Fall fever — finally! The nights are cold the days are cool and dry, the ideal mix for going in search of fall color. That drives our agenda of recommendations for the weekend.
Fall events, North Carolina State Parks, Saturday, Sunday. Not only is fall driving our agenda, it appears to be driving that of North Carolina State Parks as well: Gorgeous Gorges Colors Festival at Gorges State Park, Fall Discovery Hike at Lake Norman State Park, Stone Mountain Fall Hike … and that’s just on Saturday. You can find a rundown of all fall-themed events at North Carolina State Parks here.read more
It was a late November night in the late 1990s and Alan and I were hiking a stretch of the Mountains-to-Sea Trail along Falls Lake. Though we’d been mountain biking at night for two or three years, the notion of hiking in the dark had only recently occurred to us. Making our way through the woods in the quiet of night made us a bit giddy; instead of two guys in their late 40s, we were like a couple of 10-year-olds who’d snuck out of our bedroom windows on a clandestine adventure.read more
Finally, some fall-like weather! The weather unpleasantness that blew through late in the week has been replaced by seasonable temperatures. Meaning if you head out for a hike early Saturday, you better be packing fleece — it could be in the upper 40s.read more
My reintroduction to backpacking, after a nearly 20-year hiatus, was in 1995. I signed up for a weekend immersion course through Smithfield Parks and Rec. We left Saturday morning, hiked and camped the Birkhead Wilderness node of the Uwharrie National Forest, hiked out Sunday. It was a crash course, and at the time I figured it taught me 90 percent of what I needed to know about backpacking. More than 20 years later, I still chuckle at the thought. Naive me. Backpacking is an adventure in lifelong learning.read more
It’s been a toasty first week of October, but the forecast for the weekend calls for cooling and temperatures of a more seasonal nature. That said, some thoughts on how you can get out and enjoy an adventurous weekend.
GetHiking! Triangle: 5 Miles on the Mountains-to-Sea Trail at Falls Lake, Durham. Saturday, 9 a.m. Record heat has kept fall color at bay, but it’s a good bet we’ll see some on this hike that includes ecosystems that tend to promote early color. One of the more remote stretches of the MST through the Triangle. Learn more and sign up here.
Vade Mecum Trails Open, Hanging Rock State Park, Danbury. Saturday and Sunday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. The first weekend of every month, this new section of Hanging Rock State Park opens its trails for hiking, taking you into remote parts of the Sauratown Range and past remnants of the area’s past as Camp Sertoma. Learn more here.
Fall Hike Along Commissary Trail, Mount Mitchell State Park, Burnsville (sorta). 2 miles. Sunday, 10 a.m. A ranger-led hike on this trail just below the ridgeline of the Black Mountain Crest, the highest mountain range on the East Coast. Expect cold temperatures and good color at this elevation. Learn more here.
You can find more opportunities this weekend here:read more