High Peaks Brings Back Outdoor Strolls

In an effort to attract a wider range of people to experience the outdoors, the NC High Peaks Trail Association is bringing back a program of easy-to-moderate strolls and hikes.

“Many of our hikes are too long and too challenging for all but the most fit and experienced hikers, so we are re-starting a program of strolls and relaxed hikes that we experimented with a few years ago,” said High Peaks President John Whitehouse. “We hope families with kids and folks who might need to work their way back into shape will join us.”

The outings will typically be once-a-month. “Strolls” will be less than two miles in length with little elevation gain, while “relaxed hikes” will go for two miles or more and will feature some elevation gain, but taken at a deliberate pace. 

Most of the activities will be in Yancey County and will be announced in advance in the newspaper and on the club’s Facebook page and website. People can also sign up for an email reminder, too.

The outings will be open to the general public, so you don’t have to join High Peaks in order to participate. Children are welcome but parents are asked to contact the hike leader ahead of time if they are unsure of the child’s ability level.

Highlights will include springtime jaunts to the Laurel River in Madison County and Rocky Fork State Park just over the state line in Tennessee. Both of these should provide wildflower viewing.

In August, the club plans a stroll at Mount Mitchell State Park that will be followed by a picnic.

For more information or to sign up for email notices about the strolls and relaxed hikes, visit the High Peaks Facebook page or website, www.nchighpeaks.org.