February 2023 Activities

 

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Details: A moderate 3-mile dayhike and picnic along the lovely Locust Fork River in Blount County near Cleveland, Alabama.  We’ll view and drive through the genuine and newly-restored wooden covered bridge.  Then we’ll hike along the river from the bridge and have lunch right beside Powell Falls.  This waterfall drops about eight feet and carries a substantial amount of water. We’ll also view sheer cliffs rising over 60 feet right above the water.  See a rushing river, covered bridge, high rock bluffs and a large waterfall—all along a one and a half mile stretch of river. 

          Well-behaved, carefully supervised children age 7 and older welcome. 

Bring a friend or several if you wish.  Please meet 9:45 a.m. at the Cleveland Chevron.  We plan to depart from there at 10:00 a.m.

Info: Dan Frederick, 205/631-4680

 

FEBRUARY 11, SATURDAY, Meet 8:45 a.m.

Southeastern Outings Moderately Strenuous Dayhike on the Cherokee Ridge Alpine Trail System at Lake Martin, near Alexander City, Alabama

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Details: Located on the banks of Lake Martin, Alabama’s largest and allegedly most beautiful lake, the area offers linked loop trails.  Cherokee Ridge Alpine Trails are among the most scenic and diverse hiking trails in Alabama.  The trails skirt the shoreline of beautiful Lake Martin, a 40,000-acre, 700-mile-shoreline lake.  Other areas of the trails are high rocky ridges and bluffs, some with vistas of 6 to 8 miles overlooking Kowaliga Bay, Chimney Rock, and others along rocky shoal creeks, and rippling brooks.  The trails are routed through a variety of flora and fauna.  There are high rocky ridges with mountain long leaf pine, mountain laurel, low and high bush blueberry, and lush hardwood forests that include redbud, sourwood, dogwood, native azalea, umbrella and big leaf magnolia.  Numerous large thickets of Catawba Rhododendron which are usually blooming in the winter are numerous.  Deer, turkey and numerous bird species, including bald eagles, can be seen along the trail. 

The trails are built to blend into nature, free of bicycles, motorized vehicles, horses or other pack animals.  All trails are built on Alabama Power Company land that is set aside as naturally undeveloped

The trails are well-marked and maintained, the terrain is varied, and the scenery on a clear day is spectacular.

We will hike about 4 miles.  We will see longleaf pine and mixed hardwood forests, open airy sections, and other trail sections under fuller forest canopy.  We also will see pristine lake views, boats, birds, boulders and deer tracks. 

Please wear hiking boots!  Please meet 8:45 a.m. at Publix in the Village at Lee Branch in Greystone.  We plan to depart from there at 9:00 a.m.

          Well-behaved, carefully supervised children age ten and over welcome.

Optional restaurant dinner after.

Information and Hike Leader: Dan Frederick, email southeasternoutings@gmail.com or phone 205/631-4680

 

FEBRUARY 12, SUNDAY, Meet 12:45 p.m.

Southeastern Outings Second Sunday Dayhike in Oak Mountain State Park

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Details: Enjoy a moderate 4-mile walk in the woodlands near Birmingham on a Sunday afternoon.  This is an excellent outing for introducing your friends to Southeastern Outings and for making new friends who enjoy the outdoors.  Parts of this hike may be off the color-coded trails.  There will be some ups and downs.  

Well-behaved, properly supervised children age eight and up able to walk the distance of about 4 miles without complaining and complete the hike are welcome. 

Share an adventure!  Bring a friend.

Please meet at 12:45 p.m. in the Oak Mountain Park office parking lot.  We plan to depart from there at 1:00 p.m.

Please bring $5/person ($2.00 seniors) park admission fee plus your drink.

Info. and Trip Leader: Randall Adkins, 205/317-6969

 

FEBRUARY 18, SATURDAY, Meet 8:45 a.m.

Southeastern Outings dayhike to view multiple waterfalls in the Bankhead National Forest

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Details: This hike offers one of the best kept secrets of the Bankhead National Forest, its magnificent waterfalls. 

This is a trip you won’t want to miss!  The waterfalls of the Bankhead National Forest never disappoint.  See several spectacular waterfalls during the high water season in Alabama.  We will do three short hikes off trail and deep in the forest to gorgeous waterfalls with turquoise water that only a few people ever have the opportunity to see.  High falls, cascading falls, split falls, and views of more than one waterfall at a time.  The first falls will be Holmes Chapel Falls, second will be Coal Mine Falls, and thirdly we will be walking down to and along Key Mill Branch where the falls have no formal names. 

You are encouraged to participate in the Southeastern Outings’ group hike in this National Forest.   Come with us for a guided tour to get a feel for the beauty of these waterfalls.

Please note that there are over 100 waterfalls in the Bankhead National Forest.  Southeastern Outings has visited the waterfalls we’ll see on February 18 only two or three times previously                                                                               This hike is for experienced hikers (off trail means thru the woods stepping over deadfall and climbing up and down and crossing creeks etc.).  Our hike leader has extensive experience hiking in the National Forest and has picked these fairly accessible waterfalls as some of the prettiest.  Excellent photo opportunities.  Please bring your camera if you wish.  Also, please wear hiking boots.  Bring a hiking stick, picnic lunch, and water.

Optional dinner after the hike.  

Please meet 8:45 a.m. at the Hayden/Corner Park and Ride.  We plan to depart from there at 9:00 a.m.  Or you may meet the group at 9:45 a.m. at the Jack’s on U.S. Highway 278 in Addison, Alabama.

Info. and Trip Leader: Doris Hatch, 205/901-8367

 

FEBRUARY 25, SATURDAY

Southeastern Outings Dayhike, Sipsey Wilderness, Bankhead National Forest

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Details: Moderately strenuous 4-mile hike in a highly scenic location, Upper Quillan Creek Forest Area.  Most of the hike is off trail, there are lots of ups and downs, and several rock-hopping crossings are required across small creeks.   

We’ll walk along two creeks and on an old road.  At a beautiful waterfall we’ll visit the site of an old mill.  On this hike we’ll see several small waterfalls on side creeks and tributaries to Quillan Creek.  We will visit at least three very pretty waterfalls on Quillan Creek itself along the way.  We expect to see a minimum of a total of twelve lovely waterfalls on this trip.

Please bring picnic lunch and water for the day.  We expect to finish about 4:00 p.m.  Optional dinner after.  Well-behaved, properly supervised children age 9 and over able to walk 4 miles off trail without complaining welcome.

Reservations Required: If you wish to participate in this outing, you are required to call Dan Frederick, 205/631-4680 or email your reservation to southeasternoutings@gmail.com by 5:00 p.m. on Thursday, February 23, 2022.  When you contact Dan, please be sure you leave either your phone number or email address.  This outing is limited to 20 people, and we will break up into two separate groups of up to ten people each with its own separate leader in order to comply with U.S. Forest Service regulations.  We hope the limitation will not prove to be a problem. 

If you make a reservation with Dan to come on this trip and then for any reason decide later to not come on this outing, please telephone Dan, 205/631-4680 right away.  If we have 20 people signed up on the day of the hike and, for example, we have two people on the waiting list and then two people who signed up don’t show up for the hike, those two no-show people have in effect deprived the two on the waiting list from participating.  Please don’t be a no-show.  If you aren’t coming after making a reservation, please notify Dan.

At a later date leader will advise meeting time and place only to those who have signed up for this trip. 

Information and Trip Leader: Dan Frederick, southeasternoutings@gmail.com, or 205/631-4680

 

To Be Announced                    Leisurely Weekday Hike on a Thursday in February

 

January 2023 Activities

 

JANUARY 7, SATURDAY, Meet 7:45 a.m.

Southeastern Outings Picnic Lunch and Moderate Dayhike

Where: Turkey Foot and Borden Creeks, Sipsey Wilderness, Bankhead National Forest

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Details: Enjoy an especially beautiful, moderate 3 ½ mile hike along Turkey Foot and Borden Creeks.  We will see several waterfalls on this trip.  There are always three fine waterfalls on the ¾ mile walk along Turkey Foot Creek and its tributary creek.  Please note that to facilitate going up or down the possibly slippery bank beside one of the Turkey Foot Creek tributary waterfalls we will provide hikers with the opportunity to use an assist rope.  You are not required to use the rope.  You will not be climbing a vertical cliff on a rope.  Your feet will always be on the ground.  It is just that having the rope gives you something solid straight in front of you to hold on to instead of scattered rocks and roots as you go up or down the short, about 20-foot distance.

After we hike to the end of Turkey Foot Creek, we’ll then walk beside the Sipsey Fork River a short distance to Borden Creek. Our hiking route then follows Borden Creek where we will see additional waterfalls and admire the gorgeous cliffs.  Along Borden Creek the trail runs through a short, but very dark tunnel.  You can stand up through the entire length of the tunnel.  Please bring a small, bright flashlight with you to light your way through the tunnel.

          Optional dinner after.  Well-behaved, properly supervised children age 7 and older able and willing to walk 3 ½ miles without complaining are welcome.

Reservations Required: If you wish to participate in this outing, you are required to call Dan Frederick, 205/631-4680 or email your reservation to seoutings@bellsouth.net by 4:00 p.m. on Friday, January 6.  When you contact Dan, please be sure you leave either your phone number or email address.  This outing is currently limited to a total of 20 people.  We expect to find a second leader to lead a second group on this same hike.  We will add a second group and break up into two separate groups of up to a maximum of ten people each with its own separate leader in order to comply with U.S. Forest Service regulations.  The second group will visit all the same sites as the first group, but Group Two will be walking in the opposite direction from the first group.  In order to eliminate the need to take time to run two car shuttles at the start of the hike, the drivers from each group will exchange car keys when the two groups cross paths with each other on the trail.  We hope the limitation will not prove to be a problem.  People who sign up for this outing after the first twenty will be placed on a wait list.

At a later date principal leader (Dan Frederick) will advise meeting time and place to those who have signed up for this trip.  If you make a reservation with Dan to come on this trip and then for any reason decide later to not come on this outing, you are required to telephone Dan, 205/631-4680 right away. 

Information and Trip Leader of Group 1: Dan Frederick, 205/631-4680 or email southeasternoutings@gmail.com

 

JANUARY 8, SUNDAY, Meet 12:45 p.m.

Southeastern Outings Second Sunday Dayhike in Oak Mountain State Park

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Details: Enjoy a moderate 4-mile walk in the woodlands near Birmingham on a Sunday afternoon.  This is an excellent outing for introducing your friends to Southeastern Outings and for making new friends who enjoy the outdoors.  Parts of this hike may be off the color-coded trails.  There will be some ups and downs.  

Well-behaved, properly supervised children age eight and up able to walk the distance of about 4 miles and complete the hike are welcome. 

Share an adventure!  Bring a friend.  Optional dinner after the hike. 

Please meet at 12:45 p.m. in the Oak Mountain Park office parking lot.  We plan to depart from there at 1:00 p.m.

Please bring $5/person ($2.00 seniors) park admission fee plus your drink.

Information and Trip Leader: Randall Adkins, 205-317-6969

 

JANUARY 14, SATURDAY, Meet 9:00 a.m.

Southeastern Outings Dayhike, Smith Mountain Fire Tower Area near Lake Martin               

 

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Details: The Smith Mountain Alpine Trail at Lake Martin is some twenty miles north of the Cherokee Ridge Alpine Trail. The highest elevation around Lake Martin, Smith Mountain is a jagged peak mountain in the Sandy Creek area of the lake. The top of Smith Mountain is rugged. Jagged rock formations dissect the mountain top into a series of rough terraces that are for the most part disconnected. A house-sized crag consisting of numerous boulders stands out from and above the rest of the peak.            Standing majestically atop Smith Mountain is the historic 90-foot fire lookout tower. Erected in 1939 as a cooperative agreement between Alabama Power Company, Tallapoosa County Forest Conservation Association, and the Alabama Forestry Commission, the tower was a sentinel for locating forest fires for 40 years.            In November 2010, Smith Mountain was deeded to the Cherokee Ridge Alpine Trail Association (CRATA). Over a period of 18 months the tower has been restored and upgraded with new safety features and is now open to the public. Visiting time is daylight until 30 minutes after sunset, daily.                             

A trail begins at the base of Smith Mountain and ascends the northern and western slope for about 0.4 mile. The trail descends the southern and eastern slope of the mountain for about 0.6 mile back to the parking lot. The view from the tower is spectacular. 

In addition to the Smith Mountain Fire Lookout Tower, there are 5 miles of hiking trails.  The two main trails are the Lake Shore Trail and the Little Smith Mountain Trail. The Island Hop Trail is accessible only during winter months when the lake is down. The Lake Shore Trail is a two-mile trail that descends the western slope to the lake shore and follows the shoreline for most of the two miles.  There is also the dramatic two-mile Little Smith Mountain Trail which has four resting benches with some spectacular views--one bench on a peninsula, two on the south face, and one on the top.                          

Your hike leader has selected a scenic 3-6-mile moderate hiking route for you to enjoy from this wide choice of trails.

          Well-behaved, properly supervised children age 8 and over welcome.  Optional dinner after the hike.                

Please meet at 9:00 a.m. at the Publix in The Village at Lee Branch in Greystone.          We plan to depart from there at 9:15 a.m.

Info. and Trip Leader: Doris Hatch, 205/901-8367

 

JANUARY 21, SATURDAY, Meet 8:45 a.m.

Southeastern Outings Dayhike

Where: Brushy Creek and Sougahoagdee Falls, Bankhead National Forest

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Details: The hike will be 6 miles long and is rated moderate.  We will follow a beautiful trail which runs from the Brushy Creek Bridge along Brushy Creek.  At the intersection of Brushy Creek and Sougahoagdee Creek, we turn and follow Sougahoagdee Creek less than ¼ mile upstream to Sougahoagdee Falls, one of the largest and most scenic waterfalls in the entire Bankhead National Forest. 

We usually observe about nine waterfalls on this hike.  We should also see lovely cliffs, hemlock trees, canyons and perhaps some additional waterfalls.  If we have time, we may also visit the nearby natural bridge (not the one at the town of Natural Bridge) in the Natural Bridge Recreation Area of the Bankhead National Forest.

Carefully-supervised, well-behaved children age 8 and older welcome.

Please bring a picnic lunch and water. 

Optional dinner after at a delightful Italian restaurant in Double Springs.

Please meet 8:45 a.m. at the Hayden/Corner Park and Ride.  We plan to depart from there at 9:00 a.m.  Or you may meet the group at 9:20 a.m. at the Mile 300 Rest Area on I-65.

Info: Dan Frederick, southeasternoutings@gmail.com or phone 205/631-4680

 

january 22, SUNDAY, 1:45 p.m.

Southeastern Outings Dayhike on the Montevallo Parks Trail

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Details: Enjoy an easy 4-mile hike on a trail in Montevallo.  The main trail is two miles one way and goes through parks, by two picturesque, flowing streams, and around a beautiful university-owned lake in a wooded park.  Total hiking distance is about four miles. 

          This walk will be Southeastern Outings’ eleventh or so hike on the Montevallo Parks trail.  Come with us for a guided tour of an easily walkable trail.  Please bring plenty of water and wear good walking shoes or boots. Dress appropriately for the weather.

Please meet 1:45 p.m. at the McDonald’s Galleria.  We plan to depart from there at 2:00 p.m. or you may meet the group at 2:45 p.m. at the parking lot beside the larger bridge over Shoal Creek which is the wide creek that flows through Orr Park between the ball fields and the open recreational area in the park in Montevallo.  The bridge is right beside the parking lot along the creek at the back of the ball fields.  Please email Dan Frederick at the email address below if you would like driving directions from Hoover to Orr Park sent to you before the hike.

Well-behaved, carefully supervised children age 7 and over able to complete the hike welcome.

Admission to Trail and Park: Free

Information and Trip Leader: Dan Frederick, southeasternoutings@gmail.com or 205/631-4680

 

JANUARY 28, SATURDAY, Meet 8:45 a.m.

Southeastern Outings Waterfowl Viewing Trip

Where: Wheeler National Wildlife Refuge (WNWR), Decatur, AL

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Details Experience the thrilling sight of thousands of sandhill cranes, wild geese and ducks plus herons and other birds.  The Refuge has the largest concentration of wintering cranes, geese and ducks in the entire state of Alabama!  You don’t need to be a bird watcher to enjoy this outing!  Experienced birders leading the trip will share their knowledge with all.

This 35,000-acre refuge attracts thousands of wintering waterfowl each year.  WNWR is comprised of diverse habitat types including bottomland hardwoods, wetlands, pine uplands, shoreline or riparian woodlands, agricultural fields, and backwater embayments.  These habitats provide excellent feeding, resting, and roosting sites for wintering waterfowl, white pelicans, sandhill cranes and a few endangered whooping cranes as well as nesting sites for migratory songbirds and many species of resident wildlife.

We are highly privileged to have as our guide Dwight Cooley, the retired Refuge Manager.  Dwight will take us on refuge roads behind locked gates as we drive to various bays and sloughs where you can easily see hundreds of ducks and geese in large numbers.  We’ll also see many other types of birds including, hopefully, bald eagles.  We’ll even see a huge flock of sandhill cranes which winter at the refuge each year.  This winter the Refuge expects to be hosting approximately 22,000 sandhill cranes and about 20 endangered whooping cranes.  The gated roads are closed to the public but will be open to our group.  

Please bring binoculars, a birding field guide and a spotting telescope with you if you have them.  The leader and Dan Frederick will each bring a spotting scope which they will share with participants. 

This outing is rated easy, as there is very little walking involved, and we won’t be climbing any hills or walking through thick brush.  Please dress for the weather.  The wind at the refuge can be biting, blowing across open water on cold days. 

Well-behaved, carefully supervised children age 10 and over who can remain quiet for extended periods of time (so as to not disturb the birds and bird watchers) are welcome.

Possible optional dinner after the birding trip depending on what time we finish bird watching.

Reservations Required: If you wish to participate in this outing, you are required to call Dan Frederick, 205/631-4680 or email your reservation to southeasternoutings@gmail.com by 5:00 p.m. on Thursday, January 26, 2023.  When you contact Dan, please be sure you leave your first and last name and either your phone number or email address.  If you are bringing guest(s), please be sure to give Dan the first and last names of each of them. 

This outing is limited to 5 motor vehicles.  Dwight Cooley, the retired Refuge Manager and our outing leader, has very kindly reserved a 10-person refuge van to be one of those vehicles.  Therefore, we are currently allowing a total of 25 Southeastern Outings people in order to comply with Refuge regulations.  We hope the limitation will not prove to be a problem.

If you want to come on this outing and you have a vehicle which can comfortably hold more than four people and you are willing to use your vehicle to transport participants into the Refuge with us, please advise Dan Frederick immediately.  Your assistance in this instance will permit us to accommodate more people on our trip than the 25 maximum number of SEO people currently imposed. 

Since the Refuge’s limitation is five vehicles, you must be willing to ride in a full car or vanload of people in order to be eligible to come on this trip.  If you are unwilling to carpool with other people during this outing, please do not register to participate in this event.

People who want to register to participate after the limit is reached will be placed on a waiting list. 

At a later date leader will advise meeting time and place only to those who have signed up for this trip. 

We look forward to seeing many of you on January 28.

Info: Dan Frederick, 205/631-4680 or southeasternoutings@gmail.com

 

December 2022 Activities

 

DECEMBER 3, SATURDAY, Meet 9:45 a.m.

Southeastern Outings Picnic Lunch and Moderate Dayhike

Where: Paul Grist State Park near Selma, Alabama

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Details: Paul Grist State Park is one of the state’s most uncrowded, yet scenic state parks containing hills, forests, fields and a large, beautiful, tree-lined lake. 

Prior to the dayhike we will get together at the smaller pavilion right near the Park Office to eat our picnic lunches.  Please bring your picnic lunch and also $3 per person ($2 for children age 2-6 and seniors age 62 and older) park admission and a beverage for yourself. 

Dayhike Details: Hike rated moderate.  There are only a few ups and downs.  Total hiking distance is approximately 5.5 miles.  We plan to walk all the way around the lake and then also walk on some additional trails in the park to make the drive time down and back worthwhile.  Well-behaved, carefully supervised children age nine and over able to walk 6 miles without complaining are welcome.  Please bring your drink and wear sturdy footwear. 

Optional group restaurant dinner after the hike.  Reservations not required for this outing.

Please meet 9:45 a.m. at the McDonald’s Galleria. We plan to depart from there at 10:00 a.m.

Info: Randall Adkins, 205/317-6969

 

DECEMBER 7, WEDNESDAY, Meet 9:45 a.m.

Southeastern Outings Weekday Hike

Where:  Veterans Park, 4800 Valleydale Road, Hoover, AL 35242

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Details: Come with us a weekday hike.  Enjoy an easy 3 mile hike on trails in North Shelby County just off Valleydale Road.  Veterans Park is an 82-acre park with numerous walking trails, a four-acre lake and a one-acre pond. 

          If you are retired or not working or have off on this particular Wednesday, you are urged to participate in the Southeastern Outings group hike on the trails and get a feel for the location and scale of the land. 

This walk will be Southeastern Outings’ eighth hike in Veterans Park.  Come with us for a guided tour of easily walkable trails.  Please bring water and wear good walking shoes or boots. Dress appropriately for the weather.

Please meet at 9:45 a.m. in the Veterans Park parking lot right beside the building with restrooms in it at the park.  We plan to depart from there at 10:00 a.m.

Optional lunch nearby after the hike at Metro Diner Restaurant in Inverness.

Admission to Park: Free

Information and hike leader: Randall Adkins, 205/317-6969 cell

 

DECEMBER 11, SUNDAY, Meet 12:45 p.m.

Southeastern Outings Second Sunday Dayhike in Oak Mountain State Park


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Details: Enjoy a moderate 4-mile walk in the woodlands near Birmingham on a Sunday afternoon.  This is an excellent outing for introducing your friends to Southeastern Outings and for making new friends who enjoy the outdoors.  Parts of this hike may be off the color-coded trails.  There will be some ups and downs.  

Well-behaved, properly supervised children age eight and up able to walk the distance of about 4 miles and complete the hike are welcome. 

Share an adventure!  Bring a friend.

Please meet at 12:45 p.m. in the Oak Mountain Park office parking lot.  We plan to depart from there at 1:00 p.m.

Please bring $5/person ($2.00 seniors) park admission fee plus your drink.

Info: Randall Adkins, 205-317-6969

 

DECEMBER 17, SATURDAY, Meet 8:45 a.m.

Southeastern Outings Dayhike

Where: DeSoto State Park and Lost Falls

 

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Details: Moderately easy hike in DeSoto State Park. We will hike along the beautiful West Fork of Little River.  We’ll also hike various other trails in the park and visit Lost Falls.  We expect to see a total of eight waterfalls during this hike.   This is one of the most scenic state parks in Alabama.  Well-behaved, carefully supervised children age 9 and over able to walk about 5 miles without complaining welcome.

After the outing we’ll enjoy an optional restaurant dinner together. 

Please meet 8:45 a.m. at the Applebee’s Trussville. We plan to depart from there at 9:00 a.m.

Info. and Trip Leader: Dan Frederick, southeasternoutings@bellsouth.net or phone 205-631-4680

 

DECEMBER 26, MONDAY, Meet 1:45 p.m.

Southeastern Outings Easy Walk

Where: Vulcan Trail inside the City Limits of Birmingham

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Details: Enjoy an easy walk in the woodlands overlooking Birmingham on the day after Christmas.  The trail is level, as it is on an old mining railroad right of way just below the crest of Red Mountain.  This walk is an ideal activity for those Christmas guests who have been in your house for several days and with whom you are looking for something to do to get them out of the house.  A previous walk on this trail drew one of the highest number of participants, 67, on any outing SEO has ever sponsored.  Don’t miss it!

Please meet at 1:45 p.m. in the Vulcan Park and Museum Parking Lot where you would normally park to visit the statue and Vulcan Park.  We plan to depart from there at 2:00 p.m.  We will walk from the big parking lot a short distance down some new stairs to the trail head and then on the trail to Green Springs Highway and back.  The formerly unpaved section of the Vulcan Trail has recently been widened and resurfaced. 

There is no charge to participate in this hike and there is no charge for admission to either Vulcan Park or the trail.

Well-behaved, carefully supervised children age 7 and older able to walk 4 miles welcome.  After the walk is completed, there will be an optional dinner at Jim 'N Nick's 11th Avenue Grill at Five Points South.  

Share an adventure.  Bring a friend or friends.

Info: Dan Frederick, southeasternoutings@gmail.com or 205/631-4680