Midwest Meet?

4:13 p.m. on July 21, 2010 (EDT)
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When? - 2 weeks in late August/early September, 2010

Where? - Southern Illinois, River-to-River Trail, Battery Rock.

What? - Thru-hike of entire 160-mile River-to-River Trail; various trail maintenance along the way.

Conditions? - Traverse of Shawnee Hills/Shawnee National Forest. They're quite small hills really. 75F during the day, 50 at night. Bugs generally gone. Water generally plentiful. Perhaps the best time to go light. Tarps are perfect, but many overhanging caves abound, providing opportunities for cover-less sleeping. Camping is allowed all along the RTRT.

Storm damage from spring, 2009 derecho still blocks trail at times, but it's never impassable, and the trail is mostly clear and well-marked. Just head West! The trail itself is generally good singletrack, but gets torn up at times (Lusk Creek) due to equestrian use. Alternatingly overgrown and tame, the trail can be done in trail runners, but scree gaiters will help (especially with the burrs).

Details? - I'd like to try to get a fairly large group together to give this a go, so exact dates are still up in the air to allow flexibility. Length of the trip can change as well, if the final group wants to pick up the pace; if time is an issue, the trail can be walked in 8 (or less) days without much discomfort, provided your pack is light...

Battery Rock is right on the Ohio River, at the Kentucky Border, very near where Illinois, Indiana, and Kentucky meet. It's a great place to start, and a great hike all around.

Any takers?

3:32 p.m. on August 15, 2010 (EDT)
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Well, let's give it a bit more time then...I've lined up a trip to the Cascades n early September, so let's shoot for late September/early October. Full leaf change by then, and even better weather for both hiking and sleeping...

So, then, for anyone else out there like me, please use this pre-planning discussion as a reason to get out and take that hike you've been putting off this year...

2:30 p.m. on September 14, 2010 (EDT)
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Looks like it's 15-mile days by myself then...I guess shooting for a "group" was a bit overreaching considering not single person has responded.

No worries though; you all talk too much anyway!

4:28 p.m. on September 14, 2010 (EDT)
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Hey PillowThread,

I feel bad I didn't respond- I hadn't wanted to clutter your thread with a "can't make it" reply, but I would have liked to join you. My job, however, won't allow any more time off than was spoken for since early in the year.

I hope someone else can join you last minute.

Have fun mate, Gonzan

9:42 p.m. on September 14, 2010 (EDT)
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I too would wish to have the time and money to come join you, but I can't as well. Have a good hike.

October 21, 2014
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