Today is a scouting day. Of my many tasks as a hiking guide, scouting the trail in advance is among my favorite. If I’m leading on a trail I haven’t hiked in a year or longer, I go out beforehand and hike it. I like to make sure the trail is passable, that a hurricane hasn’t laid a stand of trees across the trail, that recent rain hasn’t turned a key crossing into a Class III rapid, that—in the case of a National Forest—the trail hasn’t been closed for logging or another form of resource development. As a guide, I don’t like surprises when trying to get hikers from Point A to Point B safely.
Winter is the honest season. Stripped bare of busy ground cover and a blurring canopy, winter is incapable of keeping a secret. Stone foundations from homesteads long abandoned lie exposed. Distant mountain peaks are revealed. Critters have nowhere to hide. It’s the perfect time to be in the woods.
So many adventures, so few weekends.
That’s the story of summer, the 13-week run between Memorial Day and Labor Day when we pack in most of our adventures for the year. So we set out to pick some destinations that seem most worthy of summer fun. Here are a few places we’re headed this summer, and why:
What do we love most about what we do with the GetHiking! program?
Help people fulfill their dreams.
Using the skills developed through the GetHiking! GetBackpacking! and GetOriented! programs, folks accomplish any number of goals.
For instance, ascending one of the revered Seven Summits.
A dull, distant whirring, an intrusion of industrial origin that should have been distracting at the least. Instead, it was curiously reassuring.
I was walking a stretch of the Eno River upstream from Durham, downstream from my home in Hillsborough. More rural than urban, but not entirely detached. I’d been faintly aware of the thrum of tires rolling down I-85 a half mile distant, fading in and out, of the occasional chirp of a truck backing up closer by. Then, the low, constant buzz of a plant of some kind powering along, the heartbeat of the world I was trying to shake. I should have been annoyed. And yet … .