Smokies Park reaches biodiversity milestone at 20,000 species

Great Smoky Mountains National Park has reached a biodiversity milestone with the discovery and documentation of 20,000 species of plants, animals, and other organisms. Scientists from across the world have assisted the park in a concerted effort to catalog all life in the park through an All Taxa Biodiversity Inventory (ATBI). “Reaching this milestone is a testament to...

Learn More

How can I teach my students about climate change?

The good news about young brains — as anyone who’s been even passively absorbing climate news over the past year probably knows — is that the Teens Are Pretty On It. Seattle-based climate activist Jamie Margolin launched the nonprofit Zero Hour when she was yet to hit voting age. The International Youth Climate Strike, which took place in over 130 countries this past...

Learn More

Oregon Dunes hike is a strange, sandy adventure on the coast

The 40-mile stretch of sand dunes on the central Oregon coast can feel like an alien world (and, in fact, was the inspiration for classic sci-fi novel “Dune”). Because the dunes are always shifting with the wind, no permanent trails lead through them, forcing hikers to navigate through the sand. Whether you’re planning to follow the markers or wander on...

Learn More

New Trail Opens in Brevard’s Bracken Mountain Preserve

  A new trail for hiking and mountain biking just opened in Brevard, NC’s Bracken Mountain Preserve. The approximately 1.5 mile trail, called the Pinnacle Trail, offers a steep climb with 500 feet of elevation gain and creates a new loop. It brings the trail system in Bracken Mountain Preserve to nearly nine miles. These trails create a direct connection...

Learn More

In fall, experience the awe and adventure in Sequoia and Kings Canyon national parks

The giant trees of Sequoia National Park will fill you with awe — and give you a crick in your neck from staring up at them. The wild backcountry of Kings Canyon National Park will bring you over-the-top adventure — and muscle cramps from walking too far with a 35-pound pack on your back. Shoulder-season visitors (September-November) avoid the hustle and bustle of peak...

Learn More

Oahu’s Best Hiking Trails Have One Thing in Common — Breathtaking Ocean Views

When it comes to outdoor adventure, Oahu packs a punch. Within its 597 square miles, visitors to the island can find stunning beaches to unwind on, delicious local foods to enjoy, and miles upon miles of hiking trails to explore. According to Best of Oahu, there are close to 50 different hiking trails to choose from around the island. From beginning to expert, the...

Learn More

Where to go hiking in Nashville: Great spots to get outdoors this September

Now that fall is just around the corner, you may be thinking about taking a hike. September offers plenty of opportunities, with Public Lands Day hikes at all state parks, plus plenty of other chances to get out and enjoy beautiful Middle Tennessee on foot. All 56 Tennessee state parks have free, ranger-led hikes or volunteer park and trail cleanup programs on National...

Learn More

19-Mile Rail Trail Could Link Hendersonville and Brevard

North Carolina House Rep. Chuck McGrady, Conserving Carolina, and Friends of the Ecusta Trail are pleased to announce that Conserving Carolina was awarded a $6.4 million purchase grant for the rail corridor known as the TR Line or Proposed Ecusta Trail. “This is a very big next step for the Ecusta Trail”, said McGrady. “There is still a lot of work to be done and a lot...

Learn More

Explore Kentucky’s Red River Gorge

Nestled in the heart of the Daniel Boone National Forest, the Red River Gorge attracts thousands of outdoor recreation enthusiasts year round. Rock climbers, hikers, canoeists and campers are among those who come to enjoy and explore this rugged landscape, often referred to as simply “The Red” by its most frequent visitors. Across its steep terrain, miles of towering...

Learn More

Hiking safety tips for the fall – Always a good reminder

The Appalachians are full of many natural wonders, and with a long holiday weekend ahead of us (and great weather predicted), it is a good time to get outdoors and reconnect with nature. Hiking is one of the ways many of us do that. As you hit the trails this fall, remember to keep safety in the forefront of your mind. Often, hiking is a more strenuous activity than...

Learn More

10 Things People Do On Hiking Trails That Park Ranger Can’t Stand

When preparing to go on a hike, there are a lot of things to think about. You want to make sure you are prepared with supplies and that you know the area well enough. You also have to consider how difficult the hike will be and how long it will take. While these are all important things to think about, it’s also important to keep in mind how you act when on the trail....

Learn More

Hiking in the Fairy-Tale ‘Narnia’ Hills of the Czech Republic

Stepping out above the treeline to the eagle’s nest lookout behind Pravčická brána, the sweeping, 360-degree views include the soaring Elbe Sandstone Mountains that make up the border between the Czech Republic and the German state of Saxony. Its crowning jewel is the Pravčická brána rock bridge, the largest in Europe and one of the Czech Republic’s most impressive, and...

Learn More

Yes, the Amazon wildfires are bad, but how bad?

Brazil has recorded over 75,000 individual forest fires in 2019 so far, showing an 85 per cent increase when compared to the first eight months of 2018. The impact on the Amazon has been catastrophic. In July, an area the size of Manhattan was obliterated every single day. And this destruction will undoubtedly have grave consequences for the entire planet. The Amazon...

Learn More

Pennsylvania Has An Ice Cream Trail With 32 Glorious, Sugar-Filled Stops

Sure hiking trails are great, but don’t you think they’d be even better if they included scoops of ice cream instead rocks and bugs and stuff? Well, Pennsylvania just made that dream into a sweet, sweet reality with their massive, statewide ice cream trail. The trail is made each year by Discover PA, and this year it features a whopping 32 creameries and ice...

Learn More

A Chance to Bond on a Perilous Hiking Trail in Iceland

Landmannalaugar is a remote outpost in southern Iceland. This is the start of the Laugavegur Trail, a 34-mile trek through an astounding diversity of terrain — all of Middle-earth (minus the orcs) — plus, according to the guidebook, there is a shack, somewhere in the middle, that serves beer. The plan usually is to do it in four days and to stay in huts along the way....

Learn More

You Can Now Hike Around the Entire City of Chicago on One Awesome Trail

Last summer, a group of intrepid local hikers discovered a way to hike around the entire Chicago metro area in one go. It’s called the Chicago Outerbelt, an uninterrupted 210-mile nature trail that pieces together existing forest preserves and park land into one contiguous loop. With highlights along the trail ranging from scenic lakes and rustic campsites to forested...

Learn More

Park Webcams Provide Smokies Views and Weather

Great Smoky Mountains National Park recently installed webcams at Newfound Gap and Clingmans Dome, providing visitors with near real-time access to weather conditions and views from the highest elevations in the park. The public can access images taken every 15 minutes, along with hourly information on temperature, humidity, wind speeds, precipitation, and air quality....

Learn More

This Overlooked Region Has Some of the Loveliest Hikes in New England

The gentle hills of Greater Boston aren’t exactly known for their heart-pumping hiking trails. The same goes for the sloping dunes of Cape Cod — you’d be hard-pressed to find gaggles of Lands End-clad hikers trekking out to sandbars in Eastern Massachusetts the way some groups scale the mountains of Western Mass. And that’s exactly why it’s so wondrous to go hiking...

Learn More

The best inn-to-inn hikes in California

Tom Courtney had a revelation in 2006, while hiking up to the top of a ridge in the Marin Headlands for the spectacular view he knew awaited him. When he finally reached the summit, he was able to see 38 miles clear to the north, all the way to the enduring peninsula of Point Reyes, with endless stretches of green and blue between. It was a sight to behold, but Courtney...

Learn More

Why Lebanon’s 293-Mile Hiking Trail Is More Than a Trekking Route

Lebanon, a country on the eastern shore of the Mediterranean that predates recorded history, boasts remarkable geographic and cultural diversity despite being smaller than Connecticut. Eighteen religious sects live in its snow-capped mountains and fertile Bekaa Valley and along its rocky coast. For more than 10 years, intrepid hikers have been able to experience much of...

Learn More

What is proper trail etiquette? An expert lays out the do’s and don’ts of hiking

Every trail has rules, and often there are signs not just at the trailhead but also along the trail to remind hikers of what to do and what not to do to respect the environment. However, some of the guidelines for hiking seem to get overlooked time and time again, either out of lack of knowledge or intentionally. The State Trail Programs Manager for Colorado Parks and...

Learn More

Tips for Hiking With Young Kids

Going to the grocery store with small children can seem like a monumental task, never mind taking your brood on a wilderness journey. But with a little patience, some practice, and a healthy dose of expectation management, you can make hiking a family affair. Keep in mind, there will be good hikes, bad hikes, and “Why are you rolling in poison ivy?!” hikes. Treks with...

Learn More

Possibly the strangest hike you’ll ever take

You’re off for a ramble in the woods. The trail is narrow, the brush is thick. Everywhere you look – trees, bushes, greenery. Then you spot it, half-hidden, nestled against a fallen, rotting log. You go up for a closer look to be sure that what you think you’re seeing is what you’re really seeing. But there it is – a disembodied baby...

Learn More

It’s raining plastic: microscopic fibers are falling from the sky

Plastic was the furthest thing from Gregory Weatherbee’s mind when he began analyzing rainwater samples collected from the Rocky Mountains.“I guess I expected to see mostly soil and mineral particles,” said the US Geological Survey researcher. Instead, he found multicolored microscopic plastic fibers. The discovery, published in a recent study titled “It is raining...

Learn More

Hiking 101: The Complete Guide to Hiking for Beginners

You’ve got your hiking boots on, your worries left at home and a trail in front of you. You’re surrounded by dense nature, no sounds of buses or chatter, just the calming sounds of birds singing and a breeze whistling through the trees. You can feel the sun on your skin, you fill your lungs with perfectly fresh air and can smell the environment around you. All the while...

Learn More

How Jocassee Gorges Was Saved

To appreciate what Bill Thomas did for Gorges State Park, think of it not as a stand-alone property but as part of the larger Lake Jocassee watershed. Also known as Jocassee Gorges, it is a freak of climatological and geologic nature that extends across the North Carolina-South Carolina line southwest of Asheville and has been named by National Geographic as one of fifty...

Learn More

Indians Plant 220 Million Trees In A Single Day

More than a million Indians planted 220 million trees on August 9, 2019 in a government campaign to tackle climate change and improve the environment in the country’s most populous state. Forest official Bivhas Ranjan said students, lawmakers, officials and others planted dozens of species of saplings along roads, rail tracks and in forest lands in northern Uttar Pradesh...

Learn More

The Controversial Plan to Protect America’s Trails

There are 11 designated national scenic trails stretching across nearly 18,000 miles in the U.S. But there are more than 4,000 miles of privately owned “gaps” in the system that leave routes vulnerable to a change in ownership or a landowner’s whims. Typically, the government or nonprofit trail associations work to fill such gaps by purchasing land from willing sellers....

Learn More

‘Honeymoon Hikers’ complete fourth hike of Appalachian Trail

They call themselves the “Honeymoon Hikers” and they just completed their fourth hike of the Appalachian Trail. Winston and Marcia Terry have done a lot of hiking since they got married in 2010. The couple has hiked 14,000 miles together. While there are no official records, Marcia is believed to be the only woman who has made four complete trips on the AT. But how did...

Learn More

Great views, smooth ride on new cycling, hiking trail in Columbia Gorge

The long-awaited Historic Columbia River Highway State Trail is still at least a couple years from completion, but the latest trail segment to open to the public proves that patience can pay off. A new three-mile section of the trail opened to the public, connecting Wyeth State Park to Lindsey Creek where it meets up with another trail segment that opened in 2016. That...

Learn More

Southern Appalachians Highlands Conservancy Protects 187 Acres at Wilkins Creek

Just beyond the rush of traffic on Interstate 40 near the Tennessee-North Carolina line, steep hillsides and forested knolls shelter a vibrant community of wildlife. Southern Appalachians Highlands Conservancy recently purchased 187 acres in this part of Haywood County near the Pigeon River to protect a corridor for wildlife grazing and movement. Encircled by the Pisgah...

Learn More

Be Vigilant Of Heat-Related Illnesses When Hiking

As the dog days of summer continue, temperatures continually reach or surpass the 90° degree mark. These temperatures bring about dangerous conditions if you don’t pay attention to heat-related illness signs. Heat-related illnesses include heat stroke, heat exhaustion, heat cramps, sunburn and heat rash. Symptoms of these illnesses can cause nausea, vomiting,...

Learn More