You may have noticed on the Outing Pages that I have a scoring system in the form of an Activity Scale. Just what does “1/5” equate to? What about “4/5?” I consider the length of the tour when deciding on the rating. Is it a half-day trip? What about a weekend tour? It goes without saying that a weekend tour takes more of a toll on one’s body compared to a day trip, by duration alone. Below are my descriptions of the Activity Scales. I hope you find this helpful as you browse my Outing Schedule.
1/5: This rating is given mostly to outings where we will be birding almost exclusively by vehicle. These tours are the easiest on one’s body. The hardest part of your day will be stepping in and out of the car (of which can be surprisingly difficult if it’s warm in the car and cold outside!)
2/5: The majority of the tours I offer are rated as a 2/5. These outings include relatively easy hikes, typically short in duration, and mostly along flat ground. During these outings, there is often a mix of birding by car and birding by foot.
3/5: Some outings are rated as a 3/5. These outings generally feature greater hiking mileage, as well as hiking along rolling, and sometimes rugged, terrain. In some cases, tours are rated a 3/5 simply due to the length of time we’ll be on our feet (take, for example, the tours to Point Pelee).
4/5: There are a few tours rated as a 4/5. This rating is given mostly to hiking-intensive outings. Participants should have a good base strength in hiking and should be able to stand for long periods of time without discomfort. 4/5 ratings are often given whenever the group will be hiking rugged and uneven topography for long stretches at a time. Additionally, the duration of these hikes is considered. In some cases, we will be without access to our cars for four to five hours, so you’ll need to be comfortable wearing a backpack packed with water and snacks.
5/5: N/A. There are no tours on this year’s schedule with a 5/5 rating.