June 21, 2012 at 11:58 am EDT | by Kevin Majoros
A gay old time
Adventuring, hiking, Great Falls, Maryland, gay news, Washington Blade

Adventuring hikers on a recent excursion to Great Falls, Md. (Photo courtesy Adventuring)

While there are many competitive LGBT sports clubs in the Washington area, there are also clubs that offer a non-competitive atmosphere for those wishing to get some exercise.

Adventuring is an outdoor club for the LGBT community that offers a variety of excursions for people looking to be physically active.

Started in the early 1980s, the group leads hiking trips every weekend all year long. From May to September, the group adds other activities such as biking, camping, backpacking and canoeing.

“Our typical hike consists of five to 20 people,” says Jeff Hughes, president. “Surprisingly the New Year’s Day hike is usually our largest turnout with 42 people showing up this past year.”

Throughout the winter months, the group can be found hiking locally across trails that offer many sights from the rich history of the D.C. area. The trips can range from short to long and from easy to hard.

“We have a diverse group of hikers that includes Civil War buffs and a geologist,” Hughes says. “For people interested in local history, the hikes are a great learning experience.”

During the summer months, the Adventuring hikers often trek out to the more mountainous areas to enjoy the cooler temperatures afforded by the higher altitudes.

Starting in May every year, the group begins a weekly Arlington evening bike ride series on Tuesday nights. The weekly ride maintains a relaxed pace utilizing a 19-mile loop through the city to the Lincoln and Anacostia Parks. At the conclusion of the ride is an optional social dinner at a local restaurant.

Adventuring operates as a nonprofit and there are no member dues. The only costs for their activities are trip fees ($2 for day trips or $4 for overnight trips), park entrance fees and the sharing of driving expenses if cars are necessary.

The group has a monthly newsletter that gives an overview of upcoming events, trips and activities. About 600 are on the email list and about 150 hikers and 75 bikers are active in the group.

Upcoming trips:

June 24 — American Chestnut Land Trust Hike

June 26 — Arlington evening bike ride (weekly)

July 4 — Great Falls (Md.) holiday hike

July 4 — Great Falls (Md.) holiday ride

July 7 — Blackberry ice cream hike

July 15 — Adventuring summer picnic

Aug. 5 — Paw Paw tunnel hike

Aug. 25-26 — Big Meadows weekend

Sept. 3 — Wilson Bridge hike

Oct. 6-10 — Biking in the Finger Lakes (New York)

For more information on Adventuring or to sign up for the free email newsletter, go to adventuring.org.

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