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  1. #1
    Registered User FarmerChef's Avatar
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    05-03-2012
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    Northwestern, VA (outside of Harper's Ferry)
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    Default Tom Leonard Shelter

    Stayed here the past week. Hiked in in the dark past a couple guys who tented smack dab in the middle of the trail because they could not find it. We were getting ready to bail out to whatever semi-flat spot we could find when lo and behold the shelter came into view about 1/4 mile past. We pulled in around 9:00 and set about making dinner as quietly as we could as there was another section hiker in the shelter, though she was up and about and hadn't turned in for the night. Phew!

    Navigating the shelter, tent pad, privy and spring are tricky during the day and especially so at night. Someone was kind? enough to carve it into the picnic table out front.

    As you face out from the shelter this is a very large rock that starts and runs to your right. If you proceed to the left of the rock and around back you will find the tent pad a short distance behind it. I found it in the dark with a failing headlamp and realized if I didn't get back I wouldn't find the shelter again. There were no obvious blazes or path. Also, if you go up to the pad and look down, you realize that you are looking straight down into the bottom of the ravine. That was especially exciting in the dark with a failing headlamp.

    If you turn right at the rock and keep it to your left there is a trail down to the privy. Come around the privy to the opposite side, look straight downhill (and I mean downhill) and you'll see both blue blazes and round white blazes on the "path" to the spring. It is a long way down though the water was running well, cold and clear. It is a trudge back up the hill with the water though.

    During the night, the heavens opened up and several lightning strikes were very close to the shelter. The skylights let us watch the show and we stayed dry as a bone. Had it been during daytime, we could have easily made lunch or dinner at the picnic table which is under the overhang of the shelter. Once we rose for the day and the rain had subsided we discovered a lovely creek just a few yards away from the shelter (left as you face out). There was ample water though it was brown with tannins. No worries there - it tasted fine.

    The shelter has a loft plus double bunks on both sides. All in all one of the nicest shelters we stayed in.

  2. #2

    Default

    Yeah, it can be tricky to find your way around a campsite in the dark w/a headlamp that's not up to par, but that tent platform sure is a sweet spot to sleep. The stream you found in the morning is temporary (probably from the overnight rain). Did you get a chance to meet the resident porcupine?

    Cosmo

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