Friday, December 10, 2010

Winter Outings, Events, and Meeting/Programs

2010 White Pine Group, Sierra Club

December 11 (Saturday)
 Keough Indian Mounds Hike
Charlie Winterwood will lead a short hike at this site. Meet just east of the Hy-Vee gas pumps at the north end of the Hy-Vee parking lot on South Locust St. in Dubuque (near the US 20 Illinois bridge) at 9 AM to carpool to the Indian Mounds location. Those of us with showshoes will blaze a trail as needed. Plan is to return to Hy-Vee by noon. Contact Charlie Winterwood.

December 13-14 (Monday night - early Tuesday)
Geminid Meteor Shower
See article elsewhere in this newsletter. Assuming the sky will be clear--and COLD, anyone want to try to winter tent out in the boonies at Faraway Farm that Monday night--to watch the display from near a warming fire? Contact Dick (Frozen Toe Tip) Worm.

January 15 (Saturday)
Bald Eagle Watch
Grand River Center, Port of Dubuque. 9 AM - 4:30 PM. Raptor programs at 9:30, 12:15, and 3:00. Pella Wildlife Programs at 11 and 1:45. Shuttle to Eagle Viewing with scopes from 9-4 at Lock and Dam #11. Exhibits, vendors, and children's activities. [Audubon Society arranges volunteer help. Contact Nita.]

January 25 (Tuesday)
White Pine Group Meeting/Program
Utah's Fisher Towers and Escalante River Service Trips (& Goblin Valley)
Jim Fahrion and Dick Worm. 7 PM, St. Peter Lutheran Church, 3200 Asbury Road, Dubuque. Meeting follows the program. Trail work near the spectacular pillars of Fisher Towers and Russian Olive removal along the remote Escalante River are featured; as well as a side trip among uniquely shaped rock formations in Goblin Valley.

January 28-30 (Friday - Sunday)
White Pine Group Hosts Chapter Backbone State Park Cabins Outing
Two of the heated, 2-story cabins each with 2 bathrooms and 1 shower have been reserved (maximum of 11 people each.) One-night stays are $20, and two-night stays are $30. Five meals at $4/meal will be RSVP provided beginning with Friday night dinner. Half-price youth rates (age 12 and under) can be arranged. Enjoy frozen Backbone Lake directly down slope from the cabins. Trek via x-country skiing/snowshoeing/hiking around Backbone Lake; trek to and on the Backbone ridge and its Devil's Oven; experience a thrilling Crevice Slide; trek to Richmond Spring and the Cave. RSVP for snowshoe provision. Enjoy evening campfires, table and card games, and conversation. Accommodations include four bedrooms with double beds; two single beds, two 2-person futons, and floor space and can be reserved on a reasonable, order-of-reservation basis. Several reservation requests have already been received, but space is still available, particularly for Friday night. Maps and logistical details will be provided prior to the event. Contact Dick Worm.

February 12 (Saturday)
Whitewater Canyon Cross-Country Ski/Snowshoe Outing along Whitewater Creek
Meet at 1 PM at the Whitewater Creek Wildlife Area parking lot. Follow signs southward onto D-53 and Curoe Road from US 151 between Sundown Road (Y-21) and Fillmore Park east-northeast of Cascade. For more specific details about the adventure, contact Bill Jamison. Snowshoes may be able to be provided via Swiss Valley Park (contact Dick Worm).

February 22 (Tuesday)
White Pine Group Meeting/Program
Border Route Trail (Northern Minnesota)
Seven days of backpacking (Sept. 14-20, 2010) were sandwiched between two days of day-hiking (Sept. 13 and 21) as White Pine Group members Wayne McDermott and Dick Worm experienced the wonders along the 65-mile Border Route Trail (BRT) that parallels the international border between Minnesota and Canada. The first 8.7 mile day-hike began at the far west end of the BRT and followed the Magnetic Rock Trail to that awesome slab pointing skyward; then progressed on to Loon Lake. The backpacked section, mainly through the Boundary Waters Canoe Area began near the east end of the BRT and went westward from McFarland Lake back to Loon Lake. The BRT campsites were BWCA camps along Pine, Clearwater (2), Rose, and Partridge Lakes. Spectacular, bluff top views into Canada across those and other, many lakes highlighted the colorful scenery. The rock column in front of a view of Rose, Rat, and South Lake used as the BRT trail marker "symbol" was the most satisfying "discovery" along the way. The final "campsite" was a truly primitive camp established near Bridal Veil Falls above Gunflint Lake. Among many other unique, natural features were the burned and sculptured tree trunks shaped by a recent forest fire. Much trail clearing maintenance was accomplished along the way. The final 12.3 mile day-hike began at the east end of the BRT and went westward back to McFarland Lake. Besides more woodland and bluff top views of the Swamp River and South Fowl Lake, a section of tail along the Pigeon River that there IS the border with Canada was a major attraction during that final day-hike. 'Twas a nice ending to an active summer.

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