Tag Archives: Medoc Mountain State Park

Piedmont Explorer: the thrill of discovery

The first time I went to Umstead State Park in Raleigh was in January 1992. It was a bluebird day, the temperature around 30. I’d intended to hike for about an hour; I was there for four. I was smitten.

I’ve hiked, biked or run at Umstead more than 2,000 times since. While I have flash memories of several of those visits, it’s that first day in the park that bubbles to the top. That sense of discovery, the notion that a playground so vast could be right in my own backyard still makes me smile. read more

This weekend: Trick or treat? Pedal or paddle?

There are lots of ways to celebrate Halloween this Saturday. You can go the traditional route by dressing as your favorite explorer (Alferd Packer?) and shaking down the neighbors. Or, you can dress up for a paddle race at the coast or a bike ride (or two) in the mountains. read more

This weekend: Several ways to enjoy two sunny days

The forecast calls for seasonal, sunny weather over the next several days, weather that won’t be around for long and that’s ideal for certain types of adventure. Paddling at the coast, for instance. Or hiking a mountain trail. Or discovering a place that you’ll want to discover again and again. read more

This weekend: Get schooled

Photo courtesy Cold Stone Classic
Photo courtesy Cold Stroke Classic

It’s a new year and time to branch out, to learn a new sport, learn about a new place to explore.

Coast

Looking for new adventure in 2015? Check out the Cold Stroke Classic Saturday in Wrightsville Beach.

Now in its seventh year, the classic is a stand-up paddlboard competition that appeals both to the experienced SUPer with a 7-mile race and the beginner, with a course half as long. Cash awards in the elite category, $5,000 in prizes for the beginners. Don’t have a board? No problem; check out the used gear swap on Friday. Don’t have a wetsuit? That’s a problem. read more

This weekend: Trees, stars, rocks

What's the big tree on the left?
What’s the big tree on the left?

A learning experience at the coast, stargazing in the Piedmont, and in the mountains, drawing inspiration from some true rock stars.

Coast

Can you tell an oak from a hickory, a beech from a boxelder? Maybe in summer, when a full canopy displays each tree’s distinctively shaped, tell-tale leaves. But in winter, when the leaves have vacated, identifying the dendrologic denizens of the forest can be more challenging. read more