Tag Archives: sunset

GetOut! Your friday nudge for weekend adventure

Our two favorite times to be in the trail in winter: sunrise and sunset. They’re great year-round, frankly, but much more accessible in winter: Sunrise today is at 7:21 a.m., sunset at 5:34 p.m.

If you have to ask what’s so special about these two golden hours of the day, then you’re probably not a hiker. Or possibly in possession of a pulse. Personally, we love the moment-to-moment change as the sky evolves from yellow to pink to orange to crimson to purple. If we sense the conditions for a good sunset, we’ll dash to the local summit in town, Occoneechee Mountain, which affords an open view to the west: sunset over the Eno River Valley is one of the best. We’re pretty crazy about certain other sunsets as well: from Shortoff Mountain at the south end of Linville Gorge, from atop Shining Rock in the Pisgah National Forest, from Little Long Mountain in the Uwharrie National Forest, from Hump Mountain on the Appalachian Trail. We’ve even seen the queen mother of sunset phenomena: the elusive green flash, a prismatic neon burst that lasts just a second or two, which we saw over the Pacific Ocean years ago in Hawaii. read more

90 Second Escape: Fall’s fading light

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 or slide show 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 90-Second Escape: Fall’s Fading Light

One thing we’ll miss now that fall is here and the days very quickly getting shorter is our evening hikes. Savoring the fading sunlight of day is perhaps our key motivator to hit the trail. With the sun setting at 8 p.m. or later, there’s plenty of time after work to enjoy the period known as eventide.

Today, the sun sets officially at 7:05 p.m. in Raleigh. There’s still a bit of time to enjoy, but not for long: a week from today, the sun sets a full 10 minutes earlier; by mid-October, the sun will be down by 6:30.

So enjoy this late-day gift while you can. As incentive to do just that, we bring you 90 Seconds of late daylight on the trail.

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90 Second Escape: Sunset on the water

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 or slide show 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 90-Second Escape: Sunset on the Water

One of the joys that indoor lighting has robbed us of is watching day fade to night. The gradual disappearance of light is a phenomenon that is different every day: clouds, length of day, humidity — any number of factors influence the sun’s last hurrah. Sunset is especially captivating over water.

With the opportunities for catching sunset after work diminishing by the day (the sun sets today in Raleigh at 7:44 p.m.; it sets a week from today at 7:34), here’s a little incentive to get out and take advantage when you can. Here’s a September sunset from four years ago.

Enjoy!

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90 Second Escape: Last Call

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 or slide show 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 90-Second Escape: Last Call at Lake Crabtree

Daylight is entering that period were it becomes a premium for an after work escape. This evening, the sun officially sets in Raleigh at 8:11 p.m. In two weeks, it goes down at 7:45 and in a month we’ll call it a day at 7:24. Our summer evenings of adventure will soon by gone, so take advantage of them while you can.

To that end, we share 90 seconds of what it’s like at Lake Crabtree, one of the area’s most popular after work playgrounds. Enjoy, then vow to take advantage of our waning sunlight.
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This weekend: The sun shines on Saturday

Another seven days, another seven days of which one is decent. And, fortunately again, that day falls on the weekend. A few thoughts on how to spend a sunny Saturday.

Coast

Run, Rick, run!

Flytrap Half Hell Haul 7K: even if you don’t run, how could you not want to be a part of something with a name like that! And when you discover the Half Hell Haul is on the trails of the Boiling Spring Lake Preserve, well, that’s got to seal the deal.

Boiling Spring is a coastal preserve near Wilmington protected by both the state and The Nature Conservancy. Among it’s rare plants: the Venus flytrap, and it’s one of just 15 Venus flytrap populations remaining in the world. With Venus flytraps being carnivorous, there’s added incentive to log a good time. And the Half Hell in question? That would be the Half Hell Swamp.

Logistics: Saturday, March 22, 9 a.m. $15-$30. More information here.

Saturday forecast: High of 73, mostly cloudy.  http://www.wunderground.com/weather-forecast/US/NC/Wilmington.html

Piedmont

Maybe you’ve toyed with the idea of yoga but are baffled by the options: Ashtanga? Bikram? Kripalu? Power yoga sounds a little aggressive, and what’s the deal with hot yoga: down dog in a 103-degree room? Really?

Saturday, you have a chance to sample different types of yoga and get some of those questions answered, at YogaFest NC, a day-long celebration of yoga at the McKimmon Center at N.C. State University in Raleigh. Various types of classes, meditation sessions, educational programs, exhibitors, complimentary massages. And lunch catered by Neomonde. A daylong affair.

Logistics: Saturday, March 22, 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. $55. N.C. State University McKimmon Center, Raleigh. More info here.

Saturday forecast: Irrelevant, since it’s indoors (although Saturday’s weather is forecast to be much warmer than Sunday’s.

Mountains

We love hiking. We love hiking at night. So you can imagine how excited we get about hiking in the mountains at night. Pretty darn excited.

And it’s hard to imagine a better place to hike at night in the high country than Mount Jefferson State Natural Area. Mount Jefferson rises more than 1,600 feet above the surrounding landscape, topping out at more than 4,000 feet. In the dark, that translates some pretty cool views of the lit landscape below. This hike, out to Luther Rock, has some challenging climes, so come prepared.

Logistics: Saturday, March 22, 7 p.m. Mount Jefferson State Natural Area, West Jefferson. Meet at the park office. For more info call 336.246.9653

Saturday forecast: High of 58, mostly cloudy and according to Ray, you “cannot rule out a few light showers.” http://asheweather.com/Forecast/West+Jefferson

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Those are our thoughts on the weekend. Find more options at the sources listed below.

Coast

CapeFearCoast.com
Comprehensive calendar for the Cape Fear/Wilmington/southern N.C. coast searchable by date and event name.

Coastal Guide
Comprehensive calendar including nature programs from a variety of costal conservation and research agencies that offer nature programs. Covers the entire coast.

Crystal Cost Tourism Authority read more