Category Archives: Volunteering

Your weekend: It’s National Trails Day — salute your favorite trail

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Volunteers build a footbridge on the Mountains-to-Sea Trail near Blowing Rock

Since the early 1990s, the first Saturday in June has been recognized by the American Hiking Society as National Trails Day. It’s a day set aside to honor our favorite trails, hiking or paddling, mountain biking or equestrian.

Around the country, hundreds of events will be held as part of the observation. At some events, folks will gather to spruce up their favorite trails, or to clear new favorites. At other events, folks will gather and hike/bike/paddle/ride. read more

Your weekend: Hike the coast, clean a lake, ride the mountains

Looking for motivation to get your youngsters outside? How about a meat-eating plant! Meanwhile, there’s a lake in the Triangle that could use your TLC, and a ride in the mountains that promises to be just plain fun.

Also: Next Wednesday, April 6, is National Walking Day, sponsored by the American Heart Association. Learn more here. read more

National Trails Day: Roll up your sleeves and enjoy

A volunteer hauls in posts to build a bridge on the Mountains-to-Sea Trail.

We love trails. You love trails.
Saturday, we show that love during the annual National Trails Day observation. Launched by the American Hiking Society in the early 1990s, NTD is the one day of the year where express our love of hiking trails, paddle trails, singletrack mountain bike trail, doublewide equestrian trail … if it’s a trail, it’s covered under the NTD rainbow.
Dozens of National Trails Day events are planned in North Carolina for Saturday. We’ve compiled a list of 37 events; we provide the basics and a link or phone number where you can score specifics.
We’ll rerun a more complete list a week from today, on Thursday, June 5. In the meantime, leave Saturday, June 7 open. You have a date with a trail. read more

New trail: Dig it

A workday last summer on the Penny's Bend to West Point on the Eno stretch of the Mountains-to-Sea Trail.

Fred Dietrich, who oversees construction and maintenance of the Mountains-to-Sea Trail in Durham and Orange counties, reports: “2013 was a good year for the Eno River Section of the MST trail. Thanks to your hard work we were able to keep the trail maintained, and to build the final section and final bridge to complete the trail between Penny’s Bend and West Point on the Eno.
“Over the past five years,” he adds, “we have built three sections of trail that are now part of the completed 14.8 miles of trail from Pleasant Green Road to Penny’s Bend.”
Nearly 15 miles of uninterrupted trail from Pleasant Green Road to Penny’s Bend. And at Penny’s Bend, you hook up with another 60 miles of uninterrupted MST along the south shore of Falls Lake.
That’s 75 miles of uninterrupted hiking on natural surface trail.
How does a metro area come to have a 75-mile (and growing) hiking trail in its midst? Same way the Mountains-to-Sea Trail, stretching from Clingman’s Dome to Jockey’s Ridge, is now more than 500 miles finished: because of people such as yourself. People who don’t mind rolling up their sleeves once a month and spending a Saturday building and maintaining trail. If you haven’t yet joined the ranks of dedicated MST volunteers, now’s the time to do so. We’ve even got a list of Fred’s monthly work days that you can jot into your calendar. Pencil ready? read more

Give a little, get a lot

Thirsty?

The highlight of my weekend: handing a bottle of water to someone.

Close second: taking an hour to clear a two-foot wide, 15-foot-long swath of forest.

Slow weekend?

Hardly.

Not long ago I decided I should become more giving to the various outdoors communities I benefit from. I’ve written three books about hiking trails, so that seemed a good place to start. And last week I got a Facebook message from a bike team I once belonged to asking for help. Why not? I thought. read more