Monday — never an easy time for the outdoors enthusiast. After a weekend of adventure, returning to the humdrum work-a-day world can make one melancholy. To help ease the transition, every Monday we feature a 90 Second Escape — essentially, a 90-second escape to a place you’d probably rather be: a trail, a park, a greenway, a lake … anywhere as long as it’s not under a fluorescent bulb.
If you live in the eastern part of the state, Irene promises more adventure than you’d care to handle. Thus, it’s a good weekend to head west.
We’re going to bypass the coast this weekend for obvious reasons. If you live Down East, you’re probably not thinking about where the nearest 5K is, or whether there’s a group paddle nearby. If you don’t live Down East, the region probably isn’t high on your list of recreation destinations.
Officially, on average today is the coldest day of the year. Which means it’ll start getting warmer come the weekend, great incentive for getting out.
Think this weather is for the birds? Well … you’re right. It may seem cold to you, but for hundreds of thousands of birds from more northerly climes, North Carolina’s coast is to them what Florida is to humans. That makes this time of year ideal for getting out in the wild for some birdwatching. Here are three programs this weekend where you can go out with trained naturalists and learn just who likes to spend their winter at the coast:
Just when it looked like December’s excellent cross-country skiing conditions in North Carolina’s high country was a once-in-an-every-five-years-or-so occurrence, it looks like Mother Nature might be staging an encore starting this weekend.
Weather.com and Weather Underground both see snow starting in the Boone area Friday and lasting at least through Wednesday of next week. The omnipotent Ray’s Weather, the definitive source for mountain weather, is likewise suggesting snow for the next week, and says some higher elevations could get a foot or more alone out of the system moving through today and Saturday. Along with the snow: dang cold temperatures, possibly not getting out of the 20s for much of the next week.
Last week, according to SkiSoutheast.com, between 18 and 22 inches of snow fell in North Carolina’s high country, more snow is falling (Ski Beech reported 9 inches of new snow overnight), and snow is expected to fall throughout the week. That’s good news for the state’s downhill ski industry, although cold temperatures alone is enough to make ski areas and their sophisticated snowmaking operations happy. The true benefactors of this ongoing dump of Mother Nature’s own?