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  1. #1
    Kia Kaha's Avatar
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    OHIO-Archers Fork Trail-March 28-30-official thread

    I wanted to start an official thread for this hike/get together as planned in another thread. The plan is to do Archers Fork Trail and the North Country Trail connector to Scenic River Trail (south loop). March 28-30. We can plan more details here. Hopefully there is enough variety for all. Those that want to just do an overnighter can do the Archers loop only (10 miles), and we can look at what is available for those that want to hang only.

    Me, dougalcorn, and jlink79 are in so far. Sound off if you want to join us!

  2. #2
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    How far in is a good site. I talked to my boss and might work a half day on Friday and take Monday off also. Still need to get my maps.

  3. #3
    Senior Member dougalcorn's Avatar
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    Here's a rough map I made of Archers Fork, NCT connector, Scenic River, and River Loop



    Red is Archers Fork Trail. Yellow is NCT connector. Blue is the Scenic River Trail. Purple is the River Loop Trail.

    Point A south and west to point B is about 4 miles.
    Point B south to point C is between 2.5 - 3 miles.
    I'm not sure how far point C south to D is; maybe a mile or two.
    Point D south to point E is a tad more than 2 miles.
    Point D west and north to point E is 7 miles.
    Point B east and north to point A is about 5.5 miles.

    I'm not sure how many miles we want to do and on what nights. Is this a two night outing? Friday and Saturday? I'm planning on taking off Friday, but it's almost 4 hours from Cincinnati. Loading up before a trip always takes more time than I think. I bet I couldn't get there before early-afternoon.

    Here's a Google map of the Archers Fork Trail Head. It's "T411 and T-34, New Matamoras, OH 45767". The actual trail head is just a tad down "St. Patrick Cemetery Road" (or T411) at the cemetery. You can see the cemetery on Google maps if you look at the satellite view.

    Here's what BPO has to say about day hiking in the area:

    The Archers Fork loop is an attainable day hike for fit hikers; it would require 4 to 6 hours of time to complete. Because the trail crosses several gravel roads, it is possible to create your own loop hikes of shorter distance. An easy out--andĖback hike of approximately 1.5 miles is all that is required to visit the Irish Run Natural Bridge. Visiting the natural bridge is what brings most visitors to Archers Fork, but most donít venture too far past it. For a little longer hike of just under 4.0 miles, continue past the natural bridge to the crossing of an old road, actually the same old road walked for a short distance at the start of the hike. In the Trail Notes and Mileage section for the Archers Fork Trail, this crossing will be at the 0.9-mile point. Instead of following the trail across the road, turn left here and follow this old road downhill for 0.3 mile until in intersects with Irish Run Road. Turn left and walk Irish Run Road for 1.0 mile until you rejoin the main trail at the 8.2-mile mark, passing McCormick Hill Road on the left in the process. Finish up the hike on the last 1.6 miles of the main trail.

    Given the excellent trail conditions and smartly designed switchbacks, the SRT/RLT loop can be completed as a day hike by many hikers. Starting from the SRTís southern trailhead on State Route 7, the total distance for a loop hike is 9.3 mile. Add 2.0 miles if you visit the SRTís northern trailhead on County Nine Road. Starting from the SRTís northern trailhead, completing the SRT/RLT loop totals 10.6 miles. Also starting from the parking area at the SRTís northern trailhead on, consider hiking the NCT connector to the Archers Fork Trail and back for a very pleasant hike totaling 5.2 miles.
    Last edited by dougalcorn; 02-24-2014 at 21:23. Reason: fixing image link

  4. #4
    Senior Member dougalcorn's Avatar
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    BPO shows good sites on Archers Fork at about 4:00 - 3:00 on the southeast side of the loop. It also shows a good site about 2 miles south of Archers Fork on the NCT. It also lists some good sites about a mile to the southwest from the SRT/RLT junction on the RLT. Finally, it lists a good site about a mile north of the SRT southern trail head.

    However, when I was there I only hiked about two miles south and west into Archers Fork and found some random spot. My impression is that there would be a lot of open areas good for a few hammocks.

    If we wanted a shorter hike on Friday, it may be worth going clockwise on Archers Fork. BPO lists a good camp site about 2.5 miles in at the junction with "Ohio View Trail Connector", whatever that is.

  5. #5
    Kia Kaha's Avatar
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    Would it be better to start at the southern point, right off of rt 7? Would that be the safest place to park cars? This looks like a nice hike, we just need to plan on camping sites, I will download maps later and have a look. I will not be able to get out on Friday until 2:30/3:00 so I can just meet up at the first night's campsite. I should be good with something in the 3-5 mile range as far as day light goes.

  6. #6
    Senior Member dougalcorn's Avatar
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    OHIO-Archers Fork Trail-March 28-30-official thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Kia Kaha View Post
    Would it be better to start at the southern point, right off of rt 7? Would that be the safest place to park cars?
    The Archers Fork trail head is quite secluded. I wouldn't worry about cars there at all. I'd expect many more people would have access to the cars south at Rt. 7.

    This looks like a nice hike, we just need to plan on camping sites, I will download maps later and have a look. I will not be able to get out on Friday until 2:30/3:00 so I can just meet up at the first night's campsite. I should be good with something in the 3-5 mile range as far as day light goes.

    I'm not good at planning distances and camp sites. I'd welcome help or someone else to do it. At my skill, fitness level, and this terrain I'd guess I can do 8 or 9 miles comfortably in a day. I'm not quite sure how that plays into it.

  7. #7
    Kia Kaha's Avatar
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    That mileage sounds about right to me. I am thinking, 3-5 miles Friday. There is a campsite .6 miles of the AFT on the connector (4.5 miles in, but it is near the road. There is another area 1.4 miles from there, so it would be a total of 6.4 miles from the trailhead for night one. That may be a bit of a stretch if we don't hit the trqil early. The hike total is 9.8 miles for AFT, 5.2 for the connecto (2.6x2), and 9.3 for the river trails for 24.3 miles total, so something like 6, 10, 8, would make sense. We might do 12 miles Saturday since we have all day, and do 6 on Sunday so we can finish by 12:00ish. I downloaded both maps and will read them over to get a better idea.

  8. #8
    jlink79's Avatar
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    I'll also be leaving Cbus early afternoon on Friday. These miles seem very do able to me. We do need to setup a given spot for everyone to meet Friday night. I figure camp Saturday might be a little more if depending on the group.
    This will be my first real hammock/backpacking trip got to double check stuff. I've do Mohican a few times but the bailout is such an easy option.

    Kia let me know if you want to get together to iron out some details since we are close. I find it easier to plan face to face.

  9. #9
    Kia Kaha's Avatar
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    Sounds good. My only concern is Friday night. I should be able to get off by 2:30, that puts me there about 5:00, sunset is at 7:15, so I can most likely make 4-6 miles. I am thinking the campsites that are a mile or so from the connector trail, between A and B on your map the "V" if you look at it. I will do some more reasearch.

  10. #10
    Senior Member dougalcorn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jlink79 View Post
    Kia let me know if you want to get together to iron out some details since we are close. I find it easier to plan face to face.
    Maybe a quick phone call with the three of us? Once you get your maps and have a chance to check it out, we should chat. I agree that the only real concern is Friday night. As long as we have a plan for the route (and distance) we can play Saturday night by ear.

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