Wimble Scale: Moderate, Length: 4.8 miles, Climb: 740 feet, Time: 3 hours
We'll be doing the Peter's Creek Loop for the first night hike of the year. The Docents suggested we start at 5 so that they'll have time for us to go up around Hickory Oaks (the hill off to the left) and take in the extra view and wild flowers. So, plan on it being between 9:30 and 10 pm before we get back to the cars. The hike is the upper end of easy to the lower end of moderate on the "Wimble Scale." It's probably about 5 to 7 miles with the extra loop. There is one short, somewhat steep climb.
The weather is likely to be a bit less than 80 when we start (last night's forecast). That means it will be cool in the valley to start, pretty warm on the ridge up along Long Ridge, and cool to freakin cold in the valley on the way back. It's possible there may be fog. Think about bringing jackets and gloves that you can put on if needed.
Bring one or two water bottles, at least. You can snack along the way - it will, after all, run about 6 hours before we're done. Bring a good meal for supper along the trail. If you feel like it, bring a little something to share: apple slices, cheese, candy, cookies, fruit, etc.. But this is not required.
BRING A FLASHLIGHT with good batteries. On this hike, on the way back it gets frellin dark and the trail is tight and twisty in spots.
Sneakers will work, though there is some chance that parts of the valley will be soggy. Wear them at your own risk. The chances for poison oak exposure are small, but not totally impossible. Watch where your feet are, particularly coming back in the dark. Poison oak is small and sneaky down at foot level right now. Don't make me have to gross you out with my arm and butt, showing you the ravages of poison oak. Well, ok, you can always talk me into showing my butt, but you don't want to have to see my arm. If you come late, I would advise you to _NOT_ try to catch us on the trail. The park is closed at night and you might get arrested. You can only do these night hikes if you are accompanied by docents.