Category Archives: GetHiking!

Were Record FKTs in 2020 a warm-up for 2021?

If you thought 2020 put the kibosh on all forms of competition, then you aren’t familiar with FKTs.

Fastest Known Times — that is, the fastest known time that it’s taken someone to cover a stretch of trail. You may be familiar with the concept in terms of a major trail. The AT, for instance, which has seen intense competition over the years to see a new FKT record. The current record, for the 2,189-mile AT, btw, is 41 days, 7 hours and 39 minutes, set in 2018 by Karel Sabbe, a Belgian dentist. Or possibly North Carolina’s 1,175-mile Mountains-to-Sea Trail, which saw a new record set last summer, when Tara Dower ran it in 29 days, 8 hours and 48 minutes. read more

Joe Miles in the Uwharries

We weren’t quite 4 miles into the hike, not far past Camp 5 and beginning a long downhill stretch when the realization struck: the 30 or so hikers with me, most of whom had never hiked hiked more than 5 miles, were under the impression that the hike was a little more than half over. That we had about 3 miles to go, tops, and when those 3 miles were over they’d be back at the trailhead, basking in their new PRs, motoring to a local brewpub for a celebratory pint.  read more

This year, plan your own First Day Hike on the MST

A secluded stretch of the MST in Durham County

First Day Hikes have been a tradition in N.C. State Parks for nearly a decade.

Unfortunately, there’s been nothing traditional about 2020, and there will be no First Day Hikes as we usher in 2021. 

“Parks are not hosting any guided First Day Hikes on January 1,” states a notice on ncparks.gov. “We encourage park visitors to conduct their own First Day Hikes with members of their household. Please note that parks may be busy on New Year’s Day, so please be prepared for parking delays and make backup plans.” read more

There’s never been a better time to be outdoors

If ever there was a winter to get over your dislike of the cold, this is it. 

Without dwelling, cold weather historically drives people indoors, and, this year, indoors is where you have a significantly greater chance of contracting the coronavirus. The advance of fall is already seeing a significant increase in the number of COVID-19 cases and deaths in North Carolina and nationwide. In response, on Tuesday North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper dialed back the cap on indoor group gatherings to 10 people. Staying indoors is trouble, especially if you like people. read more