Weekend Plans: Ice? Snow? Bah!

We’re not going to let a little forecast ice and snow keep us from having a good time this weekend. Or at least planning to have a good time this weekend.

Photo courtesy Cold Stroke Classic
Photo courtesy Cold Stroke Classic

Coast: 8th Annual Cold Stroke Classic

Head on down to Wrightsville Beach this weekend to participate in (or watch) the 8th Annual Cold Stroke Classic! Lots of standup paddleboarders competing in different divisions: based on age, gender and height. Friday, there is a pig pickin’ and music fest, followed by the races on Saturday. Registration ends this Friday!

There are two races, a 3.5-mile recreational race, and a 7-mile elite race with cash prizes for winners! All racers must bring a USCG approved PFD in order to participate. Registration fees differ based on category.

Weather policy: there will be a weather call Saturday morning. Canceling will occur only if paddling conditions are unsafe.

Vital stats: 8th Annual Cold Stroke Classic, Friday and Saturday, more information here or here. ColdStroke@coastalurge.com or head here.

Saturday forecast: High of 42, chance of rain. Might wear a wetsuit. Or a dry suit.

Looking ahead: Quintiles Wrightsville Beach Marathon Madness; marathon, half-marathon, marathon relay, 5K, 1-mile run, March 18-20. More info here.

Seeking shelter from the storm at Mount Rogers
Seeking shelter from the storm at Mount Rogers

Piedmont: Mount Rogers Hike

Weather permitting, this Saturday the Piedmont Hiking and Outing Club is hiking the Mount Rogers Trail to intersect with the Appalachian Trail, Northbound, in the popular Mount Rogers National Recreation Area in southwestern Virginia. Before signing on, the club advises that you be prepared for cold temperatures, high winds and possibly deep snow!

If you can’t make this hike, the club is one of the more active outdoors groups in the region. Check their website for a schedule of activities; individual membership fees are $20 per year, family memberships are $30 annually.

Vital stats: Saturday, Mount Rogers National Recreation Area, visit the club’s website for meeting time and additional information.

Saturday forecast: Snow starting Thursday evening will begin to taper Saturday morning, with accumulations of 18 inches expected. High temp: 30.

Looking ahead: Nature’s Notebook Hike, Weymouth Woods-Sandhills Nature Preserve, Saturday, Feb. 6. More info here.

Snowy trail at the Icycle (photo courtesy Fontana Village Resort)
Snowy trail at the Icycle (photo courtesy Fontana Village Resort)

Mountains: Icycle Mountain Bike Event

“The most fun you’ll ever have on two wheels, rain, sleet, snow or sunshine,” promises the event’s sponsors. Fontana Village Resort hosts the Icycle Mountain Bike Event Saturday. Cross-country races begin at 11 a.m. and go late into the night. If you’re looking for a challenging winter mountain bike race, the IBM should do it.

Registration takes place in advance and race day; fees vary, see website.

Vital stats: Icycle Mountain Bike Event, Saturday, beginning at 11 a.m. into the night, Fontana Village Resort, Fontana Dam. More info here.

Saturday forecast: Snow throughout the day, high of 32.

Looking ahead: Swannanoa Rim Hike #3: Cherokee Boundary, March 19, 4.5-mile hike nearly all off trail. More info here.

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Those are our thoughts on the weekend. Find more options at the sources listed below.


Comprehensive calendar for the Cape Fear/Wilmington/southern N.C. coast searchable by date and event name.

Coastal Guide
Comprehensive calendar including nature programs from a variety of coastal conservation and research agencies that offer nature programs. Covers the entire coast.

Crystal Cost Tourism Authority
Comprehensive calendar focusing on the Crystal Coast. Good source for programs offered by N.C. Coastal Federation, Cape Lookout National Park, N.C. National Estuarine Research Reserve and other costal conservation and research agencies that offer nature programs.

Comprehensive calendar including programs for the Outer Banks and Crystal Coast.

North Carolina Coast Host
Comprehensive calendar for the entire coast that lets you search for events by day, by region, by county, by city or by event (based on key word).

This Week Magazine
Primary focus is the Crystal Coast (North Carolina’s coastal midsection).


Asheville Citizen-Times
From the main page, click on “Outdoors,” then WNC Outdoors calendar.

Blue Ridge Outdoors
Searchable calendar lets you extend your reach to events throughout the mid-Atlantic and Southeast (or you can just limit it to North Carolina). Also lets you search a boatload of categories, ranging from Hiking, Mountain Biking and Climbing to Trail Running, Triathlon and Road Walking.

The Mountain Times
From the main page, click on “Calendars,” then Main Events.

Todd’s Calendar



Charlotte Observer events calendar
Comprehensive calendar searchable by category, including Nature, Recreation, Recreation & Wellness, Running

Charlotte Parent
Comprehensive calendar concentrating on things the family can do together.


Comprehensive calendar includes a Sports & Recreation category.

Piedmont Parent
Comprehensive calendar concentrating on things the family can do together.


Comprehensive calendar searchable by category, including: Birding, Boating, Cycling, Nature, Rec & Wellness, Recreation, Running, Swimming, Tennis, Yoga.

Carolina Parent
Comprehensive calendar concentrating on things the family can do together.


Great Outdoor Provision Co.
Calendar includes three weekly events for each of its seven markets: Chapel Hill, Charlotte, Greensboro, Greenville, Raleigh, Wilmington and Winston-Salem. Search by market.

Office of Environmental Education
One calendar for the numerous Environmental Education Centers statewide.

North Carolina State Parks
Lets you search for programs at the state’s parks, recreation areas and natural areas by location, by month, by topic. To reach the calendar from the home page, click on “Education,” then “Fun & Free Programs at Parks.”

National Forests in North Carolina
From the home page, click on Carolina Connections for news updates on the state’s four national forests as well as hints on recreational opportunities and a detailed rundown of recreation areas and the amenities at each.

U.S. National Wildlife Refuges
Rundown, by month, of regular activities at the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service refuges in North Carolina.

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