submitted by Iva Gillet
On this rare day in July with lots of hikers, the Charlottesville Chapter was able to offer options of an easy hike or an easy trail maintenance trip on a hot day. Andy Willgruber’s group headed to Little Calf Mountain, while Karen Siegrist, Marty Snell, Claire Cline, John Sinclair, Norman Beil and Iva Gillet traveled south to Nelson County and a rail trail. Predicted for temps in the 90’s, a flat hike on the banks of the Piney and Tye River seemed an excellent choice. Departing from the trailhead on Rt 151, we hiked more quickly than in the mountains, but stopped to read the signs which tracked the history of the area from hurricane Camille to the rise and fall of American Cyanamid in the production of titanium dioxide and its pollution of local rivers. This 7 mile one way trail is a lovely and mostly shaded, crossing the Piney and Tye rivers several times. It is open to hikers, cyclists, and horseback riders.After our two mile port-a-potty break, who should appear on the trail- John Brandt- who else?! We hiked the trail for 4 ½ miles and then turned around to make a 9 mile round trip. There is a lovely covered bridge on the trail and we picnicked on the bank of the river beside it. Several of us enjoyed a swim in a deep pool. That made our walk back all the more pleasant. The shade was lovely, and we enjoyed good conversation while avoiding kids on bikes on the return trip. Several of us then headed to Wild Wolf for refreshments before returning to Charlottesville. A non-traditional hike for us, but fun and exercise all the same.
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