Finding Minnesota: Superior Hiking Trail

Before you know it, the trees in Minnesota will be turning bright shades of yellow, orange and red. Some of the most spectacular views in the state can be found along the Superior Hiking Trail in the Arrowhead region. “It’s a whole different world out here,” said Dan Carr of Two Harbors, who hikes the trail regularly. “You just have to get off Highway 61.” The Superior...

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Hikes you must do in Marin County, CA

While you can’t go wrong with when it comes to hiking in Marin County, California, there are some areas you undoubtedly must visit at least once. Considering Marin’s seemingly endless selection of open space and trails, creating a list of the best hikes the county has to offer is no easy feat. But here’s a shot, with a mix of cardio-pumping routes and...

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Hike into hell: Testing your limits in the mountains

The past winter was so brutal that only the thought of a week-long hike through hell could keep Scott Gauvin warm. Gauvin, 37, of Springfield, IL, is one of 14 outdoor bloggers from all over the country to undertake the six-day Hell Hike and Raft — named for the trip through the Seven Devils mountain range and the Snake River running through Hell’s Canyon in Idaho. It...

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Olympic National Park is a gem, rain or shine

The far side of the Olympic National Park, on the west coast of Washington’s Olympic Peninsula, is indeed rain forest. Its Hoh River Valley is drenched with a dozen feet of rain a year. Think 50 shades of green in a wondrous tangle of trees, moss, ferns. Yet Olympic National Park is so vast – almost 1 million acres of mountains, forest and ocean beaches – that you can...

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Crooked River Ranch trails of central Oregon become more fun to hike as summer’s heat wanes

The heat is slowly on its way out, so the time is on hand to experience the many trails that leave from the edge of the Crooked River Ranch in Central Oregon. Actually, summer was a good time to go, too, because the trails lead to the cool waters of the Deschutes and Crooked rivers. Hiking early or late in the day helps beat the heat. The Crooked River Ranch is a...

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A 500-mile solo hike to cure loneliness

The plan was to hike the Colorado Trail, a 500-mile path through the Rockies that links Denver with Durango. It crosses eight mountain ranges, travels through remote wilderness areas, and climbs nearly three times the height of Mt. Everest. Most of the trail is above 10,000 ft., so the air is thin, the danger of lightning strikes is severe, and nighttime temperatures...

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Grand Canyon to limit rim-to-rim hiking-group size

Grand Canyon National Park is trying to fight overcrowding and the accumulation of clothing, food and even human waste along trails by requiring permits for organized groups and limiting them to 30 people. Starting Sept. 15, 2014, any group taking organized, rim-to-rim or extended day-hiking and running trips in the inner Canyon will have to pay $175 for a permit....

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Girl Scouts save boys hiking Pikes Peak

Three teenagers said the survival skills they learned during Girl Scouts saved two high school boys trying to hike Pikes Peak. Rebecca Clark, Jordan Wilson and Tristina Altman set out on Pikes Peak last weekend. They thought their toughest challenge would be summitting Pikes Peak. “We packed sleeping bags, tents, fire building stuff, water, toilet paper,...

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You Should Spend Money on Experiences, Not Things

It’s been over a decade since American psychologists Leaf Van Boven and Thomas Gilovich concluded that doing things makes people happier than having things. “To Do or to Have? That Is the Question” was the title of the study they published in 2003, and it’s been cited hundreds of times since. Many people now recognize that spending money on, say, a plane ticket for a...

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Hickory Nut Gorge celebrates waterfall access, trailhead into park

An impromptu appearance of a dozen hikers was affirmation for the 50 people sitting at a ceremony on folding chairs that Carolina Mountain Land Conservancy had succeeded in their goal of expanding access to the Hickory Nut Gorge’s growing trail network. The ceremony along Highway 74-A was hosted by CMLC and Henderson County Parks and Recreation to celebrate several...

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The Cradle of Forestry Hosts Afternoon Tea with Llamas

The Cradle of Forestry in America will offer “Afternoon Tea with Llamas” on Saturday, Sept. 13 at 11 a.m. and again at 2 p.m. The llamas will carry your lunches or snacks on this easy walk along the Forest Discovery Trail at the Cradle of Forestry. Organizers will provide ice tea and cups. As the group walks the Forest Discovery Trail, children can take turns...

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Hiking Kanarra Creek Trail is a family affair

If you want to experience a beautiful slot canyon with the family, Kanarra Creek, Utah is slow-moving and not too difficult to access. Hikers of Kanarra Falls Trail can expect to encounter multiple waterfalls, including two that are 8 feet or taller, and breathtaking sandstone colors throughout the slot canyon. While it’s not something for small children or those new to...

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Trace Ridge Trails and Roads Reopened in Pisgah

The U.S. Forest Service has reopened all trails and roads in the Trace Ridge and Wash Creek Area after completing an ecosystem improvement project in the Pisgah Ranger District, Pisgah National Forest. All roads and trails have been reopened to their designated use, including Wash Creek Road, which restores motorized access to the Trace Ridge Trailhead. The roads and...

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Retracing the Mullan Road: A once-vital route across the Continental Divide

Wagon wheel ruts remain in sun-baked soil atop the mountain pass named for the man who left his mark there. John Mullan was an Army first lieutenant in the 1850s and tasked with building a road that would connect two outposts and help speed the travel of troops, travelers and commercial freight across the Continental Divide. He was to construct a road across plains and...

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A walk on the woolly side: sheep trekking in Wales

It’s the tour for those who like to follow. Visitors to Wales can now enjoy sheep trekking; roaming the Brecon Beacons national park in the company of wooly farmyard friends. The concept – which is new to the region – is being offered by Good Day Out along with Aberhyddnant Farm, who have trained a flock of Jacob sheep for the purpose. Visitors can select their own...

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Taking a trip of exotic hiking in Iceland

You have to walk quite a few miles, climb your share of hills and wear out an army’s stock of shoe leather before getting to the point of considering backpacking in Iceland. Sixty-one-year-old Jim Foster, who refers to himself as a reformed attorney, has walked Patagonia, climbed Kilimanjaro, trekked New Zealand, backpacked the American west, and in 2007, hiked the...

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Wildfire shuts down 25 miles of Pacific Crest Trail

A large swath of the Pacific Crest Trail in the Southern Cascades will be shut down beginning August 23, due to the growing activity of the 790 Fire. The closure covers roughly 25 miles from Oregon Highway 140 north to the boundary of Crater Lake National Park, the U.S. Forest Service said. The closure includes most trails in the popular Seven Lakes Basin of the Sky...

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Bradley Fork and Smokemont Loop Trails, Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Water. Forest. Mountains. History. For me, that is what Great Smoky Mountains National Park is all about. On the Smokemont Loop hike you will get all of them. For the first couple miles, stroll along one of those beautiful mountain streams the Smokies are known for, then prepare your legs and lungs for a tough climb 1,350 feet through the forest to the top of the ridge....

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Parking Meters at Hiking Trailheads?

The Phoenix Parks Board meets next week to discuss a proposal to install parking meters in the parking areas of the city’s most popular hiking trailheads. The idea of “fee-based parking” was approved by the Parks Board in 2010 but never implemented. Now, with a looming city budget deficit, the idea is being revived to bring in extra revenue. Deputy...

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Hiking guide explores the trail less traveled

For adventurous hikers looking to traverse the paths less traveled, author Justin Rohde said his new book provides a detailed guide to the region that straddles the Oregon and California border, which contains the highest concentration of undammed wild and scenic rivers in the United States. Rohde, who worked as a guide on hiking trails near Cave Junction in...

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Changes at Streamside in the Southern Appalachians

The loss of eastern hemlock could affect water yield and storm flow from forest watersheds in the southern Appalachians, according to a new study by U.S. Forest Service scientists at the Coweeta Hydrologic Laboratory (Coweeta) located in Otto, North Carolina. The article was recently published online in the journal Ecohydrology. “Eastern hemlock trees have died...

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NPS Implements Interim Policy Prohibiting Unmanned Aircraft on Appalachian National Scenic Trail

The National Park Service has developed an interim policy prohibiting the use of unmanned aircraft, also known as drones, on NPS managed lands of the Appalachian National Scenic Trail. This is a new park use that could affect park resources, staff, and visitors in ways that the National Park Service has yet to identify, analyze and examine. It is the National Park...

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How a Health Guru Helped L.A. Discover its Hiking Trails

Long before yoga pants made their first appearance in Runyon Canyon, a health guru helped Angelenos discover their local mountain trails. Beginning in 1924, on the first and third Sunday of each month, members of the Wanderlusters Hiking Club followed Paul C. Bragg into the hilly terrain around Los Angeles. Dozens of them traipsed through Altadena’s Millard Canyon...

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Renville County, MN looks to develop more hiking trails

Provided you know how to find your way, there are miles of prairie and woodland trails offering scenic overlooks, opportunities to view wildlife, and areas to enjoy a picnic lunch alongside flowing water. It’s all to be found in the seven Renville County, Minnesota parks, where it soon could be a lot easier to find your way. Mark Erickson, community and environment...

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Restoring Acadia’s Historic Hiking Trails

Hiking Acadia is a pastime almost as old as the state of Maine itself. “People have been hiking Mt. Desert Island and these moutains since the mid-1800s,” said Gary Stellpflug, Trails Foreman at Acadia National Park. Between the 1890s and the 1930s some 130 miles of trails were cut in this park. But then… “Finances for the trails program dwindled over the course of the...

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Gunsight Pass: Cross Continental Divide on Glacier trail

If you want to cross the Continental Divide in Glacier National Park and are looking for more adventure than walking past the sign atop Going-to-the-Sun Road, take the trail over Gunsight Pass instead. The 20-mile trail connects Jackson Glacier Overlook on the east with Lake McDonald Lodge on the west, and can be done as a long day hike or as a backpacking trip. Along...

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Ken Burns shares secrets of Great Smoky Mountains National Park

“There is a great human story” of Great Smoky Mountains National Park, according to Ken Burns, the Emmy award-winning filmmaker. As co-creator of the PBS series America’s Best Idea: The National Parks, Burns and his team spent over six years filming in national parks across the United States. Burns sat down with USA TODAY and shared the secrets of Great...

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Prescott, AZ 7th annual hiking spree starts Sept. 6 at Highlands Center

This year’s Hiking Spree enthusiasts will start their morning at the Highlands Center at 9:00 AM, September 6th with a free presentation by Sam Frank, Central Arizona Director for the Arizona Wilderness Coalition (AWC), in recognition of the 50th anniversary of the Wilderness Act. “This presentation will include inspiring photos, history of the AWC, take-home maps, and a...

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