We began our recent hitch with two nights at Braley Pond in preparation for five nights and six days in the backcountry. Following our usual day of organization we packed up our tools and headed into continue cutting back the corridor of the Ramsey’s Draft Trail. Our hike was then up to about four miles and took roughly an hour and fifteen minutes. We began by clearing a short reroute of brush and a few downed logs. The crew labored along cleaning up another quarter mile of the trail and moving a small section away from the rivers edge and back toward the mountain slope on its other side. After hiking out that evening we enjoyed dinner and a quick run to Tastee Freeze for a pre-wilderness snack. ON day three we packed up all the gear and food needed for six days inside Ramsey’s Draft.
With everything ready to go we headed to the trailhead at Confederate Breastworks (just up Rt. 250 from the RDW trailhead) so that Reuben and Drew could hike a new route into our intended camp site. They headed down the Shenandoah Mountain Trail that link s up with Jerry’s Run and then to the Ramsey’ Draft Trail. They reported many downed logs and some other precarious obstacles await us on Jerry’s Run. Once we were all reunited we set up tents and the camp kitchen and headed back up the trail to whip down a copious amount of nettles lining the trail.
Day four of our adventure included more clearing of the corridor. The popular tool of the day was the pole saw as we encountered many hemlock limbs hanging from above. Drew was surprised by a birthday visit from the lovely Marguerite. All we glad to have a guest at camp. The following three days saw more and more clearing of the trail. We had hoped for more opportunities to get on the cross- cut saw but most downed logs went quickly by the axe. The group entertained themselves in the evenings with a new game of rock target. Many laughs.
On our last day out on the trail we were met by Rebecca Martinez of the Staunton News Leader. She interviewed and took pictures of us for an article in the upcoming Sunday paper.
Before our day was out we back tracked near the convergence of Jerry’s Run top clear a huge, old oak that had fallen near the trail. Once camp was disassembled we made record time hiking out in 45 minutes. The team was rewarded shortly thereafter with a meal at the Chinese Buffet in Staunton. The last day of hitch we cleaned all the gear and tools at the Deerfield work station and organized our trailer ready for the next hitch.