Author Archives: Deb Takach

About Deb Takach

Debra Takach is a retired teacher who volunteers much of her time for worthy causes. She is an avid hiker and professional story teller. She is CPR AED Wilderness Remote First Aid Certified and has had Hike Leadership Training.

Tour of Indiantown Gap The Regal Fritillary Butterfly

DOC LogoOn Sat., July 8th join the Duncannon Outdoor Club (DOC) for a  three hour tour at Fort Indiantown Gap to observe the endangered Regal Fritillary butterfly and the habitat necessary for breeding and providing success for 100 other species of conservation concerns in PA.  Wear appropriate shoes and clothing for a nature walk on gravel trails and mowed paths.  Bring bug spray, sunscreen, binoculars, lunch, and cameras.  Meet at the Geisinger Holy Spirit Center at 8:00 am. or alternately at the Kmart in Summerdale ready to leave by 8:30 am.  Driving distance is approximately 80 miles total.  Please pay drivers 10 cents per mile for gas.  If you opt to drive without passengers you do not have to stay the whole three hours.  Call Deb at 395-2462 or email dtakach@duncannonatc.org to register.  

Kayak/Canoe The Susquehanna

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On Sat., June 24th join the DOC on a canoe/kayak trip from Blue Mountain Outfitters (BMO) to West Fairview for an opportunity to observe birds on Wade Island, learn about the Susquehanna Watershed, and check the water quality of the Susquehanna.  Cost is $12.50 if you bring your own boat.  Rent a kayak for $45.00 plus a $7.50 shuttle fee, a two man kayak for $65.00 plus $7.50 per person, or a canoe for $45.00 plus $7.50 per person.  Tax is not included in these figures.  Call 395-2462 or email dtakach@duncannonatc.org to register.  Meet at the Geisinger Holy Spirit Duncannon Center to carpool at 9:30 am., or alternately at BMO at 10:00 am. 

RSVP by June 18th.

Hiking With Dogs

DOC LogoDo you have a dog and like to hike?  Want to learn more about hiking with dogs?  Come to a dog friendly, average paced, 6 mile loop hike over moderate terrain on Sat., May 6th.  We will be walking on the AT from Rt. 850 up Blue Mountain to Darlington trail to Miller’s Gap, returning down the road to the AT back to the start.  Since there is limited parking at the AT trailhead, we will meet at 9:00 am. at the State Game Lands 170 Parking area located on Rt. 850 about 18 miles west of Marysville on the left side of the road.  It is 0.5 miles past Cove Rd which will be on your right.  If you get to the AT trailhead parking area you have gone too far.  We will walk the 0.3 miles from the game lands parking area along the road to the AT trail head.  Call Debra at 395-2462 or email dtakach@duncannonatc.org to register.

 

Build Your Own Bluebird Box

Bluebirds from Bluebird Society of PADOC LogoOn Sat., April 22nd come to a family friendly, average paced, 1.67 mile hike over easy to moderate terrain.  Then learn about bluebirds from Phil Durgin, Vice President of the Bluebird Society of PA, and make your own bluebird box from 11:00 to 12:00.  Cost is free.  Donations for materials are appreciated but not expected.  Meet at the Holy Spirit Duncannon Center at 9:00 am. to carpool or alternately at Little Buffalo State Park by the stage.  If you do not wish to hike but want to participate in the bluebird workshop meet at the park stage at 11:00 am.  Call Deb at 395-2462 or email dtakach@duncannonatc.org to register.  Hope to see you there.

 

Duncannon Outdoor Club Middle Creek Wildlife Management Area – Migrating Snow Geese and Tundra Swans

DOC LogoOn March 11th Come to the Middle Creek Wildlife Management Area to observe the thousands of Snow Geese and Tundra Swans as they migrate to this important way station.  Then hike an average paced 6 mile hike over moderate to strenuous terrain on a series of trails that form a loop back to the visitor’s center.  There are 2 climbs ranging from 300 to 400 ft.  Meet at the Duncannon Family Health Center to carpool at 8:30 am or alternately at the Kmart parking lot at 9:00am.  Call 395-2462 or email dtakach@duncannonatc.org to register.  Please reimburse drivers 10 cents per mile and for turnpike tolls (total mileage is 124 miles).  Bring your cameras and binoculars if you have them and pack a lunch.  Hope you can make it!

Duncannon Outdoor Club Hike at Wildwood Theme: Fur Bearing Animals

DOC LogoOn Sat., Feb. 18th the Duncannon Outdoor Club (DOC) will be hiking an average paced, three mile loop trail on easy terrain at Wildwood Nature Center.  Come and learn about fur bearing animals in PA.  This family friendly hike is for all ages and is dog friendly.  We will be meeting at the Duncannon Family Health Center at 9:00 am.to carpool.  Alternately meet at the Wildwood Nature Center at 9:30 am.  Call Deb at 395-2462 or email dtakach@duncannonatc.org to register.

Ned Smith Center Hike – Theme: Coyotes

DOC LogoOn Sat., January 21st join the Duncannon Outdoor Club (DOC) at The Ned Smith Center in Millersburg for an average paced 5 mile hike on moderate to strenuous terrain.  There is one .75 mile climb up Mountain Laurel Trail to Berry Mountain Trail with a nice view at the top.  Return on Berry Mountain Trail to Deer Run Trail.  Then take Drumming Log Trail back to the starting point at the Ned Smith Center.  If snow or ice is on the trail bring Microspikes or Yaktrax if you have them.  Wear something orange for the hunting season. The theme for discussion will be coyotes.   Meet 9:00 am. at the Holy Spirit Duncannon Center, a Geisinger Affiliate (formally the Duncannon Family Health Center) to carpool or alternately meet at the Clarks Ferry Bridge (RT 147/322) parking lot at 9:15 am. Please reimburse drivers 10 cents for a total of 36 miles.   Call Deb at 395-2462 or email dtakach@duncannonatc.org to register. Click here for larger printable versions of the Ned Smith trail map.

Spooky Stories on Halloween Hike

The Duncannon Outdoor Club went on a spooky night hike for Halloween. It was a beautiful, clear sky with a large harvest moon. While the moonlight helped it was still dark and eerie, especially at the grave yard.  It was also a little unnerving when something was moving in the bushes next to the path.  We continued to hike with a heightened pace and a lot more noise!

Participants listened to ghost stories told by the witch named Wilhalmina Dorothea Roskabower Kaufman.  The story, “Evil Woman” had everyone jumping out of their boots.  Of course the tombstones gave an added chilly feeling to all of the stories.  In the end fun was had by all – especially the dog.

DOC/ATC National Family Hiking Day

DOC Logo The Duncannon Outdoor Club (DOC) joined the Appalachian Trail Conservancy (ATC) in their efforts to celebrate National Family Hiking Day in September, 2016.  The DOC offered a “hike at your own pace” hike up to Hawk Rock.  Prior to the assent participants decorated tree cookie necklaces provided by the ATC.  They were so popular that other hikers at the top inquired how to get a necklace.

A group shot with out tree cookie necklaces.

A group shot with out tree cookie necklaces.

Participants included a wide range of ages.  A baby, kids, adults and three dogs comprised our list of adventurers.  Many of our hikers had always wanted to hike Hawk Rock but were hesitant to do so independently or in a group because of the difficulty.  When given the option to hike at one’s own pace in a group with an experienced leader, hikers chose to enjoy a safe, comfortable alternative and mastered the climb.  Everyone made it to the top and back successfully without incident.

Checking out one of the riddles posted along the way,

Checking out one of the riddles posted along the way,

In order to motivate the hikers and make it entertaining, thirty riddles, with answers on the flip side, were posted along the way.  Many hikers, not with our group, read the riddles as they hiked up and down the mountain.  A big thank you goes to Sean O for posting the riddles ahead of time.  Riddles were removed by the sweep so as to leave no trace.  What was the riddle at the top? :  What does a mountain and an addition problem have in common? (answer at article’s end).

Below are pictures depicting the event.


 

Answer to the riddle: You sum it.

 

Duncannon Outdoor Club Hike at Pine Grove Furnace State Park, Theme Lyme Disease

DOC LogoOn Sat., Dec. 17th join the Duncannon Outdoor Club (DOC) at Pine Grove Furnace State Park for a 7 mile, average paced, loop hike on moderate terrain to Pole Steeple.  This hike will include one climb that rises 500 ft. for three-quarters of a mile.  If there is snow on the mountain tops wear micro spikes or Yak Traks if you have them.  We will be learning about Lyme Disease and how to prevent it.  Meet 8:30 am. at the Duncannon Holy Spirit Center, a Geisinger Affiliate (formally the Duncannon Family Health Center) to carpool or alternately meet at the K Mart in Enola at 9:00 am.  Pack a lunch and don’t forget fluids.  Wear something orange for the hunting season.   Please reimburse drivers 10 cents a mile. Total miles = 52 miles from  K Mart and back. Call Deb at 395-2462 or email dtakach@duncannonatc.org to register.  Hope you can make it!