Hiking News

Canadian Cross-Country Hiking Trails

Posted by on Jul 14, 2011 @ 7:08 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

Nature hikes in Canada will range from the most empowering and physically demanding trails, to footpaths natives took to get from one area to the next. Canadians love the outdoors, and it shows. The country’s current plan to construct not one, but two, cross-country recreation trails, is a sheer testament to the passion of nature hiking in the country as a whole. The two trails are called the Trans Canada Trail and the National Hiking Trail.

The Trans Canada Trail will be, at its conclusion, the world’s longest recreation parkway. It will have more than 10,000 miles of hiking trails, a length that allows people from coast to coast to enjoy its beauty. The route will take hikers from Saint John’s, Newfoundland, eastward to Victoria, British Columbia.

A secondary option for those who wish to explore the beauty of this natural wilderness is the National Hiking Trail. Once called the Senitier National Trail, upon completion this trail will be a footpath that spans 6,213 miles. What is the difference between the Trans Canada Trail and the National Hiking Trail? The National Hiking Trail is only for foot traffic, unlike the other, which is acceptable for horseback, biking, and other vehicles.

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Keeping Pace When Hiking

Posted by on Jul 14, 2011 @ 3:28 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

Pacing is an essential part of hiking because it allows people to reach goals and objectives that they may not have otherwise been able to reach. As long as the steps of the participant are measured and regular, they will be able to keep going on for much longer than they would normally.

Hiking can be a draining experience for those that are unprepared. Often times, unprepared people will go off on the trail with a huge burst of energy, and will quickly burn out and need frequent breaks, until they are so tired that they can no longer maintain the attempt.

An experienced hiker knows to pace themselves. Since the destination that people are traveling to is often a fair ways away, the act of conserving energy through a steady gait can be a life saver in this context. Therefore, it is advised that people maintain a constant and steady pace for as long as they can. It is not necessary to make hiking speedy or draining.

Instead, people can go off on the trail with a slow speed, walking in measured and determined footsteps to make it to their objective. Being consistent is very important.

The physical part of the body of the participant will be able to regulate the flow of energy that is utilized over time as the person goes, if they are going at a steady rate. Additionally, the person can establish a physical rhythm that will allow them to go on for a longer period of time.

At any rate, being able to walk with measured steps can prove to be a huge boon for those that are engaged in the activity. This is because they will be able to maintain the effort more easily, without fear of overheating or overextending themselves.

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Today’s Hike – Coontree Loop

Posted by on Jul 14, 2011 @ 2:43 pm in Hiking News, North Carolina, Pisgah National Forest | 1 comment

Today’s Hike – Coontree Loop

Went hiking on the Coontree Loop to Bennett Gap in Pisgah National Forest today. It was a nice mild day, but very, very humid. There had been significant rainfall yesterday as the trail was still quite wet, but surprisingly Coontree Creek didn’t have much water in it. In the photo, I paused for a moment while crossing the creek.

The view from Bennett Gap of Looking Glass Rock was awesome as always. For those out-of-towners who don’t get to Pisgah National Forest every week like I do, the Coontree Loop hike is about 2 1/2 hours if you hustle. Add another hour if you stop for lunch and take lots of pictures. It climbs about 1200 feet and is a nice workout if you don’t have time for a longer hike. It starts right on the main road through the forest so it’s easy to get to, and not overly crowded. We didn’t see anyone else today.

Join CMLC on a Public Hike to Connestee Falls Saturday, July 16

Posted by on Jul 13, 2011 @ 7:15 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

On Saturday, July 16, join the Carolina Mountain Land Conservancy for a hike to view the spectacular Connestee Falls waterfall from a vantage point not typically available to the public. This is a CMLC Hiking Challenge Hike! In addition to Connestee Falls, hikers will have the opportunity to view four other waterfalls: Upper Batson Creek Falls, Middle Batson Creek Falls, Batson Creek Falls, and Silver Slip Falls. The route will follow well-groomed trails entirely constructed and maintained by volunteer trail stewards. The hike will take 2 1/2 to 3 hours, including time to view the falls and take a lunch/snack break. This hike is rated moderately strenuous and is 3 miles long with 500 ft elevation change. Hikers should come prepared with proper clothing, footwear, sunscreen, water, and a snack.

For further information…

Lightning storm safety for hikers

Posted by on Jul 13, 2011 @ 4:40 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

Thunderstorms and lightning are a common occurrences throughout the United States, particularly in June, July and August. While the best defense is not to hike on days when thunderstorms are likely, there’s still a good chance that you’ll be caught in one with little warning.

Here are some important safety tips to keep you safe if you find yourself in a thunderstorm with lightning.

  • Stay away from tall trees
  • Get below treeline and off open mountain summits
  • Avoid wet areas that can conduct ground electricity
  • Do not hide in a cave
  • If you are in an open field, head for the woods
  • Throw hiking poles as far away from you as possible

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Vermont trail club opening new trail in Avery’s Gore

Posted by on Jul 13, 2011 @ 3:51 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

AVERY’S GORE, Vt. — The Green Mountain Club has broken ground on a major new hiking trail in Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom. The new “Split Rock” trail on Middle Mountain in Avery’s Gore, population zero, is part of the club’s effort to provide greater access to the Kingdom’s beautiful mountains to Vermonters and visitors.

The new trail begins off the Gore Trail and eventually will go from there along the Bluff Ridge to Island Pond — a total of 17 miles.

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Wilderness Skills: What to do when…

Posted by on Jul 13, 2011 @ 2:44 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

Saturday, July 16th Linville Falls Campground Amphitheater (milepost 316) 7:30pm: While out hiking you may become lost, get injured, encounter wildlife, or endure a thunderstorm. What do you do then? Come find out!

Blue Ridge Parkway Hike of the Week: Shades of Summer

Posted by on Jul 13, 2011 @ 2:38 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

Friday, July 15th Rough Butt Bald Overlook (milepost 425) 10am: Join Parkway Rangers for an easy 4 mile hike to the base of Mount Hardy. Experience the magic of cool crisp hiking through high altitude Balsam Fir forests. Take note of the plethora of varying shades of greens and browns. Meet at the Rough Butt Bald Overlook (MP 425) just south of Devil’s Courthouse. Bring water; wear good walking shoes; and be prepared for changeable weather. Call (828) 298-5330 ext. 304 for details.

How to use pepper spray during a bear attack

Posted by on Jul 13, 2011 @ 7:16 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

When hiking in bear country, it is recommended that each hiker carry his or her own can of pepper spray. If a bear attacks, you will be happy if you have already practiced these six tips:

1.) Have your can of bear pepper spray readily accessible. Wear it in a holster on your hip or shoulder strap of backpack. Don’t pack it away inside your fanny back or backpack – you will have only seconds to get at it, if needed.

2.) Use bear pepper spray only in up-close confrontations with a bear. Pepper spray is not to be used as a deterrent like mosquito spray. Don’t spray it around your tent – it will not “ward off” the bears.

3.) Remove the safety, aim between the eyes of the bear and give the bear at least a five second blast.

4.) Keep backing up as you shoot the spray

5.) Don’t close your eyes – you need to keep a good aim on the bear’s face.

6.) Don’t turn your back to the bear. Back out of the situation slowly.


Olympic National Park’s Mountain Goat Plan Warns Of Dangers of Urinating On Hiking Trails

Posted by on Jul 12, 2011 @ 7:11 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

With hopes of preventing another fatal encounter between a hiker and a mountain goat, Olympic National Park officials will urge hikers not to urinate on trails, as the salty deposits in effect become “long linear salt licks.”

Bob Boardman, of Port Angeles, Washington, was gored to death by a mountain goat last Oct. 16 on a park trail near Klahhane Ridge some 17 miles south of Port Angeles. The 63-year-old was protecting other hikers from a goat, estimated at 300 pounds, when it gored him in the thigh and then reportedly stood over him as he bled to death. Park officials, knowing that mountain goats are attracted to salt, immediately began to spread the word to park visitors about not urinating on or near trails or walking away from your backpack or daypack, as sweaty shoulder straps could also lure mountain goats.

Last week Olympic Superintendent Karen Gustin signed off on the park’s revised Mountain Goat Action Plan. The 27-page document provides a biological overview of goats, discusses their aggressive behavioral postures, and mentions their affinity for salt and mineral licks. “If goats approach closer, encourage them to leave the area with loud noises, arm waving, snapping plastic bags, and rock throwing,” the report says.

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Hanging Lake: A National Natural Landmark

Posted by on Jul 12, 2011 @ 4:09 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

The pristine turquoise lake known as Hanging Lake has always been one of the most popular hikes for visitors to Glenwood Springs, CO. Located along Interstate 70 in Glenwood Canyon, the breathtaking one-mile trail has awed countless hikers for decades. Now the scenic spot has another big fan – the U.S. federal government, which recently designated Hanging Lake as a National Natural Landmark (NNL).

The Hanging Lake trailhead is located approximately 10 miles east of Glenwood Springs along I-70. The trail follows Dead Horse Creek, with foot bridges spanning the creek along the way.

I hiked this trail in the summer of 1983. It truly is a beautiful sight.

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Ethical hiking in Annapurna, Himalayas, Nepal

Posted by on Jul 12, 2011 @ 3:22 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

Hike through the Himalaya’s while giving back to the Nepalese community.

Lisa Young explored 
a new community trek route that passes through the spectacular Annapurna mountains to Kopra Ridge. This route focuses on what’s known as ‘socially conscious trekking’, which means they stayed in lodges that help support 
the community.

    Lisa’s Trekking tips:

  • Travel insurance is highly recommended before setting off.
  • Take plenty of small Nepali Rupee notes as lodges struggle to find change.
  • Avoid trekking alone in remote areas, especially if you are a woman.
  • Carry a dry-bag or plastic rubbish bags to protect your gear from rain.
  • Take two water bottles. Avoid buying bottled mineral water. Instead pay a few rupees to the lodge staff for freshly boiled water – let it cool over night.
  • Tips are discretionary, but the going rate is £2 – £3 for each porter, Sherpa and guide per day from each trekker.
  • Trek at your own pace, it’s not a race and your body needs time to adjust to altitude.
  • Drink plenty of water to avoid dehydration and prevent altitude sickness.
  • Be polite and courteous to locals and fellow trekkers, ‘Namaste’ is the local greeting for ‘hello’.
  • Always ask before taking photos of people. You wouldn’t like a camera shoved in your face, would you?

Read more…

Two-Heel Drive, Tom Mangan’s site for hikers, campers and nature cravers

Posted by on Apr 24, 2011 @ 10:30 am in Hiking News, North Carolina | 2 comments

Two-Heel Drive, Tom Mangan’s site for hikers, campers and nature cravers

Earlier today, Tom Mangan of Two-Heel Drive challenged hiking bloggers to “review and profile a great hiking blog you discovered in the past month.” For me, this one’s easy… why it’s Tom’s site itself. Unlike my neophyte month-long foray into the joy of trail reporting, Tom has been at it for five years with his well-known and well-followed Two-Heel Drive. Most recently Tom has been sharing his experiences on the trails of North Carolina, but that barely scratches the surface. To understand the genesis of Tom’s love of all things outdoors, a little bio is in order.

Tom is a writer by education and training, and a writer with passion. That, along with persistence, helps explain Tom’s success and endurance in the environment of niche blogging. He knows how to place his readers at the scene of his latest outdoor adventure. After going to work for the San Jose Mercury News in Silicon Valley in 1999, Tom started Two-Heel Drive in 2006 as he says, “despite persistent evidence that bloggers rarely hike, and hikers rarely blog.” It only made sense to detail his excursions in and around the San Francisco Bay Area, including the Diablo Range, the Santa Cruz Mountains, and the Marin Range. Over the years Tom expanded outward with reports about the Pacific Crest Trail, the west coast’s equivalent of the Appalachian Trail.

I first became aware of Two-Heel Drive about a month ago when I stumbled upon Tom’s excellent piece about the 10 Essentials for Happy Hiking. I liked the way this was done, because it wasn’t just another warning about safety precautions to take before you hike, and along the trail. Instead, I liked the tone of comfort, and happiness. I don’t know about you, but that’s why I hike, because I am a happy person who enjoys hiking very much. I also found some great tips from Tom and his readers about blister prevention, compass basics, and trail mix, among many others in the information section titled Hike Hacker. I can never learn enough to make my hiking experiences even more pleasurable, and safe.

Tom relocated to North Carolina in 2009, and has been sharing his experiences on the trails of the Piedmont and the Blue Ridge ever since. Tom has a profound interest in conservation, something very near and dear to my own heart. I dream that generations of hikers 500 years from now can enjoy the same beauty and tranquility that we do today. It is only right for us to leave that legacy for those who succeed us. Tom is also very busy on Twitter and Facebook… you will find him all over the Internet. If you’re new to hiking, and you’re new to blogging about hiking like me, then Two-Heel Drive, Tom Mangan’s site for hikers, campers and nature cravers is a great bookmark for daily reference.


This post was created by Jeff Clark. Please feel free to use the sharing icons below, or add your thoughts to the comments. Pack it in, pack it out. Preserve the past. Respect other hikers. Let nature prevail. Leave no trace.