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, then ran yet again on July 6, 2021. The original has been paired down from 10 hikes to 5, but with more details on the 5.
Some of us don’t mind hiking in the heat. Switch to cotton, freeze your water bottle overnight, use your trekking poles as spider web vanquishers … . Sure, you work up a nice glow. But you’re on the trail, and really, it’s not unbearable.
We recognize, though, that not everyone is inclined to keep on hikin’ between Memorial Day and Labor Day. We also recognize that along about the Fourth of July weekend, the aforementioned cool-weather hikers are starting to undergo withdrawal. They get out their phone and stare longingly at those photos from the beginning of the year, when you were bundled in fleece. Ah, the good cold days.read more
Winter hikes in the mountains intimidate us. Not so much the hiking itself — who doesn’t love tromping through a forest carpeted with snow? Rather, it’s simply getting to the trailhead. The prospect of icy mountain roads, of road closures, of other drivers who don’t know how to drive on icy roads. Why run the risk?read more
We’ve been thinking about some of our favorite mountain places to explore come fall, and realized that there are a variety of ways we love to explore them. There’s the day hike: spending a day to see as much as possible, then heading home. There’s the basecamp trip: Either establishing camp in a campground or hiking in a short distance in full pack and setting up camp, then doing day hikes from there. Or, there’s the point-to-point backpack trip. Since we all explore differently, we thought, why not look at all three options? So today, we do.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