News

A military legacy loosens its grip on a landscape

Posted by on Sep 22, 2017 @ 4:53 pm in Conservation | 0 comments

A military legacy loosens its grip on a landscape

In 1942, the U.S. Army transformed a valley near Leadville, Colorado, into training grounds for its 10th Mountain Division. The high altitude, climate and steep terrain prepared World War II troops for critical battles in the Italian Alps. At Camp Hale, as the area at the headwaters of the Eagle River became known, thousands of soldiers learned to ski, mountaineer and survive in harsh winter conditions. To build the camp, the Army Corps of Engineers brought in millions of cubic yards of fill by rail car to flatten the valley bottom. The Corps...

read more

Small Pests, Big Problems: The Global Spread of Bark Beetles

Posted by on Sep 22, 2017 @ 6:38 am in Conservation | 0 comments

Small Pests, Big Problems: The Global Spread of Bark Beetles

Warming temperatures are fueling the expansion of pine and spruce beetle outbreaks across North America, Europe, and Siberia, ravaging tens of thousands of square miles of woodlands. Scientists warn that some forest ecosystems may never recover. First, mountain pine beetles devastated lodgepole and ponderosa pine trees across western North America. Then came spruce beetles, which have targeted high-elevation Engelmann spruce, spreading from New Mexico into Colorado and beyond. Altogether, with their advance fueled by climate change, bark...

read more

Trails Around the World, the Magazine of the World Trails Network

Posted by on Sep 21, 2017 @ 11:52 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Trails Around the World, the Magazine of the World Trails Network

The World Trails Network strives to connect the diverse trails of the world to promote the creation, enhancement, and protection of outstanding trail experiences. The World Trails Network brings trail associations, trail advocates, walkers, hikers and people passionate about the outdoors together from around the world to foster global collaboration and networking for the betterment of the world’s trails. The World Trails Network fosters global collaboration and networking among all trail types that serve to connect people with nature, the...

read more

Thru-Hike Your City. Not As Crazy As It Sounds.

Posted by on Sep 21, 2017 @ 6:46 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Thru-Hike Your City. Not As Crazy As It Sounds.

In 2011, Liz “Snorkel” Thomas hiked the Appalachian Trail from Georgia to Maine in 80 days and 13 hours, cementing a reputation as a trailblazing woman in the American hiking community. She has completed hiking’s Triple Crown, which in addition to the Appalachian Trail includes the Pacific Crest Trail and the Continental Divide Trail. Thomas estimates she has logged some 15,000 miles on long-distance trails. This summer, she published a book about the art of thru-hiking called Long Trails. She is presently thru-hiking the Pacific...

read more

Featured Recreational Trail: Fisher Towers National Recreation Trail, Utah

Posted by on Sep 20, 2017 @ 5:06 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

Featured Recreational Trail: Fisher Towers National Recreation Trail, Utah

The Fisher Towers Trail allows visitors to the Moab and Arches National Park area to hike among the world-renowned towers of the Colorado Plateau. Improvements to the trail have been funded with Recreational Trails Program dollars. The Fisher Towers are among the most outstanding scenic features of Utah’s Colorado Riverway. These rock pinnacles soar above a maze of red and purple hued canyons. Visitors to the Fisher Towers Recreation Site will be rewarded with a sweeping view of the towers, Castle Rock, the cliff-enclosed Richardson...

read more

Park Hosts Volunteer Trail Opportunity for National Public Lands Day

Posted by on Sep 20, 2017 @ 6:34 am in Conservation, Hiking News | 0 comments

Park Hosts Volunteer Trail Opportunity for National Public Lands Day

Great Smoky Mountains National Park is hosting a volunteer trail maintenance workday on Saturday, September 30, 2017 in celebration of the 24th annual National Public Lands Day. Participants are invited to participate on a trail rehabilitation project along the Clingmans Dome Bypass Trail from 10:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Volunteers will perform trail maintenance including installation of drainage features, rehabilitation of trail surfaces, and removal of brush. While jobs may vary in complexity, volunteers must be able to hike at least 2 miles...

read more

A New Trail Would Connect 3 States Across 1,650 Miles

Posted by on Sep 19, 2017 @ 11:50 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

The NY-NJ-CT region features hundreds of parks and landscapes, from the Catskills and Pinelands to the beaches of Jersey and Long Island. Despite all of this open space, these recreational spots are disjointed from each other and from the communities that would use them. A New York-based non-profit has proposed a plan to connect the state with Connecticut and New Jersey via a 1,650-mile network of hiking and biking trails. With the new proposal, some 8 million residents would be within a half-mile of a trail, and 80 percent of residents in...

read more

Volunteers remove tons of trash from Arizona National Forest land

Posted by on Sep 19, 2017 @ 6:48 am in Conservation | 0 comments

Volunteers remove tons of trash from Arizona National Forest land

Arizona’s Natural Restorations remove trash, graffiti and anything foreign to the environment from natural areas throughout the state. They have a passion for nature and believe outdoor restoration and education ensures everyone will be able to enjoy the outdoors for generations to come. They approach every project with a commitment to long-term change and making lasting impacts in communities across the state. Natural Restorations has removed more than 116 tons of trash from Arizona national forest land so far in 2017. Natural...

read more

Hiking Etiquette 101: The 12 Trail Rules You Should Know

Posted by on Sep 18, 2017 @ 11:43 am in Hiking News | 1 comment

Hiking Etiquette 101: The 12 Trail Rules You Should Know

There are not many rules of etiquette that stretch across the world, but hiking etiquette is one of them. No matter where you are, people tend to abide by the same hiking rules, keeping the peace and helping everyone around them to stay safe. Of course, you might not always meet other people on your treks, but when you do it is important to know what to do and how to respond to the situation. When you go out hiking you are going to meet people who think they own the wilderness and as though they have the right to do whatever they like. These...

read more

Discover Oklahoma: State parks offer trails for outdoor exploration

Posted by on Sep 18, 2017 @ 7:06 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Discover Oklahoma: State parks offer trails for outdoor exploration

Autumn weather just gets us stirring around, doesn’t it? Perhaps it all originates with that preparation for the change of season. Various creatures such as squirrels start packing away supplies for the winter, but we humans may be seeking a little food for the soul as we can see the gray winter days that will keep us housebound coming straight at us. The timing couldn’t be better as we all seem to receive this pre-winter burst of energy because, let’s face it, fall is arguably the best season for outdoor activity. The...

read more

Important Facts You Should Know About Post-Wildfire Restoration

Posted by on Sep 17, 2017 @ 2:51 pm in Conservation | 0 comments

Important Facts You Should Know About Post-Wildfire Restoration

As of September 15, 2017, over 8,834,487 acres across the United States have been burned by wildfire, the highest number of wildfire acres burned in year-to-date records kept by the National Interagency Fire Center. The highest total acreage burned in any year on record is 9,873,745, in 2006. Wildfire is a necessary and important part of a natural landscape, but it is undeniable that some wildfires have harsh and negative impacts on communities, water resources, outdoor recreation resources, and fish and wildlife habitat. In these cases,...

read more

Why it’s a real mistake to count on a cellphone when you go hiking

Posted by on Sep 17, 2017 @ 7:18 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Why it’s a real mistake to count on a cellphone when you go hiking

Sarah Savage was alone in the woods and didn’t know which way to turn. She had been eager to explore the Appalachian Trail when she moved to Pennsylvania and discovered that her house was near an access point. But not long after she took off from the trailhead, the path branched in different directions. She wasn’t carrying a cellphone or a map. Nervous, she turned back. “I was afraid of getting lost. I didn’t know how to read a map or even that maps existed for where I was hiking,” said Savage, 49, who works in educational publishing. But she...

read more

Glacial melt will wreck ecosystems

Posted by on Sep 16, 2017 @ 12:08 pm in Conservation | 0 comments

Glacial melt will wreck ecosystems

Glaciers cover one-tenth of the planet’s land surface – but not for much longer. Glaciers worldwide are in retreat, and losing mass. They are shrinking and melting, and that will create problems almost everywhere, according to new research. Between 2003 and 2009, glaciers melted on a gargantuan scale, with an estimated 1,350 cubic kilometres of meltwater draining from what had once been vast streams of slowly flowing ice. Ice has been in retreat in the Gulf of Alaska, the Canadian Arctic, Greenland and Antarctica. In the European Alps summers...

read more

Conserving Carolina’s Fall Hiking Series Begins September 22, 2017

Posted by on Sep 16, 2017 @ 6:22 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Conserving Carolina’s Fall Hiking Series Begins September 22, 2017

Join Conserving Carolina, formerly the Pacolet Area Conservancy (PAC) and Carolina Mountain Land Conservancy (CMLC), for five Friday hikes offered to the public, free of charge, this fall. Conserving Carolina invites the community to enjoy the work that many conservation organizations have done for the preservation of areas of natural resources and take in the beauty of autumn. Starting September 22, the first trek will head to Caesar’s Head State Park, part of the Mountain Bridge Wilderness Area, for an approximately 6.7-mile, easy, out and...

read more

The Mark Twain Trail through Nevada & California brings ups, downs and a new view of the author

Posted by on Sep 15, 2017 @ 12:17 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

The Mark Twain Trail through Nevada & California brings ups, downs and a new view of the author

Who flies to Reno on a spring evening, rents a car and heads into the mountains with no skis, no mountain bike and a backpack full of books? and Why? Because in 1861 a 25-year-old Missouri riverboat pilot named Sam Clemens boarded a stagecoach bound for the same territory. He was going to dodge the Civil War for a few months, work for the government, do some writing, maybe dig for silver. Instead he stayed for almost seven years, emerged as Mark Twain, gave us “Huckleberry Finn” and won global fame as that sardonic old man with the white hair...

read more

130 Miles, 8 Days, 1 Spellbound Hiker/Photographer on Kodiak Island

Posted by on Sep 15, 2017 @ 6:48 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

130 Miles, 8 Days, 1 Spellbound Hiker/Photographer on Kodiak Island

Kodiak Island, the second largest in the United States, is best known for the main quarry of this trip, the oversized subspecies of brown bear, the Kodiak bear, that is unique to its mountains and shorelines. This journey goes 130 miles along the notoriously rough shoreline of Shelikof Strait, across river drainages and bays, paddling packrafts through a series of lakes that end at Karluk Lake, which flows into its namesake river and the point of the start of the journey. The Kodiak National Wildlife Refuge shares many characteristics with...

read more

For the National Parks, a Reckoning

Posted by on Sep 14, 2017 @ 11:56 am in Conservation | 0 comments

For the National Parks, a Reckoning

Even though the National Park Service is charged with keeping places like Sequoia “unimpaired” for future generations, it doesn’t usually step in when trees meet their end because of thirst and pestilence. Droughts and insects are supposed to be normal, natural occurrences. But it’s hard to say whether the changes witnessed here — or at neighboring Kings Canyon National Park, or at national parks across the nation — still count as normal, or even “natural,” at least as park stewardsn have long understood the term. And those changes raise a...

read more

A Bear’s-Eye view of the Katmai Coast

Posted by on Sep 14, 2017 @ 6:39 am in Conservation | 0 comments

A Bear’s-Eye view of the Katmai Coast

Ever wonder what the world looks like through the eyes of a brown bear? Researchers at Katmai National Park wonder, too. To learn more, they initiated a collaborative, multi-year study examining the relationship between intertidal resources, coastal brown bear behavior, and human influences. As a part of this study, nine brown bears along the Katmai coast were outfitted with GPS location collars during the summer of 2015 to help better understand how they use intertidal resources like clams and mussels. Two of the collars were equipped with...

read more

The West Is on Fire. Get Used to It.

Posted by on Sep 13, 2017 @ 11:21 am in Conservation | 0 comments

The West Is on Fire. Get Used to It.

The West is burning, and there’s no relief in sight. More than 80 large wildfires are raging in an area covering more than 1.4 million acres, primarily in California, Montana, and Oregon, according to the National Interagency Fire Center. Taken together, that’s a wildfire larger than the state of Delaware. California has declared a state of emergency as wildfires burn outside Los Angeles and threaten giant sequoias in Yosemite National Park. In Oregon, the Eagle Creek fire is tearing through the scenic Columbia River Gorge. Seattle, Boise,...

read more

Electric cars are about to get their biggest boost ever

Posted by on Sep 13, 2017 @ 6:52 am in Conservation | 0 comments

Electric cars are about to get their biggest boost ever

The largest and fastest-growing car market in the world is going to ban the sale of new gasoline and diesel cars. China has announced plans to join the rapidly expanding list of countries with plans to phase out fossil fuel-burning cars, a list that includes the UK, France, Norway, and India. “These measures will promote profound changes in the environment and give momentum to China’s auto industry development.”said vice minister of industry and information technology, Xin Guobi, at a recent Chinese forum on cars. China has moved swiftly to...

read more

Columbia Gorge trails might be closed until spring

Posted by on Sep 12, 2017 @ 11:56 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Columbia Gorge trails might be closed until spring

Hiking trails affected by an Oregon wildfire in the Columbia River Gorge might be closed for months, authorities have said. Landslide risk, potential for falling trees, root snags and severe erosion as the winter rains start will have repair crews busy until spring, Dawn Stender, a trail crew supervisor for the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area said. The fire in the Columbia River Gorge has displaced hundreds of residents, shut down Interstate 84 and burned 52 square miles since it started over the Labor Day weekend in one of...

read more

North Carolinians Team up to Complete MST Hike in One Day

Posted by on Sep 12, 2017 @ 6:33 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

North Carolinians Team up to Complete MST Hike in One Day

Over 1,600 North Carolinians collaborated on September 9, 2017 to complete in one day 100% of the 1,175-mile Mountains-to-Sea hiking trail from the Smokies to the Outer Banks.    Most hiking legs were 3-5 miles long, although one hiker went over 20 miles. Officials with the American Hiking Society said the “one-day” hike was probably the first such event ever among America’s long distance trails. The hike, organized by Friends of the MST, commemorates a September 9, 1977 speech by Howard Lee that became the catalyst for creation of the...

read more

Why flowering meadows are better than lawns

Posted by on Sep 11, 2017 @ 12:15 pm in Conservation | 0 comments

Why flowering meadows are better than lawns

Groomed, grassy fields can be good for certain uses, like sports or picnics. But for broader “ecosystem services” — things like plant pollination, disease control, soil quality and climate regulation — look to meadows. Meadows are more than just unmowed lawns, though. They are rich, diverse ecosystems, bustling with a wide range of wildlife. And as a new study illustrates, meadows and other natural grassland habitats can be surprisingly beneficial to humans — if we let their biodiversity reach full bloom. Published in the journal...

read more

Taking in the White Mountains, every step of each trail

Posted by on Sep 11, 2017 @ 7:02 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Taking in the White Mountains, every step of each trail

In 1907, the Appalachian Mountain Club published a little book called “Guide to the Paths and Camps in the White Mountains.” As its rather wordy title made clear, it was a collection of maps and descriptions of trails through the Presidential Range and beyond. Through printing after printing, the book changed titles — the 30th edition of what is now known simply as the “White Mountain Guide” was just published — but its basic structure remained largely unchanged: It was an adventure book without a plot. Then some hikers decided that it most...

read more

The Layering Equation: Dressing for Winter Comfort

Posted by on Sep 10, 2017 @ 11:26 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

The Layering Equation: Dressing for Winter Comfort

Calculating how to layer on clothing for maximum comfort while venturing outside can be a tricky equation. There are lots of variables, like unknown or changing weather conditions and activity levels that can range on a given day from strenuous boot-packing or snowshoeing to long sedentary chairlift rides or winter camping. Everybody’s different, too, with different comfort and exertion levels, so there’s no one-size-fits-all answer to the layering question. Lucky for us, we can leave our Number 2 pencils at home, because this is a...

read more

After its dams came down, a river is reborn

Posted by on Sep 10, 2017 @ 6:23 am in Conservation | 0 comments

After its dams came down, a river is reborn

The Elwha River starts at Dodwell-Rixon Pass, a high crack in Washington’s Olympic Mountains. There, a hiker who crossed would find the Elwha Snowfinger, formed by heavy winter storms and the avalanches that pour off the surrounding mountainsides. Wedged into a steep-walled gully, it forms the upper reaches of the Elwha basin. If the hiker followed this snow down, eventually she’d find a stream, and that stream would widen and become the Elwha River. As she traveled down, as more streams joined its flow, she would find one of those messy...

read more

A free series of fall foliage hikes is planned across New Hampshire in the coming weeks

Posted by on Sep 9, 2017 @ 12:18 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

A free series of fall foliage hikes is planned across New Hampshire in the coming weeks

Following the leaves as they turn color from north to south in New Hampshire, the Five Easy Hikes series will catch the early reds of turning maples in Bethlehem, take in a full-moon hike near Lake Sunapee, catch the breathtaking views over Lake Winnipesaukee in Alton, explore a less-traveled trail on Mount Monadnock in Jaffrey and end with a pre-Halloween visit to a property some believe to be haunted in Chesterfield. The Five Easy Hike fall series is sponsored by the Society for the Protection of New Hampshire Forests and WMUR. They are all...

read more

China’s Mars will feature zero gravity, hiking trails and an amusement park

Posted by on Sep 9, 2017 @ 7:03 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

China’s Mars will feature zero gravity, hiking trails and an amusement park

The space race just got closer to home. China recently unveiled plans to recreate Mars in a 35,000 square mile region of Tibet. The $61 million project is expected to be both a tourist destination and training grounds for future astronauts. Located near the westernmost tip of the Great Wall, the replica will be built in Qinghai province, an arid, rocky stretch of desert land described by China’s official news agency as “the most Martian place on Earth.” “People dream about migrating to Mars, so what we want to do is give people a high-end...

read more

Interior Secretary Zinke fiddles on climate while America’s national parks burn

Posted by on Sep 8, 2017 @ 11:49 am in Conservation | 0 comments

Interior Secretary Zinke fiddles on climate while America’s national parks burn

September 2017 is quickly becoming one of the most devastating months in history for America’s national parks and forests. From Montana to Oregon to California, national treasures in Glacier National Park, the Columbia River Gorge, and Yosemite National Park have been destroyed or threatened by wildfires. While any single season or event cannot be attributed to climate change alone, this summer’s fires, along with the string of hurricanes that are developing one after another in the Atlantic Ocean, and record-breaking heat in the West, are...

read more

Melting permafrost in the Arctic is unlocking diseases and warping the landscape

Posted by on Sep 8, 2017 @ 6:37 am in Conservation | 0 comments

Melting permafrost in the Arctic is unlocking diseases and warping the landscape

You can find evidence of a changing climate everywhere on Earth. But nowhere are the changes more dramatic than in the Arctic. Our world’s northern polar region is warming twice as fast as the global average. And the consequences are easy to spot. On average, Arctic sea ice extent is shrinking every summer. The Greenland ice sheet is becoming unstable. But perhaps most disturbing are the changes occurring underground in the permafrost. Permafrost is a layer of frozen soil that covers 25 percent of the Northern Hemisphere. It acts like a giant...

read more

National Public Lands Day 2017—less than four weeks away

Posted by on Sep 7, 2017 @ 12:11 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

National Public Lands Day 2017—less than four weeks away

NEEF’s 24th annual National Public Lands Day (NPLD) is just a few weeks away. Where will you be on September 30, 2017 when hundreds of thousands of people join in the nation’s largest, single-day volunteer effort for public lands? Take a moment to check out NPLD events in your area and register your event today. Whether you are interested in learning about nature, spending time with your family, getting exercise that is good for your health, connecting with your neighbors and others in your community, or giving back to the lands...

read more

Conquering the Florida Trail in a skirt

Posted by on Sep 7, 2017 @ 6:36 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Conquering the Florida Trail in a skirt

Out on the trail, hiker Gretchen Matt is known as “Dirty Bowl.” It’s a long-standing tradition among serious hikers to adopt a nickname. (Matt’s harkens back to her days as an Outward Bound instructor who was lackadaisical about cleanliness.) And Matt is a serious hiker. In her 28 years she has completed two of the most intimidating and respected hikes in the U.S. — the Appalachian Trail (2,190 miles) and the Pacific Crest Trail (2,659 miles). In January 2017, she decided to attempt the lesser known Florida Trail — one...

read more

It’s Almost Time for Mountains to Sea Trail In a Day

Posted by on Sep 6, 2017 @ 11:44 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

It’s Almost Time for Mountains to Sea Trail In a Day

There will be boots and boats on all 1,175 miles of the Mountains-to-Sea Trail on September 9, 2017, from Clingmans Dome atop the Smokies to Jockeys Ridge on the coast. What a great way to celebrate the day 40 years ago when Howard Lee, N.C. Secretary of Natural Resources at the time, first proposed the idea of a statewide trail. As time neared filling all 300 legs of the trail, Friends of the MST noticed that the total of hikers and paddlers was nearing 1,000. Another couple hundred hikers and they could have a hiker for every mile of trail...

read more

Down with the Glen Canyon Dam?

Posted by on Sep 6, 2017 @ 6:35 am in Conservation | 0 comments

Down with the Glen Canyon Dam?

In 1963, Glen Canyon was pronounced dead. Glen Canyon Dam had submerged its fabled grottoes, Ancestral Puebloan cliff dwellings and slickrock chutes beneath the stagnant water of Lake Powell, and forever altered the ecology of the Grand Canyon just downstream. For wilderness lovers, the 710-foot-tall concrete wall stuck out of the Colorado River like a middle finger — an insult that helped ignite the modern environmental movement. In 1981, the radical group Earth First! faked a “crack” on the dam by unfurling a 300-foot-long black banner down...

read more