Humpback Rocks: A hiking hot spot on the Blue Ridge Parkway

For the inexperienced hiker, the task might be a bit rigorous. But for anyone, be it a novice or a seasoned mountain climber, the reward for reaching the peak is spine-tingling. Humpback Rocks, a hiker’s picturesque paradise, draws tourists from all over to the Blue Ridge Parkway. Located just outside Waynesboro, VA, about 6 miles down the parkway at the northern end,...

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Fluke Fire Burning Atop Sequoia Tree Leads To Small Closure Of Congress Trail At Sequoia National Park

A fluke fire burning in the crown of a giant sequoia has prompted the partial closure of the Congress Trail at Sequoia National Park. The fire is a hold-over from the Circle Meadow Prescribed Fire, conducted last summer to maintain a regular fire cycle that improves forest health by reducing the amount of dead, woody debris that can lead to larger, more intense fires,...

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Renovated Rosendale trestle reopens, reconnecting long-sundered Wallkill Valley Rail Trail

“A great day for Rosendale” is how supervisor Jeanne Walsh characterized the grand opening of the renovated railroad trestle spanning the Rondout Creek, linking the northern and southern portions of the nearly completed 24-mile Wallkill Valley Rail Trail from Gardiner to Kingston in New York. Four years after the Wallkill Valley Land Trust (WVLT) and the Open Space...

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New trail christened at Baker Lake, ID

The Baker Lake Trailhead northeast of Ketchum, ID gives recreationists access to serene views of crystal-blue alpine lakes and stunning vistas of the Boulder Mountains. Now, hikers have more options off of this versatile trailhead. The Idaho Trails Association worked to complete an extension of the Osberg Ridge trail system. Hikers can now begin at the Baker Lake...

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What it’s like to be a national park ranger

As a park ranger for the National Park Service, you share the science, history and beauty of this natural wonder with thousands of visitors from around the world. National parks are like outdoor museums. They preserve some of America’s most beautiful and historic places. Park rangers protect the parks’ animals, plants, land, buildings, artifacts and people. They have a...

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Appalachian Trail Biennial features music, culture, trails

The Appalachian Trail Conservancy’s Biennial Conference invites the public to attend live music, dancing, presentations about hiking trails, and a Cherokee storyteller July 21-25 at Western Carolina University in Cullowhee, NC. Events each evening begin at 8 p.m. Nightly tickets are $7, and children younger than 12 are admitted free. Some of the highlights: • On July 21,...

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Acadia reopens hiking trails

Hiking trails at Valley Cove and Jordan Cliffs in Acadia National Park, ME, closed earlier this spring to protect peregrine falcons, have been reopened. Falcons had been observed defending and engaging in courtship behavior at Valley Cove and Jordan Cliffs areas in April and May but have failed in their nesting attempt, Superintendent Sheridan Steele announced. The...

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Move your downward dog to the hiking trail this summer

Considering hiking is truly about the journey, Steve Tsilimoss is taking each step in the right direction. The new Hiking Yoga program he’s introduced to the Vail Valley this summer brings eastern philosophy to the Western Slope of Colorado, where mindfulness meets movement. “I think this program adds an important element to what yoga was founded on — serenity in being...

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One-night trips into the Smokies

For day hikers who want to take the next step or for a seasoned backpackers who can’t find the time or resources to make that long trip this year, outdoor author Jim Parham is offering up the solution that is just right: the short backpacking trip. His recently published book, Backpacking Overnights, details 50 one- and two-night trips in the Carolina Mountains. The...

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Maine author traces Thoreau’s steps in new hiking guide

“I have met but one or two persons in the course of my life who understood the art of Walking,” Henry David Thoreau wrote in the mid 1800s. Thoreau, a Massachusetts man, was many things — an author, philosopher, naturalist, historian, transcendentalist — but perhaps more importantly, he was a walker. And if Thoreau hadn’t learned “the art of walking,” his life and legacy...

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An angel for trekkers

Wiffer’s Wayside is really just a condo. But for hikers trekking across North America on the Continental Divide Trail, it’s truly a luxury hotel. Sharon Henschen of Sidney, Ohio, is well-known to the hiking community as “Wiffer,” a trail name she was given because of her keen sense of smell. She makes her vacation condo – two miles north of Purgatory, CO at Durango...

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Wildflower Festival Coming To Cedar Breaks National Monument

At 10,000 feet and above, wildflowers bloom a wee bit later than, for instance, at sea level. That’s why Cedar Breaks National Monument’s 8th Annual Wildflower Festival is just beginning on July 6th. “During this spectacular display, visitors to the Monument will be able to see paintbrush and primrose, lupine and larkspur, and a spectrum of other flowers in...

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5 Facts You May Not Know About California’s National Forests

In California, we rely on our National Forests for half of our water. That is one of the many reasons why the National Forest Foundation is working to restore the valuable resources in the forests that contribute to $37 billion in food and commodities. From their work in the Tahoe on aquatic, forest and rural communities to their work in the Angeles National Forest to...

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Group of teachers, coaches take hiking challenge

Hiking 34 miles in steamy, hot temperatures probably isn’t what most schoolteachers dream about doing on their summer vacation. For five Hampton School District teachers and coaches, though, it was their idea of a “challenge.” The group got together June 22 for the 17th annual Rachel Carson Trails Conservancy Challenge – a 34-mile hike between...

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Hike Florence Nature Preserve with CMLC

Join Carolina Mountain Land Conservancy (CMLC) on Saturday, July 13, for a guided hike through CMLC-owned Florence Nature Preserve. Hikers will trek a lollipop-route, circumnavigating the Preserve to reach two of FNP’s most scenic locales: Rattlesnake Knob and Little Pisgah Point. These rock outcroppings feature scenic views of the rugged Hickory Nut Gorge. This...

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Mount Hood book guides hikers safely around the mountain

A handy, pocket-size book that has long been in many a Portland hiker’s collection has gotten an upgrade and a facelift. “Around & About Mount Hood” is a new edition of an old classic that was first published in 1997. The author is Sonia Buist, with Emily Keller. Lots of things have changed around the mountain since the previous version of the book...

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Hiking enthusiasts flock to Mount Fuji as climbing season opens

Hikers flocked to Mount Fuji on Monday as Japan’s highest mountain, which last month was added to UNESCO’s World Heritage List, opened for the climbing season. At the 3,776-meter summit, climbers cheered as the sun broke through the clouds at around 4:40 a.m. Monday. They trekked up the mountain, which straddles Shizuoka and Yamanashi prefectures, after three of its four...

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Canadian man hiking for 5 years has backpack stolen, burned

A Canadian man said he lost all his camping gear and footage for a documentary about his five-year hike when someone stole and burned his backpack. Dana Meise said he was hiking in Saskatchewan when he was invited by a family to see the chuck wagon races in Onion Lake. When he turned his back for a few minutes while preparing to sleep in one of the wagons, someone stole...

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The 5 best U.S. places to raise outdoor kids

Want to get your children hooked on the active life? In these five family-friendly towns, adventure is right outside the front door. New York City is a great place to raise a cultured, worldly kid, but when it comes to teaching them to appreciate nature, the Big Apple falls short in a big way. Though it’s geographically close to a number of quick, fantastic...

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Chimney Rock Wins Favorite State Park, Best Hiking Trail in Best of the Mountains Southeast Travel Awards

Chimney Rock at Chimney Rock State Park in North Carolina won the platinum award for Favorite State Park in Blue Ridge Country’s 2013 Best of the Mountains travel poll, covering seven southern states in the Appalachian Mountains. Readers awarded three more platinum honors for Best Hike to Take the Dog Along, Best Birding Area and Best Beautiful Fall Foliage Spot....

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