Cumberland Trail Hiking Series returning after last year’s success

Outdoor Chattanooga is bringing back its popular Cumberland Trail Hiking Series for a second year. The series will provide guided hikes across the developing trail system throughout 2019.

The series featured nine day hikes and three overnight backpacking trips last year. Despite the success of the day hikes, the overnight trips failed to gain interest. Outdoor Chattanooga leaders decided to scrap the overnight trips for the series this year and focus on the day hikes.

The half-day hikes will be held once a month on Saturdays with the exception of the summer months of July, August and September.

Trip leaders will shuttle hikers to and from the start of the hike. Each hike will be between 4 and 7 miles and mostly downhill. The organization is hoping to appeal to a wide audience and get new hikers involved.

“We’ve been able to cut the trail segments into shorter distances and shuttle to make it less intimidating for those not used to finding trailheads, following trail markers and the logistics,” said Terri Chapin, who will be leading some of the hikes. “We handle a lot of that to make it easier.”

Last year’s hikes also featured people traveling from Knoxville and other outside cities who were interested in hiking new sections of the Cumberland Trail system. The guided hikes offer those users a safer experience and introduce them to the unfamiliar area.

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