We get so much from our trails in a year. Is it too much to ask that we give a little back on just one day? That day being this Saturday, June 5?
For a few decades now, the first Saturday of June has been National Trails Day. It’s a day when we celebrate our trails, sometimes by doing maintenance, sometimes by simply taking a hike. In North Carolina this National Trails Day, 15 events have been registered with the American Hiking Society, which sponsors the annual event.read more
Whooo, baby! We’re looking at our first 90-degree weekend of the year. And you had your heart set on taking a hike.
No need to cancel your plans. You just need to alter them a wee bit.
From our GetHiking! Guide to Summer Hiking, a bit of advice:
Dress appropriately. Button-up fishing and hiking shirts typically have vents and mesh that do a good job of keeping your torso from building up head. Shorts are good, but there are also inexpensive lightweight nylon pants that protect your legs without keeping in the heat.
Hydrate. Always important, especially in heat. Increase your desire to drink by packing cold water, either by filling a water bottle three-quarters full the night before, freezing it and topping it off with cold water before the hike, or by loading a bladder with ice, then filling in the nooks and crannies with cold water.
Hike early. The coolest part of the day. This weekend, the temperatures shortly after sunrise should be in the low 60s.
Hike late. Temperatures typically peak late afternoon, then drop as the sun does. By 6:30 p.m. you should be down 10 degrees from the day’s high, and you’ll benefit from a continually dropping thermostat.
Choose a heat-resistant trail. How, you ask? Look for trails with:
Higher elevations. The temperature drops roughly 3 degrees for every 1,000 feet of elevation.
Near water. Trails along creeks or around lakes are especially good. If you start to overheat, kick off your boots and wade in.
Look for a northern exposure. Trails that spend most of their time on a northern exposure, away from direct sunlight, tend to be cooler.
Not sure you want to do that much research? Worry not. We have some recommendations.read more
The signs of re-emergence continue this weekend, with North Carolina State Parks hosting some of the more ambitious — and larger hikes — that they’ve done since the pandemic, including:
3 Parks — 2 States — 1 Hike, Saturday, 8:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m., Crowders Mountain State Park/Boulders Access, Kings Mountain. This 10-mile out-and-back, co-sponsored by the Friends of Crowders Mountain, takes the Ridgeline Trail south into South Carolina’s Kings Mountain State Park and Kings Mountain National Military Park. A long hike, but it flattens after crossing into the Palmetto State. The hike is limited to 30 (been a while since we’ve seen a hike that big), and drinks and snacks will be available through the Friends prior to the hike. Free, but a donation to support the work of the Friends would be appreciated. Register by calling 704.853.5375; learn more here.read more
On today’s Morning Walk with Joe on Facebook Live we marveled at the unique confluence facing us this weekend: cool temperatures (in the 60s and 70s) and sunny skies, and a fully leafed-out forest.
Typically, when we think of a leafed-out forest in the Southeast we also think of hot temperatures and muggy air. Walking through the Seven Mile Creek Nature Preserve this morning I was struck by the full onslaught of green and the fact that, with the temperature around 60, I needed long sleeves. Spring hiking weather with the visual benefits of summer. It’s the best, and that’s what this weekend is about: the chance to take a summerlike hike in spring.read more