News

New polling on climate change: Denial is out, alarm is in.

Posted by on Oct 14, 2020 @ 7:11 am in Conservation | 0 comments

New polling on climate change: Denial is out, alarm is in.

Americans are now nearly four times more likely to say they’re alarmed about the climate crisis than to be dismissive of it. That’s the highest ratio ever since the Yale Program on Climate Change Communication (YPCCC) first began gathering data on American attitudes about climate change back in 2008. According to survey data, more than a quarter of the U.S. adult population — 26 percent — now thinks global warming and its attendant consequences are alarming. That’s more than double the 11 percent who were alarmed back in 2015, and almost four...

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Maine town apologizes after criticizing anonymous hiker who fixed bridge along its trail

Posted by on Oct 13, 2020 @ 6:19 am in Conservation, Hiking News | 0 comments

Maine town apologizes after criticizing anonymous hiker who fixed bridge along its trail

There’s a Maine town trying to identify the hiker who built a replacement bridge next to a collapsed one along a hiking trail on a popular 308-acre preserve. “When outside entities create trails and structures without notifying our department, that leads to confusion for hikers and others” using the Lowell Preserve, Windham town manager Barry Tibbetts posted on Facebook. The post drew widespread criticism from Mainers who felt the town was targeting the hiker for wrongdoing, instead of thanking them for installing a safe crossing on a...

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Easy ways to improve your safety while hiking

Posted by on Oct 12, 2020 @ 6:39 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Easy ways to improve your safety while hiking

Two recent deaths on Katahdin, Maine’s tallest mountain, have stirred conversation about hiking safety, raising questions like: “What kind of safety gear should you carry besides water, snacks and a headlamp?” First of all, accidents happen, and sometimes they’re entirely out of our hands. On occasion, the most prepared hiker can become injured or worse. But there are many ways you can reduce risks while hiking. Hiking safety is important to think about year round, but some aspects of it become even more important in the fall and winter, when...

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Forest Service in home stretch on draft Pisgah, Nantahala forests plan

Posted by on Oct 11, 2020 @ 7:07 am in Conservation | 0 comments

Forest Service in home stretch on draft Pisgah, Nantahala forests plan

James Melonas, deputy supervisor of the National Forests in North Carolina (NFsNC) office addressed a crowd of Forest Service colleagues at an April national training in Denver to share his thoughts on the ongoing Pisgah and Nantahala National Forests plan revision effort in Western North Carolina. His message: be transparent and build trust. “Really focusing on relationships and engaging folks as early as possibly well before the revision starts is critical,” Melonas said. A national forest management plan provides a general framework to...

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The Best Winter Hiking Boots for Men and Women

Posted by on Oct 10, 2020 @ 6:26 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

The Best Winter Hiking Boots for Men and Women

In the past, once chilly temperatures and snowy days started to arrive, hikers used to pack up until spring came along. But now that hiking gear is warmer and more weatherproof than ever, they can enjoy the Great Outdoors year-round. If you plan on immersing yourself in nature this season, there are a few items that you should invest in prior to hitting the trails. In addition to an ultra-warm coat or jacket, you’ll also need to have a top-notch pair of winter hiking boots on hand. The perfect pair will not only keep your feet warm and...

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Pair sets new hiking record with Tour de Smokies

Posted by on Oct 9, 2020 @ 6:36 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Pair sets new hiking record with Tour de Smokies

Nancy East and Chris Ford were greeted by an entourage of fans and supporters when they emerged from the woods in the Big Creek section of Great Smoky Mountains National Park, setting a new record for a unique long-distance hiking challenge. The pair hiked all 900 miles of trails in the park in just 30 days. East, from North Carolina, said she is still getting used to the idea of being a record holder. “While I’ve hiked thousands of miles, I’ve never hiked this many miles at once. It was immensely rewarding to achieve what I once thought was...

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Nature Conservancy buys 2,110 acres in heart of Superior National Forest

Posted by on Oct 8, 2020 @ 4:55 am in Conservation | 0 comments

Nature Conservancy buys 2,110 acres in heart of Superior National Forest

More than 2,000 acres of private land within the Superior National Forest will remain undeveloped under a real estate deal announced by the Nature Conservancy. The 2,110 acres of private land is surrounded by national forest land and includes six wild lakes, 3 miles of trout streams, 972 acres of wetlands and tracts of old-growth white spruce and white cedar. It’s also near, but not inside, the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, which means it could have been sold to developers for recreational cabins or other development. The land, about...

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New hiking challenge involves bringing your dogs to the Adirondacks

Posted by on Oct 7, 2020 @ 7:02 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

New hiking challenge involves bringing your dogs to the Adirondacks

  A new hiking challenge called “ADK-9” asks hikers to bring their dogs with them on the outdoor adventure and take a picture of them on the peak. The ADK-9 hiking challenge provides 9 dog friendly hikes with views and offers a chance to explore lesser traveled peaks of the region. Once you have hiked all 9 peaks, you are eligible to become an ADK-9 finisher where you will receive a ADK-9 patch, sticker and roster number. There is also a first-time ever seasonal Fall photography contest where photos of your dogs must be...

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Section of the Long Trail Permanently Protected

Posted by on Oct 6, 2020 @ 7:14 am in Conservation | 0 comments

Section of the Long Trail Permanently Protected

The Trust for Public Land, Green Mountain Club and the Vermont Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation (FPR), announced the protection of Codding Hollow, adding 160.7 acres to Long Trail State Forest in Johnson and Waterville, Vermont. The newly protected property includes one of the last unprotected sections of the Long Trail, the oldest long-distance hiking trail in the United States. Approximately 200,000 people use the Long Trail each year, and it is recognized by the Vermont General Assembly as a “unique, historic and irreplaceable...

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Why Arches National Park has an overcrowding problem, causing 3-hour closures almost daily

Posted by on Oct 4, 2020 @ 6:29 am in Conservation | 0 comments

Why Arches National Park has an overcrowding problem, causing 3-hour closures almost daily

Arches National Park has a problem. It’s too popular. While that may seem like good news, for many people who came to visit the park in September, it’s a major disappointment. Because of parking lot size, overcrowding and safety concerns, Arches has been forced to turn people away for hours of the day, mostly during weekends. In September, nearly every weekend — and lately many weekdays — have been met with closures and disappointing turnarounds for visitors in a record-setting month. It boils down to safety, according to park...

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New 100-mile Hiking Trail in Ireland Comes With a Remarkable History Lesson

Posted by on Oct 2, 2020 @ 6:37 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

New 100-mile Hiking Trail in Ireland Comes With a Remarkable History Lesson

This September, Ireland launched the National Famine Way, which follows the footsteps of 1,490 emigrants who walked from Strokestown, Co Roscommon, to Dublin, hoping to escape the famine. It now doubles as both a live history lesson as well as a hiking and cycling trail. The trail follows the path of the 1,490 people who left Strokestown and joined ″some of the worst coffin ships” on their way to Liverpool and onward to Quebec, Canada. Only half of those who started the journey ended it alive. Along the trail, walkers and cyclists can...

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The ‘Wetland Wanderer,’ celebrates outdoors career, Hispanic Heritage Month

Posted by on Oct 1, 2020 @ 6:25 am in Conservation | 0 comments

The ‘Wetland Wanderer,’ celebrates outdoors career, Hispanic Heritage Month

When Lucia Ibarra was growing up in Las Mochis, Mexico, near the Gulf of California, she felt most at home running barefoot, climbing trees, playing in the ocean, and laughing with the sheep and horses on her mother’s ranch. “Since I was a kid I loved nature. My culture was humans and animals. But I felt like we were all connected and everything had a domino effect,” said Ibarra, who has lived in Asheville, NC for nearly three years. “When something happened to a living being, something else was affected. It was a chain of changes. I couldn’t...

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What Makes an Appalachian Trail View Great?

Posted by on Sep 30, 2020 @ 6:50 am in Conservation, Hiking News | 0 comments

What Makes an Appalachian Trail View Great?

Picture, in your mind, an Appalachian Trail (A.T.) view that inspires you. Now have a fellow A.T. hiker do the same. Did the view they selected look anything like yours? Most likely not. Since the A.T. traverses so many regions, the views along its 2,193 miles vary significantly, sometimes even within a few miles. From craggy mountains in North Georgia, to rolling farmlands in Pennsylvania, to the rugged Saddleback Range in Maine, the Trail provides visitors with a diversity of views to admire, each tied to the environments surrounding the...

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2,000 Miles, 650 Trails, No One in Sight: The Solitude of Hiking in a Time of Virus

Posted by on Sep 29, 2020 @ 7:14 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

2,000 Miles, 650 Trails, No One in Sight: The Solitude of Hiking in a Time of Virus

  It was well after dark on a recent evening when Philip Carcia, a record-breaking hiker, emerged from another 28-mile day in the woods, his legs streaked with mud and crisscrossed with bloody cuts, into a desolate parking lot near New Hampshire’s border with Maine. Mr. Carcia, 36, has been living out of his red Toyota Yaris on the outer reaches of the White Mountain National Forest all summer, attempting to break the record on an obscure and extreme hiking challenge known as the Redline: a journey through all 650 trails in a...

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Travel Back in Time at Mesa Verde

Posted by on Sep 28, 2020 @ 6:42 am in Conservation, Hiking News | 0 comments

Travel Back in Time at Mesa Verde

You may find yourself traveling back in time. Hop down a series of stone steps, take a sharp left turn, and feel your heart skip a beat. There, sprawled out below a sandstone plateau dotted with piñon pines and juniper trees, stands the 800-year-old remains of Cliff Palace, an ancient city of the Ancestral Puebloan people. The largest and best known of Mesa Verde National Park’s native dwellings, Cliff Palace is a wonder to behold. The site contains 150 rooms and 23 kivas (circular ceremonial spaces), indicating that it was once a...

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Check out the Triangle’s newest nature preserve with trails, working farms

Posted by on Sep 27, 2020 @ 6:27 am in Conservation, Hiking News | 0 comments

Check out the Triangle’s newest nature preserve with trails, working farms

The Triangle Land Conservancy‘s newest nature preserve, the Bailey and Sarah Williamson Preserve, is now open. The 405-acre property, at 4409 Mial Plantation Rd., Raleigh, offers nine miles of walking and biking trails that connect to the Neuse River Greenway. It’s the eighth nature preserve for the Triangle Land Conservancy, a nonprofit that works to conserve land in North Carolina’s Triangle region. The Williamson Preserve is the first of the nonprofit’s nature preserves to include working farms on the site. Project...

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‘It’s just becoming awful’: Zion park officials try to deal with unprecedented amounts of graffiti

Posted by on Sep 26, 2020 @ 6:45 am in Conservation | 0 comments

‘It’s just becoming awful’: Zion park officials try to deal with unprecedented amounts of graffiti

Officials at Utah’s Zion National Park are grappling with unprecedented amounts of graffiti throughout the park as visitors continue to flock to the canyon. These days, besides their normal job description of welcoming visitors, park rangers face the additional challenges of managing the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic response as well as the presence of a toxic cyanobacteria bloom in the North Fork of the Virgin River, which runs through the park. The graffiti, which has been found along the popular Narrows hike, the Kayenta Trail and on the...

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The NFF and Gunnison County Team Up to Create Stewardship Jobs

Posted by on Sep 24, 2020 @ 7:11 am in Conservation | 0 comments

The NFF and Gunnison County Team Up to Create Stewardship Jobs

An example of National Forest stewardship in action. As with many mountain communities in Colorado, visitation to the Gunnison Valley is at an all-time high. Land managers observe that they have never seen our public lands as busy as they have been in recent years. The area is surrounded by 1.7 million acres of National Forest, and the Bureau of Land Management and National Park Service also manage well-known recreation areas and parks in the region. The valley has been nicknamed “the American Serengeti” for its abundance of wildlife, the...

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Route Finding and Navigation for Hiking & Mountaineering

Posted by on Sep 23, 2020 @ 6:25 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Route Finding and Navigation for Hiking & Mountaineering

As promised yesterday, Meanderthals will shift gears for awhile and introduce you to shared information on the Internet that can help you be a better steward in the outdoors. Today, it’s how to improve your route finding from the REI Co-op. On many hiking or mountaineering adventures, you’ll leave the well-trodden trail behind to set off for the summit. Doing so is an exciting opportunity to explore new terrain and test your abilities. But to stay on course, travel efficiently and choose a suitable route up the mountain, you and your...

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A Commitment from Meanderthals to Do Better

Posted by on Sep 22, 2020 @ 6:27 am in Conservation | 0 comments

A Commitment from Meanderthals to Do Better

Have you been paying attention to social media in the Southern Appalachians region in recent days? No doubt you have seen the disturbing photographs from Max Patch, one of the iconic hiking locations along the Appalachian Trail, and in all of the South. Max Patch, and so many others of our favorite destinations, is being overcrowded to a slow, painful death. After any summer weekend you may find hundreds of pounds of trash discarded and left behind, spoiling the scenery for those that follow. It’s laziness plain and simple. Especially...

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Akron moves forward with ‘Rubber City Heritage Trail’ on abandoned elevated railway

Posted by on Sep 21, 2020 @ 6:54 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Akron moves forward with ‘Rubber City Heritage Trail’ on abandoned elevated railway

Akron and the Ohio and Erie Canalway Coalition are moving forward with plans to design the six-mile “Rubber City Heritage Trail” on a stretch of an abandoned elevated rail line. The trail will be constructed on the former Akron-Barberton Belt elevated railway corridor, and is intended to resemble the High Line in New York City. It will be 10-feet wide and can accommodate hikers and cyclists. The Rubber City Heritage Trail will serve primarily the residents of Akron by making trail connections to libraries, schools, parks and grocery stores....

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The New American Perimeter Trail Will Be the Longest Hiking Route in the U.S.

Posted by on Sep 20, 2020 @ 6:43 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

The New American Perimeter Trail Will Be the Longest Hiking Route in the U.S.

In June 2019, hiker Rue McKenrick left his home in Bend, Oregon, and headed into the Three Sisters Wilderness to then walk south along the Pacific Crest Trail. When he hit the end of the Sierras, he turned east, walking across the Mojave Desert in California through Death Valley. He’s kept walking and, in the last year, has averaged 20 to 30 miles a day, notching more than 8,000 miles total. But McKenrick isn’t on a casual cross-country hike: He’s scouting and mapping the American Perimeter Trail, informally considered the newest and longest...

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Are you ready, boots? Hiking do’s and don’ts in the age of COVID-19

Posted by on Sep 19, 2020 @ 7:03 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

Are you ready, boots? Hiking do’s and don’ts in the age of COVID-19

Hiking is a wonderful thing. It’s great exercise and it’s good for the psyche. But with more newbies hitting the trail, and concerns about social distancing, it’s time to take a fresh look at trail etiquette. Many people aren’t riding together anymore due to COVID, so if four friends go hiking, they each drive a car. “This, along with more people seeking outdoor recreation, has resulted in a parking problem at the trailheads,” says a mountain guide. We’ve heard stories of 2-mile backups at popular trails, and trailside parking lots full by 7...

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Migration in Motion: Visualizing Species Movements Due to Climate Change

Posted by on Sep 18, 2020 @ 7:00 am in Conservation | 0 comments

Migration in Motion: Visualizing Species Movements Due to Climate Change

As climate change alters habitats and disrupts ecosystems, where will animals move to survive? And will human development prevent them from getting there? Now you can see those migrations in motion. New research from The Nature Conservancy and university scientists revealed that only 41 percent of the natural land area in the United States retains enough connectivity to facilitate species tracking their preferred climate conditions as the global climate changes. As part of that study, scientists modeled the distribution and habitat needs of...

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The Best and Most Comfortable Leggings for Hiking

Posted by on Sep 17, 2020 @ 6:30 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

The Best and Most Comfortable Leggings for Hiking

OK ladies, whether you’re a seasoned hiker or new to the trails, it doesn’t take long to realize that the right gear, from hiking boots to hydration packs, will make a trip exploring the great outdoors much more comfortable. Same goes for apparel — as we creep closer to the fall and winter seasons, it’s just about time to exchange your favorite shorts for a pair of durable, comfortable leggings that will keep up with you on the trails. This is a review of six pairs of leggings that are specifically designed for hiking and...

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National Public Lands Day September 26, 2020

Posted by on Sep 16, 2020 @ 6:54 am in Conservation | 0 comments

National Public Lands Day September 26, 2020

NEEF’s National Public Lands Day is the nation’s largest, single-day volunteer event for public lands. Established in 1994 and held annually on the fourth Saturday in September, the event brings out thousands of volunteers to help restore and improve public lands around the country. This year, the COVID-19 pandemic has upended many aspects of daily life in this country, and our public lands are no exception. Due to social distancing requirements remaining in place for the foreseeable future, many public lands sites will be unable...

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A guide to hiking for novice hikers

Posted by on Sep 15, 2020 @ 6:31 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

A guide to hiking for novice hikers

On a recent hike, John Gallen Jr. came across an injured hiker. The hiker had stumbled, fallen and was bleeding. With his first aid kit, Gallen was able staunch the bleeding from what appeared to be a small severed artery. He helped the hiker to safety. Falls can happen to anyone on the trail, but being prepared can make a difference. Gallen, an experienced hiker, said the first aid kit is something he never hikes without, whether it’s a familiar local stroll or a trek through the Andes or Himalayas. “I think she was younger than...

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Studies show North Carolina’s river otters are thriving, and that’s good news for all of us

Posted by on Sep 14, 2020 @ 6:28 am in Conservation | 0 comments

Studies show North Carolina’s river otters are thriving, and that’s good news for all of us

Most people would agree: River otters are adorable. But beyond their playfulness, the otters have an important role in determining the health of a river system. At N.C. State University, scientists this year released studies on river otters that they plan to use as baselines for future research. The first study examined the toxicological effects that metals, such as mercury, cadmium, arsenic and lead, are having on the otters. North Carolina’s river otter populations are relatively healthy compared with populations in other areas of the...

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The Best Hiking Snacks to Pack No Matter What Distance You’re Trekking

Posted by on Sep 13, 2020 @ 6:27 am in Hiking News | 0 comments

The Best Hiking Snacks to Pack No Matter What Distance You’re Trekking

The moment your stomach starts rumbling and your energy levels take a nosedive, your instinct’s to comb through your snack stash for whatever — be it a sugar-filled granola bar or bag of pretzels — excites your tastebuds. But if you’re trekking up a mountain or through a secluded pine tree forest, you’ll need to be a little more strategic with your snack choices — and when you eat them in the first place. In fact, hikers should consider eating a snack every 60 to 90 minutes between meals, depending on the intensity of the hike, says a...

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How apocalyptic this fire season is

Posted by on Sep 12, 2020 @ 6:43 am in Conservation | 0 comments

How apocalyptic this fire season is

It’s still 2020 and the pandemic-/-climate change apocalypse just got even worse. The West Coast is burning. Residents of the San Francisco Bay Area awoke to dark orange skies, as a thick layer of smoke settled over Northern California. (Smoke scatters blue light, allowing only red and yellow to reach the ground.) It’s hard to overstate how really, terribly bad this fire season has been. In California alone, wildfires have blown through 2.5 million acres of land since the beginning of the year — about 10 times more than last year, and much...

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Parcels donated by CTNC to National Park Service near Waterrock Knob

Posted by on Sep 11, 2020 @ 6:27 am in Conservation | 0 comments

Parcels donated by CTNC to National Park Service near Waterrock Knob

Conservation Trust for North Carolina recently donated three properties totaling 123 acres to the National Park Service for addition to the Blue Ridge Parkway. The land, made up of three tracts, contains a significant section of Woodfin Creek upstream of the Woodfin Cascades, between Parkway mileposts 446 and 450 in Jackson County. Each of the tracts adjoin other properties protected by CTNC that will also be donated to NPS for inclusion in the Blue Ridge Parkway. All of the land is highly visible from Waterrock Knob and is part of a growing...

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