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Appalachian Trail Finishers Share 99 Tips for Aspiring Thru-Hikers

Posted by on Jun 23, 2019 @ 10:15 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Appalachian Trail Finishers Share 99 Tips for Aspiring Thru-Hikers

  If you’re thinking about hiking the Appalachian Trail, you probably have a lot of questions. Who better to answer them than the people who have already been there and done that? Experienced thru-hikers were surveyed to get their best advice about hiking the Appalachian Trail. It can be difficult to get friends and family on board, but reassure them the best you can. For example, demonstrate you have the capability by completing a long shake-down hike. Express how this is something you’ve been dreaming about for a while and that...

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Your Guide to Summer Hiking

Posted by on Jun 22, 2019 @ 6:45 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Your Guide to Summer Hiking

Many of us hike all the time, and so going out for an afternoon jaunt is not cause for long, detailed preparation. We take a water bottle and hit the trails. However, for beginners and those planning hiking trips in new locations, it’s important to put safety first. “Depending on where you hike, if you’re not digging the trip because of weather or you feel tired, sometimes bailing isn’t as easy as calling an Uber,” says Liz Thomas, a record-holding professional hiker, speaker and author. “Learning some safety tips before you head out will...

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Himalayan glacier melting doubled since 2000, spy satellites show

Posted by on Jun 21, 2019 @ 7:28 am in Conservation | 0 comments

The melting of Himalayan glaciers has doubled since the turn of the century, with more than a quarter of all ice lost over the last four decades, scientists have revealed. The accelerating losses indicate a “devastating” future for the region, upon which a billion people depend for regular water. The scientists combined declassified US spy satellite images from the mid-1970s with modern satellite data to create the first detailed, four-decade record of ice along the 2,000km (1,200-mile) mountain chain. The analysis shows that 8bn tons of ice...

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Trump’s EPA just replaced Obama’s signature climate policy with a much weaker rule

Posted by on Jun 20, 2019 @ 6:54 am in Conservation | 0 comments

Trump’s EPA just replaced Obama’s signature climate policy with a much weaker rule

The Environmental Protection Agency killed President Obama’s signature climate change policy, the Clean Power Plan. It’s one of the few definitive wins in the Trump administration’s full-court press to undo and weaken environmental regulations. With the release of a replacement plan before an audience that included coal miners wearing reflective shirts and hard hats, EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler finalized the end of the Clean Power Plan (CPP). The plan required states to meet targets for cutting greenhouse gas emissions from power plants...

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New hiking trails in Korean DMZ offer rare access to forbidden areas

Posted by on Jun 19, 2019 @ 6:58 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

New hiking trails in Korean DMZ offer rare access to forbidden areas

For most South Koreans, a chance to enter the demilitarized zone, the heavily fortified buffer that has divided the peninsula since the end of the Korean War in 1953, has been rare. However, a series of newly opened DMZ Peace Trails is allowing curious civilians to get a closer glimpse of North Korea. On a recent guided tour at the first Peace Trail to open, in Goseong, located on the East Coast of South Korea, a group of around 20 tourists trekked along a trail with rugged coastline on one side and dense forest on the other. Shrubs of...

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Be a Saturday Volunteer at Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Posted by on Jun 18, 2019 @ 6:41 am in Conservation | 0 comments

Be a Saturday Volunteer at Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Smokies Service Days begin on June 29th, 2019. Individuals and families are invited to work alongside staff to care for park trails, picnic areas, campgrounds, and historic sites. Make new friends, earn service hours, and gain invaluable experience as you help keep our National Park clean and green. A segment of each Service Saturday is dedicated to insider-enrichment and exploration of the park. Projects run 9am – 1pm on Saturdays. Each project offers tasks that are suitable for all ages and abilities. June 29, 2019: Clean-Up Cosby...

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Tips and Tricks to Keep You Safe While Hiking This Summer

Posted by on Jun 17, 2019 @ 8:50 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Tips and Tricks to Keep You Safe While Hiking This Summer

With the official start of summer right around the corner many people are excited about hiking in the mountains. “Well it starts with a good plan and research at home, first and foremost,” DEC forest ranger Howard Kreft said. He says the outdoors are full of surprises and you can never be too prepared. “You want to make sure you have good sturdy footwear, hiking boots with ankle support. You want to have a map, a compass, extra clothing, layers. You want to have a GPS, your cell phone,” Kreft said. He says filling out...

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Visiting the nation’s newest national park: Indiana Dunes

Posted by on Jun 16, 2019 @ 9:22 am in Conservation | 0 comments

Visiting the nation’s newest national park: Indiana Dunes

West Beach is sand — and not just a dusting of the stuff either, but the soft, deep, undulating variety you’d expect to find near a beach. In honor of its designation in February as the 61st and newest national park, this would be a good place to work across Indiana Dunes — formerly a national lakeshore. It’s a popular place to catch some rays and swim from Memorial Day through Labor Day — and the only beach in the park with lifeguards during the high season. But on a cool, wind-whipped morning you can also get into hiking. The Dune...

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Hear the William Bartram story

Posted by on Jun 15, 2019 @ 9:19 am in Conservation, Hiking News | 0 comments

Hear the William Bartram story

On Friday, June 21, 2019, a hike along part of the Bartram Trail will impart stories of the man who inspired it, with N.C. Bartram Trail Society member Brent Martin leading the adventure. The hike is one of HCLT’s series of EcoTours available to its members. Anyone can become a member on the hike. Reserve a spot by contacting hclt_ed@earthlink.net or 828.526.1111, or reserve online at www.hicashlt.org. At 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, June 25, 2019, Martin will present a program at The Village Green in Cashiers titled “Blazing Trails: looking into the...

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How Much Nature Is Enough? 120 Minutes a Week, Doctors Say

Posted by on Jun 14, 2019 @ 7:23 am in Conservation | 0 comments

How Much Nature Is Enough? 120 Minutes a Week, Doctors Say

It’s a medical fact: Spending time outdoors, especially in green spaces, is good for you. A wealth of research indicates that escaping to a neighborhood park, hiking through the woods, or spending a weekend by the lake can lower a person’s stress levels, decrease blood pressure and reduce the risk of asthma, allergies, diabetes and cardiovascular disease, while boosting mental health and increasing life expectancy. Doctors around the world have begun prescribing time in nature as a way of improving their patients’ health. One question has...

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Celebrating Cosby in the Smokies: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow

Posted by on Jun 13, 2019 @ 6:50 am in Conservation | 0 comments

Celebrating Cosby in the Smokies: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow

Great Smoky Mountains National Park officials invite the public to attend “Celebrating Cosby: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow” community programs on Fridays beginning June 14, 2019 through August 2, 2019 at the Cosby Campground Amphitheater. The programs honor the rich cultural and natural history of the Cosby area through music, storytelling, and history walks. “These programs offer incredible opportunities for visitors to discover Cosby by experiencing it firsthand with the people who live and work here,” said Superintendent Cassius Cash. “We...

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San Diego’s Greatest Hikes for Every Skill Level

Posted by on Jun 12, 2019 @ 7:26 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

San Diego’s Greatest Hikes for Every Skill Level

San Diego is known around the country as a beach haven, and for good reason: the county does, after all, have more than 70 miles of pristine, world-class coastline. However, those who actually live in the city know that its natural splendor extends far beyond its shores – the county is also home to some spectacular hiking. While San Diego’s mountains might not attract the same level of fame as its beaches, they provide a world of opportunity for outdoor enthusiasts looking to hike, mountain bike, climb, or simply get away from the...

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Smokies National Park Hosts 2019 Women’s Work Festival

Posted by on Jun 11, 2019 @ 7:30 am in Conservation | 0 comments

Smokies National Park Hosts 2019 Women’s Work Festival

Great Smoky Mountains National Park will host the annual Women’s Work Festival at the Mountain Farm Museum on Saturday, June 15, 2019 from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. The festival honors the vast contributions made by the women of Southern Appalachia. Park staff and volunteers will showcase mountain lifeways and customs that women practiced to care for their families in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. As part of the celebration, demonstrations among the historic buildings will include hearth cooking, soap making, corn shuck...

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How to keep your tweens and teens interested in hiking and backpacking

Posted by on Jun 10, 2019 @ 9:12 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Spending time with your children is important no matter how old they get, but how can you keep teens and preteens engaged in outdoor recreation during their sometimes rebellious years? “Kids need to spend time outdoors — a fun, healthy, beyond-the-ordinary place. Backpacking is a great way to help them appreciate all the beauty and adventure that the natural world offers.” Here are some ways to keep your teens and tweens excited about hiking and backpacking: Parents can send negative messages when they use too many ‘don’ts’ leading up to a...

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The Maine Coast Heritage Trust has preserved many acres on Maine’s Frenchboro Island, saving it from second-home development

Posted by on Jun 9, 2019 @ 9:51 am in Conservation, Hiking News | 0 comments

The Maine Coast Heritage Trust has preserved many acres on Maine’s Frenchboro Island, saving it from second-home development

In the late 1990s, 940 acres on Frenchboro, or roughly two-thirds of the island, was listed for sale. Frenchboro is an island of the coast of Maine, accessible by ferry. Fearing this spectacular property would be purchased for subdivision and seasonal home development, concerned island residents forged a partnership with the Maine Coast Heritage Trust, the Island Institute and the Maine Seacoast Mission to conserve the land. A massive fund-raising effort ensued, and in 2000 the parcel was acquired by MCHT. In 2011, the entirety of Rich’s...

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Hiking Spain’s luminous Lighthouse Way

Posted by on Jun 8, 2019 @ 7:45 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Hiking Spain’s luminous Lighthouse Way

The Lighthouse Way, Camiño dos Faros in Spanish, traverses a stretch of coast that British sailors in the 19th century dubbed the “Costa da Morte” (Coast of Death) because so many of their compatriots died in shipwrecks there. The route goes between Malpica and Fisterra, Spain. Along the way it is marked by haphazardly painted shamrock-green arrows (that often look just like blobs of paint) on trees or rocks. A group of local friends started piecing the Camiño together in 2013, connecting fishermen’s paths, farm tracks, beaches, livestock...

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Colorado hikers, one blind and one in a wheelchair, use their strengths to help each other climb mountains

Posted by on Jun 7, 2019 @ 6:48 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Colorado hikers, one blind and one in a wheelchair, use their strengths to help each other climb mountains

Trevor Hahn has been legally blind since he was born. He suffers from macular degeneration, iritis and glaucoma. “Ten years ago, I could drive a car. Five years ago, it went downhill and I could only see light after that,” Hahn said. “I can only see light now. No shapes, really.” He learned how to hike using adaptive techniques like following the sound of bells or with voice commands from his hiking partners. That’s how he climbed the 17,575-foot summit of Gokyo Ri mountain in Nepal. In summer 2018, Hahn and his wife Mandy attended a function...

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1 Billion Acres At Risk For Catastrophic Wildfires, U.S. Forest Service Warns

Posted by on Jun 6, 2019 @ 7:44 am in Conservation | 0 comments

1 Billion Acres At Risk For Catastrophic Wildfires, U.S. Forest Service Warns

The chief of the U.S. Forest Service is warning that a billion acres of land across America are at risk of catastrophic wildfires like last fall’s deadly Camp Fire that destroyed most of Paradise, Calif. As we head into summer, with smoke already drifting into the Northwest from wildfires in Alberta, Canada, Vicki Christiansen said wildfires are now a year-round phenomenon. She pointed to the hazardous conditions in forests that result from a history of suppression of wildfires, rampant home development in high-risk places and the...

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Following environmentalist Edward Abbey’s footsteps in the Utah and Arizona deserts

Posted by on Jun 5, 2019 @ 6:55 am in Conservation | 0 comments

Following environmentalist Edward Abbey’s footsteps in the Utah and Arizona deserts

The road trip from Moab, Utah, to Ajo, Ariz., is a sunbaked ramble through about 600 miles of dreamy, lethal desert, beginning with the red rocks of Utah’s Arches National Park, skirting Monument Valley and the Colorado River, and ending in the cactus country of southern Arizona. Edward Abbey (1927-1989) was a desert rat, a chronic contrarian, a serial government employee with a penchant for anarchy. He spoke for the rocks, the sand and the snakes in a way that no one had. He made his reputation by exploring Arches in the nonfiction...

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Hiking with kids this summer? Follow these safety tips.

Posted by on Jun 4, 2019 @ 9:10 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Hiking with kids this summer? Follow these safety tips.

If you’re planning on hiking with your children this summer, it’s important to be prepared. Whether you’re sticking close to home or heading to a national park for a day of fun, follow these safety tips for hiking with children: Keep children in your sight. Dress them in brightly colored clothing with multiple layers to accommodate the changing temperatures. Give them a whistle in case they get lost. A whistle can be heard farther than a child yelling. Have them carry snacks such as trail mix, raisins and candy bars. If a...

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How Tech Has Changed Hiking

Posted by on Jun 3, 2019 @ 8:57 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

How Tech Has Changed Hiking

Before Jean Taggart left home to conquer the 800-mile Arizona Trail last year, she made a detailed spreadsheet to organize her resupply provisions. To update friends and family on her progress, she bought a Garmin inReach Mini, which is a GPS and satellite messenger. She poured over hiker blogs and absorbed detailed information about each section of the trail on the Arizona Trail Association’s website—which also connected her with “trail angels” who could help her cache water on exceptionally dry sections of the route. Taggart watched hikers’...

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Hiking the Bay Area’s epic Skyline Trail

Posted by on Jun 2, 2019 @ 7:29 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Hiking the Bay Area’s epic Skyline Trail

Thru-hiking a National Recreation Trail isn’t easy. Preparing for it is even harder. Backpackers need the right combination of fitness, finances, luck and time. A Pacific Crest thru-hike will set you back about $6,000. Considering the John Muir Trail? Permits are assigned by lottery exactly 168 days in advance. Not to mention the Sierra Nevada snowpack is at roughly 160 percent this year — which is just fantastic after five years of drought, unless your plan was to hike there. But there is good news for those looking to enjoy the peace of a...

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The Great Ocean Walk: 104 Kilometers of Stunning Variety in Victoria, Australia

Posted by on Jun 1, 2019 @ 7:03 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

The Great Ocean Walk: 104 Kilometers of Stunning Variety in Victoria, Australia

Starting in Apollo Bay and ending at the Twelve Apostles, this coastal trail packs a lifetime of experiences into four to eight days. Trek through Great Otway and Port Campbell National Parks, sharing verdant hills with cows and kangaroos alike. Wind through thick forests and catch a glimpse of a koala clinging to a eucalyptus tree, and marvel at the Southern Ocean in action as it carves out jagged seaside cliffs. For those who don’t have the luxury of living down under, the Great Ocean Walk (GOW) is the best way to connect with the terrain...

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Free, guided National Trails Day hikes planned at sites across West Virginia

Posted by on May 31, 2019 @ 9:27 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Free, guided National Trails Day hikes planned at sites across West Virginia

Free guided hikes and other outdoor activities will be offered on public lands across West Virginia on Saturday, June 1, 2019, in recognition of National Trails Day. Begun in 1993 by the American Hiking Society as a way to introduce people to trails in their area, National Trails Day drew nearly 110,000 people in 50 states to nearly 1,200 hikes and other activities. This year, National Trails Day events will take place at more than a dozen West Virginia locations, including four in Kanawha State Forest. Two of the Kanawha State Forest hikes...

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The Big Bend 100: The Newest Long-Distance Trail in Texas

Posted by on May 30, 2019 @ 7:03 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

The Big Bend 100: The Newest Long-Distance Trail in Texas

The newest trail in Texas, the Big Bend 100 looks to give the Lone Star State a strong long trail of its own. The brand new route highlights everything the area has to offer with mountain peaks, low lying canyons, sandy desert paths and plenty of desert heat. When most people think of Texas, they cannot help but imagine flat ranch land, cowboy hats and pickup trucks. It’s fair to say the state is not known as a hiking destination. The Big Bend area, in far west Texas, combines both the National Park and Texas’ Big Bend Ranch State Park,...

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We’ll soon know the exact air pollution from every power plant in the world

Posted by on May 29, 2019 @ 7:49 am in Conservation | 0 comments

We’ll soon know the exact air pollution from every power plant in the world

  A nonprofit artificial intelligence firm called WattTime is going to use satellite imagery to precisely track the air pollution (including carbon emissions) coming out of every single power plant in the world, in real time. And it’s going to make the data public. This is a very big deal. Poor monitoring and gaming of emissions data have made it difficult to enforce pollution restrictions on power plants. This system promises to effectively eliminate these problems. And it won’t just be regulators and politicians who see this data;...

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Praise Song for the Unloved Animals

Posted by on May 28, 2019 @ 6:59 am in Conservation | 0 comments

Praise Song for the Unloved Animals

Even the most maligned creatures of backyards and roadsides have a potent purpose in the world. Sing, O muse, of the lumbering opossum, of the nearsighted, stumbling opossum, whose only defenses are a hiss, a hideous scowl and a rank scent emitted in terror. Let us rejoice in the pink-nosed, pink-fingered opossum, her silvery pouch full of babies, each no bigger than a honeybee. May your young thrive to ride upon your back. May they fatten and grow large and stumble off on their own to devour cockroaches and carrion and venomous snakes. May...

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Even avid hikers can find themselves in peril. Here’s how to stay safe on the trail.

Posted by on May 27, 2019 @ 6:50 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Even avid hikers can find themselves in peril. Here’s how to stay safe on the trail.

By all accounts, Amanda Eller is an avid hiker. The trail she chose the day she disappeared was one she had hiked before. Eller, a Maui resident who went missing for 16 days before being found, is a fit yoga instructor and physical therapist, yet she still found herself in a life-or-death situation on what was supposed to be a pleasant, three-mile hike. No one sets out to run into trouble, but even experienced hikers can lose their footing, encounter a threatening wild animal or simply get turned around on the trail. Hiking organizations such...

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How to Handle Your Period While Hiking and Camping

Posted by on May 26, 2019 @ 9:36 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Going outside inevitably impacts the environment, whether all that remains are your footsteps—as Leave No Trace (LNT) would encourage—or you’re treating nature as your personal trash can and compost pile. And having your period while backpacking or camping only makes it harder to reduce that impact. In accordance with Leave No Trace principles, don’t leave anything not created by your body—including tampons and toilet paper—in nature. Keep this in mind if you’re going on a trip where you won’t see a garbage can for a while, as you’ll have to...

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Littering and Following the Crowd

Posted by on May 25, 2019 @ 7:07 am in Conservation | 0 comments

Littering and Following the Crowd

Loretta Brown walked along Bishop’s Beach near Homer, Alaska, looking for plastic bottles, Styrofoam cups, beer cans, cigarette butts, and old fishing nets. “You tend to find things among the driftwood, since the same tide that washes up the driftwood washes up the trash,” she said, stooping to pick up a plastic water bottle. “It’s kind of like an Easter egg hunt.” Brown is a marine debris education and outreach specialist with the Center for Alaskan Coastal Studies, a nonprofit organization based in Homer that educates the public about...

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The one sure way to convince a climate denier

Posted by on May 24, 2019 @ 6:51 am in Conservation | 0 comments

Back in 2007, South Carolina Congressman Bob Inglis rebelled against the Republican party and his conservative state: He told the world that climate change was real, that it was caused by humans, and that his party would “get hammered” if they didn’t step up and do something about it. Then, unlike other Republicans who gave the issue lip service at the time, he actually tried. Why would a dyed-in-the-wool Republican take such a strong stance? Inglis’s son said he’d vote against him if he didn’t. Apparently, his son’s vote wasn’t the one he...

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‘Unlikely’ Hikers Hit the Trail

Posted by on May 23, 2019 @ 7:04 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

‘Unlikely’ Hikers Hit the Trail

Jenny Bruso is a 37-year-old, plus-size, queer hiker living in Portland, Ore. She went on her first hike seven years ago after a person she was dating asked her to join. On the 5.8 mile loop trail she felt self-conscious, walking slowly and sweating because she wasn’t used to working out. “I really didn’t know what to do except walk,” she said. “But I felt something kind of unlock, this feeling of possibility like I was seeing nature for the first time.” Ms. Bruso became obsessed with hiking. But the more she hiked, the more she saw that the...

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Photography In The National Parks: Is There In Truth No Beauty?

Posted by on May 22, 2019 @ 7:09 am in Conservation | 0 comments

Photography In The National Parks: Is There In Truth No Beauty?

Quite a few stunning photographs have undergone their fair share of editing. For instance, the starry night photos you may see of the Watchman and the Virgin River in Zion National Park with the perfect lighting on both river and mountain even in the dark of night. Those are composites of two or more images blended together. Some photographers will state how many shots it took to create that composite, while others remain silent about it. Is it a beautiful image? Yes. Is it an honest image, true to the original scene? Well … sure. The...

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Collaborative works to reduce I-40 animal deaths

Posted by on May 21, 2019 @ 7:44 am in Conservation | 0 comments

Collaborative works to reduce I-40 animal deaths

The Pigeon River Gorge Wildlife Connectivity Project is a joint effort of at least 19 nonprofit and governmental groups working to bring the death rate of wildlife on Interstate-40 through the gorge down. The many groups under the connectivity project umbrella, including the N.C. and Tennessee Departments of Transportation, U.S. Forest Service, Southern Appalachian Highlands Conservancy and Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, recognize the increasing hazards of vehicle collisions. Since the 28-mile stretch of I-40 between the Maggie Valley exit...

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How to protect yourself on hiking trails

Posted by on May 20, 2019 @ 10:12 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

How to protect yourself on hiking trails

Alarming headlines about missing hikers, or worse, can trigger panic about trail safety and the risks of exploring remote areas. The potential for danger exists no matter where you are, but the best way to guard against it is to be prepared and alert. Here are some tips for how to stay safe while hiking in remote areas, culled from the National Park Service and the Appalachian Trail Conservancy. Whether you’re alone or in a group, it’s wise to tell someone else where you’re going and when you intend to return. Establish a...

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The Quest to Complete the Greater Patagonian Trail

Posted by on May 19, 2019 @ 3:06 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

The Quest to Complete the Greater Patagonian Trail

In late 2017, German engineer Jan Dudeck was just completing a decade-long quest to create a new long trail through South America. The Greater Patagonian Trail (GPT), as he named it, would come to be 1,900 miles, stretching through the southern Andes from Santiago to the Argentinean climbing mecca of Mount Fitzroy. “This trail rewards the humble,” Dudeck says, “and humiliates the proud.” Stories were emerging from some of Dudeck’s collaborators of glacial river crossings, trailblazing, and frontiersman-like bushwhacking on the GPT. These...

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