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home » Hike For Discovery » HFD 2007 » Mar 10, 2007 - Cunningham Falls/Catoctin Mtn

Meet the 2007 HFD Team

Aileen Goss
Andrea Hoffman
Brianna McMullen
Cindy Kiamko
Cindy Vogelberger
Clint Reach
Deb Donofrio
Ellen Brooks
Erin Noseworthy
 Greg Palmer
Heather Mitchell
Heidi Sowers
 Jessica Koman
Joel Shalowitz
 Kate Brotman
 Kate Greenberg
Kendra Plemmons
Kevin Pearson ‡
Kim Guercio
Kyle Bray *
Lisa Fronc *
Lauren Allen †
Olivia Darden
Patti Harden **
Paula Finkelstein
Terrill Esposito
Tracy Kight
Rosamaria Somarriba
Samuel Somarriba
** Hike Leader
* Mentor
† LLS Staff
‡ Honorary Team Member

Hike Hero - Gary

A Hike Hero in the Hike For Discovery program is a person that is currently fighting a blood cancer. The members of each group hike in honor of this individual.

The Hike Hero for the Maryland Chapter is Gary Todd. He first discovered he had enlarged lymph nodes during a visit to the hospital after having chest pains during a hike in late November 2003. In June 2005 he began feeling tired and experiencing night sweats. At first he thought he was worrying unnecessarily because of his impending retirement the next year. However, after a number of tests it was diagnosed with Stage 4, Non-Hodgkin’s spleenic lymphoma.

Gary underwent a chemotherapy treatment in six cycles over eighteen weeks and on January 1, 2006 went into remission. Unfortunately in late March of 2006 he began to feel sick again and in mid-May he began treatment with Rituxin*. He has been diagnosed with chronic lymphoma and will be taking Rituxin every ninety days for at least the next two years.

* Rituxin is an advanced and less invasive medicine that was made possible by money donated for research. It attacks only the cancerous cells and leaves healthy cells intact.

Mar 10, 2007 - 6th Training Hike
Cunningham Falls/Catoctin Mountain

Time of Hike: 8:30 AM
Distance Hiked: 5.0 Miles
Temp During Hike: Low 37.4 °F   High 53.6 °F
Elevation Change: 700 Ft

Catoctin Mountain Park Visitor Center

It’s getting warmer. This hike actually started off above freezing but because of the elevation of the mountain and a snow storm earlier in the week we still had to hike through snow and ice. We got some good practice climbing up hills and we’ll need more of it to be ready for the climb back out of the Grand Canyon on May 12th.

We started at the Catoctin Mountain visitor center and from there climbed 700 feet to the Hog Rock overlook. Along the way we got to know the area a little better as we walked past some historic charcoal making exhibits. In the past this mountain was clear-cut for farm land and the trees were used to make charcoal to fire the Catoctin Iron Furnace.

Jack the Dog
Jack the Dog
temporary mascot

After enjoying the view from hog rock for a while we descending back down the mountain to visit Cunningham Falls. To be honest, the falls were less than spectacular. These are cascading falls, which means that instead of a straight drop the water flows gradually over several smaller sections and with the snow it just looked like a snow covered hillside.

After leaving the falls we picked up a mascot for a little while. Jack the dog was walking by himself so we took him to find his owner who thanked us for returning him. The people (and dogs) you meet on the trail are always friendly.

This was a great hike and I know they will continue to get better as we venture farther into the wilderness to even more natural wonders.

  About Cunningham Falls and Catoctin Mountain

This beautiful 10,000 acre forest is divided into 2 parks by Maryland Route 77. Catoctin Mountain Park (part of the national park service) to the north and Cunningham Falls State Park to the south. Both parks provide many camping and hiking opportunities with many scenic overlooks along the trails and Cunningham Falls contains the 78 foot cascading waterfall it is named after.

For more information visit:


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