Deborah and Carin did a day trip to Gifford Pinchot State Park to meet with Jim who not only hiked the MDT several times but volunteers maintaining the trail. We arrived at the boat ramp parking lot at 9 a.m. as he and some fellow volunteers would be doing trail maintenance . There were several downed trees they needed to cut up. There was some miscommunication as Jim believed we were there to volunteer with the trail maintenance (or did Deborah volunteer us 🙂 We were invited to sign a release form and then promptly given loppers to clip back overgrowth on the trail. We happily did about 1.5 miles getting both a lower body and upper body workout then met Jim who hiked back with us and gave us a 5 star for our job!
We took Jim out to lunch afterwards and Deborah asked him questions about hiking the MDT. Jim was very knowledgeable about the trail and gave us great advice about avoiding winter hikes in the woods due to hunting and sharing the most scenic beautiful hikes were along the Susquehanna river as well as showing us the most difficult sections on the maps. After lunch we began exploring the different areas he suggested. We are very excited about Walking and Wine-ing our way along the MDT!