News

Flash Flood Temporarily Closes Cosby Area in the Smokies

Posted by on Jun 23, 2015 @ 8:58 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

Great Smoky Mountains National Park officials announced the temporary closure of the Cosby entrance road due to flood damage. On June 22, 2015 at approximately 4 p.m., flash flooding along Rock Creek spilled over the banks, damaging road shoulders along 1,500 linear feet of the Cosby entrance road. Underground electric and phone lines were exposed along most of the road where the shoulder area was washed out up to 6 feet deep. All electric power and water service to the campground and picnic area has been shut off. Park maintenance crews...

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G-KUP, Vancouver Company, Patents 1st Compostable Coffee Pods

Posted by on Jun 23, 2015 @ 3:00 pm in Conservation | 0 comments

G-KUP, Vancouver Company, Patents 1st Compostable Coffee Pods

Vancouver-based company G-Kup has come up with 100 per cent compostable coffee pods as a solution to uneconomical and incredibly wasteful K-Cups. The plastic single-serve coffee pods designed for Keurig machines have exploded in popularity, but the garbage it creates has become a global problem. A Mother Jones report said the number of K-Cups produced in in 2013 was enough to wrap around the planet 10.5 times. Even the pods’ creator has said he regrets creating them in the first place. As an alternative, G-Kups are held together with a...

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Trekking through Italy’s romantic Cinque Terre

Posted by on Jun 23, 2015 @ 2:02 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

If you’re going to fake it as a paid-up member of the jet set, then Monterosso, at the northern end of the Cinque Terre, is the perfect place. Pinned to the cliffs above the Gulf of Genoa on the shin of the Italian boot, the Cinque Terre – the five lands – is the sort of landscape that causes hearts to beat a little faster. This is one of the scenic miracles of the Mediterranean: five small villages hewn from solid rock, huddled facades and pantiled roofs overlooked by churches and fortifications that date back to the Middle...

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Rosalynn Carter Trail expanding to help save monarch butterfly

Posted by on Jun 22, 2015 @ 9:19 am in Conservation | 0 comments

Something has been missing from Middle Georgia gardens. Nature lovers may have noticed the lack of monarch butterflies. The familiar orange wings with black veins flutter between Canada and Mexico during annual migration that keeps them from wintering in freezing temperatures. Milkweed plants in the Southeast and Midwest are the traditional breeding ground, but many butterflies die trying to find increasingly sparse pockets of the plant. A decline in native milkweed on Georgia roadsides and Midwest farms means fewer places to lay eggs....

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New CEO, President Named For National Park Foundation

Posted by on Jun 22, 2015 @ 8:38 am in Conservation | 0 comments

New CEO, President Named For National Park Foundation

Will Shafroth, who worked in the Interior Department under former Secretary Ken Salazar, has been hired as CEO and president of the National Park Foundation. Shafroth fills a void created when former CEO and President Neil Mulholland abruptly left the organization last fall. Yellowstone National Park Superintendent Dan Wenk served in an interim capacity, but returned to his park earlier this year. Shafroth will oversee the Foundation’s work, including its operations, philanthropic support through individual and foundation giving, corporate...

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Volunteers needed for Montana’s Benchmark trail project

Posted by on Jun 21, 2015 @ 10:19 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Volunteers needed for Montana’s Benchmark trail project

CDT Montana, a branch of the Montana Wilderness Association that focuses on maintaining and supporting the Continental Divide Trail, had no problem filling most of its volunteer slots for this summer’s trail projects. That was until a longtime partner had to cancel leaving an entire project without any volunteers. The trail maintenance project runs July 5-10, 2015 in the Benchmark area of the Rocky Mountain Front. CDT Montana is looking for four folks to help on the project but could take up to eight volunteers. The group will car camp at the...

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Tuolumne Meadows area offers gateways to high country

Posted by on Jun 21, 2015 @ 10:10 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

In just a mile on level ground, you can reach a spot that can change the way you feel about things for a long time. From the trailhead for the Pacific Crest Trail near Tuolumne Meadows, you can amble north for 20 minutes or so to a pristine meadow sprinkled with lodgepole pine, where a high mountain rim frames your moment in time. Unicorn Peak (10,910 feet), Cathedral Peak (10,940) and Fairview Dome (9,731) poke holes in the sky. Nearby, the Tuolumne River runs clear, cold and pure. The only sounds are often meadowlarks, nutcrackers and other...

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4 Reasons Hikers Are The Best People You’ll Ever Meet

Posted by on Jun 20, 2015 @ 8:13 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

If you can surround yourself with anyone, surround yourself with hikers. They are the most down to earth, adventurous folks you’ll ever meet. They are the definition of pure, good vibes. They’re all different, but they all have similar characteristics that make them simply irresistible. If you don’t hike, you should strongly reconsider. Here’s why: They’re optimistic, yet prepared for anything They’re minimalists They’re incredibly encouraging They’re carefree and bold Surround yourself with those who care more about fulfilling their souls...

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Forests Provide Clean Drinking Water for the South

Posted by on Jun 19, 2015 @ 8:51 am in Conservation | 0 comments

A recent report by the U.S. Forest Service shows that for over 19 million people in the South – roughly the population of Florida – clean water begins in the region’s national forests. The report provides information at a level not previously available on the amount of surface drinking water national forest lands provide to communities in the South. The Forest Service Southern Region and Southern Research Station (SRS) worked together to produce the report’s analysis, tables, and maps, which include detailed data on public water system...

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Enjoy rewarding hike at Palomar Mountain trail, courtesy of Canyoneers

Posted by on Jun 19, 2015 @ 8:34 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

The Palomar Mountain Observatory Trail is one of only four National Recreation Trails in San Diego County, California. From the tree-shaded, well-maintained trail there are bucolic vistas of grassy meadows with grazing cattle. It also provides a chance to visit the Hale Telescope and the world-class Palomar Observatory. It is easily accessible and is a rewarding hike year-round. Palomar Mountain rises steeply from the Pauma Valley in the west and the Temecula Creek valley in the east, but the mountain itself consists of gentle rolling hills...

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Long Trail footbridge opens to hikers

Posted by on Jun 18, 2015 @ 8:19 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

More than 100 years after legislation was introduced to build a bridge over the Winooski River, hikers on the Long Trail will have a safe place to cross the river and head north. The Green Mountain Club opened a new 224-foot Long Trail suspension bridge as part of the Winooski Valley Long Trail relocation. The bridge, located just off of U.S. 2 in Bolton, Vermont saves hikers from a 3 mile walk down the highway from the woods of Camels Hump State Forest to the Jonesville Bridge and back onto the trail, said Mike DeBonis, executive director of...

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Kids in Parks Hiking Trail Opens in Crozet, VA

Posted by on Jun 18, 2015 @ 8:03 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Kids in Parks Hiking Trail Opens in Crozet, VA

Thanks to a new partnership between Albemarle County and the Kids in Parks program, there’s a new family hiking trail in Crozet, Virginia. Kids in Parks is a national program designed to get kids outside and exploring. The new trailhead at Mint Springs Park is open with a kiosk stocked with interactive maps. Kids in Parks calls it a track trail, it has free guides that teach kids about birds, nature, safe hiking and more. As families work their way along the path, kids can check off what they find and see. When they get home, they can...

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21 of the world’s 37 largest aquifers losing water

Posted by on Jun 17, 2015 @ 12:11 pm in Conservation | 0 comments

Drought-stricken California is not the only place draining underground aquifers in the hunt for fresh water. It’s happening across the world, according to two new studies by U.S. researchers, including NASA. Twenty-one of the world’s 37 largest aquifers – in locations from India and China to the United States and France – have passed their sustainability tipping points, meaning more water is being removed than replaced from these vital underground reservoirs. Thirteen of 37 aquifers fell at rates that put them into the most troubled...

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Hiking Alone — The Mental Game

Posted by on Jun 17, 2015 @ 7:10 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

The mental game is huge when you’re in the woods. Alone, the ante is upped considerably. You’re more alert. More cautious. More in tune with what’s going on around you and inside of you. These are all good things, but there’s a downside: There’s no one to commiserate with about aches and pains, no one to consult the map with, or share a difficult passage, or speculate about the weather. No one to laugh or joke or share the beauty and joy with. It’s the first rule of the woods — never go alone. But people do...

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Family Summer Fun – Hiking in the Smokies

Posted by on Jun 17, 2015 @ 3:01 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Never been hiking with your kids? Great Smoky Mountains National Park is presenting a series of programs this summer to help introduce families to hiking in the park. These ranger led programs will give parents advice on how to prepare for a hike, what to take, what to watch out for, and some fun activities that you can do with children while hiking. Not sure about bringing your toddler or your 5 year old on a hike? There will be some suggestions for bringing along these young ones too. The park is kicking off these family programs on June...

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The Power of the Long Walk

Posted by on Jun 16, 2015 @ 8:41 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Here’s another powerful benefit to walking. When your brain is completely overloaded and you need to take a life time-out and hit the reset button, nothing will accomplish that better than logging some cleansing miles on foot, solo. No phone, no headphones, just you and your feet. The long walk is a therapeutic tool to not only power up your mind but also to recharge its battery. Which, in turn, leads to much greater creativity once you’ve rebooted. One day, when Marc Andreessen, the money man behind such tech giants as Facebook, Twitter, and...

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The Weather Channel’s new climate change messages will surprise you

Posted by on Jun 16, 2015 @ 3:25 am in Conservation | 0 comments

The Weather Channel’s new climate change messages will surprise you

The Weather Channel has gone hawkish on climate change. It has started web- and broad-casting short but blunt messages from “25 influential voices on climate change, security, energy and peace.” The “Climate 25” features former Bush Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson, who warns that failure to take strong action on climate is “radical risk taking” for our economy. Unilever CEO Paul Polman talks about the $300 million in annual climate disruption costs hitting his company. New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman, who explained why the Syrian...

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How did we get to this point, where our politics determines whether we trust scientists or not?

Posted by on Jun 15, 2015 @ 8:11 am in Conservation | 0 comments

By Katharine Hayhoe New to Texas Tech, it was my first year as an atmospheric science professor. We’d just moved to Lubbock, the second most conservative town in the United States. A colleague asked me to guest teach his undergraduate geology course while he was out of town. The packed lecture hall was cavernous and dark. Many of the students were glued to their phones; others were slumped over, dozing. I began with the fundamental components of the climate system; I waded through the geologic climate record and ice core data; and finally, I...

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Phoenix mountain rescues increase

Posted by on Jun 15, 2015 @ 2:55 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

It’s a sound Camelback Mountain regulars have come to expect. Amid the Spotify, busy chatter of teenagers and welcome breezes, the chop of rescue helicopters cuts through the air, its occupants combing the terrain for the latest broken ankle or victim of Valley heat. Phoenix, Arizona mountain rescues spiked by more than 30 percent in 2014 over the previous year, and 2015 so far is keeping up the pace, according to records maintained by the Phoenix Fire Department. By the end of June 2014, Phoenix fire crews had been called out on 120...

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Trekking Through History: The Second European Peace Walk

Posted by on Jun 14, 2015 @ 7:08 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Trekking Through History: The Second European Peace Walk

Many travelers are familiar with the Camino de Santiago pilgrimage walk, but there is a new journey that seems to be gaining traction with everyone from history buffs and outdoorsy types to those looking for a creative way to disconnect from email and cell phones for several weeks in the European countryside. The inaugural European Peace Walk (EPW) took place last summer, a century after The Great War began. Groups of travelers left Vienna on a six-country, 23 day walk of peace to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the beginning of World...

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With U.S. as a Model, China Envisions Network of National Parks

Posted by on Jun 14, 2015 @ 3:03 am in Conservation | 0 comments

More than 140 years ago, the United States government designated Yellowstone as the nation’s first national park — an untouched Western landscape of geysers, grizzly bears and soaring peaks. The national parks program eventually expanded to include more than 450 sites and has become one of the country’s greatest tourist draws. Now China is trying to do with some of its natural spaces what the United States did during its own industrial boom. Chinese officials and a research center based in Chicago, announced a plan to undertake trial national...

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The UN surprises everyone with a breakthrough deal to slow deforestation

Posted by on Jun 13, 2015 @ 6:26 pm in Conservation | 0 comments

A surprise deal emerged from United Nations climate negotiations in Bonn, Germany, this week: diplomats managed to reach a key agreement to compensate developing nations that agree to preserve their forests. And environmental and civil society groups had generally nice things to say about the deal. Deforestation has a huge effect on climate change. Activities like slash-and-burn agriculture account for nearly 20 percent of greenhouse gas emissions, according to the UN. Trees, of course, also play a key role in slowing climate change by...

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National Forest fields 200,000 comments on Grand Canyon project

Posted by on Jun 13, 2015 @ 8:34 am in Conservation | 0 comments

The Kaibab National Forest is sifting through more than 200,000 public comments that are mostly against an easement through the town of Tusayan that would help make a development near the Grand Canyon possible. Stilo Development Group USA wants to build homes, retail shops, hotels, and cultural centers in the area. The easement would allow utilities to be installed and improved along roads managed by the Forest Service. Kaibab spokeswoman Jackie Banks said the scope of a review of environmental impacts will be determined later this month,...

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Hiking, rafting and relaxing in Greece’s Zagori wilderness

Posted by on Jun 13, 2015 @ 8:20 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

The Zagori region in north west Greece is little known among visitors heading to Athens and the islands. But amid its mountains, canyons and ancient villages are superb hiking trails, delicious local fare and top places to stay. Forested mountains stretch into the distance – the craggy peaks still topped with snow – and the clear waters of the Voidomatis River whoosh by below. In a country so blessed with ancient ruins, islands and beaches, people tend to forget about Greece’s mountains as a holiday option. Unspoilt Vikos-Aoös National Park...

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Where The Wild Things Reign – Hiking The Cohos Trail

Posted by on Jun 12, 2015 @ 8:50 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

With more than 4,000 miles of hiking trails, it’s not too hard to get away from it all in New Hampshire. But if you want to get even further away, you could head out on the Cohos Trail, one of the wildest, most remote trails in New England. The Cohos Trail is a 165 miles long approximately. It utilizes new trail, moose paths, existing trails, old ways, old rail beds and it gets you where you have to go. The trail begins on the Davis Path in Crawford Notch and ends in Pittsburg at the Canadian border customs stop. Bring your passport and...

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Heading to the Grand Canyon? Read these hiking tips first

Posted by on Jun 12, 2015 @ 8:41 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Nearly 5 million people visit Grand Canyon National Park each year, but many do not get far below its limestone rim. Even fewer head to the bottom. Why? The simple answer is: It’s hard. The hike down to the banks of the chalky green Colorado River, and especially back up, is challenging, even grueling. Even if you’ve trained on stair climbers and hills with a 30-pound backpack, hiking the Grand Canyon will test your endurance and your ability to remain hydrated. But the sweat and sore muscles are worth the experience as you gaze at the...

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A.T. In A Day

Posted by on Jun 11, 2015 @ 7:18 am in Hiking News | 5 comments

A.T. In A Day

Backpacker Magazine is throwing a 2,180-mile party from Georgia to Maine! Join in on June 20, 2015 for a record-setting attempt to hike the Appalachian Trail in 24 hours. Bring on the thru-hikers, the section hikers, the weekend warriors. Bring on the dayhikers with sneakers on their feet and baby carriers on their backs. Bring on the AT lifers and those who have never hiked it (but always wondered). Bring on the ridge runners, the trail maintainers, the hiking clubs, the soloists. Bring on anyone who needs another reason to get out on the...

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Cradle of Forestry to Host Free Outdoor Activities on National Get Outdoors Day

Posted by on Jun 11, 2015 @ 2:00 am in Conservation, Hiking News | 0 comments

Cradle of Forestry to Host Free Outdoor Activities on National Get Outdoors Day

The Cradle of Forestry in America will celebrate National Get Outdoors Day, June 13, 2015, with outdoor skills demonstrations, activities and crafts. Admission to the site and all activities are free. The USDA Forest Service is a National Get Outdoors Day partner. The campaign encourages Americans, especially youth, to seek out healthy, active outdoor lifestyles, connect with nature, and embrace their public lands. The Forest Service has an ongoing commitment to engage children with nature through various programs in support of President...

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National Park Service kicks off zero-landfill pilot

Posted by on Jun 10, 2015 @ 6:46 am in Conservation | 0 comments

Three of America’s most iconic National Parks are getting a helping hand on their waste management practices from Subaru’s zero-landfill experts. It’s unfortunate that some of our most beautiful places, our public lands, are also a place for one of our ugliest habits, wastefulness, to rear its head, but that may be changing, thanks to a partnership between Subaru, the National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA), and the National Park Service (NPS). According to the NPS, more than 100 million pounds of waste were generated...

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Nearly 3 in 10 Hikers Carry a Gun

Posted by on Jun 10, 2015 @ 3:07 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

If you’ve been coming to this site for awhile and paying attention to the sidebar, I’ve been running a poll for the past several months. The poll had to do with carrying a gun when you hike. The specific question was: I was surprised to learn how many people apparently carry a gun when they hike. How about you? Do you carry when hiking? Well, the poll reached a thousand respondents this week, so I thought that would be a good time to close the poll and share the finished results with you. Final Results Yes — 285 —...

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Here’s what it would take for the US to run on 100% renewable energy

Posted by on Jun 9, 2015 @ 1:57 pm in Conservation | 0 comments

It is technically and economically feasible to run the US economy entirely on renewable energy, and to do so by 2050. That is the conclusion of a new study in the journal Energy & Environmental Science, authored by Stanford scholar Mark Z. Jacobson and nine colleagues. Jacobson is well-known for his ambitious and controversial work on renewable energy. In 2001 he published, with Mark A. Delucchi, a two-part paper on “providing all global energy with wind, water, and solar power.” In 2013 he published a feasibility study on...

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8 great Georgia hikes to incredible places

Posted by on Jun 9, 2015 @ 8:40 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Haven’t explored Georgia outside of the metro Atlanta area? There’s a whole lot more to Georgia than you’d think. Georgia’s landscapes are beautiful and staggering in variety, from southern sandy Atlantic coast to lush, green, rolling Appalachian Mountains in the north. Moss and fern-filled forests, breezy mountaintops with stunning views, barrier islands where wild horses roam free, deep-cut canyons filled with waterfalls: Georgia’s beauty leaves a lot to explore. Hike these top Georgia hikes to the state’s most beautiful views: deep,...

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This is crazy, but there is actually good news about climate change

Posted by on Jun 9, 2015 @ 8:36 am in Conservation | 0 comments

Here’s something rare in climate reporting: a bit of good news. Or, more accurately, not disastrous news. China has long exerted an outsize role in global climate change, not simply because it’s by far the world’s leading emitter of greenhouse gas, due largely to its enormous population, its rapid growth, and its reliance on dirty coal — but also because of China’s influence over global politics as a hold-out in international climate deals. Now the reigning heavyweight contributor to global warming might be slimming down a bit. China’s...

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Jenny Bennett Is Missing

Posted by on Jun 7, 2015 @ 6:05 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

Jenny Bennett Is Missing

Well known Smoky Mountains author and off-trail hiker Jenny Bennett is missing. She was scheduled to move to Vermont on June 1, 2015, but has not been seen. She evidently went for one last hike in the Smokies on Saturday, May 30 or Sunday, May 31 and did not return. The movers arrived at her house on Monday, June 1 and she was not there. She has not been seen or heard from since. All readers of Jenny’s blog in the NC / TN area please let everyone she knew know about this. It is imperative that we try to locate her as soon as possible. If you...

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