Archive for the ‘Hiking’ category

This weekend: Get wet, go high 

Another hot, summery weekend is on tap, which means you have two choices for outdoor fun: get wet or go high. Coast Not that you need a reason to visit the Great Dismal Swamp, but if you did … Saturday, join a ranger on an intimate Summer Paddle of the Dismal Swamp Canal at Dismal Swamp State Park north of Elizabeth City. Everything you need — boat, paddle, PFD, basic…

10 Especially Appropriate Independence Day Hikes  

As you contemplate your plans to celebrate Independence Day tomorrow, contemplate this: what would be the most appropriate way to celebrate your independence, that sense of truly expressing your freedom? With a hike, of course. In honor of Independence Day, we’ve come up with 11 hikes that capture — in name at least — the spirit of the day. Find one near you and enjoy. (For additional information, check the…

This weekend: Celebrate your Outdoor Independence 

    Coast Since this is a special weekend, extending to Wednesday for many of you, we’re throwing the 4th into the mix — and one of the best displays of brightness lighting up the sky that you’re likely to see: the Cosmos & Cocoa display on Bald Head Island. Take advantage of Bald Head Island’s removed location and minimal nighttime light pollution to catch the night sky ablaze. “Use…

Four ways to celebrate the Roan Highlands

I ran into an old camping acquaintance Sunday in the Wilson Creek area Sunday and we spent a few minutes updating one another on our travels. Among her recent exploits: a February visit to Roan Mountain. Roan Mountain in February? I thought. Risky business being above 6,000 feet in the dead of winter. A better time, I thought, would be … right now. Massive Roan Mountain straddles the North Carolina/Tennessee…

This weekend: a 2X Tri, Wilderness Survival and the Friendly Side of Mitchell 

Carolina Beach Double Sprint Triathlon: the triathlon so nice they let you do it twice. Plus, surviving the wilds of South Mountains and experiencing Mount Mitchell’s gentler side. Coast Loaded with energy? Say, twice the energy you typically have? Then perhaps you’re up for Saturday’s Carolina Beach Douple Sprint Triathlon in Carolina Beach. Swim 375 meters in the Atlantic, run 1.5 miles, bike 20K. Then, instead of collapsing and kicking…

This weekend: Fun with Dad 

Show dad how much he means to you by taking him into the great outdoors. Coast So many mysteries contained in Merchants Millpond, the nearly 200-year-old, 760-acre water assemblage that spreads throughout the State Park bearing its name. Is it a pond or a swamp (sure seems like the latter)? What are those weird, prehistoric fish you occasionally see near the surface? Are there alligators? These questions and more answered…

Wake Up and Hike

As summer and its 90-degree temperatures near, hiking midday can be one sweaty undertaking. That leaves the evenings and early mornings, when temperatures in the 70s seem downright fall-like. Today, we revisit a piece from May 6, 2011, that expounds  upon the delights — and challenges — of the early morning hike. I bolted upright, wide awake, at 4:45, 15 minutes before the alarm was scheduled to do its ugly…

This weekend: We get the fun off to an early start

Start your weekend Friday evening in the Piedmont, learn how the woods once helped paint their own portraits at Elk Knob State Park, “sneak” into 10 nature programs at the coast. So much to do this weekend, and great weather in which to do it. Coast When I was in high school, certain friends would buy a ticket for the noon movie on Saturday, then, when it was over, linger…

Hikes from a road trip

Today, a slideshow. At the end of May, I helped my daughter move from North Carolina to Salt Lake City for her first job. Along the way, we managed to work in a hike or four. All were spontaneous, there was no planning. These were pretty much of the, ‘Hey! We’re in the Ozarks! Let’s pull over and hike” variety. Roadside hikes that were pretty dang awesome. We started in…

Trail Magic Revisited

On Sunday, I saw a Facebook post from a hiker visiting Damascus, Va., for Trail Days, the annual event celebrating the first wave of Appalachian Trail thru-hikers traipsing through town. It reminded me of what a delight it is to hike among thru-hikers and hear about their experiences. Back in April of 2010, I happened upon a wave of thru-hikers, along with a bit of paternal trail magic, in the Standing Indian area…