Friday, December 10, 2010

Autumn Outing Reports

To "Explore and Enjoy" are major aspects of active Sierra Club membership. Our Group provides opportunities to achieve those ends. Brief reports describe outings and adventures that may also encourage action to "Protect." Send us a report on an exploration that you have enjoyed?

Border Route Trail, MN (9/12-22)
Meeting/Program topic on February 22. Good weather and scenic; but WAS a challenge at times!

Kaufman Ave. Prairie Work Day (11/18)
Work canceled due to weather but explored, anyway! Jim reported not aware such existed in Dubuque.

Autumnal Equinox Full Moon & Jupiter Hike at Mines of Spain (11/23)
Cloudy & drizzly so didn't hike. It happens! An RSVP helps.

Yellow River SF/Unit Hike & Natural Gait Cave Concert (10/9)
Got directions to a trail to overlooks of the Yellow River Valley. Off-trail, found a short crevice to explore & a unique tree with scars where it once grew into the rock bluff next to it! The Natural Gait's Black Forest Trail was "dark and dense" but had neat wildlife plaques along the way. The Michelle Lynn Cave Concert up on an Ion Exchange bluff face enjoyed perfect autumn weather. Camped 11/8 at N. Gait.

Namekagon River Tip (10/15-20)
Canoed 68 miles from Hayward, WI, to Riverside Landing (on the St. Croix River.) Light drizzle for a few minutes the final day. Good shoreline wilderness campsites each night. Saw turtles, otters, eagles, ducks, geese. Negotiated "rapids" and big rocks without mishap. Only a couple of very short step-out-of-the-canoe needs. Good Trego Dam portage.

Ram Hollow/Hoffman DNR Wildlife Area Hike (11/13)
Weather looked questionable, but the rain held off as six intrepid hikers crossed the Trout Stream east of Colesburg; climbed to an impressive rock outcrop, crossed another small stream, investigated a rock wall and related rock gap; noted a gigantic sinkhole; followed a previously recorded GPS setting to an impressive rocky gorge lined by a couple of cliff face caves and gigantic White Pine trees; collected five bags of trash at a GPS-recorded old dump site; and carried the bags back to the parking area. Mission accomplished!

Finley's Landing Hike (11/21)
Six folks crossed a bridge at this Dubuque County Park to reach a ridge above the Mississippi River shore; circled to a beaver-gnawed woodland & high prairie; and partook of brats on a sandy beach.

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