Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Weverton Cliffs to Crompton Gap

Oh boy, we had a short hike today--just 7 miles.  We were finished by noon.  My feet didn’t have time to start hurting.

I walked north from the C & O Canal with the first stop being at Weverton Cliffs.  The Cliffs were a short walk off the trail, but the view was well worth the extra walk.

After this initial climb from the river to the cliffs, the trail leveled out and was a nice walk all the way to Crampton Gap.  About halfway I took another very short detour off the trail to the Ed Garvey Shelter.  This is a very nice and relatively new shelter.  Ed Garvey was a boy scout along about 1918.  He did a thru-hike sometime around the late 1980s.  After his retirement, he worked tirelessly, essentially full-time, as a volunteer on the trail with Potomac Appalachian Trail Club as well as with ATC.  He wrote a book on how to hike the Appalachian Trail.  This shelter was constructed in his honor about 9 years ago.

The trail today seemed to be a series of memorials.  Just a few feet off the trail was a red granite memorial stone placed by the family of Glenn R. Caveney.  Glenn had volunteered many hours helping his father maintain a section of trial in Shenandoah National Park.  Glenn was killed in an auto accident.

Alfred Townsend mausoleum

Memorial to Civil War Correspondents

The hike ended today at Crampton Gap which is located in Gathland State Park.  The Gap saw heavy fighting during September, 1862 with the Union Army eventually taking over.  The first thing I saw when I came into the gap was an old stone wall surrounding a stone building.  The stone building is the empty mausoleum of George Alfred Townsend, a Civil War journalist.  In the gap, and the most predominant feature of Gathland State Park, is the 50-foot tall stone memorial to Civil War newspaper correspondents.  This memorial was constructed by Townsend.

View of Potomac River from Weverton Cliffs

Since the hike was so short, we packed a picnic in the cooler and had our lunch at the picnic pavilion at the park.

That’s it for today.

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