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Posted: 3/1/2020 6:28:46 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/1/2020 10:24:40 PM EDT by verticalgain]
American Pioneer Corps/ Florida Battle Buddies Hike --- 18 APRIL 2020

OPORD format stolen from @leftytheking

SITUATION:
Area of Operations: Yearling Trail, FL-19, Fort McCoy, FL 32134
Terrain: Sandy trail through wooded areas. Occasional tree roots and tripping hazards during the course. No water crossings, occassional elevation changes.  See second post for more details.
Weather: Historical High ~84/Low ~61
Sunrise: 0600
Mission: The mission of the American Battle Buddies (ABB) is to provide public service to the nation by encouraging physical fitness and organization for patriotic Americans throughout the country.
Intent: The purpose of these hikes is to establish the Florida ABB network. These groups will meet in various cities across the state to develop a functional network. Events have already been scheduled and completed all over Florida.
This Hike is intended to serve as a 6 mile hike towards 3rd Class ABB Qualification, though any are welcome to attend and no weight is required.  Feel free to hike along for the camaraderie and exercise.
Potential Hazards: Heat, Ticks, Venomous Snakes, Black Bears.  Black Bears are typically very timid and easy to scare off, but they may be seen while hiking and can be surprising if you aren't used to them.
Bystanders: Occasional foot traffic may be seen on the trail, many of whom will be carrying packs of their own.   We will not be out of place here.

MISSION: Florida ABB conducts 6.1 mile ruck march April 18 2020 at 0930 at The Yearling Trail, Ocala National Forest.

EXECUTION:
Intent: My purpose is to conduct a 6.1 mile weighted Ruck March in Wooded Terrain at a pace of at least 3mph per ABB standards.  It is also to continue the networking and cameraderie started by the various Florida ABB groups.
Concept of Operation: Members will arrive at The Yearling Trail Trailhead at 0900. Group will conduct safety brief, prep gear, wait for latecomers/stragglers, etc. until step-off at 0930. Group will follow a loop of 6.1 miles before returning to the parking lot.  Upon completion of the event, ABB will discuss future events and conduct AAR.
Scheme of Maneuver: Group will move in a column through the trail, allowing traffic to pass as necessary. No halts will be conducted due to the pace requirements. Packs are not required. Pace will be minimum 19:00/hr according to ABB SOP.
Coordinating Instructions: ABB standards are HERE. No pack is required if you don't want to qualify, we encourage everyone to come and hike along.

TIMELINE:
0900- Arrival and Weigh-In
0930- Step Off
1130- March Complete
1145-1200- Depart Area

Uniform/Packing List:
Required: Athletic/outdoor clothes, boots or athletic shoes. Motivation.  Bug spray/sunscreen/allergy meds as needed.
Required for 3rd Class Qualification: Rucksack with minimum 45lbs excluding drinking water.

SUSTAINMENT:
Logistics: Restroom facilities are NOT available on site. Treeline may be utilized for waste, this is a backcountry camping area so please bring trowell and TP if you plan on pooping in the woods.  The town of Salt Springs is located a few miles to the North of the Trailhead on HWY 19, and has multiple places to pick up food/drinks and multiple restroom facilities.

Class I (food/water): Running water is NOT available on site. Bottled Water will be staged at the vehicles for topping off. Recommend bringing at minimum one 32oz bottle of water. Energy bars/gels are recommended.  This is a big loop, and we won't be back to the cars until the whole 6.1 miles is done.
Class VIII (medical): Emergency aid bag located with vehicles. Bring allergy meds/personal prescriptions as needed.
Medical: If a medical emergency occurs on trail, members will call 911 and move casualty to trailhead if possible. Minor medical issues may be treated onsite if within the skillset of first aid and basic medical supplies (i.e., blisters, cuts, etc.)  

COMMAND AND SIGNAL:

Command Posts: Main gather point is the Yearling Trail Trailhead on HWY 19 across the road from Silver Glen Springs rec area. This is the default “end” location for Google Maps. We will gather at the Trailhead Parking Lot and weigh packs before step off.
Signal: CELL SERVICE IS SPOTTY OR NONEXISTANT at Trailhead.  Download offline maps to your GPS apps as required.  Arfcom thread is the primary communication until step-off; OP will be active on the thread until loss of signal at approx. 0830.

This location is approximately a 2 hour drive from Jacksonville, Orlando, Gainesville and Tampa city centers.

Post Below will contain Photos and Trail Condition description from my scouting trip today (3/1).
Link Posted: 3/1/2020 6:29:15 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/1/2020 9:58:15 PM EDT by verticalgain]
PICTURES AND TRAIL CONDITIONS

Here are the pics and info from my scouting trip of the Yearling Trail today.  I had my wife with me, and we walked at a leisurely pace without weight, stopping to read the signs and check out the sights.

Below is a map of where the trail is located:

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This sign marks the trailhead parking lot.  If you are coming from the NORTH, this sign will be on the right hand side of the road (FL19) and you will turn on the dirt road on the right just before the sign.  If you are coming from the SOUTH, this sign will be on your left, and you will take the dirt road on your left immediately past the sign.  The actual Silver Glen Springs recreation area is across the road from the sign, and is a paved road.

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This is the actual Trailhead, once you get to the parking lot:

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Here are some maps of the trail:



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Here is a trail map with the 6.1 mile route overlaid on it in blue:

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The first (and last) 3/4 of a mile is sugar sand, but it isn't too deep and not bad to walk through.

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It turns to grass for several portions.  A handful of settlers lived in this area in the 1800s, it is called The Yearling Trail because both the book and film take place here and are based on the settlers who lived here.

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Most of the trail is straw covered hard-packed trail through trees.  There was fairly abundant shade, despite us walking it around midday.  At 0930 shade should be even better.

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Here is the largest Sinkhole in the area, it drops off vertically after the second log.  If you look at the trail map, I took a left at the sinkhole and went to the Cemetery, then turned around and walked back past the sinkhole to marker 5 and continued along the loop.  This makes the total loop 6.1 miles.

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Long Family Cemetery

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Here is the data from my Strava app, showing the recorded route and the elevation change by mile.

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Link Posted: 3/1/2020 8:44:32 PM EDT
Tagged.  This might be a good choice for my 6 mi.
Link Posted: 3/1/2020 9:55:57 PM EDT
Easy trail guys....

So jodies trace was maintained? That'd be a 1st.
Link Posted: 3/1/2020 10:03:37 PM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By protus:
Easy trail guys....

So jodies trace was maintained? That'd be a 1st.
View Quote
I didn't have any trouble following it.  It was yellow blazed often enough to easily see where to head, although the trail after the sinkhole was more traveled. I think most people skip the Trace and go to the sinkhole from the cemetery.

It was easy to stay motivated since you're always seeing something new, and none of the elevation changes are severe.
Link Posted: 3/2/2020 7:00:45 AM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By verticalgain:

I didn't have any trouble following it.  It was yellow blazed often enough to easily see where to head, although the trail after the sinkhole was more traveled. I think most people skip the Trace and go to the sinkhole from the cemetery.

It was easy to stay motivated since you're always seeing something new, and none of the elevation changes are severe.
View Quote
Yeah at the churchill road joint,is where im talking about as it changes from pinr flat to hammock.
If your at the sink hole trail.post, its pretty much right behind that.
Hardly anyone goes that route. Unless they blazed churchill rd striaght to the main drag that leads to the FT going to pats trail head.
It's a fun trail, and lots of history.  Plus not a bad area to do over nighters with newbs.( aka kids lol ).
Link Posted: 3/2/2020 11:42:24 AM EDT
I'm in! I'll see if Mrs inimicalone would like to play as well.
Link Posted: 3/3/2020 11:03:23 PM EDT
If I can attend I will, work schedule permitting
Link Posted: 3/5/2020 12:33:04 PM EDT
You can count me in for this one. It's a nice drive up there, might stop by Silver Glenn afterwards.
Link Posted: 3/8/2020 10:28:49 PM EDT
Hope the girlfriend and I will make it
Link Posted: 3/9/2020 8:49:50 AM EDT
Just up there yesterday. Pat's island trail head was full.......
Should by vacant by april since it'll be warmer and the fair weathers dont like to sweat or deal with bugs.
Link Posted: 3/9/2020 1:48:38 PM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By protus:
Just up there yesterday. Pat's island trail head was full.......
Should by vacant by april since it'll be warmer and the fair weathers dont like to sweat or deal with bugs.
View Quote
I'm hoping the same.  Outside of three couples with packs, the other people I saw were just casually walking.  They all were on the main straightaway, I didn't see anyone on Jody's Trace or the Florida Trail sections.
Link Posted: 3/9/2020 3:02:27 PM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By verticalgain:

I'm hoping the same.  Outside of three couples with packs, the other people I saw were just casually walking.  They all were on the main straightaway, I didn't see anyone on Jody's Trace or the Florida Trail sections.
View Quote
It should.
Ive never ran into anyone on the FT to graveyard route and only 1 or 2 over the years on jodies.
Seems the road in to grave,to sink hole or pats trailhead to grave and back is the busiest.
Reason i asked about jodies , it was so over grown at the sink hole it resembled a game trail. That keeps folks away.
Last i hiked it was before the holidays,  the trail association normally clears everything to double highway lane width to keep thier gucci gear clean.

Barring anything dumb, i shoulnt have issue showing up.
Dont have my provisional yet. so worse case ill just tag along and bust that out lol.
Link Posted: 3/12/2020 10:36:40 AM EDT
I have put this on my calendar to attend.
Link Posted: 3/20/2020 9:51:14 AM EDT
BTT
Link Posted: 3/24/2020 9:17:45 PM EDT
I have been working a lot and the Covid thread has had my attention lately, but I am still good to go for this hike. Sorry I have been absent from the thread, hope everyone is doing well in all this craziness.
Link Posted: 3/25/2020 9:57:34 AM EDT
I'm still a go too if the trail is open that day. It will be a good thing to be out on a hike with all the craziness right now! just have to figure out how I'm going to get 45-50 pounds in my bag, might have to wrap a couple of weights in a towel!
Link Posted: 3/28/2020 2:38:30 PM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By DKano:
I'm still a go too if the trail is open that day. It will be a good thing to be out on a hike with all the craziness right now! just have to figure out how I'm going to get 45-50 pounds in my bag, might have to wrap a couple of weights in a towel!
View Quote


Yeah hopefully they leave the Forest open, it would be nice to get out and hike in the woods.  I am using these weights in a padded laptop bag, but I don't think you could get a set delivered in time with what's going on, at least not from Amazon.

Something I'd suggest is if you come up a couple pounds short, add some first aid equipment to make up the difference.  Moleskin, motrin, vetrap, Israeli bandages, that sort of thing.  I added an emergency litter to my pack the other day in the event someone requires evac from the woods to the road.  Filled water bottles would also make good "dead weight" that's useful in an emergency, as long as you aren't drinking from them they count.

Tomorrow is my last working day for the next couple of weeks, so I'll try to get out to the trail again and see what the traffic/conditions are like.

Also, if anyone is coming that hasn't done Provisional yet, according to the main thread a 35lb hike is not required; if you want to start out from the beginning with a 45lb pack you can.  The 3miles/35lb Provisional rating was there to give people something to work for if they didn't think they could achieve the 3rd class standards. You don't have to start at 35.

Again, weight isn't required at all, but if you're confident you can make it with 45 this can be your first hike and count towards both Provisional and the 3rd class APC rating.
Link Posted: 3/28/2020 6:02:12 PM EDT
I’m very interested. Good choice of trail OP!

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