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REGISTRATION REQUIRED: Once you've reviewed the event details, and decided you'd like to join us, you MUST sign up at the bottom of this page.

Warm Afternoon Hike at Mason Mill Park & adjoining Emory Trails

The Basics:
Event Type:Hike
Event Location: NE metro Atlanta near I-85 Clairmont exit & VA Hospital   Hike: Warm Afternoon Hike at Mason Mill Park & adjoining Emory Trails  National Weather Service Forecast
Date(s) & Time:Tue, Feb 1 2022  1:30 pm >> Tue, Feb 1 2022 3:30 pm
Registration Opens: Sun, Jan 30 2022 12:30 pm
Registration Cut Off: Tue, Feb 1 2022 11:00 am
Event Duration:2 Hours
Difficulty Rating:D2: Easy to Moderate
Distance:5 Miles
Trip Leader(s):
Charlie Cottingham
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Member Cost:None

Participant Info:
Who's Invited: Members Only, 21 And Older Only
Maximum Group Size:10
Minimum Group Size:2
Number Registered So Far: 10 / 0 (To see who's signed up, log in to the Member Area)
Are Dogs Permitted: Yes


EVENT PLAN:   Hope you can join us for this adventurous mid-afternoon hike!  Ideal winter weather is expected - in the high 50s with lots of sunshine & no chance of rain.   We'll explore about 5 miles of the vast network of shady trails & boardwalks at DeKalb County's Mason Mill Park and the interconnecting Lullwater Preserve parklands at Emory University.
  We'll gather a few minutes before 1:30 PM in the free parking lot just inside the Mason Mill Park entrance (by the stone restroom building) and expect to be back there at the cars by 3:30.  See detailed Directions & GPS info below.  As on similar hikes since the pandemic began we expect it to be easy to observe the CDC's latest guidelines regarding safe social distancing, etc. while outdoors.
  We'll enjoy portions of popular multi-million-dollar "PATH Foundation" paved trails and raised forest-canopy boardwalks - also explore a few ruggedly scenic narrow trails that wind around the creeks & lakes.  At the base of the panoramic hill surrounding the 95-year-old Emory president's mansion we'll visit its nearby waterfall and take an exciting suspension foot bridge (above photo) across Peachtree Creek to explore the estate's historic stone "hydropower tower."  We'll take a moderate paceslowing down a bit on the few steep spots and pausing occasionally to take photos and discuss the native wild flora & fauna.  If you need to "split" early from the group for any reason, that's OK, but please let me know if and when you choose to do so.  From almost anywhere in the terrain it should be easy to direct you back toward your car at Mason Mill.
  Bring your well-behaved dog if you like, but please make sure that he or she is leashed and under your control at all times - also in your registration notes please mention his/her name & breed, etc.

OPTIONAL EXTRA INFO about the PARKS, TRAILS etc:  The hundreds of acres of beautifully wooded parklands at Mason Mill and Emory conveniently interconnect with one another.  The PATH Foundation's South Peachtree Creek Trail (see interactive map link below) is the main artery through this multi-park region, and like the Silver Comet Trail was built to their high design & construction standards.  In the ~15 years since PATH built the original mile of "double-wide" trail & boardwalk between Mason Mill Park and Medlock Park the foundation has invested additional millions to create and maintain a beautiful 3/4-mile spur from Mason Mill to North Druid Hills Rd and another 1/2-mile spur to Emory University underneath Clairmont Rd, allowing easy access to the awesome Lullwater Preserve trail network.  At Mason Mill a high wooden deck overlooking the historic "Decatur Waterworks" ruins by the RR track has proven to be a favorite dark spot for urban "skygazing" - i.e, viewing the stars & planets, sunsets, moonrises, eclipses, meteor showers, comets, etc.  Just across the creek below that deck is Ira Melton Park, with a convenient set of massive flat stepping stones allowing hikers easy access to its trails at normal water levels.  Although we don't have time to include it this time, another fun option is to walk eastward beyond Medlock Park a few blocks further to lovely Clyde Shepherd Nature Preserve and enjoy at least a mile-long "bird-habitat wetlands loop" there before heading back.


Required Items to Bring:

• Wear comfortable well-broken-in Athletic Shoes or Hiking Boots and Lightweight Clothing appropriate for the weather.  Also please carry your own COVID Mask and either:
A) Wear it during the entire event, or
B) Be prepared to put it on in case it's needed to safely pass other park visitors, etc

• Hydrate in advance and carry in your Daypack or Fanny Pack a filled Water Bottle or a "Camelbak" type hydration system.

Recommended Items to Bring:
Use our Event Checklists to make sure you have everything you need.

- Don't forget your Camera or SmartPhone!  We expect to have lots of nice Photo-Ops.

- Consider bringing a Snack or two in your fanny pack or daypack.  We can enjoy these at scenic stops along the way and share any extras.

- If you have Trekking Poles consider using them to improve stability and give your upper body a workout along with your legs & knees.  A few spots along our route will be a bit steep or rocky.  A simple shoulder-high Hiking Stick (or single Trekking Pole) is a good alternative.

How to Get There:
Event Directions:

DIRECTIONS to our GATHERING SPOT in the MASON MILL PARKING LOT,  just inside the main Park Entrance by the stone Restroom Building:

As your Destination address for our gathering spot
inside the park, you can enter the following Lat/Lon address, being
 sure to include the comma and minus sign:  33.8079, -84.3065
(For a zoomable color MAP and satellite view of this spot click the square blue & green "Event Location" icon near the top of this article.)

ROUTE from the I-85 CLAIRMONT ROAD EXIT in NE METRO ATLANTA to our above MASON MILL PARK Gathering Spot:
1. From this I-85 Exit (#91) take Clairmont Rd southward (toward Decatur) about 2.3 miles to the traffic light at McConnell Drive.  (This is the next light south of the much busier Clairmont/ North Druid Hills intersection, and it's a half mile north of the huge VA Medical Center.)
2. Turn Left onto McConnell Drive and go just 0.1 mile to the stop sign.
3. Turn Right to stay on McConnell and continue
 another 0.1 mile to the "Mason Mill Park" entrance sign.
4. Turn Left at the Park entrance and park in the large free lot just ahead on your right.  We'll gather there by the stone Restroom building and playground.  In the unlikely event that parking spaces are scarce, the nearby public library at the above right turn has plenty of free parking - just a 3- or 4-minute walk away.

* We encourage all members to follow our Etiquette Guidelines while participating in AOC events.

Cost Includes:

Free Event with Free Parking!

Cancellation/Partial Attendance:   Please review the AOC cancellation policy.