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Greetings from Virginia!

I just joined the REI Co-op after shopping at REI for years. I am a biologist and a recovering Federal govie in between careers with quality time on my hands. I'm looking forward to hitting the trails on a regular basis.

15 Replies

@Mark5150 Thanks for the introduction and welcome to the community!

You will find you're in good company being from Virginia! We have several folks in and around there: @Philreedshikes@CajunHiker@coastalxplorer@BlueRidge@CoastToCoast@Hiking-Chef, and @CJ. Feel free to check out the Virginia area page to connect with some local people, events, and locations. Also, don't be surprised if we tag you in posts for your local expertise as well!

Welcome again, we're glad you're here!

At REI, we believe time outside is fundamental to a life well lived.

@REI-JohnJ  Thanks for the info. Feel free to pick my brain on anything biology, chemistry and forensics. I'm still getting the hang of posting on this forum. Not sure if any of my replies are going through. Maybe there's a delay or something.

@Mark5150 Your replies are coming through just fine! Thanks and welcome again!

At REI, we believe time outside is fundamental to a life well lived.

@Mark5150 welcome to our online community! What part of VA are you in? I did my undergrad at W&M, had my first "real" job in NoVA, and fell in love with backpacking in/around that area!

At REI, we believe time outside is fundamental to a life well lived.

@REI-JenK  I live in Lake Ridge, near Occoquan. I earned my BS in Biology at the University of Central Oklahoma and MS at University of Alabama at Birmingham I also got my first real job in this DC area as well.

Hi Mark,


I’m also a biologist.  What did you do?  Where do you like to hike?  Are you a member of the Appalachian Trail Club?

@coastalxplorer  I worked at a forensics lab and have been working as a consultant. The Occoquan area is fun to hike. Purse park in Md is fun to hike and fossil hunt, as well as the Calvert county area. I'll go anywhere where there are fossils and pretty rocks LOL.

Mark, I work on Chesapeake Bay restoration.  My kids love fossil hunting too.  We’ve scoured Chippokes State Park in VA for fossils and Westmoreland State Park in VA for shark’s teeth.  Big fun!

@coastalxplorer @Mark5150 

This is great! We also have another user, @hikermor, who is an archaeologist and has a keen interest in pygmy mammoths on Channel Island (if I am recalling correctly!). Additionally, we have another user, @Rob6, from Maryland who may have some other suggestions around these areas you're talking about. We had a good conversation started by @ECharles  Geology, do you know the history you have traveled through?, that you might find interesting as well.

How did you all get into fossil hunting? Do you need a permit for that? Are you allowed to excavate and remove fossils? Are these parts of 'sponsored' digs through a university? What kind of equipment do you need?

As you can see I am fascinated and have many questions!

At REI, we believe time outside is fundamental to a life well lived.
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