Seasonably civil weather, finally! With weekend temperatures forecast to go no higher than the mid-70s throughout much of the land, it’s the perfect weekend to get out and explore. (And who won’t want to celebrate the end of a crazy first week of October when the temperatures hit triple digits in areas!)
Here are three fall-like recommendations for exploring state parks. Then, check out what our GetHiking! chapters are up to!
Ranger-led Hike at Bear Paw State Natural Area, Saturday, Oct. 5, 8 a.m., Bear Paw State Natural Area, Banner Elk. The main reason we like this hike is that, probably like we did, you’re likely scratching your head and wondering, “Where’s Bear Paw State Natural Area?” It’s a satellite of Grandfather Mountain State Park, located north of Grandfather between NC 105 and NC 194. We also like the sounds of the hike description: “Terrain is moderate; unmaintained road beds, uneven and often muddy. Wear closed-toe, walking shoes, dress for the weather and prepare to be outside. Water and snacks recommended. You may bring field guides, cameras, binoculars.” The hike is expected to take about two hours. Expect to learn a lot.” Learn more and get directions here.
Introduction to Hiking, Sunday, Oct. 6, 2 p.m., Occoneechee State Natural Area, Hillsborough. We hike or run at Occoneechee at least twice a week; in fact, it’s a 10-minute walk from the house. So we know the mountain pretty well and realize that it’s a great place to get introduced to hiking, especially on a fall afternoon when the temperature likely won’t reach 75. The hike will be about a mile in length, passing through all five of Occoneechee’s eco zones, on its way to the overlook (on a clear day, you can see Efland!). Learn more here; call 919.383.1686 to register.
Fall Nature Hike, Sunday, Oct. 6, 3 p.m., Falls Lake State Recreation Area, Raleigh. We like this hike because of its optimism in simply proclaiming itself a fall hike! You’re looking at about 2 miles of hiking on the Mountains-to-Sea Trail starting from the Rollingview Trailhead. Learn more here.
GetHiking! this weekend
What are our GetHiking! groups in North Carolina and Virginia up to this weekend? Plenty, thanks for asking …
GetHiking! Charlottesville: Beat the Heat! Mount Pleasant, Friday, October 4, 8 a.m., Wegmans, Charlottesville. Moderate. 6-mile hike with views of two summits. Learn more here.
GetHiking! Charlottesville: Disaster and First Aid Course, Saturday, October 5, 8:30 a.m. to Sunday, October 6, 6:30 p.m. One Forest, Nellysford. Hands-on training on how to survive in the wilderness. Learn more here.
GetHiking! Charlottesville: Retrace Hike to Spectacular and Remote Rock, Sunday, October 6, 8:30 a.m., Great Outdoor Provision Company, Charlottesville. Moderately Strenuous. 8.5-mile hike through multiple rivers and views of Bear Church Rock. Learn more here.
GetHiking! Charlottesville: Riprap Circuit, Sunday, October 6, 9:30 a.m., Rip Rap Trail Parking, Crozet. Strenuous. 9.5-mile hike through the south district of Shenandoah National Park. Learn more here.
GetHiking! Virginia Beach: First Landing State Park, Virginia Beach, Sunday, October 6, 9:45 a.m. Easy. 3-mile hike through flat terrain. Learn more here.
Live the video
Little River Regional Park in northern Durham County is the Rodney Dangerfield of local hikes: it gets no respect — mainly because no one knows it’s there! You can remedy that situation on this coming fall weekend, by learning what’s there and where it is, starting here.
More weekend options
Looking for more options for weekend adventure? Check out our GetOut! Find An Adventure resource page here.