GetBackpacking! Weekend Quick Escape to the Uwharries


Enjoy the best of backpacking — backcountry camping away from the crowds — and hiking in just a day pack on this Weekend Quick Escape to the Birkhead Mountain Wilderness of central North Carolina’s Uwharrie National Forest.

Dates: Friday, Dec. 10, 5 p.m. to Sunday, Dec. 12, 2 p.m.

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Bemoaning the fact you haven’t been able to backpack much this year and worry that it’s too late to go now — especially if you’re not used to hiking with 30 pounds on your back? Well, bemoan no more: our series of fourth-quarter Weekend Quick Escapes returns in 2020, giving you the opportunity to hike a short distance (a mile, in this case), set up camp, and enjoy a weekend of daypack hiking!
Here’s the deal:
* We leave at 5 p.m. Friday, so you shouldn’t have to take time off from work.
* We drive to a trailhead that’s no more than two and a half hours away.
* We hike to a campsite that’s anywhere from a half mile to less than 3. (We’ll be to camp no later than 8 p.m.).
* We set up camp (yes, in the dark; it’s a good skill to have, and easier to learn in a group).
* Saturday, we have the entire day to hike. We’ll hike in day packs, returning to our basecamp at day’s end. Our Saturday hikes will be from 10 to 15 miles.
* Sunday, we do one more short hike before heading home. You’ll be home mid to late afternoon.It’s the perfect option for backpackers who thought they didn’t have time to plan a fall backpack trip, let alone take one. Our December trip: the Birkhead Mountain Wilderness of the Uwharrie National Forest. Here’s how the weekend will unfold:
Friday, Dec. 10: We’ll arrive at the Tot Hill trailhead west of Asheboro at 6:30 p.m. and hike 2.9 miles to Camp 5.


Saturday, Dec. 11: In day packs, we’ll enjoy the 10-mile Birkhead Mountain Wilderness Loop, possibly taking a side excursion or two along the way. It’s the one time of year we can get good views from the ridge lines in this Designated Wilderness Area on the northern tip of the Uwharrie National Forest.

Sunday, Dec. 12: We’ll pack up and hike about 3.5 miles back to the trailhead. If it’s an especially clear day, we will drive to the nearby Joe Moffitt Trailhead and hike 0.8 miles on the Uwharrie Trail to Little Long Mountain for the best view in the Uwharrie range.

Cost: $105

Includes: Camping, eguide for the trip detailing all hikes (including a custom map and elevation profile), tips on what to bring and how to dress, information on the terrain we’ll be exploring. We’ll also have a Zoom Trip Planning meeting on Monday, Dec. 6, at 6 p.m. to go over the hike and give tips on how to be ready for a quick Friday escape, hiking and setting up camp at night, unique challenges this trip may present, and more.

Hike is limited to 8 participants.


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