Congratulations to Half-HAM Hikers and Volunteers!

On September 30, MCM conducted our second Half-HAM (Hike Across Maryland) event. This hike, while similar in structure to our biennial Hike Across Maryland event, covers the 21 mile distance of the northern half of the Appalachian Trail in Maryland—from PenMar County Park to Washington Monument State Park. We offered this event to our members for the first time in 2021, and we repeated it this year due to its popularity.

Forty (40) club members showed up at PenMar to participate in yesterday’s hike. We were blessed with mild temperatures, no rain, and blue skies through much of the day. Almost everyone who participated in the hike finished, and the persons who did not finish still hiked about 18 miles—a very admirable distance. There were no serious injuries.

I heard compliments from many of yesterday’s hikers about how well-organized the hike was. We’ve heard similar comments in the past at our HAM and Half-HAM events, and anyone who had hiked in these events, or volunteered to help run them, can attest to how true this is. The key to this success is the dedication of the many club members who volunteer to help run them. Yesterday, about 40 MCM volunteers worked to staff checkpoints, set up food and water stations, provide medical support, transport hikers, serve as sweeps, etc. The commitment shown by the volunteers was fantastic and was key to yesterday’s event—as our volunteers are key to everything that MCM does.

There are too many volunteers to list them all here, but I do want to single out the efforts of several key MCM members who were most heavily involved in planning and organizing this year’s Half-HAM: Betsy Stephenson, Dennis LeCompte, Jack Spitznagel, and of course the incomparable Sharon Sniffen for overseeing the entire operation. Many thanks to them and to all of the volunteers for your help in making yesterday a success!

In addition, we are grateful to the volunteers of the Frederick Amateur Radio Club, who once again provided amazing communications support. MCM is fortunate to have their involvement at our dm and Half-Ham events, and MCM is very appreciative of the time and effort contributed by their members.

Congratulations to everyone who hiked or volunteered yesterday for being part of this very fine event. I hope to see you many of you at the 41-mile Hike Across Maryland event in May 2024.

Bill Saunders

MCM President