Fri, Oct 19 2018 - Mason Mill Park to Emory Hike celebrating Grand Opening of new PATH Connector Trail & Boardwalk (View Original Event Details)

Trip Leader(s): Charlie Cottingham, Lyndsay
Participants:Charlie Cottingham, Barbara B, Lorraine C., Lyndsay, Mary Reed, Fred J

Write Up:

After beginning our hike this morning on an older scenic boardwalk section just E of the Mason Mill Tennis Center we were proud to be be among the first hikers or bikers to traverse the brand new PATH boardwalk & and other nice paved portions of the "Emory Connector" trail on the morning of its official Grand Opening.  We enjoyed being part of the colorful and festive half-hour ribbon-cutting ceremony that was held directly on the new trail (beside the pretty lake just across Clairmont Rd from the VA Hospital).  About 100 other friendly hikers, bicyclists, PATH & DeKalb County representatives, and "Clairmont Place" senior residents were also there.  Ed McBrayer, the PATH Foundation's long-time Executive Director and main "driving force," was among the fine speakers.  Ed concluded his remarks by making the surprise announcement that an agreement had been reached with Emory to continue constructing the nice multi-use trails & boardwalks through their Lullwater Park property downstream along South Peachtree Creek - presumably all the way beyond Houston Mill Road and Hahn Woods.  He also introduced other key members of his PATH team, including Jonathan McCaig who manages the South Peachtree Creek trail construction & maintenance and our own AOC member Gena Hillhouse who is a full-time PATH staff member.

After the ceremony, at about 10:30 AM Barbara, Lorraine, Lyndsay and I continued via the Connector underneath Clairmont Rd and enjoyed about 90 more minutes of hiking and exploring at Lullwater Park.  It was fun crossing the swinging bridge to explore the historic stone "electric power tower" (on the far side of the waterfall near Candler Lake) after which we hiked all the way around the Hahn Woods creek loop and up past the old Houston Mill House and Emory President's residence (Lullwater House) - about 5 miles of total hiking before returning to our cars at Mason Mill at about 12:15 PM.

Thanks to the group for being good sports about sticking with me for a slightly longer hike than I had advertised.  Special thanks
to Lyndsay 
for doing a good job as our co-leader - also for letting me and others know a couple of weeks ago that the big PATH celebration would happen today! - Submitted by Charlie Sat afternoon Oct 19th.