April 2016 - Hiking Old Rag Mountain

This was an interesting weekend of camping! The weather forecast was calling for a chance of rain and snow on Friday night and the possibility of rain on Saturday. We were fortunate Friday night was cold and clear with a sky full of stars and a low temperature of only 32 degrees. Saturday morning was clear and we headed for the parking lot. We had a few brief snow flurries while hiking but no rain. The wind started to build around 10 AM and it was blowing 20-25 mph when we reached the first overlook and throughout the rest of the hike. We only spent a few minutes on the summit because the wind was in the 50-60 mph range up top. We hiked down to Byrd's Nest Shelter and had our lunch protected from the wind.

When we returned to camp we found the canopies gone and tents collapsed on the ground. It blew so hard in camp while we were gone the adults who stayed behind took down the canopies after they chased them down and took out the tent poles and flattened tents to prevent more poles from breaking and tents from tearing. Winds were estimated to be over 25 mph most of the day with gusts into the 40-50 mph range. Check out the photographs below of tents contorting in the wind. We set up a wind break with the trailers, trucks, and a tarp between them so the patrols had a sheltered place to cook. We also drove the cars amongst the tents to provide a wind break for the tents for the first time ever. Finally around 930 PM the winds subsided and we were able to make repairs to the last of the tents so people had shelter for the night. Everything stayed up overnight despite a few gusty minutes. However, the temperature plummeted to 17 degrees overnight. We thought back longedly to the December camping trip when we had daytime highs in the low 70s.

Click on a photograph to see the large, high quality version or right click and select the menu item to save it to your disk. Please note the file size listed below the image -- most of these high quality photographs are around 500 Kb. Contact the photographers for even higher resolution images.
Old Rag Hike.jpg The screen capture at left is an image from Google Earth with our hike shown in blue. Right click on this GPX file to download the track (file) to your computer. Then open Google Earth and drag and drop the .gpx file on top of the Google Earth window and explore Old Rag Mountain in 3D like in the screen capture.  

The following photographs Copyright © 2016 Leo R. Charpentier. All rights reserved.

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The following photographs Copyright © 2016 Kenneth Krach. All rights reserved.

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Movie of tents blowing in the wind
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The following photographs Copyright © 2016 George Mozal. All rights reserved.

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