Kennedy Peak Circuit Hike

By Brett.

One canine and 13 human Adventurers from Washington DC's gay outdoors club gathered near Camp Roosevelt to execute a circuit hike and visit popular Kennedy Peak.

One thing or another delayed the D.C.-based folks a bit, including the Marine Corps Marathon, but we managed to get our expedition underway from a brand-new Massanutten Trail parking lot just after 11:00. Rather than do the circuit clockwise, as is Adventuring custom, we decided to go counter-clockwise, in honor of the end of Daylight Savings Time.

We charged up the often steep and rocky trail briskly, arriving at the Kennedy Peak fire tower/observation platform in about 90 minutes. There, we lunched and enjoyed wonderful views of Page Valley and the Blue Ridge.

Some bared their chests to enjoy the warm sun, while others courted danger by leaning on the rickety railing or sitting on the broken bench which ran along one side of the deck. After lunch, we continued our journey, enjoying the nice but not-quite-spectacular fall colors.

On the Stephens Trail, there were a few stretches made interesting by proliferations of ferns. Few of the water crossings shown on the map along this trail had any water in them, despite October's record downpours.

We made it back to the cars at 3:45 (!), a full hour sooner than Craig had predicted, at which point the trip leader finally stopped worrying that early darkness would strand us on the mountain. After the hike, some headed over to Jalisco in Front Royal for Mexican food, beer, margaritas, and sinfully rich chocolate mousse.

To learn more about Adventuring, visit their website at http://www.adventuring.org/cgi-bin/main.idc

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