Category Archives: COVID-19

On fair weather crowds, foul weather solitude

From the N.C. State Parks and Recreation Facebook page on Sunday:

  • Occoneechee State Natural Area full as of 11 a.m.
  • Eno River State Park’s Cole Mill and Fews Ford accesses closed as of 1 p.m.
  • Raven Rock State Park is full as of 10:00 a.m.
  • Hanging Rock State Park is full as of 10:40 a.m. Main restrooms are closed due to sewer failure; restrooms are open at the lake parking lot. There were 1,000 more visitors at Hanging Rock yesterday than ever recorded before.
  • Pilot Mountain State Park is full as of 10:40 a.m.

A thousand more visitors at Hanging Rock State Park “than ever recorded before.” That is a stunning statement if you’ve ever been at Hanging Rock on a gorgeous spring or fall afternoon. A thousand! Where on earth would an extra thousand fit? read more

GetOut! Warmer weather means fewer hikers

This weekend’s hiking forecast: Hot, with highs in the mid to upper 80s under mostly sunny skies with increased humidity and a decreased chance of crowds.

The arrival of warmer weather today and into the weekend should help reduce the crowds that have been flocking to trails of late. The recent crowds are the perfect-storm result of remarkably gorgeous weather and limited entertainment options under Gov. Roy Cooper’s stay-at-home. The forecast warmer temperatures and the increased number of shopping options since May 9 means we should see fewer people on the trails this weekend. That said, if you want to really avoid the crowds: read more

Don’t let a little heat keep you off the trail

After one of the most gorgeous and prolonged springs in memory, a spring that couldn’t be better suited to being on the trail, the heat is finally arriving this weekend. We couldn’t be happier.

A near-perfect spring coupled with the coronavirus has has driven an unprecedented number of hikers to the trail. But, with the coming heat and humidity, coupled with more retail outlets slowly opening, we should see far fewer hikers on the trail this weekend. read more

The return of N.C. State Parks

Portions of the 29 North Carolina State Parks that had been closed as a result of the coronavirus reopened this past weekend. Some reopened all their trails, some just a few. It’s worth a visit to the N.C. State Parks Facebook page for a sense of how things went systemwide. You’ll need to go beyond the photo of cars queued up as far as the eye can see at Raven Rock State Park to get a sense of what Reopening Day was like.  read more