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February 2013 / March 2013 Newsletter

A condensed events and activities list can be found on our Calendar page.
Membership information can be found on our Membership page.

General Participation Guidelines
Always sign up ("pre-register") for an event by using our Meetup.com site or by contacting the leader so you can be reached if there is a change or an event cancellation.  Trip leaders generally make all reservations and arrangements and may set group size limits on some trips and activities.  If you are not pre-registered you may be turned away at some events.

Additional information about these activities and events may be announced at monthly meetings, on our Meetup.com site, and by Meetup.com messaging.  If you did not sign up for an event or activity at the last club meeting and would like to do so, you may add your name to the list at our Meetup.com site.  If you have additional questions, please contact the trip or activity leader directly.


Sat 2/16, Crystal River Snorkel/Kayak with the Manatees: In an effort to accommodate both or shared interests, it is possible to snorkel and kayak together if you like. For snorkelers, Crystal Lodge Dive Center will rent pontoon boats, we will operate the boat and stay out as long as we like. The cost divided between 8 people per boat is about $15.00 each, which could be more if first or second boat is not filled. You can rent mask, fins, snorkel and full wet suite for $18.00 from the dive center. Meet at McDonalds on Cassett Ave. just north of I-10 at 7:30 AM for the approximate 3 hour drive to Crystal Lodge Dive Center, 525 NW 7th Ave. Crystal River, Florida 34428, 352-795-6798 http://www.manatee-central.com/  Kayaks can be rented from Crystal River Kayak Company http://www.crystalriverfloridakayakrentals.com/ or several other rental companies in the area. Lodging: For those who would like to go down the night before, the Crystal Lodge Dive Center is located at the Best Western, Phone 352-795-6798 http://www.crystalriverresort.com/  Please post requests. Make your own arrangements and reservations. Leader Dan Woolf, cell 904-412-4821

Sat 2/23 and 2/24 Hang Gliding, Camping and Hiking: This is the chance to take an introductory hang gliding flight at a greatly reduced price. Normally the fee is $175/each. However, the owner, Malcolm, has agreed to reduce the price to $120/ea for our group, providing we have a minimum of 10 participants. Normally, breakfast would be included but at that price he is asking for a "$5 or $10 donation for breakfast.

Wallaby Ranch has the best safety record you could ask for with 100,000+ tandem flights with NO INCIDENTS, not even a scratch. They fly only with new, well maintained equipment.

HANG GLIDING; Since they fly only when the wind is calm, we will be flying Sat. evening from ~4 PM to sunset, and Sunday morning from 8 AM to ~10 AM. If you like, and are able to get there by 8 AM Sat. you can, of course, fly then. Basically a small plane with a 180' rope behind it attaches to the tandem glider. The plane throttles up, everything starts rolling and within a few seconds you (and the instructor) are off the ground. You fly up to an altitude of 2000 feet, cut loose from the plane and gently glide back to the ground. The instructor does all the flying on takeoff and landing but will allow you to fly (if you like) at altitude. You may be grinning for hours after the flight. It is a lot of fun!!! If you'd like to know more, go to http://wallaby.com

Camping - We will probably camp in a cove just off the runway and near the bathrooms and showers. Also in that area is an outdoor screened dining area, wood fired pizza oven, grills, ping pong table....all kinds of fun stuff.  Also, they have cabins for rent on a first come basis.

Call 1 800 WALLABY to reserve. Hiking - There is an abundance of hiking trails just off the runways. The trails go off in all directions and can be viewed from Google Map or I will try to take some aerial photos.

PAYMENT; A pre-pay of $40 is required two weeks before the event with the remainder due after the flight. The pre-pay is for the purpose of staffing the event properly.

DIRECTIONS; Take I-95S to I-4 W. Go through Orlando on I-4 and turn north on to US27. Go about 1 1/2 miles and turn left on Dean Still road. Go a little more than a mile and look for a large silver mail box on the left. Look for the large numbers 1805 on the box. Turn in and make your way to the parking area near the big oak trees.

This activity is open to members and non-members. If you have not paid dues in 2012 as a Sidetrackers Club member, please fill out and bring a guest waiver form with you.

We will meet at the Wallaby Ranch site at or around 10AM on Feb. 23 and set up camp. We can have lunch there (at 3PM, and $10 per person) OR, there are several restaurants in the area.

Leader: Al Sasser,  904 233 1414  sassman010’at’att.net                                                            

Fri - Sun, 3/1 – 3/3, Camping, Kayaking and Hiking at Crooked River State Park:  We will meet at McDonalds off I-95, Exit 363A/Airport and River City Market Place.

Exit Right and head (right) past entrance to mall and you will see McDonalds on left side of road.  We will leave Friday at 6:30pm. Car pooling is available, but will take advance planning.

This will be a kayaking, camping and hiking event open to SIDETRACKER MEMBERS.  Once the trip is full, we will open a wait list for non-members.  Cabins, however, are available with a minimum of 2 nights at $135 a night.  Cabins are about mile from campsites and can fit 8 people.   

Kayaking -Due to the area we will be kayaking from, I strongly recommend the use of a touring style kayak (sit-in for flat water) because of strong tide currents. The degree of difficulty can be moderate to hard depending on your skill level and keeping up with the group.  Tides come into play so we must stick to a time table or suffer “the wrath of the tides.”  We will kayak Saturday morning around 11:30am to catch the tides (both coming and going) to Harriett’s Bluff, a 6.3 mile round-trip.  Sunday morning we will kayak around 9:30am to Cherry Point, a 4 mile round-trip.  This should take us 3-4 hours.  Kayaks can be rented by the day or for both days.  You can contact UP THE CREEK XPEDITIONS at 1-912-882-0911 or 1-877-878-4327.  Cost is $40 a day ($80 for 2 days), plus a $10 fee for drop- off and pick-up.  There is high demand for kayak rental in March, so please call to reserve ASAP. 

Camping - I have reserved two Campsites.  We have two camping spots for now and may add more pending response and up-front money.  The cost is $28 per campsite for 2 nights.   Each site allows (2) tents or (1) tent and (1) RV.   You can have up to 4 people in each tent.  The price is based on the campsite, not number of people. Cabins, however, are available with a minimum of 2 nights at $135 a night.  Cabins are about mile from campsite and can fit 8 people.  Payment must be made to me within 2 weeks of the trip to secure your spot and commitment.

Hiking - There are 4 miles of trails in the park with beautiful scenery and lots of wildlife.

Bring sunscreen, plenty of water, food for grilling/cooking, snacks, camera /binoculars.   Leader Victor Corrales, cell 904-517-2321.  As a courtesy, please call Victor if your plans change if you are unable to attend.

For those who are not members of Sidetrackers, “Meetup.com” is only a tool for providing the information for a Sidetrackers event.   This activity is open only to members.   If you have not paid dues in 2013 as a Sidetrackers Club member, please fill out and bring a guest waiver form with you. All non-members must sign a guest waiver/release form which can be downloaded from the Sidetrackers web site using the link above or show up 15 minutes early to sign a release at McDonald's.

** Visit the Sidetrackers web site (http://www.sidetracke...) for our full calendar, newsletters, membership application and other information. **

Wed 3/6, 6:30PM Monthly Members Meeting: Regency Square Library, 9900 Regency Square Blvd., Jacksonville, FL 32256 Guest Speaker – Black Creek Outfitters.

Sat 3/9, OPEN

      Sat 3/16, 8:30am, ROPES AND ZIP LINES AT ZOOMAIR DAYTONA BEACH, FL: Enjoy a treetop adventure at Zoom Air Adventure Park Daytona Beach, up in the trees of Tuscawilla Park. Zoom Air’s aerial adventure courses are deftly woven into the forest of this easily accessible City of Daytona Beach Park. Go arboreal, as you swing, climb, balance, and zip from tree to tree. Get a bird’s-eye view of the land below as you travel in the trees over dancing logs and tight wires, across rope bridges, nets, and suspended disks. Feel your adrenaline pump as you conquer abundant treetop challenges, including exhilarating rides on our zip lines. Meanwhile, your perches in the trees offer an opportunity to see flora and fauna not found on the ground, and a brand-new perspective on the park’s well-known disc golf course.

During a briefing on the ground, you are taught to use the equipment and games safely. Once you and we are confident that you understand how to proceed safely, you head for the trees and adventure! Our qualified operators, on the ground, monitor your progress through the games and are available for any questions or concerns you may have along the way. You proceed independently, your safety ensured by the two slings from your harness that are always attached to a red life line.

The Lagoon and The Reef: Enjoy nature from a new perspective. Both courses are included in one admission – that’s over 30 treetop games, including 8 zip lines, and a chance to play Tarzan! The challenge and height of the games gradually increases, to give you a chance to get your “tree legs.” (Minimum height 54”).

Point Break: Higher and more difficult than the preceding two courses, Point Break adds 16 more games, including 4 more zip lines – one of them around 500 feet long. Cost is $24.95 for the Lagoon & Reef or $34.95 for all three courses. ZOOM Air offers a 10% discount on the admission price for groups of 15 or more, provided all admissions are purchased in a single transaction. Adults will leave Photo ID as deposit for harnesses. It will be returned when all harnesses for the group are returned. There is a 54" minimum height requirement for the adult courses and an approximate 275-pound weight limit - maximum waist size for harnesses is 48"; maximum thigh size is 26". Total time to complete both courses is approximately 2 - 3 hours depending on breaks.

Meet at the McDonalds on Old St. Augustine Road (south of I-295) just west of I-95 at 8:30am for our carpool and the approximate 1-hour drive to Daytona. Wear comfortable outdoor clothing; secure, closed footwear ("sneakers"); Remove jewelry and scarves that could get caught; Tie back your hair and secure your eyeglasses. Bring a water bottle with clip, camera and a bandana to wipe your brow on the course. Bring snacks in an ice chest which we will leave in our cars or at a picnic table if someone in our group chooses to remain on the ground. You may purchase water and snacks at the very limited onsite snack bar.


Leader: Steve D. 561.602.8613 mobile / ste_dor 'at' bellsouth.net

Sun 3/17, Big Talbot Island Biking:  details to follow

Sat 3/23, Habitat for Humanity Project: Sidetrackers are volunteering at Beaches Habitat for Humanity. Time will be from 8am to 12pm, with check in to start 7:45. Directions to the meeting location will be made on our website shortly. You may contact Vicki Andrews at 904-733-4512.

Sun 3/24, Ichetucknee Springs Paddle Trip: details to follow. 

Sat 3/30, Kayak Training (6 hour course): details to follow

Additional information about these activities and events may be announced at monthly meetings and on our YahooGroups and Meetup email lists.

2013 Monthly Meeting Schedule.  Locations Will Be Announced.
MONTHLY MEETINGS are always on the first non-holiday Wednesday of the month at 6:30 p.m.
and the location may vary.  Subscribers to our Meetup.com group receive an automatic reminder message in their email two days before the meeting.

WEDNESDAY, March 6, 2013 – 6:30 PM
WEDNESDAY, April 3, 2013 – 6:30 PM
WEDNESDAY, May 1, 2013 – 6:30 PM
WEDNESDAY, June 5, 2013 – 6:30 PM
WEDNESDAY, August 7, 2013 – 6:30 PM
WEDNESDAY, September 4, 2013 – 6:30 PM
WEDNESDAY, October 2, 2013 – 6:30 PM
WEDNESDAY, November 6, 2013 – 6:30 PM
WEDNESDAY, December 4, 2013 – 6:30 PM

The Sidetrackers Newsletter
Our newsletter is maintained by Chris who can be reached by email at newsletter 'at' sidetrackers.com.
If you have any comments about the newsletter, or if you have material to submit for inclusion in the
next monthly newsletter, please send email to newsletter 'at' sidetrackers.com.

To Become a Sidetrackers Member
Members pay a small annual fee to help share the annual cost of maintaining this web site and the small costs of running the club.  Members are not required to submit a Guest Waiver Form at each Sidetrackers trip, activity or event.  Membership applications are accepted throughout the year.  Please visit our Membership page, or send questions and comments to membership 'at' sidetrackers.com.

The Sidetrackers Web Site

Our web site is maintained by Frank who can be reached by email at webmaster 'at' sidetrackers.com.  Please contact Frank if you have any corrections, photos, or other items of interest from any current activities. We will be pleased to consider your suggestions concerning the web site content.

In Case You Were Wondering...
Email addresses are slightly obscured with 'at' instead of '@' in an attempt to foil automated spam robots.

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