Finding spring, making the most of it

Remember those two really nice days last week? We spent them doing field research, seeking signs of spring.

And we found them. The two spring wildflowers that, to us, signify that spring has sprung: the spring beauty and the trout lily. Both are featured in the accompanying video, shot along the banks of the Eno River in both Durham and Orange counties. Our search is also the topic of this week’s GetHiking! Southeast Podcast, which you may find here. 

To aid you in your transition to spring, we share key resources, resources we suspect will come in handy in the weeks ahead. And note that Daylight Saving Time begins Sunday, March 14, at 2 a.m.: don’t forget to spring forward.

Sunrise/Sunset times. Enter your location and the date and will tell you not only the official sunrise and sunset times for a given day, but the amount of twilight on both ends as well.

Spring wildflower ID. Like to know what you’re looking at as spring unfolds? The piedmont-centric  A Virtual Wildflower Garden Across Time identifies spring wildflowers both by color of petals and when they typically emerge, making it easier to tell your asters (which bloom as early as January) from your fleabanes.

Park closing times. Longer daylight means longer hours at your local parks. Many North Carolina State Parks, for instance, begin staying open until 8 p.m. in March (and as late as 10 p.m. as summer nears). Check local state park hours at the links below:

National Forests. Roads and campgrounds in national forests will begin reopening. You can check the latest status of your favorite area below.

National Parks. Check on what’s reopening when by clicking on the link for a given state, then clicking on the NPS unit of your interest.

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