Outdoor escapes in 2017 — Linville Gorge

Escape with us into the Outdoors in 2018

Hiking is a gateway activity. You start with a hike along Umstead’s Sycamore Creek after a rain, maybe hike the Little Mountain Falls Trail at Virginia’s Fairy Stone State Park on a cloudless winter day. Before you know it, the notion of spending a day or more on the trail has a keen appeal. You’re hooked by the lure of outdoor escapes.

We’re here to help you realize that vision. We’ve been working on ways to help you spend more time outdoors in a variety of ways. Last week we talked about some of the more straightforward hiking programs we have planned for the new year (for those of you newish to the trail). Today, we look at two programs that let you spend the day and night on your adventure. And in the next couple of weeks, we’ll be unveiling even more programs.


Maybe you once thought that backpacking is only for the hardcore. And maybe you’re not feeling so hardcore. But backpacking can fit into your life, no matter what your age or current fitness level. We can help you get started or keep going on the trail.

  • Intro to Backpacking: Folks who have never backpacked or haven’t in a while—say, since the days of the external frame canvas pack—are advised to start with our Intro to Backpacking class: three training sessions, followed by a weekend graduation trip to the mountains. Each training session focuses on a key element of backpacking: gear and proper packing; setting up and breaking down camp; food and its preparation. By the end of the course, you’ll be a confident backpacker.
  • Intermediate Skills courses: Maybe you’ve done some backpacking but would like to be more confident in the backcountry. We have a series of Intermediate Skills courses that will build your skills in the areas of wilderness navigation, river crossings, solo backpacking, hiking and camp set-up at night, and winter backpacking.
  • Trips: In 2018, we plan to do a trip a month. Some will be three-day weekend excursions, some will be longer. Most are great opportunities for both beginners, who can to hike with and learn from more experienced backpackers, and more seasoned backpackers, who can not only mentor newbies but also discover new places.

Learn more about these programs here.

Outdoor Escape: Black Mountains
Atop Mount Craig, on a September 2017 Classic Escape to the Black Mountains

GetHiking! Classic Escapes

Our Classic Escapes explore some of the best trails in the region. In spring and fall, the hikes, about 6-8 miles long, are usually limited to a day. Once the weather warms, we do weekend camping trips, establishing a base camp for two days of great hiking, about 10-12 miles total over the two days. On tap for 2018 are trips to Pilot Mountain, Rock Castle Gorge, Black Mountains, Linville Gorge/Wilson Creek, Mount Rogers, Grandfather Mountain, Peaks of Otter.

Learn more about these programs here.

We look forward to helping you make 2018 your year of adventure!

Happy trails


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