Pacific Crest Trail celebrates 50 years

Thirty-six and a half miles east of Lake Isabella is the historic route discovered by Joseph Rutherford Walker in 1834 known as Walker Pass. Because the pass connects the Great Basin and the interior of California, it was only logical that when a walking and equestrian trail extending from Mexico to Canada was conceived, Walker Pass would be a vital section of that path....

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Trekking on Turkey’s historic Ephesus-Mimas Route

An historic 709-kilometer route in İzmir, Turkey that connects ancient Greek Ionian footways awaits visitors who want to enjoy nature as well as learn of the culture and history in the region. The main part of the route consists of six footways connecting ancient cities such as Ephesus, Colophon, Lebedos, Teos, Klazomenai, and Erythrai. The route starts in Ephesus in...

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Hiking the Jordan Trail to Petra

Billed as the “Inca Trail of the Middle East,” the 400-mile Jordan Trail runs from the Mediterranean-influenced villages of Umm Qais in the north to the coral-rich Red Sea in the south, passing through 52 villages en route, as well as two UNESCO-listed sites. The result of an eight year effort by 40-some volunteers, the route is primed to put the country on...

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Hiking groups do more than just hike

When people think of hiking clubs, they probably envision groups that lead hikes in the forests and mountains — and they’d be right. But Southern Oregon is home to a number of organizations that do a lot more than hike — they actually get their hands dirty keeping trails open, and in some cases they are building new thoroughfares in the backcountry. Gabe Howe, director...

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New Fonta Flora State Trail system connecting Asheville to Morganton grows

  It was a sleepy little town where farmers worked the rich land along the Linville River. The Burke County, North Carolina town of Fonta Flora was also once home to a post office, the Rhyne School and Old Sardis Church of 1838. But starting in 1916 the residents were dispersed and displaced to higher ground as the Catawba and Linville rivers and Paddy’s Creek...

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The 7 national trails of the Pacific Northwest

There are a ton of trails in the Pacific Northwest, but only a select few have earned the honor of being designated as national trails. From thru-hikes to road trip routes, all are part of the National Trails System, created by Congress in 1968 to “promote the preservation of, public access to, travel within, and enjoyment and appreciation of the open-air, outdoor areas...

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Hiking in Croatia: How to Master Some of the World’s Rarest Views

The Velebit Hiking Trail or Velebitski planinarski put (VPP), is open throughout the year, though heavy snowfall makes winter trekking unwise. Prime hiking season is typically from May to October. The markings are the typical European red-white-red stripes or a red circle with white center. The initials VPP often accompanies marking at trailheads. Because hiking can be...

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Tips to stay safe while hiking in the mountains

Hiking can also be dangerous and occasionally deadly if not properly prepared, especially in the mountains. The weather can change at a moment’s notice or you can fall and hurt yourself. That’s why it’s vitally important to be prepared for anything, even when out on a short hike. A map and compass are just two of the ten essentials for safe hiking. Other items include...

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Wilderness boost: Why hiking does wonders for your mind and body

  If you’ve ever had to catch your breath on an uphill stretch of trail or if your legs have felt sore after a hike, you know that hiking is a workout. You’ve also likely experienced some of the health benefits of hiking: improved cardiovascular performance, more endurance, stronger muscles and a better mood. While many people hike simply for the enjoyment of...

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Hiking the Garden of Eden – The Alpe Adria Trail, Slovenia

From the moment you touch down in Ljubljana, Slovenia you know you’re about to experience a land of the Gods. Rich green fields spread as far as the eye can see, only broken by a spattering of wild flowers like the sprinkles on a cake. The depth and lusciousness of these fields reduce remind one childhood, and feeling a primal urge to prance through them like...

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Women Hiking Solo: Staying Savvy and Safe

Regardless of gender, as a solo hiker there are daunting factors: If you injure yourself or encounter a dangerous wild animal you’re bereft of support. Yet, as a female solo hiker, the prospect of unwanted attention (or worse) whilst wandering in the wild can add an eerie element to a trek. Perhaps potential female hikers are even deterred from treading onto the trail;...

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The cloud forest in our backyard

On some mornings, the mountains across our valley radiate in the dawn light, but frequently they are coyly veiled by clouds. These are the highest peaks in the East — ancient mountains, among the oldest on the continent — and a tattered shawl of dark forest drapes over the ridge and its craggy shoulders. This high-elevation dark green forest is one of Western North...

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Hiking rescues increase in Southern California; could social media be to blame?

As the weather warms up, more people will head outdoors to hiking spots throughout Southern California and elsewhere. However, more people outdoors means more mountain rescues. “Last year our eight-volunteer Search and Rescue teams had a record 684 missions. In 2016, we had 593 and there has been a fairly steady rise over the last few years,” said Mike Leum, assistant...

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Study: Hiking Makes You Happier

British and American scientists have published new research showing that group nature walks help us combat stress while boosting mental well-being. Researchers from the University of Michigan and Edge Hill University in England evaluated 1,991 participants in England’s Walking for Health program, which hosts nearly 3,000 walks per week for more than 70,000 regular...

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What does it take to hike the entire Appalachian Trail?

Itching for adventure and seeking a break from their D.C. jobs, Elise Mann and Will Stowe figured it was time to go for a walk. In 2015, that’s exactly what the couple did, hiking roughly 2,190 miles from Georgia to Maine through woods and mountains, snow and rain on the Appalachian Trail. It took 146 days, four pairs of hiking boots each and more nonperishable food than...

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Bill to Link Minnesota Hiking Trails to National Route Advances in US House

Legislation to declare several hiking trails in the Northland to be part of the North Country National Scenic Trail has passed a U.S. House committee. The bill from Rep. Rick Nolan (D-Minn.) would incorporate the Superior Hiking Trail, Border Route Trail, and the Kekekabic Trail into the national trail. The move would add 400 miles to the national trail, bringing it to...

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How to Clean Hiking Boots – A Quick Guide

  If your hiking boots are as clean as a whistle, without a scuff or a scratch or a hint of dirt to be seen, then you’re doing it wrong. Hiking boots should only look pristine when they are brand new and have never once been worn on the trail. After that, every scrape and stain on those boots is a badge of honor. While it’s fine for your hiking boots to look...

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Free entrance to all national parks is Saturday to kickoff National Park Week

The U.S. Department of the Interior announced its kicking off National Park Week with free entrance to all national parks on Saturday, April 21, 2018. For one week each April, Interior joins with the National Park Foundation to celebrate America’s public lands. The theme for National Park Week is “Park Stars,” which celebrates everything from starry skies to park...

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Top Cincinnati Hiking Destinations

According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the average American spends 87 percent of their life indoors and another 6 percent in cars. That means humans are only outside for roughly 7 percent of their lives — a disheartening statistic. But you can buck that trend: Greater Cincinnati, Ohio is home to a myriad of free parks with their own unique vibe. And, if you...

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Anti-gay bias lead to deadly shooting on Appalachian Trail in 1988

Maybe they should have looked more closely at the name of the place where they parked… Dead Woman Hollow Road. But bad omens were not on their minds. All they knew on that warm spring afternoon, May 12, 1988, was that they were young, in love, and eager to be alone in the wilderness, hiking the Appalachian Trail. They were also both women, a fact that would later...

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Public comment sought on trail improvement plan for Pisgah National Forest

Popular trails in the Shining Rock and Middle Prong Wilderness along the Blue Ridge Parkway in Haywood County, North Carolina are included in a trail improvement plan for the Pisgah National Forest. “Each year, several million visitors come to experience the natural beauty and rich history of the Pisgah,” said Dave Casey, the head ranger for the Pisgah district of the...

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Planning a spring hike? Step carefully when it’s muddy so you don’t damage trails, habitat

The welcome arrival of spring weather will undoubtedly encourage outdoor enthusiasts to take advantage by hitting the many trails in their surrounding communities. It’s a great time of year to see colorful wildflowers blooming in the desert, before the arrival of rattlesnakes and the stifling summer heat, or spring ephemerals that blossom before the greening of the...

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Tips and Tricks for Visiting 26 National Parks, Straight From Park Employees

Each of the National Park Service’s 417 locations, from national parks and monuments, has unique sights and activities — that can be best appreciated with a few insider tips. For example, a hidden gem at Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore in Michigan is Port Oneida Rural Historic District, which is filled with turn-of-the-century farmhouses, beautiful views of Lake...

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Get outdoors with a hike in North Central West Virginia

North Central West Virginia is known for world-class hiking for every skill level. There are a number of picturesque trails winding through forest, across ridge lines or to peaks with stunning views of the surrounding hills. Rail trail systems exist in many West Virginia counties, including Harrison and Marion. At Prickett’s Fort State Park, the rail trail goes through...

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Closed Oregon Trails In Columbia River Gorge Jam Trailheads On Washington Side

More than 30 popular hiking trails on the Oregon side of the Columbia River Gorge remain closed because of hazards left in the wake of last year’s Eagle Creek wildfire. That has park rangers wrangling crowds on the unburned Washington side of the Gorge. Unsafe conditions will likely keep many trails on the Oregon side of the western Gorge closed until this summer...

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5 great places for spring hiking in upstate New York

With warmer weather finally on its way, hiking can be a great way to break a months-long spell of cabin fever and catch some springtime scenery. Luckily, the Southern Tier offers a variety of hikes that range in length and difficulty, providing outdoors enthusiasts of all ability levels with the chance to view blossoming flowers, chirping birds and flowing streams....

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Volunteers take on historic effort to sign the Continental Divide Trail

  It can be hard to find your way along the Continental Divide National Scenic Trail (CDT), which runs from Mexico to Canada along the spine of the Rocky Mountains. The trail is completely unmarked in some sections and, in others, blown-down trees and bleaching from the sun have made the existing trail markers, or “blazes,” difficult to spot. But, this year, in...

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Rainbow Falls Trail Project Continues on Mt. LeConte

Great Smoky Mountains National Park officials announced that the second phase of a 2-year trail rehabilitation project will begin Monday, April 16 on the popular Rainbow Falls Trail. The trail will be closed April 16, 2018 through November 15, 2018 on Monday mornings at 7:00 a.m through Thursday evenings at 5:30 p.m. weekly. Due to the construction process on the narrow...

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Reaching the Pinnacle: Hiking the Ouachita National Recreation Trail in Arkansas

Most Oklahoma hikers are acquainted with the bi-state Ouachita National Recreation Trail’s scenic 46 miles of outdoor adventure in southeastern Oklahoma, which roughly parallels the scenic Talimena Drive roadway. Lesser known to Sooner hikers, the trail’s eastern terminus near striking Pinnacle Mountain in central Arkansas provides a trove of hiking fun and...

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Public can weigh in on proposed improvements to Pacific Northwest Trail

After traversing Montana, Idaho and the North Cascades, hikers on the Pacific Northwest Trail pass through Whatcom and Skagit counties on their way to the Washington coast. Pacific Northwest Trail Association Executive Director Jeff Kish said in this area the trail could use some improvements and that now is the time for the public to get involved. The Mount...

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Hikes in San Fancisco’s Bay Area: 9 trails with waterfall endings

The Bay Area’s abundance of outdoors activities is no secret, and now that spring and springtime rains are here, there’s no better time to get outside, especially if you don’t mind a little mud on your shoes. Uvas Canyon County Park, a formerly obscure South Bay hiking retreat, is now so popular for its Instagram-friendly waterfalls that it now requires reservations on...

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Castle Crags’ spectacular little seen world

With one short jog from Interstate 5 in Northern California, you can discover the state park that is hidden in plain sight. The turnoff is at Castella, bound for Castle Crags State Park. Drivers on I-5 get eye-popping views of the granite spires, pyramids and a missile-shaped dome that poke 6,000-foot holes in the sky. Each hour, about 2,000 vehicles pass by Castle...

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