News

Expand Yosemite National Park

Posted by on Dec 21, 2013 @ 6:19 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

Yosemite National Park has long blessed us with its breathtaking beauty and the transcendental splendor of its valleys and backcountry. Yet between the massive Rim Fire and 17-day government shutdown, there’s no denying that 2013 was a hard year for the park we all love. As the New Year dawns, we still have a chance to enhance Yosemite’s splendor by adding 1,600 acres of important habitat for park wildlife. A strong, growing coalition supports this effort, including a unanimous California Legislature. Congress should resolve to make 2014...

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Arkansas state parks celebrate the start of a new year with first day hikes

Posted by on Dec 21, 2013 @ 8:43 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Arkansas state parks celebrate the start of a new year with first day hikes

First Day Hikes originated over 20 years ago at the Blue Hills Reservation, a state park in Milton, Massachusetts. The initiative targeted the first of January-the start of a new year-to promote both healthy lifestyles throughout the year and the year-round recreation that can be experienced locally in state parks. Through the years, other states joined this health initiative by also offering First Day Hikes and other outdoor recreation programs on New Year’s Day. Now all 50 state park systems join together to sponsor First Day Hikes,...

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National Park Service Offers Nine Fee Free Entrance Days in 2014

Posted by on Dec 20, 2013 @ 4:00 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

One of the best deals around is our national parks. If you have a permanent disability or you’re a current military member or their dependent, you can get special passes that allow you to get into National Parks at no charge 365 days a year. If you’re a senior over the age of 62, you can get a lifetime pass for only $10. Even the annual pass for the general public is a deal at $80. In addition to all these deals, the National Parks service also designates free entrance days each year when anyone can visit any of the 401 parks within the...

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New documentary celebrates the toughness of hiking the Continental Divide

Posted by on Dec 19, 2013 @ 2:01 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

The Continental Divide Trail Coalition (CDTC) in partnership with TBW Productions announces the hiking documentary “Embrace the Brutality – a Continental Divide Trail Adventure.” “Embrace the Brutality” captures the realities of one of the last great adventures – walking 3,100 miles along the “Backbone of America,” the Continental Divide National Scenic Trail (CDT). Along with the Appalachian and Pacific Crest Trails, the CDT makes up the “Triple Crown” of thru hike experiences, and is the most rugged and challenging...

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Saluda, N.C.: The Next Great Mountain Town

Posted by on Dec 18, 2013 @ 2:15 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

Saluda, N.C.: The Next Great Mountain Town

There’s a good chance you’ve never heard of Saluda, North Carolina. If the tiny town (pop. 703) is famous for anything at all, it’s the ridiculously steep, but closed, Saluda railroad grade, the steepest main line railroad in the U.S. So yeah, you’ve probably never heard of Saluda. But that’s about to change. The once-quiet downtown is now thriving, and adventurers from all disciplines are finally discovering the gems hidden inside the Green River Gamelands, an 18,000-acre tract of wilderness that’s packed with waterfalls, steep creeks, and...

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Prescribed Burn Planned for Caldwell County, NC

Posted by on Dec 18, 2013 @ 11:14 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

The U.S. Forest Service plans to conduct a prescribed burn tomorrow, Dec. 19, in northern Caldwell County, NC on the Grandfather Ranger District, Pisgah National Forest. The Forest Service will conduct the 200-acre burn in the Thunderhole Creek area to reduce hazardous fuels and help protect local communities from catastrophic wildfire. Public safety is the highest priority during a prescribed burn. Smoke may be visible in Caldwell, Avery, and Watauga counties, including the towns of Blowing Rock, Boone, Linville, Foscoe and Collettsville....

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Poll finds history is top draw at Md. state parks; hiking opportunities place 2nd

Posted by on Dec 18, 2013 @ 8:05 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Maryland residents heavily favor state parks with features of historical interest, according to a Goucher College poll released 12/17/13. The school said it surveyed 665 Marylanders by telephone in late October. When asked which activities they would likely participate in at state parks, 69 percent said they would likely or very likely visit historic sites. Hiking came in second, with 56 percent indicating an interest. The results surprised Maryland Park Service Superintendent Nita Settina, who said hiking and trails usually top the surveys...

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Israel has 6,200 miles of marked hiking trails – but hardly a foreigner on them

Posted by on Dec 17, 2013 @ 8:39 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

It was 1934, and an adventurous group of young Zionist pioneers decided they wanted to hike around the Dead Sea, located in what was then a desolate border region. So the youths, against the orders of their commanders in the pre-state Haganah paramilitary organization, loaded nine guns and crossed clandestinely into Transjordan. With no good maps, they hit impassible gorges on the Jordanian side of the sea and ran out of water. After robbing Bedouins at gunpoint for their water, the youths scaled the cliffs down to the salty sea and floated...

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Hike with CMLC to Explore the ‘Missing Link’ – Sunday, January 19th

Posted by on Dec 16, 2013 @ 9:14 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

Join Carolina Mountain Land Cconservancy on Sunday, January 19th for the unique opportunity to view land referred to as the ‘missing link’ of the Southern Appalachian Loop Trail. This land has the potential to complete the final public connection to an extensive interstate trail network measuring over 350 miles in length. This tract of land is also part of a contiguous corridor of more than 23,000 acres of conserved natural lands—many within CMLC easements—along the southern Blue Ridge Escarpment. Total hiking distance is 2.2...

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Chequamegon Chapter puts in its time on North Country Trail

Posted by on Dec 16, 2013 @ 4:03 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

Chequamegon Chapter puts in its time on North Country Trail

This year, Chequamegon Chapter volunteers have contributed well over 2,150 volunteer hours on their sections of the North Country National Scenic Trail (NCT) in Northern Wisconsin. These volunteer hours include building new bridges/puncheon, removing downed trees, brush mowing, hand brushing (wilderness sections), trimming overhanging vegetation (lopping), blue blazing (marking), installation of new interpretive/destination signage and register boxes, grant writing and outreach/promotional efforts. The North Country Scenic Trail offers a...

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Cuomo says he’ll sign Adirondack wilderness plan

Posted by on Dec 16, 2013 @ 3:58 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

Cuomo says he’ll sign Adirondack wilderness plan

The Adirondack Park Agency has voted to create a vast new 24,000-acre wilderness and primitive area along a remote stretch of the upper Hudson River in upstate New York. The land, most of which lies in Hamilton County, had been owned by the Finch Pruyn logging and paper company for more than a century. This decision by the Adirondack Park Agency commission sets aside a sprawling area of wild rivers, pristine lakes, and forests where most human development will be banned forever. The action created the largest new wilderness area in New York...

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America’s State Parks to Host First Day Hikes

Posted by on Dec 15, 2013 @ 6:54 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

America’s State Parks to Host First Day Hikes

Looking for an invigorating way to kick off the New Year? Ring in 2014 with a First Day Hike January 1 in a state park near you! All 50 states are participating in the third annual event that invites families and friends to celebrate the New Year amid the sights, sounds and wonder of our natural world with fun, guided hikes. “Last year, First Day Hikes hosted 22,000 people, who covered nearly 44,000 miles in 700 state parks all across the country,” said Priscilla Geigis, president of the National Association of State Park Directors (NASPD)....

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Trails to tranquillity

Posted by on Dec 15, 2013 @ 9:16 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

A hike, at its bare essence, is simply a vigorous venture out of the city and into the wild — a test of legs and lungs against a backdrop of scenic splendor. But something else, something more subtle, lures many to the trails around Tucson, AZ: a quest for a place that inspires quiet reflection, moments of meditation or private prayer. It might be an overlook with panoramic views. It could be a forest glade. Even a niche in the rocks where time stands still can set the stage for contemplation. “It’s quiet here,” said one hiker as she sat for...

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Candlelight Ski, Snowshoe, Hiking Events Set in Minn. Parks

Posted by on Dec 14, 2013 @ 6:40 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

Candlelight Ski, Snowshoe, Hiking Events Set in Minn. Parks

Thirty candlelight ski, snowshoe and hiking events are scheduled to take place at Minnesota state parks and trails this winter, according to the Department of Natural Resources. Among the highlights are the annual New Year’s Eve candlelight walk at Fort Snelling State Park in St. Paul, which has drawn 1,500 or more participants in past years; an all-new candlelight walk on Jan. 3 along the Luce Line State Trail in Plymouth; and several events on Valentine’s Weekend, including a Feb. 15 candlelight ski/snowshoe/walk at Wild River State Park,...

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Grand Enchantment Trail

Posted by on Dec 14, 2013 @ 5:43 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

The Grand Enchantment Trail is a 730-mile wilderness trekking route across the Southwest U.S., connecting mountains, deserts, canyons, and places of cultural and historic interest. Beginning in the Sonoran desert near Phoenix Arizona, the route meanders eastward, crossing unique and diverse Sky Island mountain ranges, deep and water-blessed desert canyons, the pine-studded Continental Divide, and toward the southernmost Rocky Mountains, where it descends dramatically to the outskirts of Albuquerque New Mexico. First conceived in 2003, the...

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Cayuga Trails Club explores and preserves region’s numerous hiking areas

Posted by on Dec 14, 2013 @ 3:29 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Cayuga Trails Club explores and preserves region’s numerous hiking areas

On a recent Saturday in November, a handful of outdoor enthusiasts gathered at the Cornell Plantations. Led by Cayuga Trails Club volunteer Anna Keeton, the group braved the early-morning chill to learn how to use a compass and map to orient themselves in nature. Keeton, who used these techniques daily in her previous job as a resource management archaeologist, explained how to calculate one’s stride, read various map features, properly set up a compass and triangulate one’s position based on two points on a map. “These are really good skills...

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Smokies Park Hosts Holiday Homecoming

Posted by on Dec 13, 2013 @ 4:33 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

Smokies Park Hosts Holiday Homecoming

On Saturday, December 21, Great Smoky Mountains National Park will host a Holiday Homecoming at the Oconaluftee Visitor Center where children and adults will have an opportunity to learn about and experience some of the traditions surrounding an Appalachian Christmas. Park staff and volunteers will provide hands-on traditional crafts and activities from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. and from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. the park will host the monthly acoustic old time jam session. “Musical expression was and still is often a part of daily life in the southern...

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Oregon hiker prepares to walk the entire length of New Zealand

Posted by on Dec 13, 2013 @ 6:55 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Mary Moynihan sits on a bar stool in her kitchen, surrounded by an organized mess of maps, trail notes and hiking gear. She has been researching and training for months, knowing that soon her immersion in information will pay dividends for her immersion in nature in one of the most awe-inspiring corners of the world. The 29-year-old Moynihan, a Bend resident for the past two years, plans to solo hike the length of New Zealand (both islands) from north to south this coming January through April along the 1,850-mile Te Araroa Trail. Moynihan,...

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Brain fatigue eased by outdoors, shows pioneering mobile EEG study

Posted by on Dec 12, 2013 @ 5:11 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

Once again scientists have confirmed what those who love nature have experienced time and time again. Not only does time outdoors make you smarter and more creative, but now research shows that it also provides an opportunity for your brain to recover from daily stress. Earlier this year, a study published by the British Journal of Sports Medicine showed how brain states of those who live in cities are altered by the outdoors. For the first time, a mobile electroencephalography (EEG) was used to record brain activity while participants went...

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‘Five Star Trails: Chattanooga’ details hiking opportunities

Posted by on Dec 12, 2013 @ 10:59 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

As climbing, paddling and other outdoor activities have grown more popular in the Chattanooga area, it’s sometimes easy to forget that this area’s hiking trails were one of the original outdoor attractions that brought visitors to Southeast Tennessee and helped residents appreciate the area’s natural beauty. Trails wind their way throughout the area, taking explorers to scenic overlooks, beautiful waterfalls and giving an up-close view of wildlife that can be easy to forget is so close to downtown. Noted outdoor writer...

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1-Minute Hike series recaps second year of trails, 100-plus Maine adventures

Posted by on Dec 11, 2013 @ 6:19 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

1-Minute Hike series recaps second year of trails, 100-plus Maine adventures

Aislinn Sarnacki missed her anniversary. At the end of October, the 1-Minute Hike series officially turned two years old. Where was she? Busy hiking, probably. For those of you unfamiliar with the 1-Minute Hike series, here’s how it works. Each week, Aislinn visits a hiking trail somewhere in Maine. She records her experience with video, photos and writing, then drives back to Bangor to polish it up for readers and viewers. The written description of the hike and select photos — perhaps a stunning mountain view, vibrant mushrooms, a startled...

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Volunteers and Conservation Education: A Winning Combination

Posted by on Dec 11, 2013 @ 4:05 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

“I was surprised by how knowledgeable and sharp the kids were, and I think they may have taught me more than I taught them.” Those were the thoughts of Ryan Johnson, a senior at the University of North Carolina – Asheville (UNCA), after delivering conservation education to a number of local elementary children this fall. Johnson, a political science and philosophy major, and Caroline Ketcham, an environmental studies major at UNCA, volunteered with the U.S. Forest Service National Forests in North Carolina this semester. The primary goal was...

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Wyoming offers hiking outings on New Year’s Day

Posted by on Dec 11, 2013 @ 2:42 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Wyoming offers hiking outings on New Year’s Day

Six New Year’s Day guided hikes will be held at Wyoming State Parks, historic sites and trails as part of the America’s State Parks First Day Hikes initiative. In Wyoming, hikes will be offered at the following locations and times: Bear River State Park – Short nature hike along the Bear River. Hike distance will vary. Meet at the Bear River Shelter. Begin at 10 a.m. Curt Gowdy State Park – Up to 4 mile hike on a trail to be determined. Meet at Aspen Grove Trailhead at 1 p.m. Edness K. Wilkins State Park – There will be two walks. One...

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The Top 10 Hikes in Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Posted by on Dec 10, 2013 @ 10:57 am in Hiking News | 1 comment

Every hiker has a list of favorite trails. After many years of hiking in Great Smoky Mountains National Park Jeff Doran of Hiking in the Smokies decided to compile a list of what he considered to be the best hikes in the Smokies. If you’re new to the Smokies you can use this article as a starting point in trying to decide where to hike during your visit. Few know more about the trails there than expert Jeff Doran. If you’re a veteran Smoky Mountains hiker, maybe there are a few hikes on this list that you haven’t had a chance to check-off...

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National Park Service seeks input on Appalachian Trail

Posted by on Dec 10, 2013 @ 9:37 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

The National Park Service is starting the process of preparing a foundation document for planning and managing the Appalachian National Scenic Trail, a unit of the National Park Service. A foundation document involves revisiting a national park unit’s core purpose and significance, most important resources and values, and the interpretive themes that tell the park’s important stories. Although the foundation document is not a decision-making document and does not include actions or management strategies, it describes a shared understanding of...

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Smokies national park to get acting superintendent

Posted by on Dec 10, 2013 @ 8:51 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Great Smoky Mountains National Park comprises 521,000 acres in North Carolina and Tennessee and gets twice as many visitors as the next most popular park, the Grand Canyon. A National Park Service official with 12 years on the job will take over next month as acting superintendent of the USA’s most-visited national park. Pedro Ramos, 46, is now superintendent at Big Cypress National Preserve in Florida. He will take the top job in Great Smoky Mountains National Park in January when Superintendent Dale Ditmanson retires. The posting is...

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Appalachian Trail Conservancy is Now Accepting Grant Applications for 2014 Trail Projects in North Carolina and Tennessee

Posted by on Dec 9, 2013 @ 10:19 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

The Appalachian Trail Conservancy (ATC) has announced that applications for the 2014 Appalachian Trail (A.T.) License Plate Grant Program are currently being accepted until Friday, January 10, 2014. The ATC will be awarding a total of $35,000 for a broad range of A.T. related projects in North Carolina. These funds are generated from the sales and renewals of North Carolina A.T. specialty license plates. The ATC is seeking individuals and partner organizations, including Trail clubs; schools; botanists and ecologists; environmental and...

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5 Washington trails to keep you hiking even in winter

Posted by on Dec 8, 2013 @ 5:46 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

The snow is piling up in the mountains, but that’s no reason to leave your hiking boots in the closet for the winter. Craig Romano, a guidebook author and expert on the trails of Washington, recommends five hikes for winter adventures. These trails should be hikeable all year, except in extreme weather. Romano also shares his tips for making sure you have a safe, fun trip. Get the list…...

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Big O Hike, a Lake Okeechobee holiday tradition

Posted by on Dec 8, 2013 @ 9:19 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Big O Hike, a Lake Okeechobee holiday tradition

Every Thanksgiving week since 1991, a group of hardy souls — from elementary-school age to octogenarians — have embarked on a one-of-a-kind, nine-day hiking adventure circling Lake Okeechobee. And this past holiday was no different. More than 100 people signed up for all or part of the 2013 Big O Hike, which began Nov. 23 and concluded Dec. 1, and was hosted by the Loxahatchee chapter of the Florida Trail Association. Most walked for just a day or two, but 25 hikers completed the 94-mile route, shortened from the usual 109-mile circle because...

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New hiking trail keeps land preserved from development

Posted by on Dec 7, 2013 @ 8:42 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

A corner of woodland will remain even if potential development rises around Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden. Nestled along the banks of Lake Wylie in Gaston County, NC, a new 2.8-mile hiking trail now invites visitors who want to enjoy the scenery on foot. The Carolina Thread Trail, Catawba Lands Conservancy and the Botanical Garden unveiled the Seven Oaks Preserve Trail. About 30 people anxiously awaited a ribbon cutting ceremony, clearing the way for nature lovers to lace up their hiking boots and hit the trail. Taking in the picturesque...

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13 Adventurous Hiking Tales

Posted by on Dec 7, 2013 @ 3:46 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

13 Adventurous Hiking Tales

Have you ever marvelled at the scale and magnificence of those great, immoveable giants of nature, the mountains? Have you ever felt the cool caress of a snow-scented breeze from distant peaks, or seen the first long sun rays of dawn dispel shadows as light creeps up to the heights? Have you ever stumbled, half-delirious with fatigue and joy, onto the summit of a mountain? From the inaugural Storytelling Theme on Maptia, here are inspiring tales of thirteen mountainous adventures from all over the world. You can see them laid out on a map....

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Hiking the Santa Catalina Mountains north of Tucson

Posted by on Dec 6, 2013 @ 7:06 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

At first glance, the Santa Catalina Mountains dominating the horizon north of Tucson seem to offer hikers little more than up, up and more up. To be sure, there’s plenty of up — lung-burning, calf-and-thigh-sizzling, oh-my-goodness-will-this-ever-end up. Depending on one’s ambition, a hike can involve 4,000 feet or more of up, followed by knee-grinding descents. But in canyons not far from midtown Tucson, the seemingly flat face of the Catalinas gives way to saguaro-studded worlds offering jaw-dropping views of the city. Hikes range from...

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Highline Trail Restoration Project

Posted by on Dec 6, 2013 @ 5:31 pm in Hiking News | 0 comments

Highline Trail Restoration Project

The Highline National Recreation Trail, so designated in 1978, is located north of Payson, Arizona and below the Mogollon Rim, which marks the edge of the Colorado Plateau in Arizona. Over fifty miles long (the second longest NRT in Arizona), it follows a course below the rim between Pine Trailhead, off Highway 87, and the 260 Trailhead, off of Highway 260. The Highline offers numerous options starting at seven different trail heads for day-hikes and longer. The original Highline Trail, a road, was constructed in the 1880s to connect ranches...

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Valles Caldera suspends open hiking

Posted by on Dec 6, 2013 @ 7:26 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Amid concerns that Indian tribes and pueblos weren’t consulted, a plan to allow unfettered public access to the Valles Caldera National Preserve in New Mexico has been put on hold. Kent Salazar, chairman of the Valles Caldera Trust Board, made that announcement at the outset of the board’s recent meeting. “It is clear from staff input that there are serious issues that must be addressed prior to the implementation of the program,” Salazar said, adding that tribal consent, review of endangered species, cultural resources, and habitat...

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