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Nantahala, Pisgah forest planning focuses on recreation

Posted by on Oct 1, 2017 @ 9:00 am in Conservation, Hiking News | 0 comments

Nantahala, Pisgah forest planning focuses on recreation

The Access Fund is one of many members of the two collaborative groups – the Nantahala-Pisgah Forest Partnership and the Stakeholders Forum – working on recommendations for the Nantahala and Pisgah Plan Revision. The years-long project holds the potential to change the way millions of people use the two giant forests that spread across the mountains of Western North Carolina. Overcrowded trailheads could get more parking. More hikers could set foot in the most remote areas of the two forests, which combined take up 1.1 million acres. And...

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In the Teton Wilderness, where two oceans begin

Posted by on Sep 30, 2017 @ 11:56 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

In the Teton Wilderness, where two oceans begin

The camp is located 22 miles from the Turpin Meadow trailhead along the famous plateau where North Two Ocean Creek makes a baffling break into two, sending Pacific and Atlantic creeks toward their namesake oceans. It’s usually reachable terrain by mid-June, once the sunshine in the high country has erased the last signs of winter atop Trail Creek Pass. Right now, in the early fall, it’s about as bustling as it gets in the Bridger-Teton National Forest’s Teton Wilderness, a treasured Wyoming high country that’s bounded by Yellowstone National...

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10 Health Problems That The Outdoors Can Help Prevent And Treat

Posted by on Sep 30, 2017 @ 7:07 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

10 Health Problems That The Outdoors Can Help Prevent And Treat

Should your doctor tell you to “take a hike,” you may want to listen. With more and more scientific studies uncovering different health benefits from spending time outdoors, is the healthcare industry not fully appreciating ways of preventing and treating disease? During an October 2016, White House Roundtable session entitled “Health Benefits of Time Outdoors,” Michael Suk, M.D., Chairman of Orthopaedic Surgery at the Geisinger Health System and a member of the National Advisory Board at the National Park Service,...

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5 Awesome Inca Sites that Aren’t Machu Picchu

Posted by on Sep 29, 2017 @ 12:17 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

5 Awesome Inca Sites that Aren’t Machu Picchu

Everybody knows that Machu Picchu is THE place to visit in Peru. However, there are many other fascinating Inca sites that are worth a visit, and most are within easy reach of Cusco. If you are backpacking on a budget and can’t afford to visit Machu Picchu, or simply want to explore more, the Sacred Valley is filled with Inca ruins to discover. On the hill above Cusco lies Sacsayhuaman or Saksaywaman, one of the easiest Inca sites to visit from Cusco. The name means ‘satisfied falcon’ in Quechua, the language of the Incas. Located on the...

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76 women on a glacier are changing the world

Posted by on Sep 29, 2017 @ 7:05 am in Conservation | 0 comments

76 women on a glacier are changing the world

Heidi Steltzer’s job, as she puts it, is “hiking where no one else will go.” As a mountain and polar ecologist studying rare plants, she’s accustomed to traveling to breathtaking Arctic vistas to chase flora along mountain ridges. But watching glaciers calve on her first trip to Antarctica last December was a one-of-a-kind experience for the scientist. “You kind of want to see it,” she said. “Even though you know it’s not a good thing, you kind of want to be there.” As she watched the great icebergs float by the boat in Neko Harbor, another...

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Have crosscut, will travel; Sawyers from Bitterroot National Forest aid hurricane recovery effort

Posted by on Sep 28, 2017 @ 11:52 am in Conservation, Hiking News | 0 comments

Have crosscut, will travel; Sawyers from Bitterroot National Forest aid hurricane recovery effort

Three sawyers from the Bitterroot National Forest of Montana are taking their crosscut saws to hurricane-ravaged Georgia to help clear trees in wilderness areas there. The three — Amelia Shields, Sierra LaBonte and Katherine Bicking — left the Bitterroot National Forest, where they worked all summer clearing trails. They expect to be available for work on the Chattahoochee-Oconee National later this week near Blairsville, Georgia, cleaning up after Hurricane Irma. “It’s part of the Appalachian Trail that’s in a wilderness area,” said Mark...

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National Parks Struggle With a Mounting Crisis: Too Many Visitors

Posted by on Sep 28, 2017 @ 6:47 am in Conservation, Hiking News | 1 comment

National Parks Struggle With a Mounting Crisis: Too Many Visitors

The rocky shorelines, shifting deserts and winding canyons of the country’s 59 national parks have been hallmarks of American vacations for generations. But the number of park visitors has reached an unprecedented level, leaving many tourists frustrated and many environmentalists concerned about the toll of overcrowding. In 2016, the National Park Service tracked a record 331 million visits, and after a busy summer, the system is likely to surpass that number this year. In August alone, some 40 million people came through park service gates....

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National Parks offering free admission for 3 days this fall

Posted by on Sep 27, 2017 @ 6:44 am in Conservation, Hiking News | 0 comments

National Parks offering free admission for 3 days this fall

The National Park Service offered 10 fee-free days in 2017, but nearly a third of those days are yet to come. This fall, travelers will get three opportunities to get into national parks free of charge: on Sept. 30 for National Public Lands Day, and on Nov. 11 and 12 for Veterans Day weekend. On those days, all entrance fees will be waived, though camping and other fees may still apply. The fee-free days apply to the 124 national parks that normally charge visitors, including Crater Lake National Park, and Lewis and Clark National Historical...

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Mountain highs: trekking without borders in the Balkans

Posted by on Sep 26, 2017 @ 6:44 am in Hiking News | 3 comments

Mountain highs: trekking without borders in the Balkans

The views from Kosovo’s highest peak are incredible. It’s a tricky thing to confirm in a blanket of murk and howling winds. This is the 2,656m summit of Mount Gjeravica, where a shabby concrete marker displays a defaced plaque commemorating Kosovo’s first and only Olympic medalist. Climbing the tallest mountains in Albania, Kosovo and Montenegro, there’s more to the itinerary than peak-bagging. The majority of the walking follows one continuous 33-mile trail through Albania’s northern borderlands, criss-crossing between countries with no hint...

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Cabin restoration completed at Smokies historic Elkmont

Posted by on Sep 25, 2017 @ 11:41 am in Conservation, Hiking News | 0 comments

Cabin restoration completed at Smokies historic Elkmont

  It still takes imagination to envision sitting among the suit-and-dress crowd listening to the orchestra on a Saturday night at the Appalachia Club House in the Elkmont Historic District of Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Thanks to a National Park Service project, however, at least a part of what it was like during those 1910 glory days is being preserved. Four structures have been opened after nearly a year of restoration at the district off Little River Gorge Road. “We wanted to preserve the character of...

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In a Stunning Turnaround, Britain Moves to End the Burning of Coal

Posted by on Sep 25, 2017 @ 6:30 am in Hiking News | 1 comment

In a Stunning Turnaround, Britain Moves to End the Burning of Coal

Bigger than any medieval castle, with its 12 giant white cooling towers gleaming in the sun, the Drax Power Station dominates the horizon for tens of miles across the flat lands of eastern England. For four decades, it has been one of the world’s largest coal power plants, often generating a tenth of the U.K.’s electricity. It has been the lodestar for the final phase of Britain’s 250-year-long love affair with coal – the fuel that built the country’s empire and industrialized the world. But no more. The coal-devouring behemoth, and the...

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Purchase opens 32,600 Arizona acres near Coronado Forest to hiking

Posted by on Sep 24, 2017 @ 5:14 pm in Conservation, Hiking News | 0 comments

Purchase opens 32,600 Arizona acres near Coronado Forest to hiking

The U.S. Interior Department’s purchase of a plot of private land will allow public access to 32,600 acres of previously isolated forest land in Arizona, a move that drew praise from wilderness advocates and hunters alike. The deal opens up two parcels of public land, one in the Coronado National Forest and one northwest of Safford, that had been inaccessible because they were surrounded by private property. It was pulled off through a collaboration between state, federal and private organizations. The newly accessible parcels in the Santa...

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Hurricanes keep bringing blackouts. Clean energy could keep the lights on.

Posted by on Sep 24, 2017 @ 6:47 am in Conservation | 0 comments

Hurricanes keep bringing blackouts. Clean energy could keep the lights on.

When Hurricane Irma scraped its way up the Florida peninsula, it left the state’s electrical grid in pieces. Between 7 million and 10 million people lost power during the storm — as much as half of the state — and some vulnerable residents lost their lives in the sweltering days that followed. Meanwhile, tens of thousands of electrical workers from around the country rushed to the Sunshine State to repair damaged substations, utility poles, and transmission lines. But in Palm Coast, on Florida’s eastern seaboard, midway between Daytona and...

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Rural communities can coexist with wolves. Here’s how.

Posted by on Sep 23, 2017 @ 6:33 am in Conservation | 0 comments

Rural communities can coexist with wolves. Here’s how.

Because wolves are prolific breeders and able to adapt to a range of habitats, they do fine, so long as they’re not poisoned, trapped or profusely shot. The key to a future for wolves is retaining public support by minimizing conflict. That means finding ways for wolves and ranchers to coexist. Washington has forged a model for building coexistence based on bringing stakeholders together through respect, dialogue and a search for common ground. This year, nearly 100 Washington ranchers and farmers signed agreements to employ deterrence...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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,...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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,...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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