Category Archives: Summer

Spend this summer on the Mountains-to-Sea Trail

A late spring day, temperature in the mid-50s under a cloudless sky, hiking down Yellowstone Prong east of Graveyard Fields along the Blue Ridge Parkway. It was during that soft-focus, three-day flash that marks the transition from winter to spring, when the natural world is enveloped in pastel greens and yellows and pinks and oranges, the colors, I’ve heard, that the tress will revert to in fall. There was the slightest of breezes, just enough to make the budding trees whisper.  read more

Defeat the heat with these 5 N.C. mountain hikes

The following is a variation of a piece that originally ran Aug. 6, 2014, titled, “Summer Hiking: Beat the Heat,” that we rejiggered and ran again, titled “Hiking: Where to Beat the Heat,” on July 20, 2016. This time, we pair down from 10 hikes to 5, but elaborate more on the 5. read more

Sunrise, sunset: the best times of day to embrace summer hiking

It was a Wednesday evening four years ago about this time and we were huddled in a splotch of shade just off the parking lot, waiting for the last hikers to arrive. It was a few minutes before 6; the temperature was trying to drop from the day’s high of 88, with a humidity that seemed to match. We hadn’t taken a single step, but already we were aglow. 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