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Poncho, anyone?

In March, I wrote about the joys of hiking in the rain — provided you have the right gear to keep you separated from that wonderful rain. I spoke glowingly of rain pants, of a rain hat, of water repellant boots, of wool socks. I was less ebullient about rain jackets. “Despite advances in breathable rain gear, I have yet to hear anyone rave about a particular garment,” I wrote….

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90 Second Escape: Paddling the Haw River

Monday — never an easy time for the outdoors enthusiast. After a weekend of adventure, returning to the humdrum work-a-day world can make one melancholy. To help ease the transition, every Monday we feature a 90 Second Escape — essentially, a 90-second video of a place you’d probably rather be: a trail, a park, a greenway, a lake … anywhere as long as it’s not under a fluorescent bulb. Today’s…

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55 and going long

As I was poring over the results of Sunday’s Off Road Assault on Mount Mitchell, I was surprised to see that of the nearly 400 riders who finished the 63-mile race, only five were older than me. (I was less surprised that all five finished ahead of me.) Perhaps I shouldn’t have been; at 56 years of age, you might think that wisdom would finally overpower the need to punish…

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This weekend: Paddle, run a classic

Two paddle trips get you on the water on a hot Southern weekend, and there’s a classic 5K in the high country. Coast The only thing better than paddling a coastal swamp is paddling it with a knowledgeable  naturalist who knows the terrain and can help make sense of what can be an overwhelming experience. Sunday morning, join said knowledgeable naturalist for a two-hour kayak trip up Goose Creek at…

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The oddity of ORAMM

Before Sunday’s ORAMM mountain bike race in the Pisgah National Forest, I’d heard it said that some people who have done the race never got on a mountain bike again. I’d also heard of those who barely survived ORAMM, yet couldn’t wait to do it again. After doing the race, I can understand both sentiments, though I will admit the latter didn’t begin to take hold until well after the…

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A cooler weekend, a hike along the Haw River

“You came all the way from Cary?” the woman exclaimed. “That’s, like, an hour away.” She and a friend were asking directions from a guy who seemed to be something of an impromptu trail ambassador when I walked up. We were standing at about the midpoint of the 4.25-mile Glencoe section of the Haw River Trail, just downstream of the NC 62 bridge. Although an hour didn’t seem like that…

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Construction begins on final link of Cary’s Black Creek Greenway

“Hey,” I said interrupting whatever it was we were talking about. “That’s the Black Creek Greenway, isn’t it?” Why I hadn’t noticed the bulldozer busy at work just beyond the Cycle Surgeon’s property line, I’m not sure because this was the fifth time in less than a week that I’d been at the Surgeon’s Cary garage as he patiently tried piecing together the bike I was borrowing after I’d broken…

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This weekend: It’s cooling off? Get out!

Sure there’s a threat of rain — there’s always a threat of rain in summer; it’s the meteorologist’s ultimate hedge. But cooler temperatures demand that you start planning an active weekend earlier than usual. Like now. Piedmont I usually don’t throw out mountain bike races as a weekend option because they’re typically targeted to a more adrenaline-influenced crowd and they can be expensive to enter. None of that applies to…

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90 Second Escape: Hiking down into the Green River Narrows

Monday — never an easy time for the outdoors enthusiast. After a weekend of adventure, returning to the humdrum work-a-day world can make one melancholy. To help ease the transition, every Monday we feature a 90 Second Escape — essentially, a 90-second video of a place you’d probably rather be: a trail, a park, a greenway, a lake … anywhere as long as it’s not under a fluorescent bulb. Today’s…

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Bike sharing comes to Charlotte

Bike sharing, a transportation concept embraced around the world but only slowly making its way to the United States, has come to North Carolina. Charlotte B-Cycle began operating yesterday, with 200 bikes located at 20 stations in Uptown, including several along Charlotte’s Lynx light rail line. Bike sharing programs offer the use of bikes to people who don’t have them. They’re typically intended to help people run errands or commute…

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