Stride Into the New Year by Joining High Peaks for Jan. 1 Hikes

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Start your New Year off right by joining the NC High Peaks Trail Association Jan. 1 for one of two hikes on scenic trails near the Black Mountain Campground.

The outings will coincide with the annual statewide “First Day Hikes” sponsored by the NC Department of Parks and Recreation, which are aimed at promoting outdoor activities and physical fitness.

The longer hike will cover four trails near the campground – the Upper and Lower River Loops, along with the Devil’s Den and Setrock Creek Falls Trails. The distance will total 7.1 miles and is considered strenuous, although there are no steep climbs or descents.

The moderate hike will cover a couple of the above-mentioned trails to be selected by the hikers, and folks can do as much as they choose.

The club will not provide transportation in Yancey vans for these hikes. Hikers should meet on the Burnsville Town Square at 8:30 a.m. to arrange their own carpools, or can meet at the kiosk near the Black Mountain Campground entrance at 9:15 a.m.

Bring warm clothes with plenty of layers, foul weather gear, lunch, water, snacks and hiking poles if you use them. Leashed dogs will be allowed on the hikes.

For more information, contact Hike Leader Dennis Smith at dennissmith4141@gmail.com or 284-4000 for the strenuous hike, or Duke Rose at dukerosejr@gmail.com or 675-5781 or Joe Lappin at joe.lappin@vanderbilt.edu or 675-0248 for the moderate hike.

As always, check the High Peaks Facebook page or website, www.nchighpeaks.com, for last-minute changes due to weather.

Photo Info: Hikers who join High Peaks for its New Year's Day hikes will catch a glimpse of Setrock Falls near the Black Mountain Campground.