NAMA

NAMA 2016 Shenandoah Foray Field Trip List

Registrants for the 2016 NAMA Shenandoah Annual Foray were sent instructions by email how to sign up for forays at the venue.  If you did not receive those instructions, contact the registrar for details.

It is the goal of the NAMA Foray Coordinating Committee to facilitate field trip execution by making assignments in advance of the foray.  For your reference, each of the field trips is described below.
 

Friday Trip Schedule


 
Matthews Arm Arena Moderate Friday, Sept. 9, 2016 0800 - 1600
 

The foray is located in the area surrounding Matthews Arm Campground in Shenandoah National Park just past Milepost 22 on Skyline Drive. There are many trails that intersect in the area that is comprised primarily of upland oak-hickory forest with an understory comprised of mountain laurel, viburnum, and a variety of berries. The average elevation is 2500 feet with ascents and descents of up to 200 feet depending on the path followed when searching. The western side of the foray area is the headwaters of Jeremys Run, which is one of the tributaries of the Shenandoah River. Other trees in the area include tulip poplar, red maple, black locust, and beech.

 
Thompson Wildlife Management Area Moderate Friday, Sept. 9, 2016 0800 - 1100
 

The foray is located in the Thompson Wildlife Management Area in the very northwestern corner of Fauquier County along the eastern ridge. The area is along the Appalachian Trail and access trail areas adjacent. Elevation is 1,300-1,500 in an area of predominately hardwoods. Oaks, tulip poplar, hickory and ironwood are abundant. There are several ecologically unique spring seeps in the Thompson WMA. Some of these springs as well as small streams feed into the Crooked Run Creek in this area allowing the area to stay moist even during much of the summer and offering a riparian environment. There are many rock outcroppings.

 
Fox Hollow Loop Trail Easy Friday, Sept. 9, 2016 0800 - 1100
 

The foray is on the Fox Hollow Loop in Shenandoah National Park. The area is of historical note as the former homestead of several generations of the Fox family and the house of Edgar Merchant. The area includes the Fox cemetery and the foundation of their home. The general category of the forest in this area is oak-hickory which is dominated by chestnut oak and northern red oak. It is expected that mycorrhizal species will predominate in this area.

 
Snead Farm Loop Strenuous Friday, Sept. 9, 2016 1300 - 1600
 

The foray is on the Snead Farm Loop in Shenandoah National Park. The area is of historical note as the former homestead of several generations of the Carter family, who were relatively wealthy farmers with extensive orchards and cornfields, including the area where the Dickey Ridge Visitors Center now stands. It is called the Snead place because its last owner was a Rappahannock County judge of that name. The park bought the 200 acre property in 1962. The trial thus covers mixed deciduous wood oak hickory forest in addition to open meadow areas and abandoned orchards.

 
AT Markham Moderate Friday, Sept. 9, 2016 1300 - 1600
 

The foray area is on either side of the Appalachian Trail in an area of uplands that extend between routes 55 and 522 just outside Shenandoah National Park. The Appalachian corridor is about .5 mile wide at this point and affords foray areas on either side of the trail. There are some open meadow areas interspersed with deciduous forest dominated by chestnut oak trees. There is some drainage with a small tributary creek that affords some potential for fungi that appear in riparian habitats.

 

Saturday Trip Schedule


 
Elizabeth Furnace/GWNF Moderate Saturday, Sept. 10, 2016 0800 - 1600
 

The foray is in the George Washington National Forest in the vicinity of Elizabeth Furnace, one of the relict iron furnaces that used charcoal to smelt iron ore in the 19th Century. The bedrock in Massanutten sandstone, a Silurian deposited ancient sea bed. The area is riparian deciduous forest along the Passage Creek and upland along the Tuscarora Trail to moderate oak-hickory woodlands. There are several areas of open meadow/grassland and many secluded picnic tables for a lunch stop.

 
Fort Windham Rocks Moderate Saturday, Sept. 10, 2016 0800 - 1100
 

The foray is on sections of three separate trails in Shenandoah National Park and accesses one of the more notable rock formations in the park. Fort Windham Rocks are composed of the last vestiges of the Catoctin formation, which consist of basalt from lava flows that occurred during the formation of the mountains. The remaining rocks in the area are the Pedlar formation, a granodiorite that dates to about 1 billion years ago. The foray area surrounds the rocks on several trials, including the Appalachian Trail, that traverses this area at a elevation of about 2,000 feet.

 
Gravel Springs Moderate Saturday, Sept. 10, 2016 0800 - 1100
 

The foray is on sections of three separate trails in Shenandoah National Park in the area of Gravel Springs shelter, which gained some notoriety as one of the stops mentioned in Bill Bryson?s Walk in the Woods. The foray area surrounds the shelter in an oak-hickory upland and includes areas adjacent to three separate trails that intersect in this area. The general habitat is wet around the shelter, as it is the headwaters of the Rush River.

 
Dickey Ridge Lower Trail Easy Saturday, Sept. 10, 2016 1300 - 1600
 

The foray area is on either side of the Dickey Ridge Trail in Shenandoah National Park (even though the trailhead is outside the park and the transport vehicle(s) never officially enter). The general category of the forest in this area is oak-hickory which is dominated by chestnut oak and northern red oak. It is expected that mycorrhizal species will predominate in this area. The northern side of the trail is dominated by a small drainage area that is in a rutted area that has many dead trees that provide habitat for saprophytic fungi.

 
Lands Run/Dickey Ridge Upper Moderate Saturday, Sept. 10, 2016 1300 - 1600
 

The foray is on three separate trails in Shenandoah National Park that intersect with Skyline Drive at Lands Run Gap. The average elevation of the area is 2,000 feet with a tree cover that is dominated by oaks. From the starting point, there are areas to explore in four directions that will be accessed sequentially, returning to the starting point after each short foray. Two of the trails remain at elevation and one descends downward several hundred feet into a deep wooded area. The last area is the upper reaches of Lands Run Road; there is a waterfall about .5 miles down this access on the right with a good observation point.