and water, dress in layers for these brisk walks. We will attempt to maintain a brisk pace (3.0 – 3.2 mph). Distance and speed is up to you and how you feel that particular day! Walk Your Own Walk! No limit. Visit http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking/ for trailhead meeting location (map), and to RSVP or contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 griffindd@aol.com

Apr. 7 Thur. P/L TRIPLE-S HIKES: Slow, Short, Strolls. These are level 1 beginner walks–the easiest type of hike you can get–with no real inclines, they’re just a “stroll in the park.” For beginners, first-timers, those with a bit of difficulty walking too far or too fast, There are mild up-and-downs, one-plank (with handrail) bridges to cross, roots in the trail, etc., but nothing too difficult. We can stop and catch our breath and have a snack as often as anyone wants. There are a couple of benches along the 1.5-mile route. Expect to walk about 2 hours. Options exist to make the hike shorter. After the walk, we can go to lunch at a nearby (inexpensive) restaurant. Bring water and snacks. Wear sturdy shoes/boots and dress for the weather. We hike rain or shine, except when there are thunderstorms. All walks begin at 10:00 a.m. Meet at southwest corner of Meridian Youth Sports Complex. No dogs. Contact: Linda Patton 850-668-4334 lpatton@fsu.edu [see also: Apr. 20, May 5, May 18, Jun. 2 & Jun. 15]

Apr. 9 Sat. P/S Garden of Eden Hike. Also known as the Alum Bluff Trail, this is a 4-mi. hike-but very strenuous.  Join us as we hike through an enchanting area that local legend claims is the original Garden of Eden. You’ll hike in longleaf pine/wiregrass uplands, skirt tops of dramatic steepheads, descend to cross their streams, ascend through sandhills, and eventually reach a spectacular view at Alum Bluff– the largest natural geological exposure in Florida–135 feet above the Apalachicola River. There are some steep sections to negotiate, so wear suitable shoes and bring your hiking stick. Leader: Barry Haber, co-leader Cindy Haber (850) 284-5615 barryjhaber@hotmail. com

Apr. 10 Sun. M/ M Wacissa River Paddle, Jefferson County. We will put in at the spring head in Wacissa and paddle 10 miles downstream to our take-out at Goose Pasture. Expect to see a variety of birds. Everyone must wear a pdf, no dogs and have all your own equipment. FTA MEMBERS ONLY. To sign up, contact Gwen Beatty (850) 539-6027 gfbeatty@yahoo.com or Gary Sisco (850) 545-4776 gsisco42@yahoo.com

Apr. 12 Tue. P/L Chapter Meeting: Monarchs and Milkweeds. Scott Davis, Biologist at the St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge, will share the mysteries of monarch migration and the plants that sustain them during all their phases of life. Learn why the migration of this dazzling butterfly is one of nature’s greatest miracles.  Find out what you can do in your backyard to help sustain this dwindling species as they journey to Mexico. . Early Learning Coalition, Suite 70, Northwood Centre, 1852 North Martin Luther King Blvd., Tallahassee. Contact: Liz Sparks (850) 570 5950 liz.aparks57@gmail.com

CANCELLED Apr. 16 Sat. P/M-S Seek and Destroy (Invasive Plants!). Meet at City of Tallahassee’s XX Park, 9:00 am – 12:30 pm. Get great exercise with hands-on education during these monthly events co-organized by the City of Tallahassee together with local chapters of the FTA, Florida Native Plant Society and The Nature Conservancy. During a short hike, participates will learn from experts about and how to identify invasive plants, particularly Coral Ardisia, and then help remove many pounds of them. Lunch provided too! Bring water, bug spray, gloves, and wear shoes appropriate for hiking. Tools provided. No limit. Contact Eric Mason (850) 509-5746 ericmason@talgov.com or Karen Berkley (850) 570-5740 kjberkley@gmail.com

Apr. 16 Sat. P/M Bear Creek Hike. Hike 5 miles at Bear Creek Tract in Lake Talquin State Forest. Moderate pace. Bring water, snacks/lunch; dress in layers for the weather. $2.00 per person entry fee or buy an annual  pass for a vehicle and 6 passengers for $45 at https://www.floridastateforests.org/annual-day-pass. Leader: Barry Haber, co-leader Cindy Haber (850) 284-5615 barryjhaber@hotmail.com

Apr. 17 Sun. P/M Apalachicola National Forest – West Trail Care. Clearing brush, limbs and repainting blazes. No limit. Contact Al Ingle 850-509-1162 al@captalavionics.com

Apr. 20 Wed. P/L Triple-S Hike: Slow, Short, Stroll. See Apr. 7 for details.

Apr. 23 Sat. P/M Line’s Tract Hike. Hike 5-6 miles at Line’s Tract in Lake Talquin State Forest. Moderate pace. Bring water, snacks/lunch; dress in layers for the weather. $2.00 per person entry fee or buy an annual  pass for a vehicle and 6 passengers for $45 at https://www.floridastateforests.org /annual-day-pass. Leader: Barry Haber, co-leader: Cindy Haber (850) 284-5615 barryjhaber@ hotmail.com

Apr. 26 Tue. M/L Activities Planning Meeting. Planning amazing activities for the months July – September 2016. Contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 griffindd@aol.com.

Apr. 30 Sat. P/L Bike Repair 101! Your bicycle doesn’t run on leg power alone. It also needs a little lube, a lotta­ love, and a good ­listen. You may not know every remedy your bike needs to live a long life, but together you can gain enough wisdom along the way to keep it in tip-top shape and out of the shop. Bring your bike to Mike’s place to learn the basics of bike maintenance and we will try to address any problems you may be experiencing—so you can leave the tough stuff to the professionals! LIMIT 8 PEOPLE. To sign up, contact  Mike Tucker (850) 545-3489 tuckems@hotmail.com

Apr. 30-May 1 Sat.-Sun. P/S Bear Creek Backpack. Hike 3.5 mi. in on Sat. afternoon and 1.5 mi. out on Sunday morning at Bear Creek Tract in Lake Talquin State Forest. $2.00 per person entry fee or buy an annual  pass for a vehicle and 6 passengers for $45 at https://www.floridastateforests.org/ annual-day-pass. Leader: Barry Haber, co-leader Cindy Haber (850) 284-5615 barryjhaber@hotmail. com

Activities – March 2016

Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate,  “M” Limited to FTA members only/“L” Leisurely,  “M” Moderately difficult,  “S” Strenuous.

March – every Mon. and Wed. P/M Stress Buster Brisk Walks! Join us on our quest to get a bit healthier and slow down the muffin tops! We have been walking 4 to 8 mi. 2X a week for three years, burning calories, de-stressing and socializing. Check for dates and meeting locations on our Meetup site before starting out, as trailhead location changes based on daylight and trail conditions. Mondays we will walk along the Miccosukee Greenway and Wednesdays hike one of the Lafayette Heritage trails. Come at 5:15 and be ready to hike at 5:30 SHARP. Bring flashlight/headlight, snack (if needed), and water, and dress in layers. We will attempt to maintain a brisk pace (3.0 – 3.2 mph). Distance and speed is up to you and how you feel that particular day! Visit http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking for trailhead meeting location (map), dates, last minute instructions and to RSVP, or contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 griffindd@aol.com

Mar. 5 Sat. P/S 21st Anniversary Bradwell Bay Swamp Stomp. Hike about 8 miles in the Apalachicola NF, from the Monkey Creek Trailhead on FR 329 west to Bradwell Bay Trailhead on FR 314. Depending on the size of the group, we may split and hike from opposite trailheads and meet on the island for lunch. Expect hike to be wet–wading and mud for about half the distance through the cool water–but the air temperature should be warm. This hike is strenuous and may have deep mud, holes and fallen trees. Contact Kent Wimmer (850) 528-5261 klwimmer2@gmail.com

Mar. 8 Tue. P/L Chapter Meeting: “The Experts’ Guide to Hiking the Florida Trail.” Florida is different. Stretching 1,400 miles from the edge of the Everglades to Pensacola Beach, the Florida Trail is Florida’s own National Scenic Trail and one of only 11 National Scenic Trails across America. It starts in a swamp, and ends on a beach. What you’ll see in between will give you a new appreciation for natural Florida. Join Sandra Friend and John Keatley, authors of “The Florida Trail Guide,” for this visual journey on how to prepare for hiking in Florida and what you’ll see along the Florida Trail, followed by an open discussion on planning yournext day hike or backpacking trip. ALSO: ELECTION OF CHAPTER OFFICERS. Early Learning Coalition, Suite 70, Northwood Centre, 1852 North Martin Luther King Blvd., Tallahassee. Contact: Liz Sparks (850) 570 5950 liz.aparks57@gmail.com

Mar. 11-13 Fri.-Sun. P/L-M 2016 Alabama Hiking & Outdoor Conference.
Gulf State Park, Gulf Shores, AL. Presentations: Richard Judy, author of “Thru: An Appalachian Trail Love Story,” showing and discussion of the documentary, “Trail Magic: The Grandma Gatewood Story,” backpack cooking, section-hiking the A.T., native plants, gear building, etc. Plus hikes, contests, raffles, auction, food, fun, and entertainment. http://hikealabama.org/joomla/index.php/33-ahts-2016-hiking-and-outdoor-conference

Mar. 12-13 Sat.-Sun. P/M Spring Canyon Camping. Overnight campout at Spring Canyon.  We will drive to Spring Canyon on Sat., leaving Tallahassee at 9:00 a.m.  Vehicles will be able to drive to the camp site, but space is limited, so carpooling is recommended.  After camp is set up, there will be a guided hike by property owners Helen and Tom Roth.  Expect to see many native wildflowers, creeks and longleaf pine restoration which is in progress.  In the morning, another short hike will be optional, before breaking camp and returning to Tallahassee in the afternoon.  Each camper will be responsible for their own equipment and food. There are no facilities at the site. LIMIT 12 PEOPLE. Contact Mike Tucker, (850) 545-3489  tuckems@hotmail.com.  or Karen Berkley (850) 570-5740  kberkley@gmail.com

Mar. 17-20 Thu.–Sun. P/M-S Backpacking Old Settler’s Trail in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. This 17-mile trail is one of the Park’s most interesting, with more traces of old settlement history than anywhere else in the Park. One is an area referred to as “Partontown”—with remains of the homestead of Dolly Parton’s great aunt. This trail was created in the 70’s as a place to hike at low altitude during the winter and is a moderate hike, with elevation gain of 700 ft. from low to high points. But with all the ups and downs, the total feet climbed is more. There are many creek crossings, so if water levels are high, you’ll get wet feet—bring extra socks! If time allows, we plan to enjoy other sights at the park. LIMIT 10 PEOPLE. Reservation permit fee is $4.00 per night. Contact John Laney, (850) 879-0168, john@john-laney.com

Mar. 19 Sat. P/M-S Seek and Destroy (Invasive Plants!) At City of Tallahassee’s Sally & Barnette Allen Preserve (near Leon High School), 9:00 am-12:30 pm. [See rest of description at Jan. 16.]

Mar. 20 Sun. P/M Apalachicola National Forest (West) Trail Maintenance. Clearing brush and limbs, and repainting blazes. Contact Al Ingle (850) 509-1162 al@captalavionics.com.

Mar. 26 Sat. P/L-M Sopchoppy Azalea Hike. A 5-mile hike on a section of the FNST that follows the Sopchoppy River in the Apalachicola NF. This section of the trail has abundant stands of wild azaleas that bloom in mid-late March. The hike leader will provide hikers with a list of plant species likely to be observed along the trail. LIMIT 20 PEOPLE. Contact George Weaver (850) 510-3288 weaver@psy.fsu.edu. or Carol Watkins-Babcock (313) 319-9463 carolwkns@yahoo.com

Activities – February 2016

Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate,  “M” Limited to FTA members only/“L” Leisurely,  “M” Moderately difficult,  “S” Strenuous.

Feb. – every Mon. & Wed. P/M Stress Buster Brisk Walks! Join us on our quest to get a bit healthier and slow down the muffin tops! We have been walking 4 to 8 mi. 2X a week for three years, burning calories, de-stressing and socializing. Check for dates and meeting locations on our Meetup site before starting out, as trailhead location changes based on daylight and trail conditions. Mondays we will walk along the Miccosukee Greenway and Wednesdays hike one of the Lafayette Heritage trails. Come at 5:15 and be ready to hike at 5:30 SHARP. Bring flashlight/headlight, snack (if needed), and water. Dress in layers. We will attempt to maintain a brisk pace (3.0 – 3.2 mph). Distance and speed is up to you and how you feel that particular day! Visit http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking for trailhead meeting location (map), dates, last minute instructions and to RSVP, or contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 griffindd@aol.com

Feb. 2 Tue. M/L Activities Planning Meeting. Plan some amazing activities for the months April through June 2016. Contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 griffindd@aol.com Orig. date was 1/26, but Dawn will be out of town on that date.

Feb. 5-10 Fri.– Wed. P/L Mardi Gras on the Bayou. Join us for an old fashioned country Mardi Gras in Mamou, LA. We will leave early on Friday to drive to Breaux Bridge, LA. It is an approx. 9-hr. drive to the Microtel Hotel where we will be staying. Some people may prefer to camp and there is a camp ground very near to the hotel. Participants will be responsible for making their own travel arrangements and hotel reservations. Breaux Bridge will serve as our base area for exploring the culture of the area. We will be enjoying as many of the local amenities as we can fit into our schedule, culminating with the traditional country style celebration of Mardi Gras (Courir de Mardi Gras) in Mamou on Fat Tuesday. We will return to Tallahassee on Wednesday following Mardi Gras. This is an opportunity to see Mardi Gras from a different historical and cultural perspective than you would see in New Orleans. LIMIT 12 PEOPLE. For more information: contact Gwen Beatty or Gary Sisco (850) 539-6027 as soon as possible.

Feb. 9 Tue. P/L Chapter Meeting: “The Adventures of ‘Little Wing’ on the Appalachian Trail.” In 2006, Jill Lingard dropped out of her usual life for five months to attempt a thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail.  During her walk across 12 states, she immersed herself in beautiful landscapes and a community of northbound hikers whose impacts have lasted well beyond the last mountain climbed.  With her current involvement in Paddle Florida and the Florida Paddling Trails Association, you’re more apt to find Jill in a kayak than on a mountain these days. Early Learning Coalition, Suite 70, Northwood Centre, 1852 North Martin Luther King Blvd., Tallahassee. Contact: Liz Sparks (850) 570 5950 liz.aparks57@gmail.com

Feb. 6 Sat. P/M Bradwell Bay East Fun Hike. 5-mile hike on the eastern side of the Bradwell Bay Wilderness in the Apalachicola NF. Contact Richard Graham (850) 878-3616 / (850) 566-5529 rdgraham@centurylink.net

Feb. 7 Sun. M/M Hike the FNST in the Apalachicola National Forest from Porter Lake to Hickory Branch. This section of the FNST is just west of the Ochlocknee River. The 3-mile hike will begin mid-morning and end mid-afternoon and will be led by local expert UF/Leon County Extension Forester Stan Rosenthal. Stan will take us on a journey through a variety of interesting plant communities, teaching us plant ID and ecological interpretations on this scenic portion of the Trail. LIMIT 15 PEOPLE. Contact co-leader Laura Newton (850) 556-6679 willsavannahsmom@yahoo.com or Karen Berkley (850) 570-5740 kjberkley@gmail.com

Feb. 14 Sun. P/M-S Training Hike – Ft. Braden Trails. These hikes will continue the series started last fall. They are designed primarily for hikers who would like to increase their endurance on the trail. We’ll hike about 10 mi. at a brisk pace. Bring water and trail snacks for several hours. This activity is appropriate for anyone wishing to train for a backpacking hike. Bring your pack loaded with 50%-60% final load. No limit. Contact Dawn Brown (850) 545-0351 / (850) 668-0091 dbrown1948@embarqmail.com

Feb. 19 Fri. P/L Coon Bottom Loop Stroll.Help celebrate the leader’s 78th birthday with an interpretive walk at Elinor Klapp-Phipps Park in northeast Tallahassee. Hike will be at a slow pace (about 1.5 mph) with lots of breaks. Followed by fun at Lofty Pursuits (menu at http://loftypursuits.com/menu). They allow “brought food” so pack a lunch to go with their ice cream (or hot chocolate). Contact Linda Patton (850) 668-4334 lpatton@fsu.edu

Feb. 20 Sat. P/M-S Seek and Destroy (Invasive Plants!) At City of Tallahassee’s Timberlane Park, 9:30 am -12:30 pm. For camaraderie, fun, healthy exercise, and the satisfaction of doing something good for the environment, consider participating in this event, which is part of a series of sessions for everyone–all ages–interested in the outdoors. Learn the importance of addressing the problem of invasive plants, with a particular focus on Coral Ardisia (CA), which is currently smothering much of the understory of this beautiful park and many other areas in Florida & N. Georgia. The event involves a short (< 1 m) nature hike during which you will learn, via hands-on work (great exercise!), how to remove CA in an area where CA is almost under control. Native plants and chemical herbiciding will also be discussed. Lunch will be provided at the end of the event. Experts from the City of Tallahassee, (COT) The Nature Conservancy, and local chapters of the Florida Native Plant Society & Florida Trail association will be on hand to teach you how to ID several species of exotic invasive plants that can be found on the trail, different methods for removing them safely, and how to distinguish them from native plants.  In the area are some threatened and endangered plant species, such as Bay star-vine, trillium,  sensitive ferns and more, which will also be identified. At lunch (~30 min),  there will be more discussion about the importance of this effort, how you can help in different ways appropriate for different activities (e.g., hiking, cycling, walking, your own back yard), how to report invasive plant sightings (http://www.eddmaps.org/), and how COT is addressing this problem with herbiciding in several COT parks.  If time permits, you will also learn more about this beautiful park. Bring a water bottle, bug spray, and wear shoes appropriate for hiking.  Although COT will have extra tools & gloves available, bring a favorite clipper and garden/work gloves if you have them.  DIRECTIONS: From Gilchrist Elementary School (1301 Timberlane Rd), continue west on Timberlane Rd for 0.2 miles to Timberlane School Rd. Turn left (south), and continue on Timberlane School Rd for 0.3 miles. The entrance to the park will be on your right. Direction signs will be posted. Contact Eric Mason (850) 509-5746, eric.mason@talgov.com;  or Karen Berkley (850) 570-5740, kjberkley@gmail.com (please text if no answer)

Feb, 21 Sun. P/M-S Training Hike – Hikers’ Choice. These hikes will continue the series started last fall. They are designed primarily for hikers who would like to increase their endurance on the trail. We’ll hike up to 10-12 mi. at a brisk pace on a trail TBD. Bring water and trail snacks for several hours. This activity is appropriate for anyone wishing to train for a backpacking hike. Bring your pack loaded with 50%-60% final load. No limit. Contact Dawn Brown (850) 545-0351 / (850) 668-0091 dbrown1948@embarqmail.com

Feb. 28 Sun. P/M-S Training Hike – Hikers’ Choice. [See Feb. 21 for full description.]

Activities – January 2016

Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate,  “M” Limited to FTA members only/“L” Leisurely,  “M” Moderately difficult,  “S” Strenuous.

Jan. – every Mon. & Wed. P/M Stress Buster Brisk Walks! Join us on our quest to get a bit healthier and slow down the muffin tops! We have been walking 4 to 8 mi. 2X a week for three years, burning calories, de-stressing and socializing. Check for dates and meeting locations on our Meetup site before starting out, as trailhead location changes based on daylight and trail conditions. Mondays we will walk along the Miccosukee Greenway and Wednesdays hike one of the Lafayette Heritage trails. Come at 5:15 and be ready to hike at 5:30 SHARP. Bring flashlight/headlight, snack (if needed), and water. Dress in layers. We will attempt to maintain a brisk pace (3.0 – 3.2 mph). Distance and speed is up to you and how you feel that particular day! Visit http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking for trailhead meeting location (map), dates, last minute instructions and to RSVP, or contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 griffindd@aol.com

Jan. 1 Fri. P/L First Day Hike at Maclay Gardens State Park. Informative ranger-led hike at 9 a.m. at the Lake Overstreet Trailhead at the end of Park Road. Our Chapter will provide info. about hiking in our area.  Pack a picnic to enjoy afterwards at the Lake Hall recreation area. See https://www.floridastateparks.org/park/Maclay-Gardens for entrance fees. Contact  Maclay Gardens SP (850) 487-4556 or Howard Pardue (850) 386-1494 hpardue@comcast.net.

Jan. 7-9 Thu.-Sat. P/L Florida Trail Kickoff. FNST Southern Terminus at Big Cypress. Join this annual gathering of hikers starting a thru or section hike from the Southern Terminus of the Florida Trail. It gives you an opportunity to meet the long distance hikers and provide ‘trail magic’ if you like. There will be places to camp. Details will be posted at http://fthikers.org

Jan. 9 Sat. P/L-M Red Hills Ramble. Enjoy up to a 12-mile ramble along Old Centerville Road to the state line (canopied road–half on paved road and half on hard packed clay.) You can choose to walk the distance/speed you choose then turn around and head back to your car. Wear comfortable clothes and walking shoes. Bring water/trail snacks for several hours. Meet at 10 a.m. at Bradley’s Country Store (park on west side of store under oaks with swing) where we will begin/end our walk. After the walk, enjoy a Bradley’s sausage dog, moon pie, and RC cola at the picnic tables under the oaks–you earned it! Contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 griffindd@aol.com

Jan. 9 Sat. P/L Leon Sinks Day Hike. Hike a canopied path through the woods, stopping periodically to enjoy the many sink hole lakes along the way. After the 5-mile hike, we will enjoy a late lunch at a local restaurant. Contact Gwen Beatty (850) 539-6027 gfbeatty@yahoo.com

Jan. 10 Sun. P/M Apalachicola National Forest (West) Trail Maintenance. Clearing brush and repainting blazes. Contact Al Ingle (0850) 509-1162 al@captalavionics.com

Jan. 10 Sun. P/M-S Training Hike – Torreya State Park. Cancelled.

Jan. 12 Tue. P/L Chapter Meeting: “Protecting the Northwest Florida Wildlife Habitat Network and Maybe Closing Some Gaps in the Florida Trail.” Those of us in northwest Florida enjoy the privilege of living amongst extraordinary wildlife diversity–sea turtles nest on the beaches, red cockaded woodpeckers live in the old pines, gopher tortoises burrow in the uplands, mussels filter the waters of our rivers, and black bears roam the woods. We still have the opportunity to protect the landscapes, the habitats of our region’s rare and endangered species, and corridors for wildlife before they are lost to roads and development.  Kent Wimmer will present Defenders of Wildlife’s vision for conserving a habitat network that links conservation lands across Northwest Florida, which may also help close gaps in the Florida Trail in the Panhandle. Early Learning Coalition, Suite 70, Northwood Centre, 1852 North Martin Luther King Blvd., Tallahassee. Contact: Liz Sparks (850) 570 5950 liz.aparks57@gmail.com

NEW HIKE NOT PUBLISHED IN THE BLAZE:  Jan. 16 Sat. P/L-M Spring Creek Hike. Hike the Florida National Scenic Trail to the first boardwalk built to replace the hurricane damaged ones.  From there, view the expanse of marsh yet to be bridged with funds donated to the “Spring Creek Project.”  About 350 feet of boardwalk is still needed and thanks to the many donors, it will be built during 2017–years earlier than if we hadn’t gotten the money through this special fund-raiser.

There will be 3 hike options:
(1) 1.2 miles: from a SMNWR forest road, on the FNST to the first boardwalk built to replace the hurricane-damaged ones, and back.
(2) 4.2 miles: from a SMNWR forest road, on the FNST to the boardwalk, and return on the FNST back to Purify Bay Rd. TH via Marsh point.
(3) 7.6 miles: on the return trip, continue on past Purify Bay Rd. TH on the FNST to Carraway Cutoff TH. 

You must contact Dawn Brown by phone (850) 545-0351 -or- (850) 668-0091 or email dbrown1948@embarqmail.com to sign up for the hike and let her know which hike option you will want, so that shuttling cars can be arranged.

In 2005, the storm surge from Hurricane Dennis flooded the St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge and the town of St. Marks.  The surge raised, and twisted, boardwalks on the Florida National Scenic Trail that had been built to carry hikers over the muddy marshes at the headwaters of Spring Creek, between Spring Creek Highway and Purify Bay Road.  Eventually, the damaged boardwalks became so hazardous they were removed, and in 2012 that section of trail was closed because the deep, thick, sticky mud can entrap hikers. There is now a 5-mile road-walk detour around that scenic section of the FNST.

As of 1 /7/16, over $16,000 has been raised–including over $6,000 from the Apalachee Chapter of FTA and it’s members.  If you haven’t already donated, you can still donate to the project by going to this website: https://donatenow.networkforgood.org/floridatrail and writing ” Spring Creek Boardwalk” in the “If you have a special purpose…” window.  All donations are tax-deductible (if you itemize) to the full extent allowed by law.

Jan. 16 NOTE DATE CHANGE: Jan. 23 Sat. P/M-S Seek and Destroy Coral Ardesia–Pulling for Science!
NOTE LOCATION CHANGE
: A.J. Henry Park, 2746 A. J. Henry Park Drive, Tallahassee, FL.

For camaraderie, fun, exercise, and the satisfaction of doing something good for the environment and science, consider participating in this event, open to everyone–all ages–interested in the outdoors. Learn the importance of addressing the problem of invasive plants, with a particular focus on Coral Ardisia (CA), which is currently smothering much of the understory of many public parks and private lands in our area.Experts from the City of Tallahassee, (COT), The Nature Conservancy, local chapters of the Florida Native Plant Society & Florida Trail Association will be on hand to teach you how to identify CA, different methods for removing it safely, and how to distinguish it from native plants. Lunch provided too! Bring water, bug spray, gloves, and wear shoes appropriate for hiking. Tools provided. Contact Eric Mason (850) 509-5746 ericmason@talgov.com or Karen Berkley (850) 570-5740, kjberkley@gmail.com

!!!SPECIAL!!!: This particular event will be of particular interest, because we will be collecting CA for Dr. Kendall Blumer, Professor of Cell Biology & Physiology at Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO. Dr. Blumer plans to pick up the CA that we collect to transport it to his lab, where he will extract molecules from the leaves to test their potential for several biomedical applications. At the event, we will have handouts explaining this exciting work. Thus, your efforts will be rewarding not only because you’ve learned about and removed an invasive species from the park, but also because you will be contributing to biomedical science! PLEASE NOTE ALSO THAT Dr. Blumer will be available at the park on SUNDAY, Jan 24th from 9:30-10:30 am to discuss his research.

Jan. 17 Sun. P/M-S Training Hike – Torreya State Park. These hikes will continue the series started last fall. They are designed primarily for hikers who would like to increase their endurance on the trail. We’ll hike about 7-8 mi. at a brisk pace. The terrain and trail conditions, however, will make these hikes more challenging than those last fall. Bring water and trail snacks for several hours. This activity is appropriate for anyone wishing to train for a backpacking hike. Bring your pack loaded with 50%-60% final load. No limit. Contact Dawn Brown (850) 545-0351 / (850) 668-0091 dbrown1948@embarqmail.com

Jan. 23 Sat. P/M-S St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge Ramble. Explore some of the out-of-the-way places, taking advantage of the dikes to go further out into the Refuge. We will walk (hike) approximately 5 miles at an enjoy-the-scenery pace. Bring along binoculars, bird ID book if you have one, lunch, water, closed-toed shoes, inclement weather gear (though we will not go in a hard rain) and your  stressed-out self ready to be quieted by some serious exposure to nature and scenery. LIMIT 10 PEOPLE. Contact Carol Watkins-Babcock (313) 319-9463 carolwkns@yahoo.com

Jan. 23 Sat. M/L FTA Board of Directors Meeting.  Open to all Florida Trail Association members. Observe the governing process of our organization. These meetings give us a broader picture of FTA and the Florida National Scenic Trail. Meeting place: Ravine Gardens State Park, 1600 Twigg St., Palatka. Meeting time: 9am-3pm. Contact: FTA office toll-free 1-877-445 -3352.  

Jan. 22-23 Fri.-Sat. P/L Florida National Scenic Trail Coalition Meeting. Central Florida—exact location/time TBD. Preliminary agenda items: FNST promotion, trailheads standards & monitoring, partner-to-partner resources. Sat. field trip on the FNST. For meeting place and time, contact Shawn Thomas, USFS (850) 523-8586 or the FTA office 1-877-445 -3352 (toll free).

Jan. 16 NOTE DATE CHANGE: Jan. 23 Sat. P/M-S Seek and Destroy Coral Ardesia–Pulling for Science!
NOTE LOCATION CHANGE
: A.J. Henry Park, 2746 A. J. Henry Park Drive, Tallahassee, FL.

For camaraderie, fun, exercise, and the satisfaction of doing something good for the environment and science, consider participating in this event, open to everyone–all ages–interested in the outdoors. Learn the importance of addressing the problem of invasive plants, with a particular focus on Coral Ardisia (CA), which is currently smothering much of the understory of many public parks and private lands in our area.Experts from the City of Tallahassee, (COT), The Nature Conservancy, local chapters of the Florida Native Plant Society & Florida Trail Association will be on hand to teach you how to identify CA, different methods for removing it safely, and how to distinguish it from native plants. Lunch provided too! Bring water, bug spray, gloves, and wear shoes appropriate for hiking. Tools provided. Contact Eric Mason (850) 509-5746 ericmason@talgov.com or Karen Berkley (850) 570-5740, kjberkley@gmail.com

Jan. 24 Sun. P/M-S Training Hike – Apalachicola NF – Trail of Lakes. These hikes will continue the series started last fall. They are designed primarily for hikers who would like to increase their endurance on the trail. We’ll hike about 9.5 mi. at a brisk pace. Bring water and trail snacks for several hours. This activity is appropriate for anyone wishing to train for a backpacking hike. Bring your pack loaded with 50%-60% final load. No limit. Contact Dawn Brown (850) 545-0351 / (850) 668-0091 dbrown1948@embarqmail.com

Jan. 27-31 Wed.-Sun. P/L Southeastern Foot Trails Coalition Meeting. Music Road Inn and Convention Center, Pigeon Forge, TN. Hikes, presentations, speakers, etc. http://southeastfoottrails.org/website-message-for-2016-meeting.pdf

CANCELLED–Jan. 29-31 Fri.–Sun. M/M Backpacking Econfina Creek FNST Section. Backpack the 20 miles of the Econfina Section of the FNST starting at Scott Road and ending at Hwy 20. LIMITED TO FTA MEMBERS and 5 TENTS. Contact Louis Brooks (850) 728-3018 louisfbrooks@yahoo.com

Jan. 30 Sat. M/L FTA Chapter Council Meeting. Gainesville, FL. Open to all Florida Trail Association members. Council members from chapters around the state discuss issues that are common to us all. These meetings give us a broader picture of FTA and the Florida National Scenic Trail. Meeting Time: 9 am-4 pm. Place: Paramount Plaza Hotel, 2900 SW 13th St, Gainesville, FL.   Contact: Howard Pardue (850) 386-1494.

Activities – December 2015

Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate,  “M” Limited to FTA members only/“L” Leisurely,  “M” Moderately difficult,  “S” Strenuous.

Dec. 2 Wed. P/S Wednesday Brisk Walk. Join us for a 4-mile walk to burn calories, de-stress and socialize.  Be ready to walk at 5:30 p.m. sharp. We will leave from the restroom area at Lafayette Heritage Trail Park, 4900 Heritage Park Blvd., which is off Conner Blvd.  We will take different routes to Tom Brown Park, or go over the pedestrian Bridge to J.R. Alford Greenway, or up and down the fishing fingers, or take a new route around the sparkling lake. Great views of lakes and wildlife. Bring flashlight/headlight and water. Dress in layers for these brisk hikes with others who want to exercise, eliminate stress and meet interesting people! We will maintain an approx. 3.2 mph pace, nonstop. No limit. Trailhead meeting location (map) and RSVP at http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking or contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 griffindd@aol.com
Dec. 9, 16 & 30 Wed. P/S Wednesday Brisk Walks.  Enjoy a 4-mile brisk walk through downtown Tallahassee’s chain of parks, LeMoyne Center for the Visual Arts and meander through Cascades Park.  Meet at the Department of Transportation (DOT) Parking Lot at 5:15 PM ready to walk at 5:30 PM Sharp.  DOT is located at 605 Suwannee Street adjacent to Cascade Park! Meet at the DOT Parking lot that is closest to the Franklin Blvd/E Lafayette Street intersection and directly across street from DOT building – I will meet group at the park benches/umbrellas at Cascades Park near this intersection. From there we will walk towards LeMoyne then over to Park Avenue and back to DOT taking a spin through Cascade Park.  Appreciate thousands of lights decorating our downtown which creates the perfect environment for an evening stroll with friends! Bring a flashlight, wear light/reflective colors and throw on your holiday hat/jingle bells!  No limit. Trailhead meeting location (map) and RSVP at http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking or contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 griffindd@aol.com

Dec. 5 Sat. P/M Torreya State Park Trail Care. Clip off encroaching vegetation and remove fallen limbs from the Torreya/River Bluff Trail. Bring loppers if you have them, along with water and lunch. We will meet 7:30 a.m. in Tallahassee for carpooling. No limit. Contact Jerry Herting (850) 878-3426 or Bob Gilley (850) 557-1536

Dec. 5 Sat. P/M “’Tween Two Lakes” Fun Hike. Walk through J.R. Alford Greenway to the Alford Arm of Lake Lafayette then, after a break, walk to view Piney Z Lake from the canopy bridge, then return–hiking a total of about four to five miles. Be at the J.R. Alford Greenway parking lot at the end of Pedrick Road ready to hike at 10:00 a.m. No limit. Contact Wendy Dial (941) 320-8470 wbdial@gmail.com

Dec 7, 14, 21 & 28 Mon. P/S Monday Brisk Walks. Meet atThornton Rd. Trailheadto walk brisklyalong the Miccosukee Greenway. Be ready to hike at 5:30 p.m. sharp. Bring flashlight/headlight and water. Dress in layers for these brisk hikes with others who want to exercise, eliminate stress and meet interesting people! We will maintain an approx. 3.2 mph pace, nonstop. Hikes are 4 – 8 miles (depending upon daylight). No limit. Trailhead meeting location (map) and RSVP at http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking or contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 griffindd@aol.com

Dec. 8 Tue. P/L Apalachee Chapter “Holiday Party & Potluck.” Celebrate the season by joining our annual holiday potluck and gift exchange.   Bring a dish to share (turkey/ham provided by the Chapter) and a wrapped gift to participate in the exchange. The gift should be trail or outdoors related if possible, and can be purchased-but-inexpensive, a white elephant, or hand-made. If you’re feeling extra festive, write a short poem or limerick describing the gift!

Dec. 13 Sun. P/M Apalachicola National Forest–West Trail Care. Clearing brush, limbs and repainting blazes. No limit. Contact Al Ingle 850-509-1162 al@captalavionics.com

Dec. 19 Sat. P/L Junior Trail Trekkers “Winter Solstice Nature Clay Impressions.” Celebrate the last weekend of fall and the coming of winter with this solstice-themed hike through Phipps Park. Children will be invited to collect textured natural objects, and clay will be provided for them to make nature impressions. Each child will be able to bring their clay impressions home to bake. The impressions make for great ornaments or present gift tags! All ages welcome; parent or guardian required to accompany child. Trail is not stroller suitable – baby wearing is encouraged. Limit: 10 families. Contact Ashley Hopkins (850) 339-3488 hello.kiddo@gmail.com

Dec. 19 Sat. P/M-S Seek and Destroy Invasive Plants! From 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at City of Tallahassee’s Lafayette Heritage Park. Get great exercise with hands-on education during these monthly events co-organized by the City of Tallahassee together with local chapters of the FTA, Florida Native Plant Society, Northwest Florida Water Management District, and The Nature Conservancy. During a short hike, participants will first learn from experts about and how to identify invasive plants, particularly Coral Ardisia, and then help remove many pounds of them. Lunch provided too! Bring water, bug spray, gloves, and wear shoes appropriate for hiking. Tools provided. No limit. Contact Karen Berkley (850) 570-5740 kjberkley@gmail.com or Eric Mason (850) 509-5746 ericmason@talgov.com

Dec. 20 Sun. P/L Day Hike at St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge. Hike a 7-9 mile section of the levees and old roads dissecting the St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge. This will include a segment of the Florida National Scenic Trail that overlooks magnificent waterway vistas with abundant wildlife. We will enjoy a late lunch at a local restaurant after the hike. No limit. Contact Gary Sisco (850) 545-4776 gsisco42@yahoo.com or Gwen Beatty (850) 539-6027 gfbeatty@yahoo.com

Dec. 26 Sat. P/L Annual Phipps Park Holiday Fun Hike! Feeling a little lethargic after too many holiday celebrations? Too much shopping, partying, out-of town relatives? Let’s get outside and play. This hike is a nice long, leisurely all day hike at City of Tallahassee’s Elinor Klapp-Phipps Park. Entire loop is 7 miles. There are several bail-out points for those who want a shorter hike. Bring fluids and trail snacks for the day and a lunch for a mid-way break at the Oak Hammock. Families and pets (on leash) welcome. Contact Dawn Brown (850) 545-0351 dbrown1948@embarqmail.com

Activities – November 2015

Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate,  “M” Limited to FTA members only/“L” Leisurely,  “M” Moderately difficult,  “S” Strenuous.

Nov. 1 Sun. P/M-S St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge Hike. This series of hikes is going to be very similar to those of preceding years. They are designed primarily for hikers who would like to increase their endurance on the trail. We will start with an 8-mile hike and gradually increase to 12-14 miles by the end of winter. We will hike over flat ground and maintain a relatively brisk pace. Bring water and trail snacks for several hours. This activity is appropriate for anyone wishing to train for a pack hike or powerwalking a half marathon race. Bring your pack loaded with 50%-60% final load. No limit. Contact Dawn Brown (850) 545-0351 dbrown1948@embarqmail.com

Nov. 2, 9, 16, 23 & 30 Mon. P/S Monday Brisk Walks. Meet at Thornton Trailhead to walk briskly along the Miccosukee Greenway. Be ready to hike at 5:30 p.m.sharp. Bring flashlight/headlight and water. Dress in layers for these brisk hikes with others who want to exercise, eliminate stress and meet interesting people! We will maintain an approx. 3.2 mph pace, nonstop. Hikes are 4-8 miles (depending upon daylight). No limit. Trailhead meeting location (map) and RSVP at http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking or contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 griffindd@aol.com

Nov. 4 & 18 Wed. P/S Wednesday Brisk Walks. Join us for a 4-mile walk to burn calories, de-stress and socialize.  Be ready to walk at 5:30 p.m. sharp.  We will leave from the restroom area at Lafayette Heritage Trail Park, 4900 Heritage Park Blvd., which is off Conner Blvd.  We will take different routes to Tom Brown Park, or go over the pedestrian Bridge to J.R. Alford Greenway, or up and down the fishing fingers, or take a new route around the sparkling lake. Great views of lakes and wildlife. Bring flashlight/headlight and water. Dress in layers for these brisk hikes with others who want to exercise, eliminate stress and meet interesting people! We will maintain an approx. 3.2 mph pace, nonstop.No limit. Trailhead meeting location (map) and RSVP at http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking or contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 griffindd@aol.com

Nov. 7 Sat. P/M Apalachicola National Forest-East Trail Care. Clearing brush, limbs and repainting blazes. Limit: 10 people. Contact Richard Graham (850) 878-3616 rdgraham@centurylink.net

Nov. 7 Sat. P/M Torreya State Park Trail Care. Clip off encroaching vegetation and remove fallen limbs from the Torreya Challenge Trail. Terrain is hilly. Bring loppers if you have them, along with water and lunch. We will meet 7:30 a.m. in Tallahassee for carpooling. No limit. Contact Jerry Herting (850) 878-3426 or Bob Gilley (850) 557-1536

Nov. 8 Sun. P/M-S St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge Hike. This series of hikes is going to be very similar to those of preceding years. They are designed primarily for hikers who would like to increase their endurance on the trail. We will start with an 8-mile hike and gradually increase to 12-14 miles by the end of winter. We will hike over flat ground and maintain a relatively brisk pace. Bring water and trail snacks for several hours. This activity is appropriate for anyone wishing to train for a pack hike or powerwalking a half marathon race. Bring your pack loaded with 50%-60% final load. No limit. Contact Dawn Brown (850) 545-0351 dbrown1948@embarqmail.com

Nov. 10 Tue. P/L Chapter Meeting: “
Hiking the Camino de Santiago.” During the summer of 2014 the local media followed Gregg and Morgan Patterson as they made a 500-mile trek along the Camino de Santiago, starting in St. Jean Pied de Port in France. The Camino is a 2000-year-old pilgrimage trail and is known by many as the Way of St James. This was a spiritual quest for Morgan. Gregg went along for the athletic challenge. Then something happened. They will share this ‘something’ when they speak. This trail tracks over several mountain ranges, through the countryside and cities of northern Spain. Their journey took 38 days before reaching the end in Santiago, Spain. Traveling with all their possessions in their backpacks, they stayed mostly at hostels breaking bread with people from all over the world. During their presentation both Gregg and Morgan share both the physical and mental challenges of this journey. Most importantly, they will share life lessons learned on the Camino. Early Learning Coalition, Suite 70, Northwood Centre, 1852 North Martin Luther King Blvd., Tallahassee. Contact: Liz Sparks (850) 570 5950 liz.aparks57@gmail.com

Nov. 13–15 Fri.-Sun. P/M Canoeing and Camping at Blackwater State Forest, Milton FL. What better way to enjoy the cool, crisp November weather than to camp in Blackwater State Park and paddle local streams. We’ll paddle Coldwater Creek, Blackwater River and Juniper Creek. You must supply your own equipment. Limit: 12 boats. Contact Gary Sisco (850) 545-4776 gsisco42@yahoo.com or Gwen Beatty (850) 539-6027 gfbeatty@yahoo.com

Nov. 13-15 Fri.-Sun. FTA South Regional Conference. Riverside Retreat (United Methodist Camp), 7305 County Rd. 78, LaBelle, FL 33935. Sponsored by the Alligator Amblers Chapter. Hikes, kayaks available for rent, speakers, campfires, and the “Wuz-nu” Raffle and Auction along with lots of good food. Registration and check-in begin Friday at 4 pm. Friday night features Hospitality night from 6-9 pm. Bring a dish/snack to share and spend a fun evening with “like-minded” friends. Deadline for meals and reserved space (RV or bunkhouse) is October 25th–tent space is not as limited. More information and a registration form are on pages 36-37 of the Summer issue of the Footprint at http://www.floridatrail.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/05/FloridaTrails_FOOTPRINT_Summer15_DIGITAL.pdf

http://www.floridatrail.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/05/FloridaTrails_FOOTPRINT_Summer15_DIGITAL.pdf

Nov. 14 Sat. P/S Aucilla River Trail Care. Clear trail and repaint blazes on a segment of the FNST from Walker Bridge to Lost Dog Rapids. Limit: 6 people. Contact James Kimbrel (850) 524-0773 JamesKimbrel@hotmail.com

Nov. 14-21 Sat.-Sat. P/S Pine Log Gathering Volunteer Work Party. Join Choctawhatchee Chapter volunteers in kicking off the hiking season with a Florida National Scenic Trail Maintenance Marathon at the Pine Log Gathering. See http://www.meetup.com/Florida-Trail-Choctawhatchee-Chapter/events/220536876/ for details.

Nov. 15 Sun. P/M Apalachicola National Forest–West Trail Care. Clearing brush, limbs and repainting blazes. No limit. Contact Al Ingle (850) 509-1162 al@captalavionics.com

Nov. 21 Sat. P/M Tate’s Hell Hike. Explore the High Bluff Coastal Hiking Trail in Tate’s Hell State Forest on a 4-mile hike with interpretive guides. Pack a light lunch to eat on the trail.  Following the hike other options could include visiting the Dwarf Cypress Boardwalk http://www.freshfromflorida.com/Divisions-Offices/Florida-Forest-Service/Our-Forests/State-Forests/Tate-s-Hell-State-Forest and\or the ANERR (Apalachicola National Estuarine Research Reserve) Nature Center  http://www.dep.state.fl.us/coastal/sites/apalachicola/. Carpool from Tallahassee leaving at 8:30 a.m. and meet at 9:30 a.m. at the east trailhead (GPS coords N 29 48.510  W 084 43.734). Feel free to bring a friend!  Another link: http://floridahikes.com/high-bluff-coastal-trail   Contact Carol Watkins (313) 319-9463 carolwkns@yahoo.com or Lori Gilbertson (850) 420-0132  ftatrails4u.lori@aol.com

Nov. 21 Sat. P/L Junior Trail Trekkers “Intro to the Native Apalachee Tribe and Trail Nature Weaving.” You and your little hikers will have the chance to learn more about the Apalachee Chapter’s namesake tribe as we explore the trails of the Lake Jackson Mound Archeological Site. This hike will include a “nature weaving” trail activity in which the children will make weavings using natural objects found along the trail. All ages welcome; parent or guardian required to accompany child. Trail is not stroller suitable; baby wearing is encouraged. $3/car fee. Limit: 10 families. Contact Ashley Hopkins (850) 339-3488 hello.kiddo@gmail.com

Nov. 21 Sat. P/M-S Seek and Destroy
Invasive Plants! From 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at City of Tallahassee’s Elinor Klapp-Phipps Park. Get great exercise with hands-on education during these monthly events co-organized by the City of Tallahassee together with local chapters of the FTA, Florida Native Plant Society, Northwest Florida Water Management District, and The Nature Conservancy. During a short hike, participants will first learn from experts about and how to identify invasive plants, particularly Coral Ardisia, and then help remove many pounds of them. Lunch provided too! Bring water, bug spray, gloves, and wear shoes appropriate for hiking. Tools provided. No limit. Contact Karen Berkley (850) 570-5740 kjberkley@gmail.com or Eric Mason (850) 509-5746 ericmason@talgov.com

Nov. 22 Sun. P/M Circle the Lake Fun Hike. Four-mile hike completely around Piney Z Lake in Lafayette Heritage Trail Park, including the canopy bridge. Meet at the Lafayette Heritage Trail Park (4900 Heritage Blvd, Tallahassee 32311) parking lot near the restrooms at 10 a.m. No limit. Contact Wendy Dial (941) 320-8470 wbdial@gmail.com

November 22 ( Sun., 8 a.m.) -27 (Fri., 2 p.m.) 24th Annual Big O Hike. Make your plans now to enjoy your Thanksgiving week 2015 with hikes on the dikes. There will be six days of hiking around or near the north half of Lake Okeechobee. The Big O Hike lets you experience this portion of the Florida Trail on a group hike with newfound friends. It is a series of day hikes–no back-packing required. Camping and afternoon activities will be centered at the Okeechobee KOA 4276 US Hwy 441 S, Okeechobee, FL. There are hotels nearby as well. Watch for details and registration forms on the Loxahatchee Chapter website http://www.loxfltrail.org/bigO.html or Meetup site http://www.meetup.com/Florida-Trail-Association-Loxahatchee-Chapter-PBCounty/events/223377394/ Leader: Scott Lunsford (561) 441-1251

Nov. 28 Sat. P/M Fern to Food Fun Hike. Five-mile walk from Panera-Publix parking lot (101 N Blairstone Road Tallassee) through woods, along canal to Tom Brown Park and back. Following the hike, lunch at Panera is an option. Be at parking lot ready to hike at 10:00 a.m. No limit. Contact Wendy Dial (941) 320-8470 wbdial@gmail.com

Activities – October 2015

Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate,  “M” Limited to FTA members only/“L” Leisurely,  “M” Moderately difficult,  “S” Strenuous.

Oct. 2 Fri. P/L Sunset-Over-Wakulla Paddle. Let’s start the weekend right with an after work sunset paddle on the Wakulla River. We’ll put in at the upper bridge and paddle down to the City of St. Marks. Let’s plan to be off the river before dark so we can head over to one of the local restaurants for dinner. No limit. Contact Gary Sisco (850) 545-4776 gsisco42@yahoo.com or Gwen Beatty (850) 539-6027 gfbeatty@yahoo.com

Oct. 4 Sun. P/M Apalachicola National Forest–West Trail Care. Clearing brush, limbs and repainting blazes. No limit. Contact Al Ingle 850-509-1162 al@captalavionics.com

Oct. 5, 12, 19 & 26 Mon. P/S Monday Brisk Walks. Meet at Thornton Trailhead to walk briskly along the Miccosukee Greenway. Be ready to hike at 5:30 p.m. sharp. Bring flashlight/headlight and water. Dress in layers for these brisk hikes with others who want to exercise, eliminate stress and meet interesting people! We will maintain an approx. 3.2 mph pace, nonstop. Hikes are 4-8 miles (depending upon daylight). No limit. See trailhead meeting location (map) and RSVP at http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking or contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 griffindd@aol.com

October 7, 14, 21 & 28 Wed. P/S Wednesday Brisk Walks. Join us for a 4-mile walk to burn calories, de-stress and socialize.  Be ready to walk at 5:30 p.m. sharp.  We will leave from the restroom area at Lafayette Heritage Trail Park, 4900 Heritage Park Blvd., which is off Conner Blvd.  We will take different routes to Tom Brown Park, or go over the pedestrian Bridge to J.R. Alford Greenway, or up and down the fishing fingers, or take a new route around the sparkling lake. Great views of lakes and wildlife. Bring flashlight/headlight and water. Dress in layers for these brisk hikes with others who want to exercise, eliminate stress and meet interesting people! We will maintain an approx. 3.2 mph pace, nonstop.No limit. Trailhead meeting location (map) and RSVP at http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking or contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 griffindd@aol.com

Oct. 10 Sat. P/M-S Seek and Destroy Invasive Plants! From 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at City of Tallahassee’s Optimist Park. Get great exercise with hands-on education during these monthly events co-organized by the City of Tallahassee together with local chapters of the FTA, Florida Native Plant Society, Northwest Florida Water Management District, and The Nature Conservancy. During a short hike, participants will first learn from experts about and how to identify invasive plants, particularly Coral Ardisia, and then help remove many pounds of them. Lunch provided too! Bring water, bug spray, gloves, and wear shoes appropriate for hiking. Tools provided. No limit. Contact Karen Berkley (850) 570-5740 kjberkley@gmail.com or Eric Mason (850) 509-5746 ericmason@talgov.com

Oct. 10 Sat. M/L FTA Board Meeting. To be held in Tampa, FL.Contact FTA Office for details: 1-877-445-3352.

Oct. 13 Tue. P/L Chapter Meeting:
“Brendan Biggs: Trekking in the Solo Khumbu.” Join Brendan Biggs as he shares his experience of trekking in one of the world’s highest and most breathtaking places, the Everest region in Nepal. Find out what it’s like to travel the footpaths and journey with him as he recounts and shares photos of his adventures, including visiting the famous Buddhist monastery at Tenboche, the Khumbu ice fall at Everest base camp, and his attempt to summit Imja Tse–a 20,000-ft “trekking” peak.Early Learning Coalition, Suite 70, Northwood Centre, 1852 North Martin Luther King Blvd., Tallahassee. Contact: Liz Sparks (850) 570 5950 liz.aparks57@gmail.com

Oct. 17 Sat. P/M Apalachicola National Forest-East Trail Care. Clearing brush, limbs and repainting blazes. Limit: 10 people. Contact Richard Graham (850) 878-3616 rdgraham@centurylink.net

Oct. 17 Sat. P/L Junior Trail Trekkers “Mini-Naturalists in the Making.” This family and child friendly hike will give your little naturalists a chance to try out their interpretive skills! As we hike the lush trails of City of Tallahassee’s Elinor Klapp-Phipps Park, each child will have the chance to point out something they like or notice and the group will stop to hear what they have to share. This is a great opportunity to boost children’s self-confidence and allow them to hear what others have to share. All ages welcome; parent or guardian required to accompany child. Trail is not stroller suitable – baby wearing is encouraged. Meet at 10 a.m. Limit: 10 families. Contact Ashley Hopkins (850) 339-3488 hello.kiddo@gmail.com

Oct. 17 Sat. M/L Chapter Council Meeting. To be held in Gainesville, FL.Contact FTA Office for details: 1-877-445-3352.

Oct. 18 Sun. P/M-S St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge Hike. This series of hikes is going to be very similar to those of preceding years. They are designed primarily for hikers who would like to increase their endurance on the trail. We will start with an 8-mile hike and gradually increase to 12-14 miles by the end of winter. We will hike over flat ground and maintain a relatively brisk pace. Bring water and trail snacks for several hours. This activity is appropriate for anyone wishing to train for a pack hike or powerwalking a half marathon race. Bring your pack loaded with 50%-60% final load. No limit. Contact Dawn Brown (850) 545-0351 dbrown1948@embarqmail.com

Oct. 22-26 Thur.-Mon. P/S 40-Mile Appalachian Trail Section Hike. Hike from Dick’s Creek Gap/US 76 (Hiawassee, GA) to Winding Stair Gap/US 64 (Franklin, NC): 40.2 miles. Thursday, October 22nd will be a travel day, leaving Tallahassee at 8:00 a.m. and arriving in Hiawassee around 3 p.m., where we plan to spend the first night at Top of Georgia Hostel (http://www.topofgeorgiahostel.com). The final day, Monday, October 26th we will end sometime during the day and head back to Tallahassee. Details and miles hiked each day and shelters/campsites for each evening will be determined the week before the hike by those who sign up. Limit: 10 people. Contact John Laney (850) 879-0168 john@john-laney.com

Oct. 24 Sat. P/M Bear Creek Forest Decennial Celebration. Join the Florida Forest Service and the many public groups it serves at the 10-Year Anniversary celebration of Bear Creek Forest Educational Center.  Beginning at 9 a.m. there will be hay rides, hikes, educational exhibits, refreshments, prizes, and more. FTA members will host an information table and lead one or more guided hikes.  Dress for the weather, wear sturdy shoes, and bring what you need for a walk in the woods. You do not have to register to join in the fun. No limit. If you would like to help at our information table or lead a hike contact Howard Pardue  hpardue@comcast.net (850) 567-2078. For more information about the event contact Tom Gilpin of the Florida Forest Service at (850) 627-9064.

Oct. 24 Sat. P/L “Birds and Brunch” Fun Hike. Gather at Sunrise (8 a.m.) to observe migrating birds in tranquil Lake Esther at San Luis City Park located at 1313 San Luis Road in Tallahassee. Then we will take a leisurely 2-3 mile hike on the park trails. Following the hike we’ll enjoy a scrumptious brunch at Woodchuck’s Café! Limit: 14 people. Contact Melanie Knapp (850) 339-8830 mermelly22@hotmail.com

Oct. 25 Sun. P/M Miccosukee Greenway “A Walk on the Mile(s) Side!” Choose to walk 7 miles, 10 miles or the entire 14 miles of the Miccosukee Greenway: Crump Trailhead to Fleischman Trailhead and back. If you want to stop earlier along the route, you can make your own arrangements to get off at the Thornton, Edenfield or Fleischman TH by leaving a car there. Bring your own water and snacks and dress for the elements. Bathrooms are at Crump, Thornton, and Edenfield THs. This is not a race–it’s all about meeting your personal goal. Plan to get clearance from your medical advisor, invest in good shoes, and do lots of pre-event training. Meet at the Crump Rd. TH (across the street from the residence at 4955 Crump Road) at 9:30 a.m. Limit: 25 people. Contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 Griffindd@aol.com or Louis Brooks (850) 383-0724 louisfbrooks@yahoo.com

Oct. 27 Tue. M/L FTA Activity Leader Planning Meeting. Scheduling for January-March 2016 activities. Meet at Milano’s Pizzeria (Tharp and MLK). Please come at 5:30 p.m. to order dinner so we can start planning at 6:00 sharp. Contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 Griffindd@aol.com

Activities – September 2015

Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate,  “M” Limited to FTA members only/“L” Leisurely,  “M” Moderately difficult,  “S” Strenuous.

Sept. 1 Tue. P/M Lines Tract Off-Road Bike Ride. A 9-10 mile off-road bike ride through pine forest and hardwoods with sections bordering Lake Talquin. Casual pace with numerous rest spots. Limit 10 people.   Contact Mike Tucker (850) 545-3489   tuckems@hotmail.com

Sept. 4-7 Fri.- Mon.   M/S Backpacking on the Appalachian Trail – Springer Mountain to Neel’s Gap. This will be a 4-day backpacking trip on the Appalachian Trail starting at Springer Mountain and hiking 32 miles to Neel’s Gap. This will be a very strenuous trip and participants should be comfortable hiking 10-12 miles a day in mountainous terrain while carrying a full backpack. Note: Start training with your pack on the Monday Brisk Walks!  Limit 6 people—FTA MEMBERS ONLY.   Sign up at http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking or contact Louis Brooks (850) 728-3018   louisbrooks@yahoo.com

Sept. 8 Tue. P/L Chapter Meeting: “Rules of Two: Recognition and Preparation for Life’s Emergencies.”  See “Chapter Meeting Programs” for details.

Sept. 14, 21, 28 Mon. P/S Monday Brisk Walks. Meet at Thornton Trailhead to walk briskly along the Miccosukee Greenway. Be ready to hike at 5:30 sharp. Come hydrated and be ready to get good and sweaty! Bring water/bug spray/sun tan lotion. Exercise, eliminate stress and meet some really wonder- ful people! We will maintain an approx. 3.2 mph pace, with two short rest/water stops. You can choose to hike between 2-8 miles. Great training opportunity for hikers/backpackers who want to increase endurance. Sign up at http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking/ or contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 griffindd@aol.com

Sept. 19 Sat. P/L Kolomoki Mounds State Park: Day Hike, Museum Visit & Picnic. Located in Blakely, GA, approximately 90 miles from Tallahassee. This historically significant park is the oldest and largest Woodland Indian site in the southeastern United States, occupied by Indians from 350 to 750 A.D. Georgia’s oldest great temple mound, standing 57 feet high, dominates two smaller burial mounds and several ceremonial mounds. The park’s museum is built around an excavated mound, providing an unusual setting for learning who these people were and how they lived. Inside, visitors will find numerous artifacts and a film. Carpooling from Tallahassee. Park fees apply: check it out at gastateparks.org/Kolomoki Mounds. Bring your own picnic lunch, snacks and beverages to stay hydrated. Limit 25 people. Rain Date Sunday 9/20. Contact Carol Watkins-Babcock (313) 319-9463 carolwkns@yahoo.com or Melanie Knapp (850) 339-8830 mermelly22@hotmail.com

Sept. 26 Sat. P/L Hikes for Tykes: Tree Leaf Rubbings.  On National Public Lands Day, in Take A Child Outside Week, explore the delightful trails and trees of Phipps Park with your little explorer on this child-friendly 2-3 mile hike. Paper and crayons will be provided for children to make leaf rubbings for their nature journals. All ages welcome, parent or guardian required to accompany child. Trail is not stroller suitable so baby wearing is encouraged. Limited to 10 families.  Contact Mike Tucker (850) 545-3489   tuckems@hotmail.com or Ashley Hopkins (850) 339-3488   hellokiddo@gmail.com

Sept. 25-27 Fri.-Sun. M/M FTA 2015 Trail Skills Training.  

NOTE:  As of July 30, 2015 this training is filled to capacity (over 75 registered!).  If you haven’t registered yet, contact the FTA Volunteer Coordinator at volunteer@floridatrail.org  to be added to the “standby” list. 

To be held at Camp LaNoChe in Paisley, FL. Meet fellow volunteers and learn great new skills to use in your trail work on the Florida Trail System!
At this event you’ll…

Find out how you can be reimbursed for feeding your work crews!
Feeding your volunteer crews is a fantastic way of saying thanks for their hard work. It sounds like a lot of responsibility, but coordinating food service for 10-20 people doesn’t have to be a full time job! Our operations staff and volunteer instructors will provide tips and tricks to streamline the planning and preparation of group meals. You’ll also learn industry standards for safe food handling in the backcountry.

Learn about how your chapter can reach new demographics!

Our Community Outreach and Fundraising Workshop will address these concerns with strategies that you can employ in your own home town. Hear how one chapter has been successful in running an annual fundraiser to raise thousands of dollars!

Meet new staff and sharpen your knowledge!

Join our new Volunteer Program Coordinator, as he walks you through developing you own volunteer work event — from initial project conception to project reporting. It’s simple to coordinate your own Volunteer Work Party, and Karl will show you how its done!   

   

Laugh and have fun!  

This year we have evening programs planned to entertain and delight our participants. Join us at the Council Fire Amphitheater, Friday night, to hear volunteers tell their stories of adventure on the Florida Trail. This program is called: “Tales From the Old Trail.”  

On Saturday night, our staff and volunteers will engage the audience in an interactive program that will take the form of a classic television game show! 

Activities – August 2015

Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate,  “M” Limited to FTA members only/“L” Leisurely,  “M” Moderately difficult,  “S” Strenuous.

Aug. 1 Sat. P/M Wacissa River and Slave Canal Paddle. A wilderness paddle on the Wacissa River and Slave Canal.  Expect many pullovers and low trees on this float through bottomland hardwood forest.  Limit 15 canoes/kayaks. Contact Kent Wimmer (850) 528-5261

Aug. 3, 10, 17, 24, 31 Mon. P/S Monday Brisk Walks. Meet at Thornton Trailhead to walk briskly along the Miccosukee Greenway. Be ready to hike at 5:30 sharp. Come hydrated and be ready to get good and sweaty! Bring water/bug spray/sun tan lotion. Exercise, eliminate stress and meet some really wonder- ful people! We will maintain an approx. 3.2 mph pace, with two short rest/water stops. You can choose to hike between 2-8 miles. Great training opportunity for hikers/backpackers who want to increase endurance. Sign up at http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking/ or contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 griffindd@aol.com

Aug. 4 Tue. P/L   Paddle on Lake Lafayette. A 7-mile paddle through open water and cypress-lined paddle trails. Originally this system was a wet prairie, much like Gainesville’s Payne’s Prairie, filling during heavy rains then draining through sinkholes into the Florida Aquifer. Over millennia, when the lakes drained, Native Americans hunted and gathered flint for tools and weapons on the lake bottom. In historic times farmers grazed cattle and planted crops in the fertile lake soil. Two dams constructed around 1950 divided the lake into three sections: Upper Lafayette continues to be a wet prairie, Piney Z Lake is a 200-acre open water lake, and Lower Lafayette resembles a cypress-covered Louisiana bayou. Limit 10 canoes/kayaks. Contact Mike Tucker (850) 545-3489   tuckems@hotmail.com

Aug. 8 Sat. P/L “Red Hills Ramble” Hike. Who doesn’t like to “ramble” along a beautiful county road?!  Join us for our fourth 6-mile ramble on the entire length of Old Centerville Road, from Centerville Road to the Florida/Georgia state line–a canopied road, half paved road and half hard packed clay, it’s an easy hike. The Red Hills has been identified for special conservation efforts and the Nature Conservancy has designated the Red Hills as one of America’s “Last Great Places.” Wear comfortable clothes & walking shoes and bring water & trail snacks for several hours. Meet at 10 a.m. at the Retreat (parking under oaks) across from at Bradley’s Country Store (approximately 6 miles beyond Bradfordville/Roberts Roads) where we will begin our walk. Afterwards plan on enjoying a well-deserved sausage dog and drink at the country store. Sign up at http://www. meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking or contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 griffindd@aol.com

Aug. 9 Sun.  M/ L Backpacking DIY Gear Bag Workshop. We will be making cuban fiber stuff sacks for use while hiking and backpacking. This uses a no-sew process and is a good introduction to making your own gear. No equipment needed, however there is a $30 fee per person to cover materials which should provide 3-5 stuff sacks.   Mail fee (check payable to Louis Brooks) to: 8785 Minnow Creek Drive, Tallahassee, FL 32312 at least two weeks before the event to reserve your space and so supplies can be ordered. Limit 8 people, FTA MEMBERS ONLY. Sign up at http://www. meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking or contact Louis Brooks (850) 728-3018   louisbrooks@yahoo.com or Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 griffindd@aol.com  CANCELLED

Aug. 11 Tue. P/L Chapter Meeting. To give everyone a much needed break, there will be no chapter meeting for August. See you in September for the fall Hiking Kickoff!

Aug. 15 Sat. P/L Hikes for Tykes: Mother Nature under the Microscope. Phipps Park–Meridian Park Trailhead on Meridian Rd. @ 10 a.m. Allow your little one to explore the wonders of nature on the microscopic level! Children will be provided with magnifying glasses and a field microscope will be available so they can investigate what they find along this 2-3 mile hike.  Parent or guardian required to accompany child. Trail is not stroller suitable so baby wearing is encouraged. Limited to 10 families. Contact Mike Tucker (850) 545-3489   tuckems@hotmail.com or Ashley Hopkins (850) 339-3488   hellokiddo@gmail.com

Aug. 15 Sat. P/L Night Prowl at the Tallahassee Museum. Special group program only offered in the evening. Group will head down the Florida Wildlife Trail at @ 7:00 p.m. to observe the nighttime behaviors of the animals. Guides will be located throughout the trail to help us find animals in their habitats. Guided tour lasts 1.5-2 hours and includes a wildlife encounter. Museum staff provide flashlights, but wear closed-toe shoes, bring bug spray and water. Cost is $10 per person, paid directly to the museum. These night prowl programs are open to the public and fill up quickly, so reserve your spot ASAP directly with the Tallahassee Museum at (850) 575-8684. Contact Carol Watkins-Babcock (313) 319-9463 carolwkns@yahoo.com

Aug. 16 Sun. P/L Chipola River Paddle: Yancy Bridge to Magnolia. Leisurely 10-mile paddle with a lunch stop at Hinson Park. The river flows through river swamps and hardwood forests. At lower water levels, enjoy viewing limestone bluffs and caves, visible from the water. Cool off in the abundant refreshing springs! Plan to enjoy a late lunch/early dinner at a restaurant in Marianna before returning to Tallahassee. Limit 12 canoes/kayaks. Contact Gwen Beatty (850) 539-6027 gfbeatty@yahoo.com or Gary Sisco (850) 545-4776 gsisco42@yahoo.com

Aug. 23   Sun. M/L “Chillin’ in the Summer Heat.” Join us at a musical ice cream social. Steve and Carol Babcock will host, Dawn Griffin will provide ice cream and Howard Pardue has generously agreed to provide banjo music. We’ll have a lazy day–come anytime after 2:00 p.m. with your own plates/bowls/beverages/silver, and we will provide hotdogs, ice cream and toppings, and a place to wander around. We live on a long dirt road, so a walk is a possibility. Please sign up by Aug. 19 so we know by how much food to provide: contact Carol Watkins-Babcock (313) 319-9463 carolwkns@yahoo.com or Howard Pardue (850) 386-1494 hpadue@comcast.net  CANCELLED

Aug. 25 Tue. National Park Service 99th Birthday. Fee-free day on all NPS lands.

Aug. 26 29 [NOTE CORRECTED DATE--THE 29th] Sat. P/L   Moonlight Hike on the Miccosukee Greenway: Good Food, Good Folks, Good Times. Laissez les bon temps roulez! Hike a 7-mile section of the Miccosukee Greenway in a unique way, cast in shadows and (almost full) moonlight. You can meet at 5:30 p.m. at Coosh’s Bayou Rouge [(850) 894-4110 located at 6267 Old Water Oak Rd., NE Tallahassee 32312 Suite 101] to grab some good eats before the hike or meet us at 7:30 p.m. at the Crump Road trailhead (across the street from the brick house at 4955 Crump Road). Then carpool to the Fleischman Road trailhead to begin the hike. The first 1.5 miles of trail are natural path. The remainder of the pathway is broad level gravel. The white stones will make following the path an easy task. Wear comfortable closed-toe shoes and bring water, a flashlight or headlamp, and bug spray. Sign up at http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking or Contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103   griffindd@aol.com.

Activities – July 2015

Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate,  “M” Limited to FTA members only/“L” Leisurely,  “M” Moderately difficult,  “S” Strenuous

July 7 Tue. P/M Bike St Marks Trail. A 32-mile bike ride on the Tallahassee-St. Marks Historic Railroad State Trail with lunch at a local eatery in St. Marks. Through the early 1900s, this historic railroad corridor was used to carry cotton from the plantation belt to the coast for shipment to textile mills in England and New England. Officially part of Florida’s Greenways and Trails System, this state trail has also been designated as a National Recreation Trail. This was the first rail-trail in Florida’s system of greenways and trails to be paved, providing a scenic experience for bicycling. At the southern terminus of the trail, the coastal City of St. Marks welcomes trail users to enjoy seafood dining, fishing and entertainment and learn about the history of the area at San Marcos de Apalachee Historical State Park. The Tallahassee–St. Marks State Trail is a completed section of the developing 120-mile “Capital City to the Sea Loop” corridor and is a destination along the “Big Bend Scenic Byway.” A moderate pace of 8-10 mph. Limit 10 people. Contact Mike Tucker (850) 545-3489 / tuckems@hotmail.com

July 13, 20, 27 Mon. P/S Monday Brisk Walks. Meet at Thornton Trailhead to walk briskly along the Miccosukee Greenway. Be ready to hike at 5:30 sharp. Come hydrated and be ready to get good and sweaty! Bring water/bug spray/sun tan lotion. Exercise, eliminate stress and meet some really wonder- ful people! We will maintain an approx. 3.2 mph pace, with two short rest/water stops. You can choose to hike between 2-8 miles. Great training opportunity for hikers/backpackers who want to increase endurance. Sign up at http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking/ or contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 griffindd@aol.com

July 14 Tue. P/L Chapter Meeting: “Oh, the Places You’ll Go!” See “Chapter Meeting Programs” for details.

July 18 Sat. M/L FTA Board of Directors Meeting at 8:00 a.m. in Jacksonville. Open to all Florida Trail Association members. Observe the governing process of our organization. For exact meeting address, call the FTA office toll-free at 1-877-445-3352.

July 18 Sat. P/L Hikes for Tykes: Woodland Scavenger Hunt. Phipps Park–Meridian Park Trailhead on Meridian Rd. @ 10 a.m. Get those kiddos outside with this fun and engaging scavenger hunt along the creeks and trails of Phipps Park. All ages are welcome on the 2-3 mile hike. Parent or guardian required to accompany child. Trail is not stroller suitable so baby wearing is encouraged. Limited to 10 families. Contact Mike Tucker (850) 545-3489   tuckems@hotmail.com or Ashley Hopkins (850) 339-3488 hellokiddo@gmail.com

July 26 Sun. P/L Spring Creek/Chipola River Paddle.  Leisurely 4.5-mile paddle down the crystalline waterways of Spring Creek into the Chipola River through floodplain and cypress-lined shoreline seeing lot of birds and fish along the way. What a way to escape the summer heat! Plan to enjoy a late lunch/early dinner at a restaurant in Marianna before returning to Tallahassee. Limit 12 canoes/kayaks. Contact Gary Sisco (850) 545-4776   gsisco42@yahoo.com or Gwen Beatty (850) 539-6027 gfbeatty@yahoo.com

July 28 Tue. M/L Chapter Activities Planning Meeting.  For October-December activities. Contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103   griffindd@aol.com

Activities – June 2015

Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate,  “M” Limited to FTA members only/“L” Leisurely,  “M” Moderately difficult,  “S” Strenuous

June 6 Sat. M/L National Trails Day. Something completely different–a venue with air conditioning!! Candy-making demo, ice cream at reduced price, parlor games to play with (and purchase?), trail talk. MEMBERS ONLY; LIMIT 12 PEOPLE. To reserve a spot: Linda Patton (850) 668-4334 lpatton@fsu.edu

June 9 Tue. P/L Chapter Meeting. See “Programs.”

June 13 Sat. P/L Red Hills Ramble. Join us for our 3rd six-mile easy ramble along Old Centerville Road, from Centerville Road to the FL/GA state line (canopied road–half paved and half hard packed clay). The Red Hills has been identified for special conservation efforts and the Nature Conservancy has designated it as one of America’s “Last Great Places.” Wear comfortable clothes, walking shoes and bring water & trail snacks for several hours. Meet at 10 a.m. at Bradley’s Country Store (approx. 5.7 mi. beyond Bradfordville/Roberts Roads) where we will park and begin our walk. Afterwards enjoy a sausage dog and drink at the country store. Contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 Griffindd@aol.com or sign up at http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking

June 14 Sun. M/M Wacissa River Paddling Trip. Paddle approximately 2 mi. round trip, from the Wacissa River Springs to Big Blue Springs and back, followed by a picnic lunch at the springs. The river is a large, spring-fed stream located in south-central Jefferson County. Its headwaters are located about a mile south of the town of Wacissa, where the river emerges crystal clear from a group of large limestone springs. Well known for its large concentration of aquatic birds, including egrets, herons, ibis, osprey, wood storks, limpkins, anhingas, kingfishers, barred owls and bald eagles.FTA MEMBERS ONLY; LIMIT 8 BOATS. Contact Louis Brooks (850) 383-0724 louisfbrooks@yahoo.com

 June 20 Sat. P/M Annual Ft Braden Interpretative Hike. Join us under the cooler forest canopy at Ft Braden Trails, located on Hwy 20 about a mile west of Coe Landing Rd.  We will meet at the trailhead just off Hwy 20 (watch for the sign) at 8:15 a.m. We will hike on one of the trail loops, enjoying interpretation on forest resource management and recreation by State Forest experts.  Dress for the weather, wear outdoor shoes/boots. Bring personal items including medications, bug & sun protection, water, snacks, etc.  The hike will conclude about noon with cooling refreshments.  Contact Howard Pardue (850) 386-1494 hpardue@comcast.net.

June 28 Sun. P/M FNST Trail Care in Apalachicola National Forest–West. Join a crew to maintain the Florida National Scenic Trail by clearing brush, limbs and repainting blazes. Location to be determined based on need. We will leave early morning and return about mid-afternoon. Wear trail shoes, dress for the weather, bring personal medications, lunch and snacks, and plan for insects & sun. Trail work can be strenuous so wear clothes you don’t mind getting worn out. We will wear protective gear, either what you bring or provided by FTA/USFS. Basic tools will be provided. Contact Al Ingle (850) 509-1162 al@capitalavionics.com

Activities – May 2015

Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate,  “M” Limited to FTA members only/“L” Leisurely,  “M” Moderately difficult,  “S” Strenuous

May 2 Sat. P/L Moonlight Hike on the Miccosukee Greenway. See a 7-mile section of the Miccosukee Greenway in a unique way, cast in shadows and moonlight. Meet at 7:30 p.m. at the Crump Rd. trailhead (across the street from the brick house at 4955 Crump Rd.) and carpool to the Fleischman Rd. trailhead to begin our hike. The first 1.5 miles of trail are natural path. The remainder of the pathway is broad level gravel. The white stones will make following the path an easy task. Wear comfortable closed-toe shoes and bring water, a flashlight or headlamp, and bug spray. Contact Melanie Knapp (850) 339-8830 mermelly22@hotmail.com or Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 Griffindd@aol.com or sign up at http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking

May 9 Sat. P/M Bike and Hike in St. Mark’s National Wildlife Refuge. Bike from the Visitor Center to the lighthouse and stop to hike some trails along the way. Contact Mike Tucker (850) 545-3489 tuckems@hotmail.com

May 12 Tue. P/L Chapter Meeting. See “Programs.”

May 17 Sun. P/M FNST Trail Care in Apalachicola National Forest-West. Join a crew to maintain the Florida National Scenic Trail by clearing brush, limbs and repainting blazes. Location to be determined based on need. We will leave early morning and return about mid-afternoon. Wear trail shoes, dress for the weather, bring personal medications, lunch and snacks, and plan for insects & sun. Trail work can be strenuous so wear clothes you don’t mind getting worn out. We will wear protective gear, either what you bring or provided by FTA/USFS. Basic tools will be provided. Contact Al Ingle (850) 509-1162 al@capitalavionics.com

May 30 Sat. M/L Float, Swim and Ice Cream Social, Apalachicola National Forest–West. We will canoe, kayak or float down the Ochlockonee River from Piney Creek landing in Wakulla County to Smith Creek, about 2 mi. south of departing point. Swimming and sightseeing is a must! Enjoy ice cream and light food at Al’s family cabin (the take out point). Plan to bring a food item to share! FTA MEMBERS ONLY; LIMIT 8 PEOPLE. Contact Al Ingle (850) 509-1162 al@capitalavionics.com

Activities – April 2015

Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate,  “M” Limited to FTA members only/“L” Leisurely,  “M” Moderately difficult,  “S” Strenuous

Apr. 1, 8, 15, 22, 29; May 6, 13, 20; June 3, 10, 17, 24 Wed. P/S Brisk Walks. Join us for a 4-mile walk to burn calories, de-stress and socialize. We will leave from the restroom area at Lafayette Heritage Trail Park, 4900 Heritage Park Blvd., which is off Conner Blvd. We will take different routes to Tom Brown Park, or go over the pedestrian Bridge to J.R. Alford Greenway, or up and down the fishing fingers, or take a new route around the sparkling lake. Great views of lakes and wildlife. Bring water and wear comfortable shoes! Be ready to walk at 5:30 p.m. RSPV at http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking/ to receive last minute changes. Contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 griffindd@aol.com

Apr. 6, 13, 20, 27; May 4, 11, 18; June 1, 8, 15, 22, 29 Mon. P/S Brisk Walks. This is our 4th year!Meet at the Thornton trailhead to walk along the Miccosukee Greenway with others who want to exercise, eliminate stress and meet interesting people! Be ready to hike at 5:30 p.m. sharp. Come dehydrated and also bring water, dress in layers. We will attempt to maintain a 3.2 – 3.5 mph pace, nonstop. Hikes are 4 – 8 miles. You can go as far and as fast as you want. RSPV at http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking/ to receive last minute changes. Contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 griffindd@aol.com

Apr. 9 Thu. – Apr 12 Sun. P/L Florida Trail Association Annual Conference. Life Enrichment Center, 4991 Picciola Road, Fruitland Park, FL. Join us as we celebrate another year dedicated to building and maintaining the Florida Trail. The venue features motel-style lodgings, tent and RV sites, buffet-style dining room, auditorium and classrooms, and wi-fi in most locations. There will be workshops and speakers, live and silent auctions, raffle, campfires, awards, election of officers, and guided/self-guided hikes. Volunteers needed–let Mary Nixon (emasis68@cfl.rr.com) know if you can help. Raffle items (new) needed–contact Eve Barbour (eve828@netzero.net) with any questions. Registration and other information at www.floridatrail.org/2015-annual-conference

Apr. 12 Sun. P/L Econfina Creek Canoe & Kayak Paddle (Bay County). Paddle 5 miles on the beautiful spring-fed Econfina Creek considered one of Florida’s most beautiful canoe trails. The river flows through a hilly limestone karst landscape, and there are springs, sinkholes, caves and rock outcrops along the way. Hopefully we’ll be just in time to enjoy the Florida wild azaleas and mountain laurel in full bloom. LIMIT 12 boats. Contact Gwen Beatty or Gary Sisco (850) 539-6027

Apr. 14 Tue. P/L Chapter Meeting. See “Programs.”

Apr. 18 Sat. P/L Tallahassee Urban Hike! Shakespeare buffs and theatergoers dust off your wherefore-art-thous and enjoy springtime while exploring downtown activities including the Southern Shakespeare Festival’s live performance of “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” at the amphitheater in Cascades Park. Plan a slow afternoon hike around downtown, grab some dinner, bring a chair/blanket and be ready for the evening performance. Details on meeting location/time/costs to be provided closer to event. Contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 griffindd@aol.com or Louis Brooks (850) 383-0724 louisfbrooks@yahoo.com or you can sign up at http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking

Apr. 18 Sat. P/M Spring Canyon Hike. A 4- to 5-mile hike through a privately owned property that is being restored to its original condition.  Expect a slow pace as we enjoy the beautiful wildflowers, ravines, and longleaf pine forest, led by owners Tom and Helen Roth.  Bring water, snacks and especially a camera.  This should be leisurely hike but expect a few steep climbs up the ravines. Contact Mike Tucker (850) 545-3489 tuckems@hotmail.com

Apr. 18 Sat. P/L Annual Wakulla Springs State Park Wildlife Festival. A celebration of the area’s wildlife and especially inviting to children and the child in everyone. There will be music, outdoor exhibitors, wildlife tours, children’s activities and more. Drop by and see us at the FTA Apalachee Chapter Exhibit. More Information at http://www.wakullawildlifefestival.com

Apr. 19 Sun. P/M FNST Trail Care in Apalachicola National Forest-West. Join a crew to maintain the Florida National Scenic Trail by clearing brush, limbs and repainting blazes. Location to be determined based on need. We will leave early morning and return about mid-afternoon. Wear trail shoes, dress for the weather, bring personal medications, lunch and snacks, and plan for insects & sun. Trail work can be strenuous so wear clothes you don’t mind getting worn out. We will wear protective gear, either what you bring or provided by FTA/USFS. Basic tools will be provided. Contact Al Ingle (850) 509-1162 al@capitalavionics.com

Apr. 25 Sat. P/M Hike, Seek & Destroy Invasive Plants! At a City of Tallahassee park, 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Get exercise and education. Earn a reward by learning from experts about invasive plants & removing as many pounds of them as you can. Co-organized by local chapters of FTA & Florida Native Plant Assoc., plus The Nature Conservancy and City of Tallahassee. Lunch/beverages provided; plus prizes! Bring water, bug spray, gloves, and clippers if you own them (we will have extras). Contact Karen Berkley (850) 570-5740 kjberkley@gmail.com or Susan Tanski (850) 891-5314 or Chuck Goodheart chuckg0116@gmail.com

Apr. 26 Sun, P/L Day Hike at Birdsong Nature Center. BNC consists of 565 acres of wildflower meadows, forests, ponds and swamps which are home to a myriad of birds and other wildlife. We will visit the famous Bird Window; the surrounding gardens and pool have attracted over 160 species of birds. Plan to bring a snack/water and day hike on some of the 12 miles of trails. Possible cookout at Dawn Brown’s house afterwards! Admission: $5 adults, $2.50 children 4-12 years old, free to BNC members. Car pool meeting location and time of departure finalized closer to event.Contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 Griffindd@aol.com or Dawn Brown (850) 668-0091, (850) 545-0351 dbrown1948@embarqmail.com or you can sign up at http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking

Apr. 28 Tue. M/L Activity Leader Planning Meeting.   Grab a beer, wine and dinner while planning chapter activities for the months of July–September. 5:30 – 7: 30 p.m. at Milano’s Pizza (Corner of MLK and Tharp). Contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 griffindd@aol.com

Activities – March 2015

Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate,  “M” Limited to FTA members only/“L” Leisurely,  “M” Moderately difficult,  “S” Strenuous

Mar. 5 Thur.—Mar. 8 Sun. P/S FNST St. Marks NWR Volunteer Work Party. General trail maintenance including brushing with loppers, hand saws, brush saws, and chainsaws. Some blazing work will be needed. FTA’s Technical Advisors will caravan/carpool with volunteers to the worksite each day and provide project support, trail maintenance training, tool training, safety supervision, and emergency response/communication support for the group. More information at http://www. floridatrail.org/stmarksvwp Registration required: contact Volunteer Program Coordinator, Megan Donoghue mdonoghue@floridatrail.org

Mar. 7 Sat. P/S 20th Anniversary Bradwell Bay Swamp Stomp, Apalachicola National Forest, FNST. Hike about 8 mi. beginning at the Bradwell Bay West Trailhead on FR 314 and hiking east to the Monkey Creek Trailhead on FR 329. Depending on the size of the group, we may split and hike from opposite trailheads and meet on the island for lunch. Expect the hike to be wet—wading and mud for about half of the distance through the cool water—but the air will be warm. Contact Kent Wimmer (850) 528-5261 klwimmer2@gmail.com

Mar. 12 Thur.—Mar. 15 Sun. P/S Bradwell Bay East Volunteer Work Party. See http://www.floridatrail.org/volunteer/volunteeropportunitiesfor details as they become available.

Mar. 15 Sun. P/M Tates Hell Hike. Explore the High Bluff Coastal Hiking Trail in Tate’s Hell State Forest on a 4-mi. hike with interpretive guides. Meeting time and location to be provided closer to event. Contact Lori Gilbertson (850) 420-0132  fta_trails4u.lori@aol.com or Al Ingle (850) 509-1162 al@capitalavionics.com or Carol Watkins (313) 319-9463   cwatkinsbabcock@gmail.com

Mar. 19 Thur.—Mar. 22 Sun. P/S Bradwell Bay West Volunteer Work Party. See http://www.floridatrail.org/volunteer/volunteeropportunitiesfor details as they become available.

Mar. 21 Sat. P/M Hike, Seek & Destroy Invasive Plants. [See description at February 21.] Contact Karen Berkley (850) 570-5740 (text OK) kjberkley@gmail.com or Susan Tanski (850) 891-5314

Mar. 26 Thur.—Mar. 29 Sun. P/S Apalachicola National Forest Volunteer Work Party. See http://www.floridatrail.org/volunteer/volunteeropportunities for details as they become available.

Mar. 28 Sat. P/M Sopchoppy Hike and Plant ID. A 5-mi. hike (approx. 2.5 hrs.) on the FNST along the scenic Sopchoppy River. The hike is scheduled to take advantage of the spring wild azalea blooms—plentiful along the riverbanks. Participants will receive a tree list with key field signs to aid in ID of plant species along the trail. A car shuttle will be arranged to allow for a one-way trip. Limit 20 people. Contact George Weaver (850) 510-3288 weaver@psy.fsu.edu or Melanie Knapp (850) 339-8830   mermelly22@hotmail.com

Mar. 29 Sun. P/M Wacissa River Paddle, Jefferson County. We will put in at the spring head in Wacissa and paddle 10 mi. downstream to our take-out at Goose Pasture. Expect to see a variety of birds. Bring your own boat and wear a pdf. No dogs please. Contact Gwen Beatty (850) 539-6027 gfbeatty@yahoo. com or Gary Sisco (850) 545-4776 gsisco42@yahoo.com

SAVE THE DATE: Apr. 9 Thur.—Apr. 12 Sun. P/L 2015 FTA Annual Conference.  Methodist Life Enrichment Center, Fruitland Park, FL.    http://www.floridatrail.org/2015-annual-conference/

Activities – February 2015

Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate,  “M” Limited to FTA members only/“L” Leisurely,  “M” Moderately difficult,  “S” Strenuous

Feb. 1 Sun. P/M-to-S Challenge Day Hike. [See description at January 11.] Contact Dawn Brown (850) 668-0091 or (850) 545-351 dbrown1948@embarqmail.com

Feb. 5 Thur. P/M Weekday Warriors FNST Trail Care.   [See description at Jan. 22.] Contact Howard Pardue (850) 386-1494 hpardue@comcast.net

Feb. 7 Sat. P/L Tallahassee Urban Walk. Learn more about our area’s civil rights history. Includes a visit toTallahassee’s C.K. Steele bus station where the famous bus boycott occurred, the ‘Civil Rights in the Sunshine State’ exhibit at the Museum of Florida History, and Smokey Hollow at Cascades Park. Limit 15 people. Details on time and meeting location provided closer to event. Contact Adrienne Ruhl (813) 293-1081 adrienneruhl@ gmail.com or co-leader Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 griffindd@aol.com

Feb. 7 Sat. P/M Apalachicola Bluffs and Ravines Preserve Hike. Enjoy a 3.75-mi. round trip hike through an enchanting area that local legend claims is the original Garden of Eden. The trail eventually opens to a spectacular view at Alum Bluff—at 135 feet above the Apalachicola River, the largest natural geological exposure in Florida. There are some steep sections to negotiate. Co-leader: Melanie Knapp. Contact Barry Haber (850) 284-5615 barryjhaber@hotmail.com  CANCELLED DUE TO TRAIL DAMAGE.

Feb. 14 Sat. P/M Trekking with Richard. Hike the FNST in the Apalachicola National Forest, from SR 319 to FR 321. This a hike in upland pine forest. Dress for the weather and bring water, lunch, cameras. There will be no bugs! Contact Richard Graham (850) 878-3616
rdgraham @centurylink.net

Feb. 15 Sun. P/M-to-S Challenge Day Hike. [See description at January 11.] Contact Dawn Brown (850) 668-0091 or (850) 545-0351 dbrown1948 @embarqmail.com

Feb. 21 Sat. M/L Basic First Aid & CPR Training. 8:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m. in Tallahassee. REGISTRATION REQUIRED. Free for FNST maintainers, reduced cost ($40) for chapter Activity Leaders, $60 for other FTA members (if space is available). Activity Leaders and other FTA members can qualify as FNST maintainers by participating in an FNST workday before Feb. 10 and completing a volunteer profile. LIMIT 16 people. For questions: Megan Eno meno02@fs.fed.us TO REGISTER: Howard Pardue (850) 386-1494 hpardue@comcast.net

Feb. 21 Sat. P/M Hike, Seek & Destroy
Invasive Plants.
At a City of Tallahassee park, 9:00 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Learn from experts about invasive plants & remove as many of them as you can. Lunch/beverages provided. Bring water, bug spray, gloves, and clippers if you own them (we will have extras). Contact Karen Berkley (850) 570-5740 (text OK) kjberkley@gmail.com or Susan Tanski (850) 891-5314

Feb. 27 Fri.—Mar. 1 Sun. P/S FNST Aucilla River Volunteer Work Party. General trail maintenance including brushing with loppers, hand saws, brush saws, and chainsaws. Some blazing will be needed. FTA’s Technical Advisors will caravan/carpool with volunteers to the worksite each day and provide project support, trail maintenance training, tool training, safety supervision, and emergency response/communication support for the group. More information at http://www.floridatrail.org/aucilla-vwp/  Registration required: contact Volunteer Program Coordinator, Megan Donoghue mdonoghue@floridatrail.org

Feb. 28 Sat. P/M Aucilla River FNST Hike.  We will be accompanying the Transit Relay Hike backpacking group for a portion of the day. Hike 9.6 mi. on the Florida Trail along the Aucilla River, stopping at the Rapids for lunch. After lunch, we’ll continue hiking to where the backpackers will stop for the night. After that, another 0.7 of a mile will take us to the end point of the day hike. There will be a shuttle, so bring snacks for morning and afternoon waits and make sure your vehicle has room for other people. Donation to drivers for gas appreciated. It is still small-game hunting season so wear hunter orange if you have it. The FTA chapter has a few extra orange vests and hats to lend. Meeting place and time will be provided to participants close to time of event. LIMIT 10 PEOPLE. Sign up by Feb. 25 and provide full name, number coming, FTA membership status, email address, and phone number. Contact Wendy Dial (941) 320-8470 wbdial@gmail.com

Feb. 28 Sat.—Mar. 11 Wed. P/M-S Apalachee Transit Relay Hike. Thru-hike along 136 mi. of our Chapter’s 150-mi. section of the FNST. This will be a fully self-supported backpacking trip; hikers will be responsible for their own equipment and food. We expect to cover 8-12 mi. per day (4 trail segments of 2-5 days and 20-45 mi. each). Participants can hike one or more sections if desired. Day hikers or overnighters welcome to join in for any part of the hike; however, those camping in the St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge are required to be thru-hiking the entire Refuge. Shuttles available to/from designated trailheads. LIMIT 8 backpackers per each segment. DEADLINE for sign-up is Feb. 1, 2015. To sign up, contact Mike Tucker (850) 545-3489 tuckems@hotmail.com

Activities – January 2015

Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate,  “M” Limited to FTA members only/“L” Leisurely,  “M” Moderately difficult,  “S” Strenuous

Jan. 5, 12, 26; Feb. 2, 16, 23; Mar. 2, 16, 23, 30 Mon. P/S Monday Brisk Walks. Meet at Thornton or Edenfield Trailheads to walk along the Miccosukee Greenway. Be ready to hike at 5:30 p.m. sharp. Bring flashlight/headlight and water, and dress in layers for these brisk hikes with others who want to exercise, eliminate stress and meet interesting people. We will maintain an approx. 3.2 mph pace, nonstop. Hikes are 4-8 mi. (depending upon daylight). Trailhead meeting location (map) and RSVP at http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking or contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 griffindd@aol.com

Jan. 7, 14, 21, 28; Feb. 11, 18, 25; Mar. 4, 11, 18, 25 Wed. P/S Wednesday Brisk Walks. It’s dark early now so we’re walking in areas with lighted sidewalks. The hikes start at Flag Credit Union at 3115 Conner Boulevard, Tallahassee (just east of Capital Circle; park in grassy area in front of bank) and are a mostly flat hike (one short, steep ascent). Be ready to hike at 5:30 p.m. sharp. Bring flashlight and water, and dress in layers for these brisk hikes with others who want to exercise, eliminate stress and meet interesting people. We will maintain an approx. 3.2 mph pace, nonstop. Hike is 4 miles along nice tree-lined sidewalks. RSVP at http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking or contact Wendy Dial (941) 320-8470 wbdial@gmail.com or Gwen Spivey (850) 528-8695 gwendolyn.spivey@gmail.com clearly stating your name and phone number so we can contact you about last-minute changes.

Jan. 10 Sat. P/M  Trekking with Richard. Hike Ft. Braden’s east loop for 5 mi. of adventure. Dress for the weather and bring water, lunch, cameras. There will be no bugs! Contact Richard Graham (850) 878-3616   rdgraham@centurylink.net  

Jan. 11 Sun. P/M Aucilla Sinks Hike. This 5-mi. hike along a section of the FNST follows a series of sinkholes and open water sections that constitute the ‘sunken’ portion of the Aucilla River. A car shuttle will be arranged to allow for a one-way trip on the trail. Including a lunch break, the hike will take approximately 3 hrs. Dress for the weather and wear hunter orange if you have it. Bring water and lunch. Contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 griffindd@aol.com or George Weaver (850) 510-3288 weaver@psy.fsu.edu

Jan. 17 Sat. P/M   Bear Creek Hike in Lake Talquin State Forest.  If you think Florida doesn’t have steep trails, this one will dispel the myth. The Ravine Trail is notable for clinging to the edges of a rather large and lengthy steephead ravine, following the topographical contours nicely. Entrance fee $2 per person, children under 6 free. If desired, we can eat at a local restaurant after the hike. Contact Barry Haber (850) 284-5615 barryjhaber@hotmail.com or co-leader Cindy Shrestha (850)567-7547 cindy.shrestha@gmail.com

Jan. 17 Sat.–Jan. 19 Mon. P/S FNST Backpacking Trip. Three-day 30-mi. trip on the Florida Trail where it runs almost continuously beside the Suwannee River. The terrain varies from flat dirt roads to high sandhills and limestone rock bluffs. Hikers must ford seven small streams and swampy areas. At times the trail passes through head-high bamboo. The river is fed by springs, which are seen as clear blue water where they enter the river. Striking white sand beaches occur on river bends, providing perfect places to camp or swim. Limit 8 people. Contact Louis Brooks (850) 383-0724 louisfbrooks@yahoo.com

Jan. 18 Sun. P/M Line’s Tract Hike in Lake Talquin State Forest. Enjoy about 6 mi. of hiking with great views of Lake Talquin. If desired, we can eat at a local restaurant after the hike. Contact Barry Haber (850) 284-5615 barryjhaber@hotmail.com or Cindy Shrestha (850)567-7547 cindy.shrestha@gmail.com

Jan. 18 (changed from Jan. 11) Sun. P/M-to-S   Challenge Day Hike. Continuing the series started in November, hikes will be over more difficult terrain with more hills and steep sections or wet trail. Distances may be less, but the terrain will make them more challenging. Bring water and trail snacks for several hours of hiking. These hikes are also appropriate for anyone training for extended backpacking trips. Bring pack loaded with 60-75% final load. Details on specific trail, meeting time and location to be determined closer to event. Contact Dawn Brown (850) 668-0091 or (850) 545-0351 dbrown1948@embarqmail.com

Jan. 22 Thur. P/M Weekday Warriors FNST Trail Care. Join a crew to maintain the FNST. We will leave early morning and return about mid-afternoon. Wear boots, dress for the weather in work clothes, and bring personal medications, insect repellant, sunscreen, water, lunch and snacks. We will wear protective gear—your own or provided by FTA/USFS. We will have basic hand tools available. Contact Howard Pardue (850) 386-1494 hpardue@comcast.net

Jan. 24 Sat. M/L FTA Board of Directors Meeting. Open to all Florida Trail Association members. Observe the governing process of our organization. For meeting place and time, call the FTA office toll-free at 1-877-445-3352

Jan. 25 Sun. P/M-to-S Challenge Day Hike. [See description at Jan. 11.] Contact Dawn Brown (850) 668-0091 or (850) 545-0351 dbrown1948 @embarqmail.com

Jan. 31 Sat. P/M Apalachicola National Forest-West, Trail Care. Clearing brush and limbs, and repainting blazes. Contact Al Ingle (850) 509-1162 al@captalavionics.com

Jan. 31 Sat. M/L Chapter Council Meeting. Council members from chapters around the state get together to discuss issues that are common to us all. These meetings give us a broader picture of FTA and the Florida National Scenic Trail. Open to all Florida Trail Association members. For meeting place and time, call the FTA office toll-free at 1-877-445-3352

Jan. 31 Sat. P/M Bike & Hike Shepherd Spring/Cathedral of Palms. Trail bike 2 mi. & hike about 1 mi. to scenic Cathedral of Palms And Shepherd Spring in St. Marks NWR. We’ll also bike down to the Wakulla Beach area. Pack a lunch for this 3-hour adventure. Contact Lori Gilbertson (850) 420-0132 fta_trails4u.lori@aol.com or Carol Watkins (313) 319-9463 cwatkinsbabcock @gmail.com  [ORIGINALLY SCHEDULED FOR JAN. 24th ]

Activities – December 2014

Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate,  “M” Limited to FTA members only/“L” Leisurely,  “M” Moderately difficult,  “S” Strenuous

Dec. 1, 8, 15, 22, 29    Mondays P/S Power Walk at Miccosukee Greenway. Meet new friends, get some exercise, eliminate stress. Gather near restroom at Thornton Trailhead (Near I-10 on Miccosukee Rd., Tallahassee); be ready to hike @ 5:30 p.m. sharp. This is not a trail running group, but we will maintain an approx. 3.2 mph pace with light hiking gear (dress in layers, wear a hat and light trekking or trail running shoes; bring water, bug spray, energy bar). Hydrate during the day and before you arrive. We will hike about 4-8 miles, rotating routes over the season. RSVP at http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking/ or contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 / griffindd@aol.com or Carol Watkins (313) 319-9463 / cwatkinsbabcock@gmail.com

Dec. 3, 10, 17   Wednesdays P/S Power Walk at Lafayette Heritage Trail Park. Meet new friends, get some exercise, eliminate stress. Gather near restroom at north end of parking area at Lafayette Heritage Trail Park (4900 Heritage Park Blvd., Tallahassee; be ready to hike at 5:30 p.m. sharp. This is not a trail running group, but we will maintain an approx. 3.2 mph pace with light hiking gear (dress in layers, wear a hat and light trekking or trail running shoes; bring water, bug spray, energy bar). Hydrate during the day and before you arrive. We will hike 4 miles, rotating routes over the season. RSVP at http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking/ or contact Wendy Dial (941) 320-8470 / wbdial@gmail.com or Gwen Spivey (850) 528-8695 /gwendolyn.spivey@gmail.com Clearly state your name and phone number so we can contact you about last-minute changes.

December 6 Saturday P/M Torreya State Park Trail Care. Clip off encroaching vegetation and remove fallen limbs from the Torreya River Bluff Loop Trail. Bring water, lunch, and loppers, if you can. We will meet at 7:30 a.m. in Tallahassee for carpooling. Contact Jerry Herting (850) 878-3426 / Bob Gilley (850) 557-1536.

December 6 Saturday P/S Day Hike in the St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge. A 12-mi. hike on the Deep Creek Trail on the FNST in the refuge. The refuge encompasses 68,000 acres of longleaf pine, freshwater marsh and saltwater marsh. A must see! Contact Gary Sisco (850) 545-4776 / gsisco42@yahoo.com

December 7 Sunday P/M-to-S Challenge Day Hike in the St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge.  These hikes are designed for hikers who would like to increase their endurance. We will hike over flat ground, maintaining a relatively brisk pace. We start with an 8-mi. hike and will gradually increase to 12-14 mi. by the end of winter. Bring water and trail snacks for several hours of hiking. This hike is also appropriate for anyone training for overnight backpacking trips–like the 136-mi. FNST Relay in Feb./Mar. 2015. Bring your pack loaded with 50-60% final load to start with. Contact Dawn Brown (850) 545-0351 / dbrown1948@embarqmail.com

December 9 Tuesday P/L Chapter Program Meeting: Holiday Party & Potluck.  Holiday Party, Used Gear Sale, & Potluck.” Bring your used hiking/camping gear to sell, marked with a price. Try to arrive by 5:30 to get it arranged on the tables and see what’s for sale before dinner begins. Celebrate the season by joining our annual holiday potluck and gift exchange. Bring a dish to share (turkey/ham provided by the Chapter) and a wrapped gift to participate in the exchange. The gift should be trail or outdoors related if possible, and can be purchased-but-inexpensive, a white elephant, or hand-made. If you’re feeling extra festive, write a short poem or limerick describing the gift.  Meeting held at the Early Learning Coalition, Suite 70, Northwood Centre, 1852 North Martin Luther King Blvd., Tallahassee. For information, contact Liz Sparks (850) 570-5950 or liz.aparks57@gmail.com.

December 13 Saturday P/M Hike in the L. Kirk Edwards Wildlife Management Area (FWC). Approx. 5-mi. hike, east of Tallahassee, on tire tracks in open field before entering upland woods. We’ll stop at the St. Marks River where the bridge used to be, pass food plots and see Mud Sink, which drains the area. Bring water and lunch. If the group wants, we can drive to another entrance and walk to canal. Contact Wendy Dial (941) 320-8470 / wbdial@gmail.com or Adrienne Ruhl (813) 293-1081 / adrienneruhl@gmail.com and provide your full name, email address and phone number.

December 14 Sunday P/M-to-S Challenge Day Hike in the St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge.   These hikes are designed for hikers who would like to increase their endurance. We will hike over flat ground, maintaining a relatively brisk pace. We start with an 8-mi. hike and will gradually increase to 12-14 mi. by the end of winter. Bring water and trail snacks for several hours of hiking. This hike is also appropriate for anyone training for overnight backpacking trips–like the 136-mi. FNST Relay in Feb./Mar. 2015. Bring your pack loaded with 50-60% final load to start with. Contact Dawn Brown (850) 545-0351 / dbrown1948@embarqmail.com

December 14 Sunday P/M St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge Dike Hike. A 4-5 mi. hike along the dikes and a portion of the FNST. Plan to hike at least 2 hrs. at a relaxed pace. The bugs will be gone and the migratory birds arriving. Not exclusively a bird watching hike, but I will bring bird ID books. After the hike, adjourn to the Picnic Pond and enjoy our packed lunches and the view. You can stay afterward and hike on your own. Bring lunch, water (no fresh water in the Refuge except at the Visitors Center), snacks, binoculars & camera. Dress in layers for changes in weather, wear a hat, and bring rain gear. We will not hike if it’s raining hard. Entrance: $5/car; free with Refuge, Senior, or Natl. Park pass. Limit 20 people. To sign up, contact Carol Watkins (313) 319-9463 / cwatkinsbabcock@gmail.com

CANCELLED: December 20 Saturday P/M Run (or Bike), Seek & Destroy Invasive Plants.  At a City of Tallahassee park. 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Get exercise and education. Earn your place to hike (or ride or run) by learning from experts about invasive plants & removing as many pounds of them as you can. Co-organized by local chapters of FTA & Florida Native Plant Assoc., plus The Nature Conservancy and City of Tallahassee. Lunch/beverages provided; plus prizes! Bring water, bug spray, gloves, and clippers if you own them (we will have extras). Contact Karen Berkley (850) 570-5740 (can text) / kjberkley@gmail.com or Susan Tanski (850) 891-5314

December 21 Sunday P/L Fort Braden Trail Hike. Hike 2 of the 3 trail loops for a total of about 6 mi. The trail winds through hardwood forests down to beautiful Lake Talquin. Bring water and a snack. No dogs please. Contact Gwen Beatty (850) 539-6027 / gfbeatty@yaoo.com

December 27 Saturday P/L Annual Elinor Klapp-Phipps Park Holiday Hike. Let’s get outside and play after too many holiday celebrations, shopping, partying, and out-of-town relatives! This hike is a nice long, leisurely all day affair; entire loop is 7 mi. There are several bail-out points for those who want a shorter hike. Bring water, trail snacks, and lunch for a mid-way break at the Oak Hammock. Families and pets (on leash) welcome. Contact Dawn Brown (850) 545-0351 / dbrown1948@embarqmail.com

Activities – November 2014

Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate,  “M” Limited to FTA members only/“L” Leisurely,  “M” Moderately difficult,  “S” Strenuous

Nov. 3, 10, 17, 24   Mondays P/S Power Walk at Miccosukee Greenway. Meet new friends, get some exercise, eliminate stress. Gather near restroom at Thornton Trailhead (Near I-10 on Miccosukee Rd., Tallahassee); be ready to hike @ 5:30 p.m. sharp. This is not a trail running group, but we will maintain an approx. 3.2 mph pace with light hiking gear (dress in layers, wear a hat and light trekking or trail running shoes; bring water, bug spray, energy bar). Hydrate during the day and before you arrive. We will hike about 4-8 miles, rotating routes over the season. RSVP at http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking/ or contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 / griffindd@aol.com or Carol Watkins (313) 319-9463 / cwatkinsbabcock@gmail.com

Nov. 5, 12  Wednesdays P/S Power Walk at Lafayette Heritage Trail Park. Meet new friends, get some exercise, eliminate stress. Gather near restroom at north end of parking area at Lafayette Heritage Trail Park (4900 Heritage Park Blvd., Tallahassee; be ready to hike at 5:30 p.m. sharp. This is not a trail running group, but we will maintain an approx. 3.2 mph pace with light hiking gear (dress in layers, wear a hat and light trekking or trail running shoes; bring water, bug spray, energy bar). Hydrate during the day and before you arrive. We will hike 4 miles, rotating routes over the season. RSVP at http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking/ or contact Wendy Dial (941) 320-8470 / wbdial@gmail.com or Gwen Spivey (850) 528-8695 /gwendolyn.spivey@gmail.com Clearly state your name and phone number so we can contact you about last-minute changes.

November 1 Saturday P/M Tates Hell Hike. Explore the High Bluff Coastal Hiking Trail in Tate’s Hell State Forest. (See: http://www.freshfromflorida.com/Divisions-Offices/Florida-Forest-Service/Our-Forests/State-Forests/Tate-s-Hell-State-Forest.) Dine out for lunch after the 4-mi. interpretive hike. After the hike/lunch other options could include: the Ralph G. Kendrick Dwarf Cypress Boardwalk and\or the Apalachicola National Estuarine Research Reserve Nature Center in Eastpoint. Contact George Weaver (850) 510-3288 / weaver@psy.fsu.edu, Lori Gilbertson (850) 420-0132 / fta_trails4u.lori@aol.com or Carol Watkins (313) 319-9463 / carolwkns@yahoo.com

November 7 Friday P/M Moon Over Miccosukee: A Night Hike. A 7-mi. moonlight hike along the Miccosukee Greenway. See the trail and woods in a unique and unusual way, cast in shadows and moonlight. Meet at 7:00 p.m. to shuttle cars & begin our hike. The first 1.5 mi. is a natural path; the remainder is level broad white-graveled pathway–which should make following the trail an easy task. Wear comfortable closed-toe shoes; bring water & flashlight/headlamp. [After-hours special event approved by Leon County.] To sign up, contact leader John Laney (850) 879-0168 / john@john-laney.com or co-leader Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 / griffindd@aol.com.

November 7-9 Friday-Sunday P/M FTA Panhandle Regional FTA Gathering. A fun-filled weekend of hikes and other activities sponsored by the Panhandle Chapter and based at Compass Lake in the Hills, Alford, Florida. Details and registration at http://www.meetup.com/hiking-central-panhandle/events/185861982 Contact: Charissa Thacker, Chapter Chair, Charissa.thacker@yahoo.com [see article on pg. 5 of fall issue of newsletter]

November 8 Saturday P/M Torreya State Park Trail Care. Hike the hilly Torreya Challenge Trail & clip off encroaching vegetation and remove fallen limbs. Bring water, lunch, and loppers, if you can. Meet at 7:30 a.m. in Tallahassee to carpool. Contact Jerry Herting (850) 878-3426 or Bob Gilley (850) 557-1536.

November 8-9 Saturday-Sunday M/L Wilderness First Aid and CPR. Wilderness 1st Aid & CPR Certification course for activity leaders and trail workers, taught by Florida Outdoor Academy (FOA) using SOLO curriculum. Learn how to care for and treat trauma injuries and medical conditions and acquire a broad array of potentially life-saving skills. Held at St. Marks NWR Headquarters. Requirement: logged volunteer hours for work on the FNST (sign up for a work day if you don’t already have FNST hours). Register at https://www.eventville.com/catalog/eventregistration1.asp?eventid=1011207 Contact Megan Donoghue (941) 408-3098 / mdonoghue@floridatrail.org

 November 8-9 Saturday-Sunday P/M Introduction to Backpacking Overnight Trip One-night backpacking trip on the FNST within the Apalachicola NF. We will start with a moderate 5-mi. hike to our destination, spend the night there and then return to our starting point the next day. Limit 6 tents. To sign up, contact Louis Brooks (850) 383-0724 / louisfbrooks@yahoo.com or Dawn Brown (850) 545-0351 / dbrown1948@embarqmail.com

November 11 Tuesday P/L Chapter Program Meeting: “Gems of the Galapagos.”  FTA member Cathy Briggs shares memorable moments and wonderul photos from her recent trip to Galapagos Islands.  You won’t want to miss her tales and adventures at this fascinating destination.  Meeting held at the Early Learning Coalition, Suite 70, Northwood Centre, 1852 North Martin Luther King Blvd., Tallahassee. For information, contact Liz Sparks (850) 570-5950 or liz.aparks57@gmail.com.

November 15 Saturday P/M Apalachicola National Forest Trail Care.  Clear trail and repaint blazes on a segment of the FNST. Wear sturdy shoes, dress for the weather in “trail work” clothes, bring water, bug spray, personal medications, lunch.  Contact Richard Graham (850) 878-3616 or rdgraham@centurylink.net

November 15 Saturday P/M Bike (or Run), Seek & Destroy Invasive Plants!  At a City of Tallahassee park. 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Get exercise and education. Earn your place to hike (or ride or run) by learning from experts about invasive plants & removing as many pounds of them as you can. Co-organized by local chapters of FTA & Florida Native Plant Assoc., plus The Nature Conservancy and City of Tallahassee. Lunch/beverages provided; plus prizes! Bring water, bug spray, gloves, and clippers if you own them (we will have extras). Contact Karen Berkley (850) 570-5740 (can text) / kjberkley@gmail.com or Susan Tanski (850) 891-5314

November 15-16 Saturday-Sunday M/M S-212 Chainsaw Bucking Certification Course. Held at Wakulla Work Center, Crawfordville. Register at https://www.eventville.com/catalog/eventregistration1.asp?eventid=1011190 Requirements: Current basic or Wilderness First Aid & CPR certification, volunteer hours for work on the FNST (sign up for a work day if you don’t already have FNST hours). Contact Megan Donoghue (941) 408-3098 / mdonoghue@floridatrail.org

November 16 Sunday P/M-to-S Challenge Day Hike in the St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge. These hikes are designed for hikers who would like to increase their endurance. We will hike over flat ground, maintaining a relatively brisk pace. We start with an 8-mi. hike and will gradually increase to 12-14 mi. by the end of winter. Bring water and trail snacks for several hours of hiking. This hike is also appropriate for anyone training for overnight backpacking trips–like the 136-mi. FNST Relay in Feb./Mar. 2015. Bring your pack loaded with 50-60% final load to start with. Contact Dawn Brown (850) 545-0351 / dbrown1948@embarqmail.com

November 22 Saturday P/M Spring Canyon Nature Hike. Enjoy an inspiring walk through Spring Canyon, a 100-acre private slice of heaven near Torreya State Park owned by Helen and Tom Roth. Helen will be our interpreter as we learn about the history of this paradise, her restoration efforts, and the fauna & flora–including several endangered species found along the ravines and in the long leaf pine forests. Hike will be about 3-3.5 mi. and about 4-5 hrs. Some steep climbs, while treading carefully to avoid damage to sensitive ecosystems. Bring water, bug spray, lunch and camera. Contact Mike Tucker (850) 545-3489 / tuckems@hotmail.com

November 23 Sunday P/M-to-S Challenge Day Hike in the St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge. (Description at Nov. 16.)   These hikes are designed for hikers who would like to increase their endurance. We will hike over flat ground, maintaining a relatively brisk pace. We start with an 8-mi. hike and will gradually increase to 12-14 mi. by the end of winter. Bring water and trail snacks for several hours of hiking. This hike is also appropriate for anyone training for overnight backpacking trips–like the 136-mi. FNST Relay in Feb./Mar. 2015. Bring your pack loaded with 50-60% final load to start with. Contact Dawn Brown (850) 545-0351 / dbrown1948@embarqmail.com

Activities – October 2014

Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate,  “M” Limited to FTA members only/“L” Leisurely,  “M” Moderately difficult,  “S” Strenuous

Oct. 6, 13, 20, 27   Mondays P/S Power Walk at Miccosukee Greenway. Meet new friends, get some exercise, eliminate stress. Gather near restroom at Thornton Trailhead (Near I-10 on Miccosukee Rd., Tallahassee); be ready to hike @ 5:30 p.m. sharp. This is not a trail running group, but we will maintain an approx. 3.2 mph pace with light hiking gear (dress in layers, wear a hat and light trekking or trail running shoes; bring water, bug spray, energy bar). Hydrate during the day and before you arrive. We will hike about 4-8 miles, rotating routes over the season. RSVP at http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking/ or contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 / griffindd@aol.com or Carol Watkins (313) 319-9463 / cwatkinsbabcock@gmail.com

Oct. 1, 8, 15, 22, 29  Wednesdays P/S Power Walk at Lafayette Heritage Trail Park. Meet new friends, get some exercise, eliminate stress. Gather near restroom at north end of parking area at Lafayette Heritage Trail Park (4900 Heritage Park Blvd., Tallahassee; be ready to hike at 5:30 p.m. sharp. This is not a trail running group, but we will maintain an approx. 3.2 mph pace with light hiking gear (dress in layers, wear a hat and light trekking or trail running shoes; bring water, bug spray, energy bar). Hydrate during the day and before you arrive. We will hike 4 miles, rotating routes over the season. RSVP at http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking/ or contact Wendy Dial (941) 320-8470 / wbdial@gmail.com or Gwen Spivey (850) 528-8695 /gwendolyn.spivey@gmail.com Clearly state your name and phone number so we can contact you about last-minute changes.

CANCELLED October 4 Saturday P/M Bike & Hike Shepherd Spring/Cathedral of Palms. Trail bike 2 mi. & hike about 1 mi. to scenic Cathedral of Palms and Shepherd Spring in St. Marks NWR. Pack a picnic lunch for 3+ hour nature adventure. Contact Lori Gilbertson (850) 420-0132 fta_trails4u.lori@aol.com or Carol Watkins (313) 319-9463 / cwatkinsbabcock@gmail.com

October 8 Wednesday P/M Leon Sinks Geological Area. After-work 3-mi. hike through rolling hills and beautiful woods (20 species of hardwoods and pines) over a section of the Woodville Karst Plain–with sinkholes and underground caverns which connect to the Floridan Aquifer via the longest underwater cave system in the U.S. Bring water and insect repellent. $3 per vehicle parking. Contact Cathy Briggs (850) 567-0506 / cbriggs825@gmail.com or James Kimbrel (850) 524-0773 / JamesKimbrel@hotmail.com

October 11 Saturday P/M Apalachicola National Forest Trail Care. Clear trail and repaint blazes on a segment of the FNST.   Wear sturdy shoes, dress for the weather in “trail work” clothes (long sleeves and pants recommended), bring water, sunscreen, bug spray, personal medications, lunch. Contact Richard Graham (850) 878-3616 / rdgraham@centurylink.net

October 11-12 Saturday-Sunday P/M FTA Trail Skills Training. A weekend of awesome training, useful information, great people and food! Gain the confidence to lead a trail crew, brush up on trail standards & tools, get refreshed on your emergency action plan & communications protocol, learn how to cook an awesome meal for a trail crew, and spend the weekend with other Florida Trail enthusiasts. Location: Lake Oklawaha R.V. Park, Fort McCoy, FL. Details & link to the agenda at http://www.floridatrail.org/trailskillstraining and registration at ww.eventville.com/catalog/eventregistration1.asp?eventid=1011209   Contact Megan Donoghue (941) 408-3098 / mdonoghue@floridatrail.org

October 14 Tuesday P/L Chapter Program Meeting: “Exploring the White Continent (Antarctica).” Join chapter member Dawn Brown on her greatest “Bucket List” adventure, a 14-day cruise to Antarctica.  Highlights include penguin watching, zodiac cruising in iceberg-filled waters, a walk on fast ice, kayaking and the infamous polar plunge.  This is truly the trip of a lifetime.  Meeting held at the Early Learning Coalition, Suite 70, Northwood Centre, 1852 North Martin Luther King Blvd., Tallahassee. For information, contact Liz Sparks (850) 570-5950 or liz.aparks57@gmail.com.

 October 18 Saturday P/M Hike, Seek & Destroy Invasive Plants! At a City of Tallahassee park. 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Get exercise and education. Earn a reward by learning from experts about invasive plants & removing as many pounds of them as you can. Co-organized by local chapters of FTA & Florida Native Plant Assoc., plus The Nature Conservancy and City of Tallahassee. Lunch/beverages provided; plus prizes! Bring water, bug spray, gloves, and clippers if you own them (we will have extras). Contact Karen Berkley (850) 570-5740 (can text) / kjberkley@gmail.com or Susan Tanski (850) 891-5314 or Chuck Goodheart chuckg0116@gmail.com

 October 18 & 19 Saturday – Sunday P/M Introduction to Backpacking Overnight Trip. One-night backpacking trip on the FNST within the Apalachicola NF. We will start with a moderate 5-mi. hike to our destination, spend the night there and then return to our starting point the next day. Limit 6 tents. To sign up, contact Louis Brooks (850) 383-0724 / louisfbrooks@yahoo.com or Mike Tucker (850) 545-3489 / tuckems@hotmail.com

October 22 Wednesday P/M Leon Sinks Geological Area. (Description at Oct. 8.)  After-work 3-mi. hike through rolling hills and beautiful woods (20 species of hardwoods and pines) over a section of the Woodville Karst Plain–with sinkholes and underground caverns which connect to the Floridan Aquifer via the longest underwater cave system in the U.S. Bring water and insect repellent. $3 per vehicle parking. Contact Cathy Briggs (850) 567-0506 / cbriggs825@gmail.com or James Kimbrel (850) 524-0773 / JamesKimbrel@hotmail.com

October 25 Saturday P/M Hike and Plant ID.A 5-mi. hike (approx. 2.5 hr.) on the FNST along the scenic Sopchoppy River. Participants will receive a tree list with key field signs to aid in ID of plant species along the trail. A car shuttle will be arranged to allow for a one-way trip. Limit 20 people. To sign up, contact George Weaver (850) 510-3288 / weaver@psy.fsu.edu or Melanie Knapp (850) 339-8830/ mermelly22@hotmail.com

 October 28 Tuesday M/L Activity Leader Meeting. Plan activities for January – March 2015. Location to be announced. Contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 / griffindd@aol.com

Activities – September 2014

Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate,  “M” Limited to FTA members only/“L” Leisurely,  “M” Moderately difficult,  “S” Strenuous

Sep. 3, 17, 24 Wednesdays P/S Power Walk at Lafayette Heritage Trail Park. Join us on these Wednesdays at Lafayette Heritage Trail Park (4900 Heritage Park Blvd., Tallahassee) near restroom at north end of parking area. Be ready to hike at 5:30 p.m. to eliminate stress, burn fat and just get some exercise. This is not a trail running group, but we will maintain a power walking pace (approx. 3.2 mph or faster) with light hiking gear (dress in layers, wear a hat and light trekking or trail running shoes). Bring water, bug spray, energy bar. Trails are mostly shaded. HYDRATE BEFORE YOU ARRIVE. We will hike about 4 miles, rotating different routes over the summer. RSVP on Meetup at http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking/ or call leader Wendy Dial (941) 320-8470, clearly stating your name and phone number in case there are last-minute changes.

September 6 Saturday P/M FNST Trail Care. Clear trail and re-paint blazes on a section of the Florida National Scenic Trailin the Apalachicola National Forest. To sign up, contact leader: Richard Graham (850) 878-3616 rdgraham@centurylink.net.

Sept. 8, 15, 22, 29 Mondays P/S Power Walk at Miccosukee Greenway. Join us on these Mondays to eliminate stress, burn fat and just get some exercise. This is not a trail running group, but we will maintain a power walking pace (approx. 3.5 mph) with light hiking gear (dress in layers, wear a hat and light trekking or trail running shoes). Bring water, bug spray, energy bar. PLEASE HYDRATE BEFORE YOU ARRIVE—you will be glad you did. The basic hike will cover about 4 miles, however some folks like to challenge themselves and go farther! RSVP on Meetup at http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking/ or call leader to get any last minute changes or cancellations. Meet at 5:30 p.m. at the Thornton Trailhead (Near I-10) on Miccosukee Road. Pets (on leash) OK; clean up after them (park rules). There is a port-o-let bathroom facility at trailhead. CHECK OUT Leon County Trail Map at: http://imsinter.leoncountyfl.gov/website/Parks_SDE/Maps /MiccosukeeGW_I-10Crump.pdf. Leader: Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 Griffindd@aol.com.

September 9 Tuesday P/L Chapter Meeting: ANNUAL VOLUNTEER AWARDS NIGHT!! followed by Program: “Hiking through History: Exploring Archeological Sites in the American Southwest” FTA member Mary Stewart will describe several hikes in the Four Corners area, including trips in Mesa Verde and Canyonlands National Parks and Hovenweep National Monument. Meeting held at the Early Learning Coalition, Suite 70, Northwood Centre, 1852 North Martin Luther King Blvd., Tallahassee. For information, contact Liz Sparks (850) 570-5950 or liz.aparks57@gmail.com.

September 12-13 Friday-Saturday P/L 2014 Forum on Outdoor Recreation in Florida. This two-day meeting includes both the Florida Outdoor Recreation Summit and the Florida National Scenic Trail Symposium. The theme for the Florida Outdoor Recreation Summit will be “Land, Water and Outdoor Recreation!” emphasizing the importance of having well-managed natural resources in order to support a growing outdoor recreation industry. After listening to the voices of many hikers and trail enthusiasts in north Florida who asked for the annual FNST Symposium to be scheduled in the panhandle this year, it will take place in the Tallahassee area. Exact location will be announced later at http://florc.org/summit-info-2

September 27 Saturday P/L Econfina Creek Paddle. Come join a leisurely paddle on Econfina Creek– about 5 mi. and 3 to 4 hours. We will paddle this beautiful section as it winds its way through Bay County, approximately 70 mi. west of Tallahassee, exploring Gainer Springs (aka Emerald Springs) as we make our way down the creek. Upon completion of paddling, we’ll enjoy an optional stop at one of the local restaurants for a good meal to finish off a fine day. To sign up, contact leader: Gary Sisco (850) 545-4776 gsisco42@yahoo.com

September 27 Saturday P/L Fee-Free Day: National Public Lands Day. Fee-free day all lands managed by Army Corp of Engineers, National Park Service, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, and U.S. Forest Service.

Activities – August 2014

Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate,  “M” Limited to FTA members only/“L” Leisurely,  “M” Moderately difficult,  “S” Strenuous

August 3 Sunday P/L Spring Creek / Chipola River Paddle. Paddle 2.5 mi. of narrow, winding Spring Creek. This shallow stream is spring-fed and has a clear, sandy bottom. We’ll stop for snacks at the confluence with the Chipola. We’ll paddle a total of 4.5 mi. and stop at a local restaurant before returning to Tallahassee.  Co-leader: Gary Sisco. To sign up, contact leader: Gwen Beatty (850) 539-6027 gfbeatty@yahoo.com.

Aug. 4, 11, 18, 25 Mondays P/S Power Walk at Miccosukee Greenway. Join us on these Mondays to eliminate stress, burn fat and just get some exercise. This is not a trail running group, but we will maintain a power walking pace (approx. 3.5 mph) with light hiking gear (dress in layers, wear a hat and light trekking or trail running shoes). Bring water, bug spray, energy bar. PLEASE HYDRATE BEFORE YOU ARRIVE—you will be glad you did. The basic hike will cover about 4 miles, however some folks like to challenge themselves and go farther! RSVP on Meetup at http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking/ or call leader to get any last minute changes or cancellations. Meet at 5:30 p.m. at the Thornton Trailhead (Near I-10) on Miccosukee Road. Pets (on leash) OK; clean up after them (park rules). There is a port-o-let bathroom facility at trailhead. CHECK OUT Leon County Trail Map at: http://imsinter.leoncountyfl.gov/website/Parks_SDE/Maps /MiccosukeeGW_I-10Crump.pdf. Leader: Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 Griffindd@aol.com.

Aug. 6, 13, 20, 27 Wednesdays P/S Power Walk at Lafayette Heritage Trail Park. Join us on these Wednesdays at Lafayette Heritage Trail Park (4900 Heritage Park Blvd., Tallahassee) near restroom at north end of parking area. Be ready to hike at 5:30 p.m. to eliminate stress, burn fat and just get some exercise. This is not a trail running group, but we will maintain a power walking pace (approx. 3.2 mph or faster) with light hiking gear (dress in layers, wear a hat and light trekking or trail running shoes). Bring water, bug spray, energy bar. Trails are mostly shaded. HYDRATE BEFORE YOU ARRIVE. We will hike about 4 miles, rotating different routes over the summer. RSVP on Meetup at http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking/ or call leader Wendy Dial (941) 320-8470, clearly stating your name and phone number in case there are last-minute changes.

August 8 Friday P/L Moon Over Miccosukee: A Night Hike. Join us for a 7-mile moonlight hike along the Miccosukee Greenway Trail on Friday, August 8th, 8:30 p.m. See the trail and woods in a unique and unusual way, cast in shadows and moonlight. We will meet at the Greenway’s Crump Road trailhead, just north on Crump Road from the intersection of Miccosukee and Crump Roads (across the street from the brick house at 4955 Crump Road). From there we will car shuttle to the Fleischmann Road trailhead to begin our hike. The trail runs along Miccosukee Road from Crump Road to Fleischman Road, a distance of approximately 7 miles. The first 1½ miles of the hike is natural pathway. The remainder of the hike from the Edenfield Road trailhead to Crump Road is level broad graveled pathway. The white gravel should make following the trail an easy task. This hike will be a pleasant and enjoyable experience for all who attend. Wear comfortable closed toed shoes and bring water, a flashlight or headlamp, and bug spray. To sign up, contact leader John Laney (850) 879-0168 john@john-laney.com or co-leader Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 or Griffindd@aol.com.

August 9 Saturday P/M FNST Trail Care. Clear trail and re-paint blazes on a section of the Florida National Scenic Trailin the Apalachicola National Forest. To sign up, contact leader: Richard Graham (850) 878-3616 rdgraham@centurylink.net.

August 12 Tuesday P/L Chapter Meeting Program: “Accessible Recreation for All.” In 1988, David Jones was shot in a hunting accident, resulting in a serious head injury that left him with paralysis of his left leg and no use of his left hand. He remains paralyzed in one arm but is now able to walk with a slight limp without any device. In the process of his rehabilitation, he became aware of the importance of recreation – not only to improve mobility, but to improve mental well-being. In 1990 he formed the Florida Disabled Outdoors Association to help overcome the challenge of sports participation by the disabled. Come and hear his story and more about the organization which came out of his positive experience using sports and recreation for his own rehabilitation. Meeting held at the Early Learning Coalition, Suite 70, Northwood Centre, 1852 North Martin Luther King Blvd., Tallahassee. For information, contact Liz Sparks (850) 570-5950 or liz.aparks57@gmail.com.  

August 16 Saturday P/M P/M Slave Canal Float Trip. Canoe or kayak the Slave Canal beginning at Goose Pasture (Wacissa River) and ending at Nutall Rise (Aucilla River). Several snags that require pullovers are likely on the Slave Canal, depending on water levels. Severe storm events often result in many more trees blocking the channel. Be prepared to carry your boat over many fallen trees in the water. The Wacissa Slave Canal was constructed in the 1850s using slave labor in an attempt to connect the Wacissa to the lower Aucilla River so cotton barges could be floated to the Gulf. It largely followed a small natural stream. The scheme didn’t work well as the canal was too shallow, and after the Civil War it was abandoned for more efficient railroads. The hard edges are gone, and somehow the decades of rain, wind and water did not fill in the canal. Except for some boulders along the banks you’d never suspect it was not a completely natural waterway. This is an adventure you will not soon forget! To sign up, contact Kent Wimmer (850) 528-5261 or klwimmer2@gmail.com

August 25 Monday P/L Fee-Free Day: National Park Service Birthday. The National Park Service was established on August 25, 1916. The United States was the first country in the world to set aside its most significant places as national parks so that they could be enjoyed by all. Today, we have 397 national parks throughout the country. Fee-free day in Florida at Big Cypress National Preserve, Biscayne National Park, Canaveral National Seashore, Castillo de San Marcos National Monument, De Soto National Memorial, Dry Tortugas National Park, Everglades National Park, Florida National Scenic Trail, Fort Caroline National Memorial, Fort Matanzas National Monument, Gulf Islands National Seashore, Gullah/Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor, and Timucuan Ecological & Historic Preserve. There are also many NPS sites in Georgia, including Cumberland Island National Seashore.

Activities – July 2014

Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate,  “M” Limited to FTA members only/“L” Leisurely,  “M” Moderately difficult,  “S” Strenuous

July 7, 14, 21, 28 Mondays P/S Power Walk at Miccosukee Greenway. Join us on these Mondays to eliminate stress, burn fat and just get some exercise. This is not a trail running group, but we will maintain a power walking pace (approx. 3.5 mph) with light hiking gear (dress in layers, wear a hat and light trekking or trail running shoes). Bring water, bug spray, energy bar. PLEASE HYDRATE BEFORE YOU ARRIVE—you will be glad you did. The basic hike will cover about 4 miles, however some folks like to challenge themselves and go farther! RSVP on Meetup at http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking/ or call leader to get any last minute changes or cancellations. Meet at 5:30 p.m. at the Thornton Trailhead (Near I-10) on Miccosukee Road. Pets (on leash) OK; clean up after them (park rules). There is a port-o-let bathroom facility at trailhead. CHECK OUT Leon County Trail Map at: http://imsinter.leoncountyfl.gov/website/Parks_SDE/Maps/MiccosukeeGW_I-10Crump.pdf. Leader: Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 Griffindd@aol.com.

July 8 Tuesday P/L Chapter Meeting Program: “Hiking Mt. LeConte – Great Smoky Mountains National Park.” Dawn Griffin shares information on hiking Mt. LeConte in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, and staying in LeConte Lodge which is considered the highest guest lodge in the eastern United States. It is situated in an open glade just below the summit of Mt. LeConte at an elevation of about 6400 feet. The Lodge serves as a grandstand for the entire Park and commands spectacular views of the Smokies. It is accessible only by hiking and is the only place in the Smoky Mountains where a visitor can sleep overnight in a snug permanent structure. Meeting held at the Early Learning Coalition, Suite 70, Northwood Centre, 1852 North Martin Luther King Blvd., Tallahassee. For information, contact Liz Sparks (850) 570-5950 or liz.aparks57@gmail.com.

July 9, 16, 23, 30Wednesdays P/S Power Walk at Lafayette Heritage Trail Park. Join us on these Wednesdays at Lafayette Heritage Trail Park (4900 Heritage Park Blvd., Tallahassee) near restroom at north end of parking area. Be ready to hike at 5:30 p.m. to eliminate stress, burn fat and just get some exercise. This is not a trail running group, but we will maintain a power walking pace (approx. 3.2 mph or faster) with light hiking gear (dress in layers, wear a hat and light trekking or trail running shoes). Bring water, bug spray, energy bar. Trails are mostly shaded. HYDRATE BEFORE YOU ARRIVE. We will hike about 4 miles, rotating different routes over the summer. RSVP on Meetup at http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking/ or call leader Wendy Dial (941) 320-8470, clearly stating your name and phone number in case there are last-minute changes.

July 29 Tuesday M/L Activities Planning Meeting. Activity leaders’ planning meeting for October-December. 6:00 p.m. at Dawn Griffin’s home, 2578 Manassas Way, Tallahassee. Lite dinner provided; please RSVP By Sunday, July 27. If you are unable to attend but would like to lead an activity, please submit your activity proposal by Monday, July 28. Contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 / Griffindd@aol.com.  [note: date changed from July 22]

Activities – June 2014

Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate,  “M” Limited to FTA members only/“L” Leisurely,  “M” Moderately difficult,  “S” Strenuous

June 2 Monday P/S Power Hike. Join us every Mon. and Wed. on local walking trails (Cascades Park, Myers Park, Alford Greenway, Miccosukee Greenway, FSU campus, Fern Trail, etc.), walking at a fast pace (about 3.5 mph) to exercise, eliminate stress, and meet new friends. Dress in layers and wear trekking or trail running shoes; bring water, energy bar. Sign up using http://www. meetup.com/ Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking so we can alert you to any last minute changes due to weather or leader conflicts. Meet at 5:30 p.m. Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 /Griffindd@aol.com.

June 4 Wednesday P/S Power Hike. Join us every Mon. and Wed. on local walking trails (Cascades Park, Myers Park, Alford Greenway, Miccosukee Greenway, FSU campus, Fern Trail, etc.), walking at a fast pace (about 3.5 mph) to exercise, eliminate stress, and meet new friends.Dress in layers and weartrekking or trail running shoes; bring water, energy bar.Sign up using http://www. meetup.com/ Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking so we can alert you to any last minute changes due to weather or leader conflicts.Meet at 5:15 p.m. Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 /Griffindd@aol.com.

June 7 Saturday P/M National Trails Day! American Hiking Society’s National Trails Day is the country’s largest celebration of trails. Come celebrate with members of the Apalachee Chapter of the Florida Trail Association. Walk 2 miles in Lafayette Heritage Trail Park, to the canopy bridge, stopping to enjoy the spectacular view, then continue on to J.R. Alford Greenway, and walk another half-mile or so into the Greenway to a shady spot for a snack. Return the 2.5 miles to cars. Lots of sun (it could be hot!) and some uphill walking, so bring ample water, snacks, camera, binoculars, and plastic to sit on. Wear insect repellant, sun screen, hat for shade and sturdy shoes. Contact Wendy Dial (941) 320-8470 /wbdial@gmail.com.

June 9 Monday P/S Power Hike. Join us every Mon. and Wed. on local walking trails (Cascades Park, Myers Park, Alford Greenway, Miccosukee Greenway, FSU campus, Fern Trail, etc.), walking at a fast pace (about 3.5 mph) to exercise, eliminate stress, and meet new friends. Dress in layers and wear trekking or trail running shoes; bring water, energy bar. Sign up using http://www. meetup.com/ Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking so we can alert you to any last minute changes due to weather or leader conflicts. Meet at 5:30 p.m. Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 /Griffindd@aol.com.

June 10 Tuesday P/L Apalachee Chapter Meeting Program: “Celebrate Tallahassee Trails!” Celebrate National Trails Day and join local recreation experts from City of Tallahassee Parks & Recreation, Office of Greenways & Trails, Florida Forest Service, and others to explore the wealth of outdoor recreation opportunities within a thirty minute’s drive of Tallahassee. Learn why ‘Trailahassee’ is a premier destination to hike, bike, paddle, and saunter on scenic byways in the Panhandle region. Join us as we share exciting trail plans for the future. Meeting held at the Early Learning Coalition, Suite 70, Northwood Centre, 1852 North Martin Luther King Blvd., Tallahassee. For information, contact Liz Sparks (850) 570-5950 or liz.aparks57@gmail.com.

June 11 Wednesday P/S Power Hike. Join us every Mon. and Wed. on local walking trails (Cascades Park, Myers Park, Alford Greenway, Miccosukee Greenway, FSU campus, Fern Trail, etc.), walking at a fast pace (about 3.5 mph) to exercise, eliminate stress, and meet new friends. Dress in layers and wear trekking or trail running shoes; bring water, energy bar. Sign up using http://www. meetup.com/ Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking so we can alert you to any last minute changes due to weather or leader conflicts. Meet at 5:15 p.m. Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 /Griffindd@aol.com.

June 13 Friday P/L Bradwell Bay Wilderness Full Moon Hike. NOTE: This is not an FTA event, but is sponsored by our federal partner for the FNST. A 3-mile interpretive walk of Bradwell Bay Wilderness along the FNST, led by Haven Cook (Wilderness Recreation Planner for the National Forests in Florida). 8:00-11:30 p.m. Free. Space is limited to 20 people and registration is required: Wakulla District Ranger Office (850) 926-3561 or chandraroberts@fs.fed.us

June 14 Saturday P/L Wakulla Springs State Park Day Hike/Swim/Picnic We’ll meet as soon as the park opens and hike while it is still cool. Distance and pace will be determined by the participants, but we usually try to do about 6 miles at 2 miles per hour. The rest of the day will be spent enjoying the spring and a picnic lunch. Drinks and grill supplies will be provided. Bring plates, flatware and a dish to share if you wish. Families and pets (on lead at all times) welcome. Entrance fee for the park. Contact Dawn Brown (850) 545-0351/dbrown1948@ embarqmail.com.

June 16 Monday P/S Power Hike. Join us every Mon. and Wed. on local walking trails (Cascades Park, Myers Park, Alford Greenway, Miccosukee Greenway, FSU campus, Fern Trail, etc.), walking at a fast pace (about 3.5 mph) to exercise, eliminate stress, and meet new friends. Dress in layers and wear trekking or trail running shoes; bring water, energy bar. Sign up using http://www. meetup.com/ Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking so we can alert you to any last minute changes due to weather or leader conflicts. Meet at 5:30 p.m. Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 /Griffindd@aol.com.

June 18 Wednesday P/S Power Hike. Join us every Mon. and Wed. on local walking trails (Cascades Park, Myers Park, Alford Greenway, Miccosukee Greenway, FSU campus, Fern Trail, etc.), walking at a fast pace (about 3.5 mph) to exercise, eliminate stress, and meet new friends. Dress in layers and wear trekking or trail running shoes; bring water, energy bar. Sign up using http://www. meetup.com/ Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking so we can alert you to any last minute changes due to weather or leader conflicts. Meet at 5:15 p.m. Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 /Griffindd@aol.com.

June 21, Saturday, P/M Ft Braden Interpretative Day Hike This annual hike will be led by Senior Forester Tom Gilpin. We will walk the trail while learning about resource management objectives of Lake Talquin State Forest during the cooler morning hours. Wear sturdy walking shoes, dress for the weather, bring bug spray, water and any personal items like medications. While the hike is leisurely and will be over about noon, there is uneven ground and some slopes to navigate. Meet at 8:15 a.m. at the trailhead on Blountstown Hwy (SR 20) about 1 mile west of Coe Landing Rd. Entrance sign is on the north side of the road. Contact Howard Pardue (850) 386-1494 / hpardue@comcast.net.

June 23 Monday P/S Power Hike. Join us every Mon. and Wed. on local walking trails (Cascades Park, Myers Park, Alford Greenway, Miccosukee Greenway, FSU campus, Fern Trail, etc.), walking at a fast pace (about 3.5 mph) to exercise, eliminate stress, and meet new friends. Dress in layers and wear trekking or trail running shoes; bring water, energy bar. Sign up using http://www. meetup.com/ Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking so we can alert you to any last minute changes due to weather or leader conflicts. Meet at 5:30 p.m. Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 /Griffindd@aol.com.

June 25 Wednesday P/S Power Hike. Join us every Mon. and Wed. on local walking trails (Cascades Park, Myers Park, Alford Greenway, Miccosukee Greenway, FSU campus, Fern Trail, etc.), walking at a fast pace (about 3.5 mph) to exercise, eliminate stress, and meet new friends. Dress in layers and wear trekking or trail running shoes; bring water, energy bar. Sign up using http://www. meetup.com/ Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking so we can alert you to any last minute changes due to weather or leader conflicts. Meet at 5:15 p.m. Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 /Griffindd@aol.com.

June 29 Sunday, NP/M Wakulla River Kayak/Canoe Paddle. Start from US 98 bridge and paddle downstream to Fort San Marcos de Apalache Historic State Park approximately 4.5 miles. The boat launch at San Marcos de Apalache State Park has a museum (fee), parking, dock, picnic areas and restrooms. Good easy paddle for a beginner. The river widens considerably as it nears the confluence with the St. Marks; expect winds and tidal influence. Wildlife is abundant along this clear, spring-fed river. After paddle, plan a late lunch/early dinner at the Riverside Café in St. Marks. Bring your own boat, pfd and equipment. RSVP by 6/26. Limit 25 people; first preference given to FTA members. To sign up, contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 /Griffindd@aol.com, John Laney (850) 879-0168 / john@john-laney.com or Wendy Dial (941) 320-8470 /wbdial@gmail.com.

June 30 Monday P/S Power Hike. Join us every Mon. and Wed. on local walking trails (Cascades Park, Myers Park, Alford Greenway, Miccosukee Greenway, FSU campus, Fern Trail, etc.), walking at a fast pace (about 3.5 mph) to exercise, eliminate stress, and meet new friends. Dress in layers and wear trekking or trail running shoes; bring water, energy bar. Sign up using http://www. meetup.com/ Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking so we can alert you to any last minute changes due to weather or leader conflicts. Meet at 5:30 p.m. Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 /Griffindd@aol.com.

Activities – May 2014

Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate,  “M” Limited to FTA members only/“L” Leisurely,  “M” Moderately difficult,  “S” Strenuous

May 5 Monday P/S Fern Trail/Governor’s Park Early Evening Hike. We will walk at a fast pace (about 3.5 mph). Dress in layers and wear light trekking or trail running shoes; bring water, energy bar. Sign up using http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking so we can alert you to any last minute changes due to weather or leader conflicts. Meet at 5:30 p.m. on the outside porch of Panera Bread at Blairstone Rd. and Park Ave. Contact Wendy Dial (941) 320-8470 / wbdial@gmail.com.

May 7 Wednesday P/S Lafayette Heritage Trail Park Lakefront Berm Walk. We will walk at a fast pace (about 3.5 mph). Dress in layers and wear light trekking or trail running shoes; bring water, energy bar. Sign up using http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking so we can alert you to any last minute changes due to weather or leader conflicts. Meet at 5:30 p.m. in parking area, near the restrooms. Contact Wendy Dial (941) 320-8470 /wbdial@gmail. com.

May 12 Monday P/S Power Hike. Join us every Mon. and Wed. on local walking trails (Cascades Park, Myers Park, Alford Greenway, Miccosukee Greenway, FSU campus, Fern Trail, etc.), walking at a fast pace (about 3.5 mph) to exercise, eliminate stress, and meet new friends. Dress in layers and wear trekking or trail running shoes; bring water, energy bar. Sign up using http://www. meetup.com/ Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking so we can alert you to any last minute changes due to weather or leader conflicts. Meet at 5:30 p.m. Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103

May 13 Tuesday P/L Apalachee Chapter Meeting Program: “Balancing Your Life: Juggling Fun, Fitness, and Long-term Health.” Don Rapp is retired from FSU where he taught Child Development, Gerontology, and Creativity. Since retirement Dr. Rapp has been the balance enhancement instructor at the Premier Health Club where he is a personal trainer. Don will speak from a neurological standpoint on how to enhance physical balance regardless of condition or age. He teaches how not to fall, as well as improving functional and athletic performance. Don is a long-time juggler and will demonstrate how he uses pre-juggling skills to enhance the nervous system. The audience will be asked to participate in chair exercises for fun and health enhancement. Meeting held at the Early Learning Coalition, Suite 70, Northwood Centre, 1852 North Martin Luther King Blvd., Tallahassee. For information, contact Liz Sparks (850) 570-5950 or liz.aparks57@gmail.com.

May 14 Wednesday P/S Power Hike. Join us every Mon. and Wed. on local walking trails (Cascades Park, Myers Park, Alford Greenway, Miccosukee Greenway, FSU campus, Fern Trail, etc.), walking at a fast pace (about 3.5 mph) to exercise, eliminate stress, and meet new friends. Dress in layers and wear trekking or trail running shoes; bring water, energy bar. Sign up using http://www. meetup.com/ Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking so we can alert you to any last minute changes due to weather or leader conflicts. Meet at 5:15 p.m. Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 /Griffindd@aol.com.

May 16 Friday P/L Wilderness 50 Film Festival Under the Stars. In celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Wilderness Act, Haven Cook of the USDA Forest Service will give a brief presentation on Wilderness and introduce seven short films that highlight the values and importance of wilderness. Movies shown will be: National Forests in Florida wilderness video – 5 min. Alberta Parks video “What goes on when you’re not there” – 3 min. American Values, American Wilderness (Christopher Reeve) – 57 min. America’s Wilderness video – 3 min. USFWS Wilderness 50th video – 3 min. Wilderness Stewardship: Shenandoah National Park video – 3 min. Forever Wild (Robert Redford) – 57 min. Bring lawn chairs and enjoy this free evening under the stars. 7:00 – 9:30 p.m. at Trout Pond Recreation Area, Springhill Rd., Tallahassee. TPRA is on the east side of Springhill Rd., 8 mi. south of Capital Circle. Contact: Chandra Roberts (850) 926-3561, ext. 6509 or chandraroberts@fs.fed.us. NOTE: THIS IS NOT AN FTA EVENT, but it is sponsored by our federal partner for the FLORIDA NATIONAL SCENIC TRAIL.

May 17 Saturday P/M Red Hills Ramble. Six-mile ramble along Old Centerville Road to the state line (canopied road, half on paved road and half on hard packed clay). Wear comfortable clothes, walking shoes and bring water/trail snacks for several hours. Meet at 10 a.m. at Bradley’s Country Store where we will park/begin our walk. Afterwards enjoy a sausage dog and drink at Bradley’s. To sign up, contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 / Griffindd@aol.com or John Laney (850) 879-0168 / john@john-laney.com.

May 19 Monday P/S Power Hike. Join us every Mon. and Wed. on local walking trails (Cascades Park, Myers Park, Alford Greenway, Miccosukee Greenway, FSU campus, Fern Trail, etc.), walking at a fast pace (about 3.5 mph) to exercise, eliminate stress, and meet new friends. Dress in layers and wear trekking or trail running shoes; bring water, energy bar. Sign up using http://www. meetup.com/ Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking so we can alert you to any last minute changes due to weather or leader conflicts. Meet at 5:30 p.m. Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 /Griffindd@aol.com.

May 21 Wednesday P/S Power Hike. Join us every Mon. and Wed. on local walking trails (Cascades Park, Myers Park, Alford Greenway, Miccosukee Greenway, FSU campus, Fern Trail, etc.), walking at a fast pace (about 3.5 mph) to exercise, eliminate stress, and meet new friends. Dress in layers and wear trekking or trail running shoes; bring water, energy bar. Sign up using http://www. meetup.com/ Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking so we can alert you to any last minute changes due to weather or leader conflicts. Meet at 5:15 p.m. Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 /Griffindd@aol.com.

May 25 Sunday P/L Spring Creek-Chipola River Paddle, Marianna Florida. Spring Creek is a delightfully clear, shallow, sandy-bottom creek that flows into the Chipola River. Put in at the dam on US 90 and paddle the 2.5 winding miles to the confluence. Stop for a break and enjoy the water along with refreshments before entering the Chipola River. Paddle approximately 4.5 miles total. A pfd is required for each person. Plan to sample the local cuisine before heading back to Tallahassee. Bring water, snacks and sun protection. No dogs allowed. Limit 20 people. Co-Leader: Gwen Beatty. To sign up, contact Leader: Gary Sisco (850) 545-4776 / gsisco42@ yahoo.com.

May 28 Wednesday P/S Power Hike. Join us every Mon. and Wed. on local walking trails (Cascades Park, Myers Park, Alford Greenway, Miccosukee Greenway, FSU campus, Fern Trail, etc.), walking at a fast pace (about 3.5 mph) to exercise, eliminate stress, and meet new friends. Dress in layers and wear trekking or trail running shoes; bring water, energy bar. Sign up using http://www. meetup.com/ Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking so we can alert you to any last minute changes due to weather or leader conflicts. Meet at 5:15 p.m. Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 /Griffindd@aol.com.

Activities – April 2014

Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate,  “M” Limited to FTA members only/“L” Leisurely,  “M” Moderately difficult,  “S” Strenuous

April 4 Friday P/L Wilderness Film Festival. In celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Wilderness Act, Haven Cook of the USDA Forest Service will introduce three films that highlight the values and importance of wilderness areas: “Forever Wild” narrated by Robert Redford, “Green Fire” a documentary of the life of Aldo Leopold, and “American Values, American Wilderness” with Christopher Reeve. 7:00-9:30 p.m. at All Saints Cinema, 918 1/2 Railroad Ave., Tallahassee. Contact: Susan Blake (850) 523-8590 or sblake@fs.fed.us. NOTE: THIS IS NOT AN FTA EVENT, but it is sponsored by our federal partner for the FLORIDA NATIONAL SCENIC TRAIL.

April 5 Saturday P/M Lafayette Heritage Trail Park Hike.Eight-mile mid-morning fun hike. Traverse new scenic canopy pedestrian bridge connecting two parks. Walk 2 miles in Lafayette Heritage Trail Park; across the new bridge(!) to J.R. Alford Greenway and then another 2 miles through the Greenway to a shady spot for lunch.Return the 4 miles to cars. Lots of sun and uphill walking, so bring ample water, lunch and snacks, camera, binoculars, and plastic to sit on.Wear insect repellant, sun screen, hat and sturdy shoes. Limit 30 people. To sign up, contact Leader: Wendy Dial (941) 320-8470 / wbdial@gmail.com or Co-Leader: Karen Berkley (850) 570-5740 / kjberkley@gmail.com.

April 7 Monday P/S Power Hike.Join us every Mon. and Wed. on local walking trails (Cascades Park, Myers Park, Alford Greenway, Miccosukee Greenway, FSU campus, Fern Trail, etc.), walking at a fast pace (about 3.5 mph) to exercise, eliminate stress, and meet new friends.Dress in layers and weartrekking or trail running shoes; bring water, energy bar.Sign up using http://www. meetup.com/ Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking so we can alert you to trail location or any last minute changes due to weather or leader conflicts.Meet at 5:30 p.m. Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 /Griffindd@aol.com.

April 8 Tuesday P/LChapter Meeting Program: “Liz Sparks, Breathtaking Coastal Footpaths of England and Wales.”Join mother/daughter hiking pals, Margaret & Liz Sparks, for a sampling of breathtaking coastal footpaths of England and Wales. Yes, it is possible to hike a challenging hilly landscape and still gain weight.Enjoying Cornish pasties, local ales and cream teas makes hiking the coastline a visual and culinary joy. Azure waters, hillsides quilted with wildflowers, ancient castles and fluffy sheep offer stunning views at every hilltop.Meeting held at the Early Learning Coalition, Suite 70, Northwood Centre, 1852 North Martin Luther King Blvd., Tallahassee.For information, contact Liz Sparks (850) 570-5950 or liz.aparks57@gmail.com.

April 9 Wednesday P/S Power Hike.Join us every Mon. and Wed. on local walking trails (Cascades Park, Myers Park, Alford Greenway, Miccosukee Greenway, FSU campus, Fern Trail, etc.), walking at a fast pace (about 3.5 mph) to exercise, eliminate stress, and meet new friends.Dress in layers and weartrekking or trail running shoes; bring water, energy bar.Sign up using http://www. meetup.com/ Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking so we can alert you to trail location or any last minute changes due to weather or leader conflicts.Meet at 5:15 p.m. Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 /Griffindd@aol.com.

April 13, Sunday P/M Get Great Exercise, & Learn How to ID & Destroy Invasive Plants! Elinor Klapp-Phipps Park, Gate A, 1275 Miller Landing Road, Tallahassee 9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.For camaraderie, fun, exercise, and environmental education, join this event, geared for everyone–all ages–interested in the outdoors. Learn about invasive plants, particularly Coral Ardisia (CA), currently harming many local areas. You will take a 1-2 mile hike while learning from experts, via hands-on work, how to ID and remove CA, followed by lunch (provided). Bring water, bug spray, garden/work gloves, and wear shoes for hiking. Bring a clipper and/or a shovel (pointed type best) if you own them. We will have extras. Contact Karen Berkley (850) 570-5740, kjberkley@gmail.com

April 13 Sunday, P/L Day Hike at Birdsong Nature Center.BNC is just over the Georgia state line on Meridian Road and consists of 565 acres of wildflower meadows, forests, ponds and swamps which are home to a myriad of birds (160+ species have been sighted) and other wildlife. Visit the bird window for an extraordinary and intimate bird-viewing experience.Bring a snack/water and day hike on some of the twelve miles of trails.Admission: $5 adults, $2.50 children 4-12 years old, free to BNC members.Meet at 1:30 p.m. at visitor check-in.Limit 25 people.To sign up, contact the Leader: Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 / Griffindd@aol.com.

April 14 Monday P/S Power Hike.Join us every Mon. and Wed. on local walking trails (Cascades Park, Myers Park, Alford Greenway, Miccosukee Greenway, FSU campus, Fern Trail, etc.), walking at a fast pace (about 3.5 mph) to exercise, eliminate stress, and meet new friends.Dress in layers and weartrekking or trail running shoes; bring water, energy bar.Sign up using http://www. meetup.com/ Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking so we can alert you to trail location or any last minute changes due to weather or leader conflicts.Meet at 5:30 p.m. For each day’s location, check Meetup or contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 /Griffindd@aol.com.

April 16 Wednesday P/S Power Hike.Join us every Mon. and Wed. on local walking trails (Cascades Park, Myers Park, Alford Greenway, Miccosukee Greenway, FSU campus, Fern Trail, etc.), walking at a fast pace (about 3.5 mph) to exercise, eliminate stress, and meet new friends.Dress in layers and weartrekking or trail running shoes; bring water, energy bar.Sign up using http://www. meetup.com/ Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking so we can alert you to trail location or any last minute changes due to weather or leader conflicts.Meet at 5:15 p.m. Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 /Griffindd@aol.com.

April 19, Saturday P/L Picnic in the Park.CANCELLED due to lack of sign-ups.  -Explore the fountains, ponds, and other sights of the new 24-acre Cascades Park in downtown Tallahassee, while walking the one mile of trails. Bring lunch, water, and camera.We will accommodate 2 groups: slower hikers (approx. 1 mile per hour) and faster hikers (approx. 2 miles per hour).No dogs please. Slow hikers contact Linda Patton at (850) 668-4334 / lpatton@fsu.edu.Faster hikers contact Dawn Brown at (850) 668-0091 / dbrown1948@embarqmail.com.

April 21 Monday P/S Power Hike.Join us every Mon. and Wed. on local walking trails (Cascades Park, Myers Park, Alford Greenway, Miccosukee Greenway, FSU campus, Fern Trail, etc.), walking at a fast pace (about 3.5 mph) to exercise, eliminate stress, and meet new friends.Dress in layers and weartrekking or trail running shoes; bring water, energy bar.Sign up using http://www. meetup.com/ Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking so we can alert you to trail location or any last minute changes due to weather or leader conflicts.Meet at 5:30 p.m. Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 /Griffindd@aol.com.

April 23 Wednesday P/S Power Hike.Join us every Mon. and Wed. on local walking trails (Cascades Park, Myers Park, Alford Greenway, Miccosukee Greenway, FSU campus, Fern Trail, etc.), walking at a fast pace (about 3.5 mph) to exercise, eliminate stress, and meet new friends.Dress in layers and weartrekking or trail running shoes; bring water, energy bar.Sign up using http://www. meetup.com/ Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking so we can alert you to any last minute changes due to weather or leader conflicts.Meet at 5:15 p.m. Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 /Griffindd@aol.com.

April 26 Saturday P/M Bradwell Bay Apalachicola National Forest East Fun Hike. Hike through the dry side of Bradwell Bay approximately 4.5 miles.Contact Richard Graham (850) 878-3616 / rdgraham@centurylink.net.

April 30 Wednesday P/S Conner Blvd Power Hike. We will walk at a fast pace (about 3.5 mph). Dress in layers and wear light trekking or trail running shoes; bring water, energy bar. Sign up using http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking so we can alert you to any last minute changes due to weather or leader conflicts. Walk along Conner Blvd to Apalachee Parkway and back. Meet at 5:30 p.m. Park along the grassy area outside the parking lot of Flag Credit Union at 3115 Conner Blvd. Contact Wendy Dial (941) 320-8470 /wbdial@gmail.com.

Activities – March 2014

Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate,  “M” Limited to FTA members only/“L” Leisurely,  “M” Moderately difficult,  “S” Strenuous

March 1 Saturday P/S  19th Annual Bradwell Bay Swamp Stomp in the Apalachicola National Forest, Bradwell Bay Wilderness Area. Slog about 8 miles on the FNST in the heart of the Apalachicola National Forest.  Hike through one of the largest bay swamp forests in Florida with old-growth slash pine and black gum trees.  With normal rain, expect wading ankle-to-knee deep water for over half of the hike.  This hike is strenuous and may have deep mud, holes, fallen trees and cold weather.  Leader:  Kent Wimmer (850) 528-5261 or klwimmer2@gmail.com.

March 5 Wednesday P/M  “Lite and Fast” Power Hike. Join us every Wednesday to eliminate stress, burn fat and just get some exercise.  This is not a trail running group, but we will maintain a power walking pace (approx. 3.5 mph) with light hiking gear (dress in layers, bring water, energy bar, light trekking or trail running shoes and with our limited daylight bring a flashlight/headlight).  The basic hike will cover about 4 miles.  Sign up at http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking or call leader for any last minute  changes or cancellations.  Meet at 5:15 p.m. at the Edenfield Trailhead on Miccosukee Road for warm-up and stretches – then due to precious daylight we hit the trail at 5:30 PM SHARP.  Pets (on leash) must maintain group pace and be cleaned up after (park rules).  Leader: Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 or Griffindd@aol.com..  This activity repeats on March 12, 19, 26

March 7-9 Friday-Sunday P/L FLORIDA TRAIL ASSOCIATION ANNUAL CONFERENCE. Each spring, the FTA holds its Annual Meeting to elect new Board members and officers. A conference is arranged around that meeting so we have the opportunity to meet and have fun with fellow Trail enthusiasts.  The conference always includes presentations, demonstrations, auctions, raffles, trail updates, exhibits, hikes, paddles, and more.  The 2014 Annual Conference will be held at Camp McConnell near Gainesville. REGISTRATION REQUIRED.  More information, and a registration link, will be posted at http://www.floridatrail.org/about-us/events/ as it becomes available.

March 7-13 Friday-Thursday P/S  Sopchoppy Bridge F-Troop. Replacement of bridge on the Sopchoppy section of the FNST in the Apalachicola National Forest.  Volunteers can expect to assist with prefabrication, assembly, equipment operation and finishing work.  Sign up for one day or the entire week.  For more information and online registration go to www.floridatrail.org/volunteer/volunteeropportunities and scroll down to ‘Sopchoppy Bridge F-Troop.’   Questions?:  Eric Mason emason@floridatrail.org.

March 8 Saturday P/M  Ft. Braden Trail Fun Hike. Enjoy a 9-mile hike along slope forest with views of Lake Talquin as we check out the spring wildflowers.  Expect trip to last 5-6 hours.  Bring lunch and bug spray.  Leader:  Mike Tucker (850) 545-3489 or tuckems@hotmail.com.

March 9 Sunday P/M  Torreya State Park Day Hike. Hike 8 miles on the Torreya River Bluff loop trail through hilly forest near the Apalachicola River this spring morning.  Participants should be physically fit.  Bring water,  lunch, bug repellent, and a walking stick (optional).  Meet at 7:30 a.m. in Tallahassee to car pool.  Leader:  Jerry Herting (850) 878-3426.

March 11 Tuesday P/L  Chapter Meeting Program: “Holly Parker and Kevin Curry, Backpacking in the Grand Canyon.” Join Kevin Curry and Holly Parker as they share their great adventures in the Grand Canyon!  Find out everything you need to know about hiking in the Grand Canyon, and enjoy breathtaking photographs from their three-day hike from the South Rim to the North Rim.  Meeting held at the Early Learning Coalition, Suite 70, Northwood Centre, 1852 North Martin Luther King Blvd., Tallahassee.  For information, contact Liz Sparks (850) 570-5950 or  liz.aparks57@gmail.com.

March 15 Saturday P/M  W.D.Line’s Tract Day Hike. The Lines Tract is on the west side of Lake Talquin and is better known as an off-road bike trail although bikes are seldom encountered.  Enjoy hiking the Long Leaf and parts of the Talquin Loop trails.  About 6 miles with great views of Lake Talquin. Leader:  Barry Haber (850) 284-5615 or BarryJHaber@hotmail.com. THIS HIKE WAS CANCELLED ON 2/3/14

March 15 Saturday P/M  Seek and Destroy!  Phipps Park Invasive Plant Education and Removal  Program. For camaraderie, fun, healthy exercise, and the satisfaction of doing something good for the environment, consider participating in this event for everyone–all ages–interested in the outdoors.  Learn the importance of addressing the problem of invasive plants, with a particular focus on Coral Ardisia (CA), which is currently smothering much of the understory of this beautiful park and many other areas throughout Florida and Georgia.  This event will be a 1-2 mile interpretative (slow) hike during which you will learn, via hands-on work (great exercise!), how to remove  CA,  followed by lunch (provided*).  Experts from  local chapters of the Florida Native Plant Society and the Florida Trail association, along with the Northwest Florida Water Management District, The Nature Conservancy,  and the City of Tallahassee will be on hand to teach you how to identify at least 4 species of exotic invasive plants that can be found there, different methods for removing them safely, and how to distinguish them from native plants.  At lunch (~30 min),  there will be more discussion about why this effort is important, how you can help in different ways appropriate for different activities (e.g., hiking, cycling, walking, your own back yard), how to report invasive plant sightings (http://www.eddmaps.org/).  If time, you will also learn more about this beautiful park: its rare butterflies, bluebird boxes, artifacts, history, and the Red Hills Horse Trials. Bring water, bug spray, garden/work gloves, and wear shoes appropriate for hiking.  Bring a clipper and/or a shovel (pointed type is best) if you own them.  Begins  promptly at 9:30 a.m. at the Gate A trailhead, 1275 Miller Landing Rd., Tallahassee, FL. Questions?  Contact Karen Berkley  (850) 570-5740, kjberkley@gmail.com or Chuck Goodheart: (850) 933-6631, Charles.Goodheart@talgov.com.

March 21 –23, Friday – Sunday M/M  Day Hikes Celebrating Spring in Pine Mountain Ga. Leave Tallahassee Friday a.m. for a 3.5-hour drive to Pine Mountain (outside Columbus, Georgia). On the way we can stretch our legs with a short hike in Georgia’s “Little Grand Canyon” at Providence Canyon State Outdoor Recreation Area, then continue our journey north to Pine Mountain and check into our accommodations. Enjoy a longer hike on Saturday on the Pine Mountain Trail. Non-hikers can visit Callaway Gardens and Warm Springs (FDR’s Little White House). On the way back on Sunday plan to stop at the Andersonville National Historic Site.  You can choose a hotel at night, or stay in a cabin or campsite.  Make your reservations early either at a hotel in Pine Mountain or at F.D.R. State Park cabins/campground  (gastateparks.org/FDRoosevelt).  Sign up early; space is limited.  FTA members only; limit 30 people. To sign up, contact one of the Leaders:  John Laney (850) 879-0168  john@john-laney.com,  Dawn Griffin (850)509-6103   Griffindd@aol.com), and Dawn Brown (850) 668-0091  dbrown1948@embarqmail.com).

March 29 Saturday P/M  Chipola River Canoe and Hinson Conservation Area Hike. Repeat of October trip to canoe the Chipola River from Yancy Bridge to Magnolia Bridge, stopping half way down for a hike with Leigh Brooks showcasing the unique spring wildflowers of the Hinson Conservation Area.  Bring shoes, water and bug spray for the hike.  Limit 12 canoes/kayaks. Leader: Mike Tucker (850) 545-3489 or tuckems@hotmail.com.

March 30 Sunday P/M  Sopchoppy River Azalea Hike. A five-mile, easy to moderate, hike on a section of the FNST that follows the Sopchoppy River in the Apalachicola National Forest.  This section of the Trail has abundant stands of wild azaleas that bloom in mid to late March.  Hikers will be provided with a list of plant species likely to be observed along the trail. Limit 25 people. To sign up, contact Leader: George Weaver (850) 510-3288 weaver@psy.fsu.edu.

Activities – February 2014

Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate,  “M” Limited to FTA members only/“L” Leisurely,  “M” Moderately difficult,  “S” Strenuous

February 1 Saturday P/M  Munson Hills Trail Hike. Eight-mile hike through long leaf pine forest and sandy shoreline ponds, seeing as many as seven different woodpeckers.  Bring lunch, water and bug spray.  Leader:   Mike Tucker (850) 545-3489 or tuckems@hotmail.com.

February 5 Wednesday P/M  “Lite and Fast” Power Hike. Join us every Wednesday to eliminate stress, burn fat and just get some exercise.  This is not a trail running group, but we will maintain a power walking pace (approx. 3.5 mph) with light hiking gear (dress in layers, bring water, energy bar, light trekking or trail running shoes and with our limited daylight bring a flashlight/headlight).  The basic hike will cover about 4 miles.  Sign up at http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking or call leader for any last minute  changes or cancellations.  Meet at 5:15 p.m. at the Edenfield Trailhead on Miccosukee Road for warm-up and stretches – then due to precious daylight we hit the trail at 5:30 PM SHARP.  Pets (on leash) must maintain group pace and be cleaned up after (park rules).  Leader: Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 or Griffindd@aol.com.  This activity repeats on Feb. 12, 19, 26

 

February 8 Saturday P/L  Aucilla River: FNST Fun Hike Part I, “The Aucilla River Uncovered.” Explore a 4.7-mile visible portion of the prehistoric Aucilla and learn about the people and animals that lived there 14,500 years ago. See where the Burnt Bridge used to be as we hike along the river’s edge. We’ll eat lunch at the rapids.  Bring lunch, water and snacks.  Email hike leader for meeting time and location, and include your full name and best anytime telephone and email address.  Limit 25 people.  To sign up, contact Leader:  Wendy Dial (941) 320-8470 or wbdial@gmail.com  See Feb. 16 for Part II of this series.

 

February 9 Sunday P/S  Torreya State Park Day Hike. These hikes will continue the popular series started last fall and this January in St. Marks Refuge, except we will switch to a venue with more challenging elevation gain and loss.  They are designed primarily for hikers who would like to increase their endurance on the trail.  We’ll hike about 10-12 miles at a brisk pace.  Bring water and trail snacks for several hours. This activity is also appropriate for anyone wishing to train for a backpacking trip.  Bring your pack with 50-60% final load. Leader:  Dawn Brown (850) 545-0351/ 668-0091 or dbrown1948@embarqmail.com.

February 11 Tuesday P/L  Chapter Meeting Program: “Living and Hiking in Paraguay.” Join John and Rosemary Bottcher as they share their experiences from living the last two years in Paraguay, South America, as Peace Corps Volunteers.  They will discuss Paraguayan culture, history and environmentalism; highlighting hikes at Iquazu Falls and in the guiet villages where they lived.  Meeting held at the Early Learning Coalition, Suite 70, Northwood Centre, 1852 North Martin Luther King Blvd., Tallahassee.  For information, contact Liz Sparks (850) 570-5950 or liz.aparks57@gmail.com.

 

February 15 Saturday P/L  Hike the FNST from Purify Bay Rd. to Marsh Point. A VERY leisurely 4-mile hike from Purify Bay Rd. trailhead to Marsh Point and back.  Lunch at Marsh Point, with scenic views of the salt marshes.  Learn about the Confederate salt works in the Refuge.  Please sign up only if you are willing to hike at a very slow pace.  Leader:  Linda Patton (850) 668-4334 or lpatton@fsu.edu.

February 15 Saturday P/S  Seek and Destroy! Phipps Park Invasive Plant Education and Removal  Program. Organized jointly by the Florida Trail Association (Apalachee Chapter), the Florida Native Plant Society (Magnolia Chapter), the City of Tallahassee, and the Northwest Florida Water Management District,   this program is geared towards hikers, runners, cyclists, school children, college students, Boy and Girl Scouts, native plant and other wildlife enthusiasts, and anyone else interested in  learning and “giving back!”  It uses Elinor Klapp-Phipps Park’s extensive invasion of coral ardisia for hands-on education and removal opportunities.  We will be working in a selected test area of the park.  Learn how to identify and eradicate coral ardisia and other invasive plants wherever you are. Learn also about other aspects of this beautiful, 670-acre park. Get some satisfying exercise and feel good about giving back.  Bring water, bug spray, gardening work gloves, and wear shoes appropriate for hiking. Some tools will be provided, but please bring a clipper and/or a shovel (pointed type is best) if you own them.  Lunch provided.  This activity may not be appropriate if you are severely allergic to poison ivy; Bentoquatam lotion barrier cream provided for those who wish to use it.  Begins  promptly at 9:30 a.m. at the Meridian trailhead, 4000 N. Meridian Rd. (Youth Sports Complex/baseball fields), located 0.1 mile in, on the left.  Questions?  Contact Karen Berkley  (850) 570-5740, kjberkley@gmail.com or Chuck Goodheart: (850) 933-6631, Charles.Goodheart@talgov.com.

 

February 16 Sunday P/L  Aucilla Sinks: FNST Fun Hike Part II, “Walk on Water.” Zigzag with us around and between the 11 named sinks along this portion of the Florida Trail where the river flows underground. The sinks expose the water flowing beneath our feet.  Hike is 4.2 miles and contains some rocky outcroppings. Despite the sign we’ll see for Long Suffering Road, the walk is considered leisure. Bring lunch and water and snacks.  Email hike leader for meeting time and location, and include your full name and best anytime telephone and email address.  Limit 25 people.  To sign up, contact Leader:  Wendy Dial (941) 320-8470 or wbdial@gmail.com.

February 16 Sunday P/S  Torreya State Park Day Hike. See Feb. 9 for details.

February 18 Tuesday M/L. Chapter Activities Planning Meeting for April – June. Open to all members who would like to participate or want to become activity leaders.  Bring your own dinner, calendar and ideas for exciting spring activities!  Held at the home of Karen Berkley (3310 Northshore Circle, Tallahassee).  Leader:   Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 or Griffindd@aol.com.

February 22 Saturday P/M  Bear Creek Trails Hike. The Bear Creek Educational Forest is in Gadsden County.  We will start the hike with 2.5 mi. on the Ravine trail and continue 3.5 mi. on the Bear Creek Trail.  If you think Florida doesn’t have steep trails, this trail system will dispel the myth. It follows the contours of a lengthy steephead ravine.  $2 per person entry fee.  Leader:  Barry Haber (850) 284-5615 or BarryJHaber@hotmail.com.

 

February 23 Sunday P/S  Torreya State Park Day Hike. See Feb. 9 for details.

Activities – January 2014

Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate,  “M” Limited to FTA members only/“L” Leisurely,  “M” Moderately difficult,  “S” Strenuous

January 4 Saturday P/L  Day Hike at Alum Bluff. Also known as the Garden of Eden Trail, Alum Buff is a short hike but very strenuous.  Join us on a day hike criss-crossing Florida’s unique steep heads.  We’ll hike to a high bluff overlooking the Apalachicola River and look down on the type section for the Alum Bluff geologic formation.  Bring a snack, water and sun protection.  After the hike, we’ll stop at a local restaurant for a late lunch. Leader:  Gwen Beatty (850) 539-6027 or gfbeatty@yahoo.com.

January 8 Wednesday P/M  “Lite and Fast” Power Hike. Join us every Wednesday to eliminate stress, burn fat and just get some exercise.  This is not a trail running group, but we will maintain a power walking pace (approx. 3.5 mph) with light hiking gear (dress in layers, bring water, energy bar, light trekking or trail running shoes and with our limited daylight bring a flashlight/headlight).  The basic hike will cover about 4 miles.  Sign up at http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking or call leader for any last minute  changes or cancellations.  Meet at 5:15 p.m. at the Edenfield Trailhead on Miccosukee Road for warm-up and stretches – then due to precious daylight we hit the trail at 5:30 PM SHARP.  Pets (on leash) must maintain group pace and be cleaned up after (park rules).  Leader: Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 or Griffindd@aol.com. This activity repeats on Jan. 15, 22, 29.

 

January 12 Sunday P/S  St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge. These hikes will continue the successful and popular series started last fall.  They are designed primarily for hikers who would like to increase their endurance on the trail.  We’ll hike about 12-14 miles at a brisk pace.  Bring water and trail snacks for several hours. This activity is also appropriate for anyone wishing to train for a backpacking trip.  Bring your pack with 50-60% final load.  Leader:  Dawn Brown (850) 545-0351/ 668-0091 or dbrown1948@embarqmail.com.

January 14 Tuesday, P/L  Chapter Meeting Program “Currie Leggoe, 500 Mile Hike On The Camino, Spain.” The Camino, or The Way of St. James, is a pilgrimage trail across the north of Spain that is more than 1200 years old. It is a river of people all flowing West to Santiago de Compostela one step at a time. There are still many Catholics amongst those who walk, but now others of different faiths or no faith at all participate. It is not a wilderness backpacking trip, but rather a walk through mountains and fields and towns and forests while staying in albergues (Pilgrim Hostels) at night. Currie will  share with us the scenery, the pattern of life, the wonderful parts and the difficulties of the 500 mile section that she journeyed. Meeting held at the Early Learning Coalition, Suite 70, Northwood Centre, 1852 North Martin Luther King Blvd., Tallahassee.  For information, contact Liz Sparks (850) 570-5950 or liz.aparks57@gmail.com.

January 18 Saturday P/M  Invasive Plant “Seek and Destroy” Workday at Spring House. Pre-registration by January 14th is required. Spring House is the only built private residence in Florida designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. The house and grounds now comprise the Spring House Institute, which is being restored for use for public events (preservespringhouse.org) but is not yet open.  The grounds around the house are heavily infested with coral ardisia and other invasive plants.  The Magnolia Chapter of the Florida Native Plant Society and the Apalachee Chapter of the Florida Trail Association have been given the privilege and a rare opportunity to address this problem.  Come join us for this special event, intended as a fun and fulfilling experience for all.  It will be a full workday (8:30 to 4:00) to remove coral ardisia in a careful manner to preserve existing native plants around the house and restore a trail through the property.  If you do not yet know how to identify or remove coral ardisia, you will be taught.  The type of work will vary from gentle to vigorous, depending on your ability and zeal.  Food will be provided throughout the day by a private donor:  Coffee & breakfast items, then lunch, then beverages & snacks.  Bring bug spray and your own water bottle. Some tools will be provided, but it bring gardening-type gloves, clippers, a pointed shovel, and a root jack or weed wrench, if you have them.  Children are permitted, but must be supervised by an adult. No pets, please.  To register, contact Karen J. Berkley (850) 570-5740 or kjberkley@gmail.com.

January 19 Sunday P/S  St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge. See Jan. 9 for details.

 

January 19 Sunday M/M  St. Vincent’s Island National Wildlife Refuge Day Hike. St Vincent is located west of Apalachicola and is an undeveloped barrier island just offshore from the mouth of the Apalachicola River in the Gulf of Mexico. The triangular shaped island is 9 miles long and 4 miles across at its widest point and has over 14 miles of pristine beaches and 80 miles of criss-crossing dirt roads.  We will be hiking within the several different habitat types including the beach – always hiking at a comfortable pace!  Check out: http://www.fws.gov/southeast/pubs/facts/svncon.pdf.  Bring plenty of water (in a daypack), lunch, cash for shuttle, sun protection and wear comfortable clothes and shoes for hiking.  We will be taking the St. Vincent Island Shuttle Services to cross Indian Pass; cost is $10.00 per person for round-trip transportation.  Plan on catching dinner on the way home.  Sign up at  http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking or call leader to register.  Meeting location and time of departure finalized closer to event.  It is a two-hour drive, so the departure time will be very early from Tallahassee.  FTA members only; limit 40 people. Leader:  Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103) or Griffindd@aol.com.

January 26 Sunday P/S  St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge. See Jan. 9 for details.

Activities – December 2013

ACTIVITIES: Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate,  “M” Limited to FTA members only/“L” Leisurely,  “M” Moderately difficult,  “S” Strenuous

December 3 Tuesday P/M  Ft. Braden Trails Hike. We’ll hike the West and Center loops, about 6 miles.  Directions: from Capital Circle SW, turn west onto SR 20.  Go 8.7 mi. to entrance on the right (north).  Leader: Barry Haber(850) 284-5615 or barryjhaber@hotmail.com.

December 4 Wednesday P/M “Wednesday Walkabout.” Grab your water bottle and good walking shoes and join us in the early evening to eliminate stress, meet folks of similar interest, build a little endurance and just get a little more exercise! This is not a trail running group, but we will maintain a minimal power walking pace (approx.3.5 mph) and walk between 3 and 4 miles. Pets are welcome but must be on leash & owner cleans up after them (park rules).  Parking lot has a bathroom and plenty of room for changing clothes.  Meet at 5:15 p.m. for meet, greet and warm- up — then we hit the trail at 5:30 p.m. (sharp).  Meet at the Miccosukee Canopy Road Greenway – Edenfield Trailhead parking lot at the Miccosukee Greenway trails (near the intersection of Miccosukee and Edenfield Road).  Location may change based on daylight savings time and closure of park at sunset.  Sign up on www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking or call leader for any last minute updates, location change or cancellations (due to weather or change in leader schedule).  Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103, Griffindd@aol.com100

December 4-10 Wednesday-Tuesday P/S  F-Troop: Spring Creek 2. Replacement of bridges on the Spring Creek section of the FNST in SMNWR.  Volunteers can expect to assist with prefabrication, assembly, equipment operation and finishing work.  Relax by a bonfire at our volunteer center in the evening.  Please come ready to get dirty with sturdy work or hiking boots, a long sleeve shirt, and durable jeans.  Location: St. Marks Volunteer Center, 6295 Coastal Hwy US 98, Crawfordville, Florida 32327.  More information and registration online at www.floridatrail.org/volunteer/volunteeropportunities/ .   Questions?: Eric Mason emason@floridatrail.org.

December 7 Saturday P/M  Trail Care, Torreya/River Bluff Trail, Torreya State Park. December is a good time to help maintain the Torreya/River Bluff Trail.  We’ll clip unwanted vegetation and remove fallen limbs.  Bring loppers if you can, water, and lunch.  We will meet at 7:30 a.m. in Tallahassee for carpooling. Limit 10.  To sign up, contact Jerry Herting (850) 878-3426 or Bob Gilley (850) 557-1536.

December 7 Saturday P/M Elinor Klapp-Phipps Park: Invasive Plant Hands-On Education Program. For camaraderie, fun, healthy exercise, and the satisfaction of doing something good for the environment, consider participating in this event, which is part of a series of sessions for everyone–all ages–interested in the outdoors. Learn the importance of addressing the problem of invasive plants, with a particular focus on Coral ardisia, which is currently smothering much of the understory of this beautiful park and many other areas in  Florida and Georgia.  This particular event will be a 1.8 mile interpretative,  slow hike around the Swamp Forest Loop trail in the park, followed by lunch (provided*).  During the slow hike, John Valenta, an expert from the Northwest Florida Water Management District, along with Brian Pelc, and expert from The Nature Conservancy, will explain how to identify at least 4 species of exotic invasive plants that are found on/near the trail, methods for removing them safely, and how to distinguish them from native plants. Hands-on education will also be included.  During lunch there will be further discussion about why this effort is important, how you can help in different ways appropriate for different activities (e.g., hiking, cycling, walking, your own back yard) and how to report invasive plant sightings (http://www.eddmaps.org/).  If time permits, you will also learn more about this beautiful park: its rare butterflies, bluebird boxes, artifacts, and the Red Hills Horse Trials.   Bring water, bug spray, garden/work gloves, and wear shoes appropriate for hiking. Bring a clipper and/or a shovel (pointed type is best) if you own them.   Meet at 9:30 a.m. at Elinor Klapp-Phipps Park, Gate A, 1275 Miller Landing Rd., Tallahassee.  Karen Berkley (850) 570-5740, kjberkley@gmail.com

December 3 Tuesday P/M  Ft. Braden Trails Hike. We’ll hike the West and Center loops, about 6 miles.  Directions: from Capital Circle SW, turn west onto SR 20.  Go 8.7 mi. to entrance on the right (north).  Leader: Barry Haber(850) 284-5615 or barryjhaber@hotmail.com.

December 10 Tuesday P/M  Bear Creek Trails Hike. Meet at 9:00 a.m. at the Bear Creek Educational Center south of Quincy for a 5-mile hike on the Bear Creek and Ravine Trails. Terrain is hilly. Entrance fee: $2.00 per car.  Directions from Tallahassee:  From I-10: take exit 181, Quincy, drive south 4.5 miles on SR 267 to the entrance of the Bear Creek Tract on the left.  Leader: Barry Haber (850) 284-5615 or barryjhaber@hotmail.com.

December 10 Tuesday M/L  Chapter Meeting:  Holiday Party & Potluck. Celebrate the season by joining our annual holiday potluck and gift exchange.  Bring a dish to share (meat provided by the Chapter) and a wrapped gift to participate in the exchange. The gift should be trail or outdoors related if possible, and can be  purchased-but-inexpensive, a white elephant, or hand-made. If you’re feeling extra festive, write a short poem/limerick describing the gift!  Meeting held at the Early Learning Coalition, Suite 70, Northwood Centre, 1852 North Martin Luther King Blvd., Tallahassee.  For information, contact Liz Sparks (850) 570-5950   liz.aparks57@gmail.com.

December 11 Wednesday  P/M “Wednesday Walkabout.” See December 4 for description.

December 12 Thursday P/S  Garden of Eden Hike. This is a strenuous 3.5-mile hike in the Apalachicola Bluffs and Ravines Preserve.  Directions: I-10 west to exit 174, left (south) on S.R. 12, continue for 20.3 miles (turn left at blinking light in Greensboro). As you near Bristol, look for a large “Apalachicola Bluffs – Garden of Eden Trail” sign on your right. Turn right (west) on Garden of Eden Rd. Go 0.4 miles to the trailhead. It is a one-hour drive from Tallahassee.  Leader: Barry Haber (850) 284-5615 or barryjhaber@hotmail.com.

December 18 Wednesday  P/M “Wednesday Walkabout.” See December 4 for description.

December 21 Saturday P/L  Fort Braden Trail Day Hike. Fort Braden Trail winds its way through hickory, oak and sweet gum hardwoods sometimes following, and sometimes crossing, a sandy ribbon of creek bed that flows with soft murmurs as it makes its way to its destination in Lake Talquin.  We’ll hike two of the three loops for a total of 6-7 miles.  Bring water and snacks and a few dollars for the entry fee.  We’ll enjoy holiday goodies after the hike!  No limit.  To sign up, contact Gwen Beatty (850) 539-6027, gfbeatty@yahoo.com

December 28 Saturday P/L  Annual Phipps Park Holiday Hike. Feeling a little lethargic after too many holiday celebrations?  Too much shopping, partying, out of town relatives?  Let’s get outside and play.  This hike is a nice long, leisurely all-day hike at Elinor Klapp-Phipps Park in NE Tallahassee.  Entire loop is 7 miles.  Bring water and trail snacks, and lunch for a mid-way break at the Oak Hammock.  No limit.  To sign up contact Dawn Brown (850) 545-0351/668-0091, dbrown1948@embarqmail.com.

December 29 Sunday P/L  W. D. Lines Tract Day Hike. The Lines Tract is on the west side of Lake Talquin and is better known as an off-road bike trail although bikes are seldom encountered.  We’ll begin our hike on the Talquin Loop and then cross over to the Longleaf Loop before heading back to the trailhead.  Expect the hike to be 8 to 9 miles total.  After the hike, we’ll head down to Whippoorwill  Landing for a late lunch.  Bring water and snack and a few dollars for the entry fee. No limit.  To sign up, contact Gwen Beatty (850) 539-6027, gfbeatty@yahoo.com.

Activities – November 2013

ACTIVITIES: Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate / “M” Limited to FTA members only
“L” Leisurely / “M” Moderately difficult / “S” Strenuous

November 2 Saturday P/M  Trail Care in the Apalachicola National Forest. Trail clearing and blaze repainting on a segment of the FNST.  Wear sturdy shoes and dress for the weather in “trail work” clothes.  Bring water, bug spray, personal medications, lunch.  No limit.  To sign up, contact Richard Graham (850) 878-3616, rdgraham@centurylink.net.

November 2 Saturday P/M Phipps Park Invasive Plant Education and Removal. Enjoy the camaraderie of a joint  FTA/ FNPS (Florida Native Plant Society-Magnolia Chapter) endeavor for hikers, runners, cyclists, native plant and other wildlife enthusiasts, and anyone else interested in learning and “giving back.” This program is using Elinor Klapp-Phipps Park’s extensive invasion of coral ardisia for a continuing series of hands-on education and removal opportunities.  Each session continues from the previous one during which we will be working in a selected test area of the park.  Learn how to identify and safely eradicate coral ardisia, not only at Phipps Park, but wherever you hike (including the FNST), from experts. Get some great exercise removing these invasive plants in this test section, and feel good about giving back!  Bring water, bug spray, gardening work gloves, and wear shoes appropriate for hiking.  Some tools will be provided, but please bring a clipper and/or a shovel (pointed type is best) if you own them. Lunch will be provided.  Note: this type of activity is not appropriate if you are severely allergic to poison ivy. IvyBlock barrier cream will be provided for those who wish to use it.  The activity begins promptly at 9:30 a.m. at the Meridian trailhead, 4000 N. Meridian Rd. (Youth Sports Complex/baseball fields); the trailhead is located 0.1 mile in, on the left.  [Map:  http://www.talgov.com/Uploads/Public/Documents/parks/pdf/phipps.pdf ]  Questions? Contact Karen Berkley (850) 570-5740  kjberkley@gmail.com  or Chuck Goodheart: (850) 933-6631 Charles.Goodheart@talgov.com

November 3 Sunday P/S  Day Hike in the St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge. This series of hikes continues the training started in October and is designed primarily for hikers who would like to increase their endurance on the trail.  We will start with an 8-mile hike and gradually increase to 12-14 miles by the end of winter.  We will hike over flat ground and maintain a relatively brisk pace.  Bring water and trail snacks for several hours.  This activity is also appropriate for anyone wishing to train for a backpacking trip.  Bring your pack loaded with 50-60% final load.  No limit.  To sign up, contact Dawn Brown (850) 545-0351/668-0091, dbrown1948@embarqmail.com.

November 6 Wednesday P/M “Wednesday Walkabout.” Grab your water bottle and good walking shoes and join us in the early evening to eliminate stress, meet folks of similar interest, build a little endurance and just get a little more exercise! This is not a trail running group, but we will maintain a minimal power walking pace (approx.3.5 mph) and walk between 3 and 4 miles. Pets are welcome but must be on leash & owner cleans up after them (park rules).  Parking lot has a bathroom and plenty of room for changing clothes.  Meet at 5:15 p.m. for meet, greet and warm- up — then we hit the trail at 5:30 p.m. (sharp).  Meet at the Miccosukee Canopy Road Greenway – Edenfield Trailhead parking lot at the Miccosukee Greenway trails (near the intersection of Miccosukee and Edenfield Road).  Location may change based on daylight savings time and closure of park at sunset.  Sign up on www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking or call leader for any last minute updates, location change or cancellations (due to weather or change in leader schedule).  Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103, Griffindd@aol.com100

November 8-10, Friday – Sunday P/L  Wakulla Walkabout: An FTA Gathering at Camp Indian Springs in Wakulla County. Florida Panhandle Regional FTA Event!  Discover the natural beauty of the wondrous treasures found only in this unspoiled “other” Florida.  Join others who have a passion for the outdoors and hiking.  The event includes day hikes, canoe trips, speakers and presentations highlighting the area’s unique outdoor resources.   Check out the website for event details and registration: http://apalachee.floridatrail.org/conferences . Volunteers needed!  Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103, Griffindd@aol.com

November 12 Tuesday P/L  Chapter Meeting:  “Samantha Sexton, Pew Charitable Trusts.” Discover why Pew Charitable Trusts got involved in ocean conservation, its efforts to end and prevent overfishing and the campaign’s expanded focus to protect forage species important to a healthy marine food web. Samantha will share ways FTA members can get involved.  Meeting held at the Early Learning Coalition, Suite 70, Northwood Centre, 1852 North Martin Luther King Blvd., Tallahassee.  For information, contact Liz Sparks (850) 570-5950   liz.aparks57@gmail.com.

November 13 Wednesday P/M “Wednesday Walkabout.” See November 6 for description.

November 13-19 Wednesday-Tuesday P/S  F-Troop: Spring Creek 1. Replacement of bridges on the Spring Creek section of the FNST in SMNWR.  Volunteers can expect to assist with prefabrication, assembly, equipment operation and finishing work.  Relax by a bonfire at our volunteer center in the evening.  Please come ready to get dirty with sturdy work or hiking boots, a long sleeve shirt, and durable jeans.  Location: St. Marks Volunteer Center, 6295 Coastal Hwy US 98, Crawfordville, Florida 32327.  More information and registration online at www.floridatrail.org/volunteer/volunteeropportunities/ . Questions?: Eric Mason emason@floridatrail.org.

November 14 Thursday P/M  Bear Creek Trails Hike Meet at 9:00 a.m. at the Meet at 9:00 am at the Bear Creek Educational Center south of Quincy (directions below) for a 5-mile hike on the Bear Creek and Ravine Trails. Option for shorter hike of 3 miles. Entrance fee is $2.00 per car. Directions from Tallahassee:  From I-10: take exit 181, Quincy, drive south 4.5 miles on SR 267 to the entrance of the Bear Creek Tract on the left.  Leader: Barry Haber (850) 284-5615 or barryjhaber@hotmail.com.

November 16 Saturday P/M  Trail Care, Torreya Challenge Trail, Torreya State Park. Enjoy hiking some of the hilliest terrain in Florida and help maintain the Torreya Challenge Trail.  We’ll clip unwanted vegetation and remove fallen limbs.  Bring loppers if you can, water, and lunch.  We will meet at 7:30 a.m. in Tallahassee for carpooling. Limit 10.  To sign up, contact Jerry Herting (850) 878-3426 or Bob Gilley (850) 557-1536.

November 16 Saturday P/L “A Taste of the Trail” fundraiser. Join the Apalachee Chapter of the Florida Trail Association for a fun and informal wine and beer tasting to benefit Florida’s unique hiking trails.  This 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. event will be held at Spring House–the only residential home in Florida designed by Frank Lloyd Wright.  Tickets are $25 per person or $40 per couple.  Each ticket includes beer & wine tasting, appetizers, and entertainment by the Mooncoin Trio (Irish traditional music).  Special thank you to our sponsors Wine Warehouse, New Leaf Market, and Spring House Institute!  Order tickets, and get a map to the location, at http://floridatrail.givezooks.com/events/a-taste-of-the-trail.  Holly Parker, (850) 567-3393  hollyep@gmail.com

November 17 Sunday P/S  Day Hike in the St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge. This series of hikes continues the training started in October, and is designed primarily for hikers who would like to increase their endurance on the trail.  We will started with an 8-mile hike and will gradually increase to 12-14 miles by the end of winter.  We will hike over flat ground and maintain a relatively brisk pace.  Bring water and trail snacks for several hours.  This activity is also appropriate for anyone wishing to train for a backpacking trip.  Bring your pack loaded with 50-60% final load.  No limit.  To sign up, contact Dawn Brown (850) 545-0351/668-0091, dbrown1948@embarqmail.com.

November 19 Tuesday P/M  Bear Creek Trails Hike. We are trying to find morning hikers for 5 mile hikes. Have any questions or suggestions please contact hike leader.  Meet at 9:00 am at the Bear Creek Educational Center south of Quincy for a 5-mile hike on the Bear Creek and Ravine Trails. Terrain is hilly. Entrance fee: $2.00 per car.  Directions from Tallahassee:  From I-10: take exit 181, Quincy, drive south 4.5 miles on SR 267 to the entrance of the Bear Creek Tract on the left   Leader: Barry Haber (850) 284-5615 or barryjhaber@hotmail.com

November 20 Wednesday P/M “Wednesday Walkabout.” See November 6 for description.

November 21 Thursday P/M  Bear Creek Trails Hike. We are trying to find morning hikers for 5 mile hikes. Have any questions or suggestions please contact hike leader.  Meet at 9:00 am at the Bear Creek Educational Center south of Quincy for a 5-mile hike on the Bear Creek and Ravine Trails. Terrain is hilly. Entrance fee: $2.00 per car.  Directions from Tallahassee:  From I-10: take exit 181, Quincy, drive south 4.5 miles on SR 267 to the entrance of the Bear Creek Tract on the left   Leader: Barry Haber (850) 284-5615 or barryjhaber@hotmail.com

November 24 Sunday P/S  Day Hike in the St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge. This series of hikes continues the training started in October, and is designed primarily for hikers who would like to increase their endurance on the trail.  We will start with an 8-mile hike and gradually increase to 12-14 miles by the end of winter.  We will hike over flat ground and maintain a relatively brisk pace.  Bring water and trail snacks for several hours.  This activity is also appropriate for anyone wishing to train for a backpacking trip.  Bring your pack loaded with 50-60% final load.  No limit.  To sign up, contact Dawn Brown (850) 545-0351/668-0091, dbrown1948@embarqmail.com.

November 24 Sunday P/M  “Prep for the Holiday” Hike. Join us for an early afternoon hike at the local Apalachee Regional Park Trail located about 4.5 miles east of US-319 on US-27.  The trail was designed to give users the opportunity to walk on several types of surfaces and for its scenic beauty and accessibility. No limit.  Sign up by contacting Wendy Dial (941) 320-8470, wbdial@gmail.com or Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6013, Griffindd@aol.com providing your full name and contact information.

November 26 Tuesday P/M  W.D. Line’s Tract Hike. The Line’s Tract is on the west side of Lake Talquin and is better known as an off-road bike trail although bikes are seldom seen. We’ll hike 5-6 miles on parts of Long Leaf and Talquin Loops, with views of the lake.  Directions: From Tallahassee, head west on I-10 and take Exit 181.. Then turn left (south) on Hwy. 267 and go 7 miles. Turn left (east) on Cooks Landing Rd. and go 1 mile to entrance on the right.  Leader:  Barry Haber (850) 284-5615 or barryjhaber@hotmail.com

Activities – October 2013

ACTIVITIES: Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.
“P” Public welcome to participate / “M” Limited to FTA members only
“L” Leisurely / “M” Moderately difficult / “S” Strenuous

October 2 Wednesday P/M “Wednesday Walkabout.” Grab your water bottle and good walking shoes and join us in the early evening to eliminate stress, meet folks of similar interest, build a little endurance and just get a little more exercise! This is not a trail running group, but we will maintain a minimal power walking pace (approx.3.5 mph) and walk between 3 and 4 miles. Pets are welcome but must be on leash & owner cleans up after them (park rules).  Parking lot has a bathroom and plenty of room for changing clothes.  Meet at 5:15 p.m. for meet, greet and warm- up — then we hit the trail at 5:30 p.m. (sharp).  Meet at the Miccosukee Canopy Road Greenway – Edenfield Trailhead parking lot at the Miccosukee Greenway trails (near the intersection of Miccosukee and Edenfield Road).  Location may change based on daylight savings time and closure of park at sunset.  Sign up on www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking or call leader for any last minute updates, location change or cancellations (due to weather or change in leader schedule).  Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103, Griffindd@aol.com100

October 3 Thursday P/M  Weekday Warrior Trail Maintenance. Working on a segment of the FNST.  Wear sturdy shoes and dress for the weather in “trail work” clothes.  Bring water, bug spray, personal medications, lunch.  No limit.  To sign up, contact Howard Pardue (850) 386-1494, hpardue@comcast.net. CANCELLED DUE TO GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN

October 5 Saturday P/M  Trail Care Apalachicola National Forest East.  Trail clearing and blaze repainting on a segment of the FNST.   Wear sturdy shoes and dress for the weather in “trail work” clothes.  Bring water, bug spray, personal medications, lunch.  No limit.  To sign up, contact Richard Graham (850) 878-3616, rdgraham@centurylink.net. CANCELLED

October 5 Saturday P/S  Phipps Park Invasive Plant Education and Removal. Enjoy the camaraderie of a joint  FTA/ FNPS (Florida Native Plant Society-Magnolia Chapter) endeavor for hikers, runners, cyclists, native plant and other wildlife enthusiasts, and anyone else interested in learning and “giving back.” This program is using Elinor Klapp-Phipps Park’s extensive invasion of coral ardisia for a continuing series of hands-on education and removal opportunities.  Each session continues from the previous one during which we will be working in a selected test area of the park.  Learn how to identify and safely eradicate coral ardisia, not only at Phipps Park, but wherever you hike (including the FNST), from experts. Get some great exercise removing these invasive plants in this test section, and feel good about giving back!  Bring water, bug spray, gardening work gloves, and wear shoes appropriate for hiking.  Some tools will be provided, but please bring a clipper and/or a shovel (pointed type is best) if you own them. Lunch will be provided.  Note: this type of activity is not appropriate if you are severely allergic to poison ivy. IvyBlock barrier cream will be provided for those who wish to use it.  The activity begins promptly at 9:30 a.m. at the Meridian trailhead, 4000 N. Meridian Rd. (Youth Sports Complex/baseball fields); the trailhead is located 0.1 mile in, on the left.  [Map:  http://www.talgov.com/Uploads/Public/Documents/parks/pdf/phipps.pdf ]  Questions? Contact Karen Berkley (850) 570-5740,  kjberkley@gmail.com or Chuck Goodheart (850) 933-6631, Charles.Goodheart@talgov.com

October 8 Tuesday P/L  Chapter Meeting:  “Dave Cook, “Turtles and Gators and Snakes, Oh My!!” Join Dave Cook, FWC Wildlife Biologist extraordinaire, who will share some special wildlife friends you may encounter while hiking and paddling in North Florida.  Get up close and personal with a variety of species who share Florida’s wonderful natural resources.  Meeting held at the Early Learning Coalition, Suite 70, Northwood Centre, 1852 North Martin Luther King Blvd., Tallahassee.  For information, contact Liz Sparks (850) 570-5950   liz.aparks57@gmail.com.

October 9 Wednesday P/M “Wednesday Walkabout.” See October 2 for description.

October 12 Saturday P/M  Canoe/Hike. Canoe from Yancy Bridge to Magnolia Bridge–about 10 miles–stopping half way down for a 4-mile hike at the new Hinson Tract Trail.  Leigh Brooks (Naturalist) will join us to share local botanical knowledge.  Meet at 8:00 a.m. (EST) in Tallahassee for carpooling.  Bring shoes for hiking, bug spray, water, lunch, canoe and safety equipment.  Limit 12 people.  To sign up, contact Mike Tucker (850) 545-3489 tuckems@hotmail.com or Gwen Beatty (850) 539-6027, gfbeatty@yahoo.com

October 13 Sunday P/S  Day Hike in the St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge. This series of hikes is designed primarily for hikers who would like to increase their endurance on the trail.  We will start with an 8-mile hike and gradually increase to 12-14 miles by the end of winter.  We will hike over flat ground and maintain a relatively brisk pace.  Bring water and trail snacks for several hours.  This activity is also appropriate for anyone wishing to train for a backpacking trip.  Bring your pack loaded with 50-60% final load.  No limit.  To sign up, contact Dawn Brown (850) 545-0351/668-0091, dbrown1948@embarqmail.com.

October 16 Wednesday P/M “Wednesday Walkabout.” See October 2 for description.

October 19 Saturday P/M  Trail Care: Apalachicola National Forest East. Trail clearing and blaze repainting on a segment of the FNST.  Wear sturdy shoes and dress for the weather in “trail work” clothes.  Bring water, bug spray, personal medications, lunch.  No limit.  To sign up, contact Richard Graham (850) 878-3616, rdgraham@centurylink.net.

October 20 Sunday P/L  “Red Hills Ramble” Hike. Who doesn’t like to “ramble” along a beautiful county road! Join us for our first 8-mile ramble on the entire length of Old Centerville Road from Centerville Road to the Florida/George state line.  It’s an easy hike on a canopied road–half on paved road and half on hard packed clay.  The Red Hills has been identified for special conservation efforts and the Nature Conservancy has designated the Red Hills as one of America’s “Last Great Places.” Wear comfortable clothes and walking shoes.   Bring enough water and trail snacks for several hours.  Meet at 9 a.m. at Bradley’s Retreat, 9002 Bradley Road.  Take Centerville Road north to Bradley’s Country Store, then left on Bradley Rd. to the parking lot of Bradley’s Retreat (approximately 5.7 miles beyond Bradfordville / Roberts Roads). Afterwards plan on enjoying a sausage dog and drink at the country store. No limit.  To sign up, contact John Laney (850) 879-0168, John@john-laney.com or Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103, Griffindd@aol.com

October 22 Tuesday M/L  Activities Planning Meeting. Chapter planning meeting for January – March activities.  Open to all members who would like to participate and those who are interested in becoming an FTA activity leader.  Held at the home of Wendy Dial, 7890 Talley Ann Drive, Tallahassee 32311 ((941) 320-8470 wbdial@gmail.com), beginning at 6:00 p.m.  Please RSVP Dawn Griffin (Griffindd@aol.com or (850) 509-6103)) by Friday, October 18 so plans can be made for dinner!  NOT for Democrat, Meetup, etc.

October 23 Wednesday P/M “Wednesday Walkabout.” See October 2 for description.

October 24 Thursday P/M  Weekday Warrior Trail Maintenance. Working on a segment of the FNST.  Wear sturdy shoes and dress for the weather in “trail work” clothes.  Bring water, bug spray, personal medications, lunch.  No limit.  To sign up, contact Howard Pardue (850) 386-1494, hpardue@comcast.net.

October 26 Saturday P/M  Hike at Maclay Gardens State Park. Mid-morning 4-mile hike around Lake Overstreet then eat lunch at Lake Hall.  Those who want can stay afterwards and paddle in Lake Hall, swim,  and/or tour the botanical gardens.  No limit.  Sign up by October 24 by contacting Wendy Dial (941) 320-8470, wbdial@gmail.com providing your full name and contact information.

October 27 Sunday P/S  Day Hike in the St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge. This series of hikes is designed primarily for hikers who would like to increase their endurance on the trail.  We will start with an 8-mile hike and gradually increase to 12-14 miles by the end of winter.  We will hike over flat ground and maintain a relatively brisk pace.  Bring water and trail snacks for several hours.  This activity is also appropriate for anyone wishing to train for a backpacking trip.  Bring your pack loaded with 50-60% final load.  No limit.  To sign up, contact Dawn Brown (850) 545-0351/668-0091, dbrown1948@embarqmail.com.

October 30 Wednesday P/M “Wednesday Walkabout.” See October 2 for description.

Activities – September 2013

ACTIVITIES: Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate / “M” Limited to FTA members only
“L” Leisurely / “M” Moderately difficult / “S” Strenuous

September 4 Wednesday P/M Wednesday Walkabout. Get together in the early evening to eliminate stress, burn fat, meet folks of similar interest and just get some exercise! Bring water, energy bar, light trekking or trail running shoes. This is not a trail running group, but we will maintain a minimal power walking pace (approx. 3.5 mph). No limit to number of hikers. Pets (on leash & clean up after them) must maintain group pace.  Sign up on Meet-up or call the leader for any last minute updates or cancellations (due to weather or change in leader schedule).Meet at 5:30 p.m. for meet & greet –then we hit the trail at 5:45 p.m. (sharp).  . Meet at the Miccosukee Canopy Road Greenway – Edenfield Trailhead parking lot at the Miccosukee Greenway trails (near the intersection of Miccosukee and Edenfied Road) for a 3-4 mile walk.  The parkinglot has a bathroom and plenty of room for changing clothes.  Leader: Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 (Griffindd@aol.com).

September 7 Saturday P/L  Explore Old City Cemetery. Have you ever driven by the gates of the Old City Cemetery and were “dying” (pun intended) to go inside and explore the old grave markers? Well your wait is over; join others for a late afternoon self guided stroll through the old cemetery.  Afterwards plan to grab dinner at one of the local restaurants.  Old City Cemetery is the oldest public cemetery in Tallahassee, established in 1829 and represents a cross-section of Tallahassee’s people during the 19th century — slaves and planters, governors and store clerks, veterans of wars and victims of yellow fever. Meet at the main gate on Luther King, Jr., Boulevard at 4:00 PM (between Call Street and Park Avenue). From there we will pick up a brochure and begin exploring before the cemetery closes at 6:00 PM. No limit on participants and no dogs please. Wear comfortable shoes/clothes, bring water and be prepared for the heat and $ for dinner.  Sign up at Meetup.com or contact Dawn Griffin (Griffindd@aol.com/cell (850) 509-6103.)

September 10 Tuesday M/L  Planning meeting for Fall 2013 Panhandle Gathering. Volunteers are needed to assist in planning and executing the  Gathering scheduled for November 8-10 at Camp Indian Springs in Wakulla County. No matter how small, your energy will be put to good use! Meet to eat at 5:30 PM at a local eating establishment to discuss ongoing planning efforts then head over to the FTA Chapter meeting by 7:00 PM.  Contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 or Griffindd@aol.com.

September 10 Tuesday P/L   Chapter Meeting.  “Rose Knox, Canoeing and Camping on the Historic Suwannee River.” Join the Apalachee Chapter for a special presentation by authors Rose Knox and Graham Schorb of their new paddler’s guidebook, “Canoeing and Camping on the Historic Suwannee River.” In their comprehensive book, Rose and Graham cover topics from the history of pioneers and early native inhabitants, to river-side cookery. Their guide details the river from the Okefenokee Swamp all the way to the Gulf of Mexico.  .  For information, contact Liz Sparks (850) 570-5950 or liz.aparks57@gmail.com.

September 11 Wednesday P/M Wednesday Walkabout. Get together in the early evening to eliminate stress, burn fat, meet folks of similar interest and just get some exercise! Bring water, energy bar, light trekking or trail running shoes. This is not a trail running group, but we will maintain a minimal power walking pace (approx. 3.5 mph). No limit to number of hikers. Pets (on leash & clean up after them) must maintain group pace.  Sign up on Meet-up or call the leader for any last minute updates or cancellations (due to weather or change in leader schedule).Meet at 5:30 p.m. for meet & greet –then we hit the trail at 5:45 p.m. (sharp).  . Meet at the Miccosukee Canopy Road Greenway – Edenfield Trailhead parking lot at the Miccosukee Greenway trails (near the intersection of Miccosukee and Edenfied Road) for a 3-4 mile walk.  The parkinglot has a bathroom and plenty of room for changing clothes.  Leader: Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 (Griffindd@aol.com).

September 18 Wednesday P/M Wednesday Walkabout. Get together in the early evening to eliminate stress, burn fat, meet folks of similar interest and just get some exercise! Bring water, energy bar, light trekking or trail running shoes. This is not a trail running group, but we will maintain a minimal power walking pace (approx. 3.5 mph). No limit to number of hikers. Pets (on leash & clean up after them) must maintain group pace.  Sign up on Meet-up or call the leader for any last minute updates or cancellations (due to weather or change in leader schedule).Meet at 5:30 p.m. for meet & greet –then we hit the trail at 5:45 p.m. (sharp).  . Meet at the Miccosukee Canopy Road Greenway – Edenfield Trailhead parking lot at the Miccosukee Greenway trails (near the intersection of Miccosukee and Edenfied Road) for a 3-4 mile walk.  The parkinglot has a bathroom and plenty of room for changing clothes.  Leader: Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 (Griffindd@aol.com).

September 25 Wednesday P/M Wednesday Walkabout. Get together in the early evening to eliminate stress, burn fat, meet folks of similar interest and just get some exercise! Bring water, energy bar, light trekking or trail running shoes. This is not a trail running group, but we will maintain a minimal power walking pace (approx. 3.5 mph). No limit to number of hikers. Pets (on leash & clean up after them) must maintain group pace.  Sign up on Meet-up or call the leader for any last minute updates or cancellations (due to weather or change in leader schedule).Meet at 5:30 p.m. for meet & greet –then we hit the trail at 5:45 p.m. (sharp).  . Meet at the Miccosukee Canopy Road Greenway – Edenfield Trailhead parking lot at the Miccosukee Greenway trails (near the intersection of Miccosukee and Edenfied Road) for a 3-4 mile walk.  The parkinglot has a bathroom and plenty of room for changing clothes.  Leader: Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 (Griffindd@aol.com).

September 28 Saturday P/L Florida National Scenic Trail (FNST) Symposium. The US Forest Service, along with the Florida Trail Association and the Florida Outdoor Recreation Coalition is hosting the 2013 Florida National Scenic Trail (FNST) Symposium to highlight the 30th Anniversary and future plans of one of Florida’s most remarkable trails. An active program of speakers will take attendees through the past, present, and future of the FNST. The symposium occurs from 8:30 am to 12:00 noon (prior to the beginning of the Florida Outdoor Recreation Summit).  Registration, but no fee, is required and a continental breakfast and lunch will be provided. The first 100 registrants will receive a special FNST Trail cap.  Details on the FNST Symposium at: http://florc.org/summit-info-2/2013-fnst-symposium/29-2013-fnst-symposium Register at: https://florc1.wufoo.com/forms/r7x2s9/ [NOTE:  This is not an FTA event]

September 28 -29  Saturday-Sunday P/L  Third Annual Florida Outdoor Recreation Summit. At the Central Florida Zoo and Botanical Gardens in Sanford, Florida.  The summit begins on Sat., Sept. 28 at 1:30 p.m. and concludes on Sun., Sept. 29 at 12:00 noon. This year’s program “Building Stronger Outdoor Recreational Organizations” will follow a workshop format with concurrent sessions and plenty of time for personal interactions.  A sample of presentation topics include: Effectively Working with Land Managers; Building Partnerships; Successfully Advocating Your Club/ Organization; Liability Management; Recruitment and Retention of Volunteers; Funding for Your Organization.  In addition there will be presentations on the business side of outdoor recreation, resource conservation and the importance of outdoor recreation and wellness.  The complete agenda is at:  http://florc.org/summit-info-2/2013-recreation-summit/30-2013-recreation-summit Register at: https://florc1.wufoo.com/forms/q7x3a1/ If you have any question please do not hesitate to contact FLORC Executive Director John Waldron at (850)556-7315 or jwaldron@florc.org.  [NOTE:  This is not an FTA event]

September 28 Saturday  P/M National Public Lands Day event at Alfred B. Maclay Gardens State Park. The Department of Environmental Protection’s Alfred B. Maclay Gardens State Park along with the Friends of Maclay Gardens, Inc. would like to encourage the public to come out and participate in this National Volunteer workday as we all work together to maintain the Lake Overstreet trails through erosion control and clearing spring and summer overgrowth. Maintenance is key to keeping the trails beautiful and accessible. If you would like to help, please dress appropriately: wear closed toe shoes, bring gloves, mosquito repellant and water. Also, please bring clippers or any other pruning tools you would like to use or the park can provide you with some. Event is 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.  Free admission will be given to volunteers for this work day. Meet at the Lake Overstreet Trail-head in Maclay Gardens State Park. Maclay Gardens is located 1/2 mile north of I-10 on U.S. 319/Thomasville Road. Turn west on Maclay Road. The park is a short distance on the right. Contact: (850) 487-4115  [NOTE:  This is not an FTA event]

Activities – August 2013

August 7 Wednesday P/M Wednesday Walkabout. Get together in the early evening to eliminate stress, burn fat, meet folks of similar interest and just get some exercise! Bring water, energy bar, light trekking or trail running shoes. This is not a trail running group, but we will maintain a minimal power walking pace (approx. 3.5 mph). No limit to number of hikers. Pets (on leash & clean up after them) must maintain group pace.  Sign up on Meet-up or call the leader for any last minute updates or cancellations (due to weather or change in leader schedule).Meet at 5:30 p.m. for meet & greet –then we hit the trail at 5:45 p.m. (sharp).  . Meet at the Miccosukee Canopy Road Greenway – Edenfield Trailhead parking lot at the Miccosukee Greenway trails (near the intersection of Miccosukee and Edenfied Road) for a 3-4 mile walk.  The parkinglot has a bathroom and plenty of room for changing clothes.  Leader: Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 (Griffindd@aol.com).

August 10 Saturday P/L  Day hike, picnic and free swim at Wakulla Springs State Park. We’ll hike early (up to 6 miles depending on the interests of the group) while it is cool and spend the rest of the day enjoying the park.  Bring water and trail snacks for the hike, something to cook on the grill and a dish to share if you wish.  Don’t forget your suit if you wish to swim.  Families and pets welcome (dogs must be on leash at all times).  Fee for admission to the park. To sign up contact Dawn Brown (850) 545-0351 or by email dbrown1948@embarqmail.com.

August 13 Tuesday M/L Planning meeting for Fall 2013 Panhandle Gathering. Volunteers are needed to assist in planning and executing the  Gathering scheduled for November 8-10 at Camp Indian Springs in Wakulla County. No matter how small, your energy will be put to good use! Meet to eat at 5:30 PM at a local eating establishment to discuss ongoing planning efforts then head over to the FTA Chapter meeting by 7:00 PM.  Contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 or Griffindd@aol.com.

August 13 Tuesday P/L Chapter Meeting.   “Caring for Our Hiking Trails.” Our August meeting will kick off with an Ice Cream Social at 6:45 p.m.! Joining us will be FTA Trail Staff, Eric Mason and Megan Donoghue, who will speak about this year’s new FNST trail program. We’ll learn how newcomers and experienced trail workers can be involved, different trainings FTA has to offer, volunteer recognition, and more.  New initiatives for chapter-led projects and trail crew leader information packets will be covered. Apalachee Chapter trail care opportunities will also be discussed.  Come see what is in store for the 2013-2014 Trail Season!  For information, contact Liz Sparks (850) 570-5950 or liz.aparks57@gmail.com.

August 14  Wednesday P/M Wednesday Walkabout. Get together in the early evening to eliminate stress, burn fat, meet folks of similar interest and just get some exercise! Bring water, energy bar, light trekking or trail running shoes. This is not a trail running group, but we will maintain a minimal power walking pace (approx. 3.5 mph). No limit to number of hikers. Pets (on leash & clean up after them) must maintain group pace.  Sign up on Meet-up or call the leader for any last minute updates or cancellations (due to weather or change in leader schedule).Meet at 5:30 p.m. for meet & greet –then we hit the trail at 5:45 p.m. (sharp).  . Meet at the Miccosukee Canopy Road Greenway – Edenfield Trailhead parking lot at the Miccosukee Greenway trails (near the intersection of Miccosukee and Edenfied Road) for a 3-4 mile walk.  The parkinglot has a bathroom and plenty of room for changing clothes.  Leader: Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 (Griffindd@aol.com).

August 17 Saturday P/M  Slave Canal Float Trip. Canoe or Kayak the Slave Canal beginning at Goose Pasture (Wacissa River) and ending at Nutall Rise (Aucilla River). Several snags that require pull-overs are likely on the Slave Canal, depending on water levels. Severe storm events often result in many more trees blocking the channel. Be prepared to carry your boat over many fallen trees in the water.  The Wacissa Slave Canal was constructed in the 1850s using slave labor in an attempt to connect the Wacissa to the lower Aucilla River so cotton barges could be floated to the Gulf. It largely followed a small natural stream. The scheme didn’t work well as the canal was too shallow, and after the Civil War it was abandoned for more efficient railroads. The hard edges are gone, and somehow the decades of rain, wind and water did not fill in the canal. Except for some boulders along the banks you’d never suspect it was not a completely natural waterway. This is an adventure you will not soon forget!  To sign up, contact Kent Wimmer (850) 528-5261 klwimmer2@embarqmail.com.

August 21 Wednesday P/M Wednesday Walkabout. Get together in the early evening to eliminate stress, burn fat, meet folks of similar interest and just get some exercise! Bring water, energy bar, light trekking or trail running shoes. This is not a trail running group, but we will maintain a minimal power walking pace (approx. 3.5 mph). No limit to number of hikers. Pets (on leash & clean up after them) must maintain group pace.  Sign up on Meet-up or call the leader for any last minute updates or cancellations (due to weather or change in leader schedule).Meet at 5:30 p.m. for meet & greet –then we hit the trail at 5:45 p.m. (sharp).  . Meet at the Miccosukee Canopy Road Greenway – Edenfield Trailhead parking lot at the Miccosukee Greenway trails (near the intersection of Miccosukee and Edenfied Road) for a 3-4 mile walk.  The parkinglot has a bathroom and plenty of room for changing clothes.  Leader: Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 (Griffindd@aol.com).

August 28  Wednesday P/M Wednesday Walkabout. Get together in the early evening to eliminate stress, burn fat, meet folks of similar interest and just get some exercise! Bring water, energy bar, light trekking or trail running shoes. This is not a trail running group, but we will maintain a minimal power walking pace (approx. 3.5 mph). No limit to number of hikers. Pets (on leash & clean up after them) must maintain group pace.  Sign up on Meet-up or call the leader for any last minute updates or cancellations (due to weather or change in leader schedule).Meet at 5:30 p.m. for meet & greet –then we hit the trail at 5:45 p.m. (sharp).  . Meet at the Miccosukee Canopy Road Greenway – Edenfield Trailhead parking lot at the Miccosukee Greenway trails (near the intersection of Miccosukee and Edenfied Road) for a 3-4 mile walk.  The parkinglot has a bathroom and plenty of room for changing clothes.  Leader: Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 (Griffindd@aol.com).

ACTIVITIES: Please read the GUIDELINES FOR ACTIVITY PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate / “M” Limited to FTA members only
“L” Leisurely / “M” Moderately difficult / “S” Strenuous

Activities – July 2013

July 9 Tuesday P/L Chapter Meeting.  “Harley Means,  Sinkholes in Florida.” Media attention was recently focused on a tragic event that happened near Brandon, Florida.  A person lost his life during a catastrophic collapse of his home into a sinkhole.  Sinkholes are part of Florida’s landscape.  Why do sinkholes occur in Florida?  How many are there?  Can a sinkhole occur under my home?  What happens if I have a sinkhole on my property?  These questions and more will be addressed as we discuss sinkholes in Florida.  For information, contact Liz Sparks (850) 570-5950 or liz.aparks57@gmail.com.

 

July 13  Saturday P/M  Maclay Gardens State Park: Overstreet hike, swim and BBQ. Carpool at 8:30 a.m. intopark from nearby location to save on admission fee ($6 per car for up to 8 people); deposit coolers, picnic baskets and lawn chairs at selected Lake Hall picnic site near swimming area and then drive short distance to hike 5 miles around Lake Overstreet Trail, stopping after a couple miles for snack before returning to picnic site. Light charcoal, jump in lake to cool off while fire heats up (bathhouse has changing rooms); then cook and eat. Bring own meat to cook and drinks, and dish to share (will have signup sheet). After eating, folks can linger and swim more or walk through the formal gardens. Limit 25. To sign up and for details, email Wendy Dial at wbdial@gmail.com or call 941-320-8470.

 

July 17  Wednesday P/M Wednesday Walkabout. Get together in the early evening to eliminate stress, burn fat, meet folks of similar interest and just get some exercise! Bring water, energy bar, light trekking or trail running shoes. This is not a trail running group, but we will maintain a minimal power walking pace (approx. 3.5 mph). No limit to number of hikers. Pets (on leash & clean up after them) must maintain group pace.  Sign up on Meet-up or call the leader for any last minute updates or cancellations (due to weather or change in leader schedule).Mark your calendar to meet every Wednesday July – September except: 7/3, 7/10, 7/24 and 7/31. Meet at 5:30 p.m. for meet & greet–then we hit the trail at 5:45 p.m. (sharp).  Meet at the Miccosukee Canopy Road Greenway – Edenfield Trailhead parking lot at the Miccosukee Greenway trails (near the intersection of Miccosukee and Edenfied Road) for a 3-4 mile walk.  The parkinglot has a bathroom and plenty of room for changing clothes.  Leader: Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 (Griffindd@aol.com).

July 23 Tuesday M/L  Activities Planning Meeting. Chapter planning meeting for October-December activities.  Open to all members who would like to participate and those who want to become FTA activity leaders.  Held at home of Dawn Griffin, 2578 Manassas Way (Bull Run development, intersection of Thomasville Road and Kerry Forest) at 6:00 p.m.  Please RSVP by Sat July 20 as Dawn is making dinner! Contact: Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 Griffindd@aol.com.

 

July 27 Saturday P/M  Interpretive Hike at Letchworth-Love Mounds. This state park has Florida’s tallest Native American ceremonial mound, built between one and two thousand years ago, predating the Lake Jackson Mound.  Artifacts from the site span a period of 12 thousand years.  The  morning hike will be led by Ranger Rob Lacy, who will tell us about the history of the mounds and the land they sit on.  Bring a lunch and after the walk we’ll eat at the picnic pavilion.  Entrance fee is $3 per vehicle (up to 8 occupants), $2 per walk- or bike-in.  We will meet outside the Park to car-pool.  LIMIT 20.  To sign up, contact Linda Patton (850) 668-4334 or lpatton@fsu.edu

ACTIVITIES: Please read the GUIDELINES FOR OUTING PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate / “M” Limited to FTA members only
“L” Leisurely / “M” Moderately difficult / “S” Strenuous

Activities – June 2013

June 1 Saturday P/M American Hiking Society’s National Trails Day®: Hike Lafayette Heritage Trail Park. NTD is the country’s largest celebration of trails and there will be activities all over the U.S.  Come celebrate with a 1-, 2- or 4-mile roundtrip walk.  The 4-mile hike to two overlooks and to the bridge leading to Tom Brown Park starts at 10:00 a.m. The 2-mile hike to two overlooks starts at 11:00 a.m.  and the 1-mile hike to the first overlook starts at 12 noon. Please come 15 minutes early to sign in!  All walks require climbing a large hill or two up to the overlooks above Lake Lafayette and its prairie.  Afterward, explore the Park’s fishing fingers and the lakefront on your own.  The ground is rough, so wear sturdy shoes. Don’t forget your water, and bring binoculars or a camera if you want.  And bring the kids!   Take Conner Boulevard east from Capital Circle and turn on Heritage Trail Boulevard through the Piney Z residential neighborhood, through the traffic circle to the lakeside park.  Look for the National Trails Day banner under the pine trees inside the park’s circular road.  Come walk with us!!  If you need more information:  Wendy Dial (941) 320-8470 wbdial@gmail.com.

June 9 Sunday P/M St Marks River Kayak/Canoe Paddle. Start from the US 98 Bridge and paddle downstream approximately 4.5 miles to the Fort San Marcos de Apalache Historic State Park. The boat launch at San Marcos de Apalache State Park has a museum (fee), parking, dock, picnic areas and restrooms. Good easy paddle for a beginner. The current is generally mild enough to be able to paddle from either bridge going upstream or downstream. The river widens considerably as it nears the confluence with the St. Marks–expect winds and tidal influence. Wildlife is abundant along this clear, spring-fed river.  After the paddle, plan to enjoy an early dinner with the group at the Riverside Café in St. Marks.  Bring your own boat and equipment.  If you need a boat, check with local outfitters: TNT Hideaway located next to the public launch at the Lower Bridge, US 98 (850-925-6412) http://tnthideaway.com; The Wilderness Way in Wakulla Station (850-877-7200) http://www.thewildernessway.net;  St. Marks Outfitters in St. Marks (850-510-7919) http://stmarksoutfitters.com; Blue Water Sports in Tallahassee (850-656-3483) http://www.bluewatersports.net.  Limit 25 and first  preference will be given to FTA members–so join FTA if you’re not already a member. To sign up, contact Dawn Griffin  (850) 509-6103 Griffindd@aol.com or Gary Sisco  (850) 545-4776  gsisco42@yahoo.com.

June 11 Tuesday P/L  Chapter Meeting.  “DIRT! The Movie.” Join us for our summer movie night! We will host a joint screening of “DIRT! The Movie” with the Big Bend Group of the Sierra Club. The film, “takes you inside the wonders of the soil. It tells the story of Earth’s most valuable and underappreciated source of fertility–-from its miraculous beginning to its crippling degradation.” Join us for a fascinating and fun look at this often overlooked subject.   For information, contact Holly Parker (850) 567-3393.

June 22 Saturday P/L  Ft Braden Interpretative Hike. This annual hike will be lead by Senior Forester Tom Gilpin. We will walk the trail during the cooler morning hours and learn about resource management objectives of Lake Talquin State Forest.  Wear sturdy walking shoes,  dress for the weather, bring bug spray, water and any personal items like medications.  While the hike is leisurely and will be over about noon, there is uneven ground and some slopes to navigate.  Meet at 8:15 a.m. at the trailhead which is on Blountstown Hwy (SR 20) about one  mile west of Coe Landing Rd.  Entrance sign is on the right (north) side of the road. To sign up, contact Howard Pardue  (850) 386-1494  hpardue@comcast.net.

June 22 Saturday P/L Paddling Spring Creek-Chipola in Marianna, FL. We’ll put in at the dam and enjoy a leisurely paddle down the mostly canopied Spring Creek. We’ll stop near the confluence with the Chipola River for snacks and cooling swim.  Join us for lunch afterwards in Marianna.  No limit.  To sign up, contact Gwen Beatty (850) 539-6027 gfbeatty@yahoo.com.

ACTIVITIES: Please read the GUIDELINES FOR OUTING PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate / “M” Limited to FTA members only
“L” Leisurely / “M” Moderately difficult / “S” Strenuous

Activities – May 2013

May 1 Wednesday and May 7 Tuesday [Repeated every Tue./Wed. except Tue. 5/14 , Tue. 6/4 & Tue. 6/11]  P/M  “Tuesday/Wednesday Walkabouts.” Get together in the early evenings to eliminate stress, burn fat, meet folks of similar interest and just get some exercise!  This is not a trail running group, but we will maintain a minimal power walking pace (approx. 3.5 mph).   Bring water, energy bar, light trekking or trail running shoes.  No limit to number of hikers.  Pets (on leash & clean up after them) must maintain group pace.  RSVP on our Meetup site at:  http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking or call the leader for any last minute updates or cancellations (due to weather or change in leader schedule).  Meet at 5:30 p.m. for warm-up, meet & greet, and stretches–then we hit the trail at 5:45 p.m. (sharp).   Tuesdays: meet at Tom Brown Park at the restroom near the large children’s playground area for a 1-hour walk in the Park.   Leader: Cathy Briggs (850) 567-0506 cbriggs825@gmail.com.   Wednesdays: meet at the Miccosukee Canopy Road Greenway – Edenfield Trailhead parking lot (near the intersection of Miccosukee and Edenfied Road) for a 3- to 4-mile walk.  Parking lot has bathroom with plenty of room for changing clothes.  Leader: Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 Griffindd@aol.com.

May 4 Saturday P/ L  Wade Tract Birding Hike. Enjoy an outstanding natural history and birding hike through one of the best remaining examples of old-growth long-leaf pine and wire grass forests in America.  Jim Cox, ornithologist with Tall Timbers Research Station, will describe the natural history of the Wade Tract and hopes to band red-cockaded chicks.  A contribution to support Wade Tract Research is requested. Limit 24 people. To reserve your spot, contact Kent Wimmer (850) 528-5261  klwimmer2@embarqmail.com.

May 5 Sunday P/L  Over-60 hike: Elinor Klapp-Phipps Park. This will be a seriously slow stroll for the over-60 crowd or those who prefer to just amble along.  The hike is about 2 miles long, with many interpretive/snack/rest stops along the way, so we’ll be out for 2-3 hours.  Dress for the weather, wear hiking shoes and bring bug repellent, plenty of water and snacks and hiking poles/stick if you wish.  Limit 15 and first preference will be given to FTA members – so join FTA if you’re not already a member.  Co-leader Karen Berkley.  To sign up, contact leader: Linda Patton (850) 668-4334.

May 11 Sunday P/L St. George Island State Park Day Hike (and perhaps a little birding too!). Enjoy tall slash pines that dominate the windswept remnant of coastal scrub forest that St. George Island State Park protects at the easternmost tip of this barrier island dividing the mouth of the Apalachicola River from the Gulf of Mexico. Starting from the campground area, the 5-mile round trip Gap Point Trail offers an opportunity to backpack or day hike to get up close to the desert-like coastal scrub. The trail will take you through salt marshes, beach and dune systems. St. George Island State Park is regularly rated one of Florida’s most beautiful beaches, but what all the beachgoers don’t realize is that it has spectacular birdwatching too! Bonaparte’s Gulls are reliable from winter to spring, Snowy Plovers and American Oystercatchers nest here and Gull-billed Terns cruise the beach in summer. Bring lunch, plenty of fluids and be prepared for warm temperatures.  In case you get wet while “playing in the surf” bring a change of clothes and footwear.  After the hike, plan to enjoy an early dinner with the group at one of the local seafood establishments!  Limit 20 and first preference will be given to FTA members – so join FTA if you’re not already a member.  Co-leader: Adrienne Ruhl.  To sign up, contact leader: Dawn Griffin  (850) 509-6103  Griffindd@aol.com.

May 14 Tuesday P/L  Chapter Meeting. “Florida’s Royal Road” Join Andy McLeod, Coordinator of Viva Florida 500 for the Florida Humanities Council, for a discussion on Florida’s earliest roads. The east-west corridor that travels over 400 miles from St. Augustine to Pensacola reveals an abundance of Florida’s long, fascinating history.  As we mark the 500th anniversary of “La Florida” this year, this “Royal Road,” or “Mission Road,” deserves greater attention for reasons of landscape beauty, education, preservation, recreation, and even commerce.

May 18 Saturday P/M  Day Hike Aucilla River Sinks Portion of the Florida Trail. Hike 4.3 miles along the sinkholes where Aucilla River shows its face after going underground along this portion of the FT.  We will traverse a deep hole natural bridge.  Photo ops abound!  Short vehicle shuttle required to move some cars to the end of the trail.  Bug protection a must!  Limit 25.  Co-leader, Ray Cade.  To sign up, contact leader: Wendy Dial (941) 320-8470  wbdial@gmail.com.

May 19 Sunday P/M   Mountain Biking at Lake Talquin State Forest (Ochlocknee Tract). Enjoy a 6- to 8-mile bike ride along forest roads and trails and 1-mile hike to Ochlocknee River. Bring your own equipment. Limit 12.  To sign up, contact Mike Tucker (850) 545-3489 tuckems@hotmail.com.

ACTIVITIES: Please read the GUIDELINES FOR OUTING PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate / “M” Limited to FTA members only
“L” Leisurely / “M” Moderately difficult / “S” Strenuous

Activities – April 2013

CANCELLED   April 5-7 Friday – Sunday M/M Day Hikes Celebrating Spring in Pine Mountain Ga. Travel from Tallahassee to Pine Mountain on Friday morning.  Enjoy day hiking on the Pine Mountain Trail on Saturday.  This well-maintained trail is rated one of the best trail systems in Georgia.  You can choose to enjoy the comforts of a hotel at night, or camp if you prefer.  Potential stops along the way to and from Tallahassee include Andersonville National Historic Site and Georgia’s “Little Grand Canyon,” Providence Canyon State Outdoor Recreation Area.  Make your own reservations at either The Days Inn of Pine Mountain, U.S. Highway 27, Pine Mountain, GA (706- 663-2121)  or at F.D.R. State Park Cabins/Campground (http://www.gastateparks.org/FDRoosevelt).  Meeting location and time of departure finalized closer to event. FTA members only. Limit 25. Co-leader: Dawn Brown.  RSVP on our Meetup.com site or contact Dawn Griffin Cell (850) 509-6103 or Griffindd@aol.com

April 6 Saturday [date changed from March 24] Sunday P/L Day Hike at Ft Braden Trail in Lake Talquin State Forest. Meet at the trailhead on Hwy 20 at 8:30 am for a 5-mile hike on the East loop. Leisure hike past pine uplands, hardwood hammocks and slope forest with nice views of Lake Talquin and a visit to “Loren’s Bench.”  Bring snacks and bug spray.  A hiking stick is recommended.  Dress for the weather. Mike Tucker 850-545-3489 or tuckems@hotmail.com

April 9 Tuesday P/L Meeting Program:  “The Apalachee Transit“ In November 2012, four backpackers from the Apalachee Chapter of the Florida Trail Association completed all of the Chapter’s section of the Florida National Scenic Trail. The group backpacked west-to-east, from Camel Lake to the north end of the Aucilla River Section, in celebration of the Apalachee Chapter’s 30th anniversary.  Join these intrepid hikers–Mike Tucker, Dawn Brown, Barry Haber, and Rayanne Mitchell– for photos, adventures, and lessons learned.

CANCELLED  Building materials not delivered in time.  Will be re-scheduled in the Fall.  April 11-14 Thursday – Sunday  P/S  Spring Creek Bridge Construction. (Originally scheduled March 27-31)  Join the Florida Trail Association at St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge for our Spring Creek Bridge Construction! Be a part of a volunteer trail crew that will focus on something that our local chapter can’t handle alone: building a bridge/boardwalk. All volunteers are welcome, no matter your skill level:  on-the-job-training is part of the fun! You can participate for a day, a part of a day, or the entire project.  All tools, safety gear, and instructions will be supplied. Volunteers are welcome to show up Wednesday evening 4/10/13 for our official 10 am start on Thursday 4/11/13. Volunteers can expect to assist with prefabrication, assembly, equipment operation and finishing work. Relax by a bonfire at our volunteer center in the evening. Please come ready to get dirty with sturdy work or hiking boots, a long sleeve shirt, and durable jeans. As always, Florida Trail Association will provide all ffully ood, equipment, and safety gear. We have laundry facilities, 12 bunk beds, a fully furnished kitchen and shower facilities onsite. Volunteers will be able to stay in the furnished bunkhouse or camp outside underneath the stars. Camping and meals are free, but you must bring your own camping gear.  Meals will be prepared by volunteer cooks at the base camp kitchen, with plenty of snacks and sandwich makings available for your work in the field.  RV hookups are not available, but there is plenty of room to throw down camp. For general information on F-troop, go to http://www.floridatrail.org/html/volunteer_for_f-troop.cfm . To sign up for this F-troop now go to: https://www.eventville.com/Catalog/EventRegistration1.asp?Eventid=1010303 .   Sign up for one day or all 5! Thanks for coming to help build the Florida National Scenic Trail!

 

April 13 Saturday P/M Phipps Park Invasive Exotics Education and Volunteer Program. This program is a series of hands-on education and volunteer events organized by the Florida Trail Association (FTA) and Florida Native Plant Society (FNPS) and taking place in Elinor Klapp-Phipps Park.  Learn how to identify and safely eradicate coral ardisia and other exotic invasive plants–wherever you hike or use trails–from FNPS experts.  In addition, Brian Pelc will demonstrate EDDMaps data entry in the field.  If you have a mobile device you can downoad the app beforehand: http://apps.bugwood.org/seedn.html .  The activity begins at 9:30 a.m. at the Meridian trailhead and ends at 12:30 p.m.  Enter the park at 4000 N. Meridian Rd. (Youth Sports Complex/baseball fields); the trailhead is located 0.1 mile in, on the left..  [Map:  http://www.talgov.com/Uploads/Public/Documents/parks/pdf/phipps.pdf ] Bring water, bug spray, and gardening work gloves.  Wear shoes appropriate for hiking. Although some tools will be provided, please bring clippers,  shovel (pointed type is best), and/or root jack, if you own them. Lunch provided. No pets. Note that this activity is not appropriate if you are severely allergic to poison ivy.  IvyBlock barrier cream will be provided for those who wish to use it.  Co-Leader: Linda Patton.  Contact: Karen Berkley (850) 570-5740   kjberkley@gmail.com, Mike Jenkins (850) 766-5716  fnpsmagnoliach@gmail.com, or Chuck Goodheart (850) 933-6631 charles.goodheart@talgov.com

 

April 14 Sunday P/M Under-40 Outing: Hike Torreya State Park. Enjoy a 7.3-mile hike on the River Bluff Trail in Torreya State Park.  We’ll explore scenic views of the Apalachicola River, historic confederate earthworks, and a variety of rare plants including the Torreya Tree and Florida Yew.  Limit 15.  To sign up: Holly Parker (850) 567-3393 or hollyep@gmail.com.

April 20 Saturday P/L Wakulla Wildlife Festival at Wakulla Spring State Park. Members Karen Berkley and Richard Graham have volunteered to be at the FTA information table! The festival is a celebration of outdoor activities and area heritage.  Local musicians, artists, and experts offer festival participants one-of-a-kind experiences, helpful advice, and personal enrichment in a neighborhood family atmosphere. Includes the ever-popular premium guided tours, living history demonstrators and children’s activities.  Special Bird of Prey and Reptile Shows presented by the Center for Wildlife Education of Georgia Southern University are planned.  Exhibitors on the main festival grounds will introduce guests to a wide assortment of outdoor activities and provide close encounters with area wildlife. The beautiful and historic Wakulla Springs Lodge will host music, art and fine food.  Bluegrass music will also enliven events on the main festival grounds.  A $6 per vehicle donation to The Friends of Wakulla Springs supports the shows and programs of the festival.  For more details check the website:  http://www.wakullawildlifefestival.com.

April 23 Tuesday M/L Activities Planning Meeting. Chapter planning meeting for July- September activities.  Open to all Chapter members who would like to participate and want to become activity leaders.  Held at home of Karen Berkley, 3310 Northshore Circle in Tallahassee, at 6:00 p.m.  Please bring your own dinner.  Contact: Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 Griffindd@aol.com.

 

April 27 Saturday P/L Hike and Social Lunch on the J.R. Alford Greenway in Tallahassee. Hike 4-5 miles along “farm” hedgerows to the woods trail leading to Alford Arm of Lake Lafayette.  Bring sun protection for open areas, water and lunch or snack.  Co-leader: Dawn Griffin. Leader: Wendy Dial (941) 320-8470 or wbdial@gmail.com

ACTIVITIES: Please read the GUIDELINES FOR OUTING PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate / “M” Limited to FTA members only
“L” Leisurely / “M” Moderately difficult / “S” Strenuous

Activities – March 2013

March 2 Saturday P/M Fun Hike Apalachicola National Forest (Forest Road 321 to Sopchoppy River). Fun hike to explore the Apalachicola National Forest.  Richard Graham (850) 878-3616 or  r_graham@lycos.com.

March 9  Saturday P/M Torreya State Park Fun Hike. River Bluff-Torreya loop trail.   Spring is coming and it’s a great time to hike the steep hills in Torreya State Park.  Participants should be physically fit.  We’ll walk about 8 miles.  Bring water, lunch, bug repellant, and a walking stick (optional).  Meet at 7:30 a.m. in Tallahassee to car pool.  To sign up for the hike, contact Jerry Herting (850) 878-3426.

March 10 Sunday P/L Hike the Oak Hammock Loop trail of the Phipps Park hiking trail and see the Red Hills Horse Trials in progress.  Hike begins at 10:00 am and is 2.5 miles, beginning and ending at the RHHT venue.  From North Meridian Road, turn onto Miller Landing Road.  Follow the “Spectator Parking” signs and go 0.9 mi to Gate “A.”  Park as directed and take the shuttle bus.  Look for the “Florida Trail Event” signs when you get off the bus.  Hike will begin outside the entry point to the RHHT.  There is no need to buy RHHT tickets to do the hike.  Dawn Brown (850) 668-0091 or dbrown1948@embarqmail.com

March 12 Tuesday P/L Meeting Program: “Apalachicola RiverTrek 2012“ The Apalachicola is one of Florida’s most dynamic rivers, the only Florida waterway to emerge from the Appalachian Mountains. It has the largest volume of water flow of any Florida river and supports an incredible number of unique plants and animals, not to mention those sumptuous oysters in Apalachicola Bay. But in recent years, the river and bay have been starved of fresh water by Alabama and Georgia, causing the near collapse of the bay’s oyster fishery and the loss of an estimated four million tupelo gum trees in the river floodplain.  Author Doug Alderson will discuss these issues and more, and will show photos from the recent high profile Apalachicola RiverTrek, a five-day paddling journey on the entire river.

 

March 15-17  Friday-Sunday P/L  Florida Trail Association Annual Conference. Each year the FTA holds its Annual Conference to elect new Board members and officers. But more importantly, we meet to have fun! The Conference always includes exhibits, presentations, auctions, raffles, demonstrations, auctions, raffles, hikes, paddles, children’s activities, and much more.
The Conference will be held at YMCA Camp McConnell. The camp is located minutes off I-75 between Gainesville and Micanopy, FL and is directly across US 441 from Paynes Prairie Preserve State Park which will host many of our nature walks. The camp has a large grassy field for tent camping and RV’s (no hookups) and 4 new bunk houses. If you prefer not to ‘rough it’ make your motel/hotel reservations soonest because this is the same weekend as Gator Nationals in Gainesville and motel rooms are filling quickly. Keep checking http://www.floridatrail.org/html/annual_conference.cfm for more information as it becomes available.  Our Meetup site http://www.meetup.com/Apalachee-Florida-Trail-Hiking will also be updated with that information.

 

March 17 Sunday (NOTE DATE CHANGE FROM 3/16) P/M Phipps Park Invasive Exotics Education and Volunteer Program. Phipps Park Invasive Exotics Education and Volunteer Program. This program is a series of hands-on education and volunteer events organized by the Florida Trail Association (FTA) and Florida Native Plant Society (FNPS) and taking place in Elinor Klapp-Phipps Park. Each session involves working in a selected test area of the Park. Learn how to identify and safely eradicate coral ardisia and other exotic invasive plants–wherever you hike or use trails–from FNPS experts.  In addition, Brian Pelc will demonstrate EDDMaps data entry in the field.  If you have a mobile device you can downoad the app beforehand: http://apps.bugwood.org/seedn.html .  The activity begins at 9:30 a.m. at the Meridian trailhead and ends at 12:30 p.m. Enter the park at 4000 N. Meridian Rd. (Youth Sports Complex / baseball fields); the trailhead is located 0.1 mile in, on the left.  [Map: http://maps.google.com/maps?q=@30.529202,-84.278480]  Bring water, bug spray, and gardening work gloves. Wear shoes appropriate for hiking. Although some tools will be provided, please bring a clipper, shovel (pointed type is best), and/or root jack, if you own them. Lunch provided. No pets. Note that this activity is not appropriate if you are severely allergic to poison ivy. IvyBlock barrier cream will be provided for those who wish to use it.   Co-Leader: Linda Patton. Contact: Karen Berkley (850) 570-5740 kjberkley@gmail.com or Mike Jenkins (850) 766-5716 fnpsmagnoliach@gmail.com

 

March 23 Saturday P/M Sopchoppy River Azalea Fun Hike. A five-mile(easy/moderate) hike on a section of the FNST that follows the Sopchoppy River.  This section of the trail has abundant stands of wild azaleas that bloom in mid-late March.  The hike leader will provide hikers with a list of plant species likely to be observed along the trail. Limit 20. To sign up:   George Weaver (850) 510-3288 or weaver@psy.fsu.edu.

March 30 Saturday [date changed from March 3 Sunday] P/S 18th Annual Bradwell Bay Swamp Stomp. Slog about 8 miles through the Apalachicola National Forest’s Bradwell Bay Wilderness.  The trail passes through old-growth timber in one of the largest swamp forests in Florida.  With normal rain, expect wading in ankle-to-knee water for over half the hike.  Kent Wimmer (850) 528-5261 or klwimmer2@embarqmail.com.

ACTIVITIES: Please read the GUIDELINES FOR OUTING PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate / “M” Limited to FTA members only
“L” Leisurely / “M” Moderately difficult / “S” Strenuous

Activities – February 2013

February 9 Saturday P/M Phipps Park Invasive Exotics Education and Volunteer Program. This program is a series of hands-on education and volunteer events organized by the Florida Trail Association (FTA) and Florida Native Plant Society (FNPS) and taking place in Elinor Klapp-Phipps Park. Learn how to identify and safely eradicate coral ardisia and other exotic invasive plants–wherever you hike or use trails–from FNPS experts. The activity begins at 9:30 a.m. at the Meridian trailhead and ends at 12:30 p.m.  Enter the park at 4000 N. Meridian Rd. (Youth Sports Complex/baseball fields); the trailhead is located 0.1 mile in, on the left.  [Map:  http://www.talgov.com/Uploads/Public/Documents/parks/pdf/phipps.pdf ] Bring water, bug spray, and gardening work gloves.  Wear shoes appropriate for hiking. Although some tools will be provided, please bring clippers, shovel (pointed type is best), and/or root jack, if you own them. Lunch provided. No pets. Note that this activity is not appropriate if you are severely allergic to poison ivy.  IvyBlock barrier cream will be provided for those who wish to use it.  Co-Leader: Linda Patton.  Contact: Karen Berkley (850) 570-5740  kjberkley@gmail.com, Mike Jenkins (850) 766-5716  fnpsmagnoliach@gmail.com, or Chuck Goodheart (850) 933-6631 charles.goodheart@talgov.com

February 12 Tuesday P/L Meeting Program:  “Our Big Bend Coast“ The Big Bend Coastal Conservancy will discuss our local coastal ecosystems and the most pressing issues they face today.  Get to know St. Joe Bay, Apalachicola Bay, Alligator Harbor Bay, Apalachee Bay–off the Ochlockonee to Suwannee Rivers–and the smaller Deadman Bay–off the Steinhatchee River.  Ever wondered what exactly a red tide is? Learn about our water quality, species and habitat conservation, and seagrass conservation efforts.  Don’t miss this chance to find out why the Big Bend Coast is one of a kind!

February 16 Saturday [NOTE date change from February 24 Sunday] P/M Fun Hike Apalachicola National Forest (State Road 319 – Forest Road 321). Fun hike to explore the Apalachicola National Forest.  Richard Graham (850) 878-3616 / r_graham@lycos.com.

February 16 Saturday P/M Under-40 Outing: Bike the St. Marks Trail. A 32-mile (round trip) bike ride to the coastal town of St. Marks on the Florida Trail.  We will enjoy lunch on the water in St. Marks.  This unique section of the Florida Trail is paved and takes you through long leaf forest to coastal salt marsh.  Limit 8.  To sign up: Holly Parker (850) 567-3393 or hollyep@gmail.com.

 

ACTIVITIES: Please read the GUIDELINES FOR OUTING PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate / “M” Limited to FTA members only
“L” Leisurely / “M” Moderately difficult / “S” Strenuous

Activities – January 2013

Weekday “Lite and Fast” Power Hikes P/M. What a success we have had with the introduction of the Fall‘Lite and Fast’ hikes!  It’s now time to burn off those extra holiday pounds and strengthen your new year’s resolution! We will continue to get together midweek in the evening to eliminate stress, burn fat and just get some exercise.  We’ll hike at a fast pace (approx. 3.5 mph) with light hiking gear (dress in layers, bring water, energy bar, light trekking or trail running shoes and flashlight).  This is not a trail running group, but we will maintain a power walking pace. The basic hike will cover about 4 miles.  We are considering having the hikes in town within a well-lit, safe area, which will give us options for additional miles and easy outs as many of the local trails close at sunset. Meet at 5:15 p.m. for warm-up and stretches–then we hit the trail at 5:30 p.m (sharp). No limit to number of hikers. Pets (on leash) must maintain group pace.  Sign up on our Meetup.com site so we can alert you of any last minutes changes due to weather–or call the leader for meeting places and updates. Leader: Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 (Griffindd@aol.com) Dates are: Jan: 7, 9, 23 / Feb: 6, 18, 20, 25, 27 / March: 4, 7, 18, 21 / April: 1, 4, 15, 17, 29. Leader: Dawn Brown (850) 668-0091 dbrown1948@embarqmail.com.  Dates are: Jan: 14, 16, 28, 30 / Feb: 11, 13 / March: 11, 13, 25, 27 / April: 8, 10, 22, 24.

January 5 Saturday P/L. Day Hike at Birdsong Nature Center. BNC consists of 565 acres of wildflower meadows, forests, ponds and swamps are home to a myriad of birds and other wildlife. Here you can enjoy the serenity and beauty of the natural landscape and return home with a renewed spirit. We will visit the famous Bird Window for an extraordinary and intimate bird-viewing experience. The surrounding gardens and pool have attracted over 160 species of birds, including many rare and first sightings. Plan to bring a pack lunch and day hike on some of the twelve miles of available trails. Birdsong Nature Center 2106 Meridian Road in Thomasville Georgia.  Admission is $5 for adults, $2.50 for children 4-12 years old.  Free to members. It is a short drive from Tallahassee (just over the Georgia state line on Meridian Road).  Meeting location and time of departure finalized closer to event.  Limit 25 people. To sign up, RSVP on our Meetup.com site or contact leader: Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103 or Griffindd@aol.com

January 8 Tuesday P/L Meeting Program:  “Three Weeks in Wildest Alaska“ In the summer of 1967, Bruce Means surveyed the Wood River/Tikchik Lakes Wilderness Region of southwest Alaska by helicopter.  In September 2012, he returned, accompanied by his sons Harley and Ryan.  The men float-planed to the upper end of Nishlik Lake where they canoed their way for 16 days to the system’s outlet at the south end of Lake Aleknagik. Come hear about this once-in-a-lifetime canoeing/camping/fishing adventure.  Experience tales of rugged mountains, boreal forest, artic tundra, and eighteen grizzly bears.  You won’t regret/forget it!

 

January 12 Saturday P/L Family Hike at Mission San Luis Park.  Enjoy a leisure hike for the whole family and grandchildren.  Very slow pace.  Bring water, snacks or even a picnic.  Begins and ends at playground.  Thomas Smith (850) 459-2662 or tcsmith19@aol.com

January 12 Saturday P/M Phipps Park Invasive Exotics Education and Volunteer Program. This program is a series of hands-on education and volunteer events organized by the Florida Trail Association (FTA) and Florida Native Plant Society (FNPS) and taking place in Elinor Klapp-Phipps Park.  Learn how to identify and safely eradicate coral ardisia and other exotic invasive plants–wherever you hike or use trails–from FNPS experts. The activity begins at 9:30 a.m. at the Meridian trailhead and ends at 12:30 p.m.  Enter the park at 4000 N. Meridian Rd. (Youth Sports Complex/baseball fields); the trailhead is located 0.1 mile in, on the left.  [Map:  http://www.talgov.com/Uploads/Public/Documents/parks/pdf/phipps.pdf ] Bring water, bug spray, and gardening work gloves.  Wear shoes appropriate for hiking. Although some tools will be provided, please bring clippers,  shovel (pointed type is best), and/or root jack, if you own them. Lunch provided. No pets. Note that this activity is not appropriate if you are severely allergic to poison ivy.  IvyBlock barrier cream will be provided for those who wish to use it.  Co-Leader: Linda Patton.  Contact: Karen Berkley (850) 570-5740   kjberkley@gmail.com, Mike Jenkins (850) 766-5716  fnpsmagnoliach@gmail.com, or Chuck Goodheart (850) 933-6631 charles.goodheart@talgov.com

January 20 Sunday M/M St Vincent Island National Wildlife Refuge Day Hike. St Vincent Island is an undeveloped barrier island just offshore from the mouth of the Apalachicola River in the Gulf of Mexico. The triangular shaped island is 9 miles long and 4 miles across at its widest point, with over 14 miles of pristine beaches and 80 miles of criss-crossing dirt roads.  Bring plenty of water (in a daypack), sun protection and wear comfortable clothes and shoes for hiking. We will be hiking in several different habitat types including the beach–always at a comfortable pace. Bring a simple item to share for “pot-luck” lunch on the trail.   The refuge is managed to preserve, in as natural a state as possible, its highly varied plant and animal communities.  In addition, the refuge serves as a breeding area for endangered red wolves. Check out: http://www.fws.gov/southeast/pubs/facts/svncon.pdf.  We are taking the St. Vincent Island Shuttle Services to cross Indian Pass–cost is $10.00 per person for round-trip transportation.  Meeting location and time of departure finalized closer to event.  It is a two-hour drive from Tallahassee, so the departure time will be very early.  FTA Members Only. Limit 40 people.  To sign up, RSVP on our Meetup.comsite or contact Dawn Griffin (850) 509-6103  or  Griffindd@aol.com

January 26 Saturday P/L 6-Mile Aucilla River to Aucilla Rapids Hike. Leisure hike from Goose Pasture Road north along river to rapids.  It’s small game season so wear hunter orange.  Car shuttling involved.  Limit 25.  Co-leader: Barry Haber.  To sign up: Wendy Dial (941) 320-8470 wbdial@gmail.com

ACTIVITIES: Please read the GUIDELINES FOR OUTING PARTICIPANTS before signing up for an activity. This will make for a better outing experience for all concerned. Click here for a copy of the Guidelines.

“P” Public welcome to participate / “M” Limited to FTA members only
“L” Leisurely / “M” Moderately difficult / “S” Strenuous

TO SEE PREVIOUS YEARS’ ACTIVITIES, CLICK ON THE “Past Years’ Activities” link under “Categories.”

February 11 Tuesday P/L  Chapter Meeting Program: “Liz Sparks, Breathtaking Coastal Footpaths of England and Wales.” Join mother/daughter hiking pals, Margaret & Liz Sparks, for a sampling of breathtaking coastal footpaths of England and Wales. Yes, it is possible to hike a challenging hilly landscape and still gain weight.  Enjoying Cornish pasties, local ales and cream teas makes hiking the coastline a visual and culinary joy.   Azure waters, hillsides quilted with wildflowers, ancient castles and fluffy sheep offer stunning views at every hilltop.  Meeting held at the Early Learning Coalition, Suite 70, Northwood Centre, 1852 North Martin Luther King Blvd., Tallahassee.  For information, contact Liz Sparks (850) 570-5950 or liz.aparks57@gmail.com.