Actually, with all esteemed deference and cowtowing toward my colleague from the great state of Northern Ireland, I don’t think that’s accurate. The flow seems to be this, supposing there is not a new thread yet for the next hike:
Post questions in the general “chat” thread (this one)
Proposal from Mucha_Man or whomever for a hike goes in the “chat” thread (unless the proposer starts a new thread when making the proposal)
Once the new thread for next hike exists, conversation and questions about that hike move to that thread. At this point, the new specific hike thread is also listed in the index.
Comments and photos, etc. after a hike about that hike also go in that hike’s thread, not the general chat thread.
So, if this is the case, then the general chat thread (this one) is only used as a temporary piece of scratch paper for that brief snatch of time between the comments ending on the last hike and the “what are we doing” conversation beginning on the next hike.
Clear as mud? Did I miss or misunderstand something?
Well, maybe. Last time we did a short poll, no one was complaining. Secondly, this thread/these threads need to primarily serve the regular active hikers, IMO. New people can either figure out what’s going on by reading or by sending a PM to anyone who posts in any hiking thread.
All said, the index seems an unequivocally good idea. The switching between the general chat thread and hike-specific threads not as clear. Time will tell, but certainly worth a try.
One huge advantage that I can see to this system (other than the index of past hikes) is the use of index for future hikes. Let’s assume we ever begin to propose hikes for farther in the future than just the next weekend. We could list two, three, or more proposals for different future dates. Special hikes, special events, etc. Then, people could join each thread (and hike) as they desired. This method would also allow people to plan farther in advance for use of their weekends.