The lower temperatures and splendiferous colors of fall will entice many of us to take longer ventures into the woods in the coming days. This is a wonderful thing, but we want to remind you of a few things that will make your hike more enjoyable.
Eat. Do not look at a 10-mile hike as a crash diet, or crash you will. Just last week, one of our hikers suddenly went weak. Turns out that, in addition to a few other conspiring factors, she’d eaten only a fig bar for breakfast and had only a 16-ounce water bottle for a 5-mile hike in 85-degree heat. Calories are key to getting you down (and up) the trail. And we’re not talking HoHos and Ding Dongs, but the nutrient-rich calories found in whole grains, fruits, and nuts. Have a good breakfast, then pack up a lunch and healthy snacks. Hydrate. In lower temperatures, when we might not sweat as much, we might think we don’t need as much hydration. Not true! Not drinking water is the fastest, surest way to stall your engine, even on a cool fall day. Some more modest hikers might be averse to drinking water because they don’t want to pee in the woods. But, you should embrace the idea that you’ll be ducking behind a tree once or twice a hike. It’s biology, people.read more
In September, GetGoingNC.com made the transition from telling you what you can do to showing you: we started GetHiking! Triangle, which leads weekly hikes in the Triangle and beyond. Our target audience: newcomers to hiking and established hikers interested in learning new trails. The initial response has exceeded our expectations. We currently have 344 members and have attracted more than 50 people to our hikes.read more
The following originally appeared on Nov. 5, 2009. It reappears as our available daylight disappears.
For maybe the fifth time in five minutes Alan stopped to comment on the trail. “This is a great trail,” he commented. And for the fifth time in maybe five minutes I reminded him that we had hiked this same trail maybe a half dozen times. His sense of discovery was justified, though. This was the first time we’d hiked the trail in daylight.
Several years ago, we both despaired at the end of Daylight Savings Time. The end of DST meant a sharp decline in our outdoor activity. Long workouts only on weekends? That just seemed silly.
And it was. For just as advances in lighting have made it possible to ride a bike in the woods at night, so have these technological advances made it relatively simple to hike at night. And unlike the light systems for mountain biking that can set you back $200 to $600 or more, you can get a decent light set for hiking for less than $30. Most of the more simple systems run on AA or AAA batteries, power an LED light, and strap to your head, leaving your hands free. For more information on lights and what to look for, go here.
Some advice before you head out:read more