Note From Jon


Wednesday, February 6, 2008

King of the 'Loaf

Once we discovered that Punxsutawney, Pa is nowhere near Philly, we gave up our dreams of a joint Groundhog Day/Philly Cheese Steak adventure, and settled instead for enjoying an un-February-like hike around Sugarloaf Mountain in Dickerson MD. Thanks to Mary for coming up with the idea!

Here are some notes from the hike:
  • We met at the West View parking lot, which meant we started the hike by driving nearly all the way to the top!
  • We did a 7 mile circuit primarily along the Blue loop, with some excursions along the White loop around the summit.
  • "Well it is possible to burp and taste fish oil" Dave reconsiders, after first defending fish oil vitamins as not having a bad taste.
  • Always check for a post-hike-ice-cream-venue before the hike. My car's GPS left us with the options of a "Jimmie Cone" (where no one answered the phone) or a Dairy Queen.
  • At the DQ, most of us felt a small Blizzard would have been big enough, and while I didn't know it on Saturday, I now whole-heartedly endorse the Banana Split Blizzard with Chocolate Ice Cream (you have to ask for the chocolate ice cream specially).

  • Right next door to the Germantown DQ is a Blimpie that serves Boardwalk Fries that really hit the post-post-hike-ice-cream spot—but they lie about serving the Nathan's Hot Dogs on their poster.

  • Rocky joined us for what would be his last hike before moving to San Francisco, and we got to see some of what his gadgetry could do on a hike. His GPS created a map of where we hiked, and by simply "synchronizing watches" between his camera and his GPS he has software that will automatically tag the exact coordinates of each picture... now if it just knew the orientation of the photo. Rocky pointed out that you can even import the data into Google Earth to get a 3D walkthough of the hike (as seen above), complete with embedded photos—each dot will bring up a photo.

  • The "Don't Try This at Home Kids" note of the hike was Dave stepping across a 40 foot deep chasm to climb into a crack in the rock that let him slide through the cliff and come out the other side where he was thankfully able to scramble down.

  • The diamond shaped blazes we saw around White Rocks don't seem to be standard trail blazes, but the offset vertically stacked rectangles indicate the direction of the turn, and triple blazes can be used for trail heads, ends, or spurs depending on the configuration.

  • Reagan received a testimonial, "She's cute and furry" from a little boy on the trail (despite her penchant for rolling around in dead animals and scat on this particular hike)


Rocky said...

Unfortunately my tracklog editing software is packed in a box I won't be able to get to for a few months. Ugh!

Rocky said...

Well, I figured out a way. Here is the trip summary, along with my pictures on EveryTrail.

Sorry the pictures aren't captioned, I'm just a little busy right now. :)

Mare said...

Trip Stats
Duration: 4 hours, 7 minutes, 31 seconds
Length: 6.9 miles
Vertical up: 1910.4 ft
Vertical down: 1685.5 ft
Average speed: 1.7 mph

That's some pretty neat software, Rocky!! I may just have to look into that.

Jon: Great write up (as usual). Glad you, Dave, Ann, and Rocky were able to join me and Reagan, er Lillybell, um Cakers, no - Ladybug...

Jon said...

Alright Rocky, I'm sold. I know the next gadget I'll be investing in! I love that I could even see the spot where we went off-road to have lunch. Glad you were able to join us on one last hike before relocating to the wrong coast :-p

Rocky said...

I think if you zoom in, you can also see the spot where I went to... take care of business.

For even more fun, click on the link that says view in Google Earth and you can see our trail overlaid on the mountain in 3D.