The following items are gleaned from our GetHiking! enewsletters for Charlotte, the Triad and the Triangle, and our GetExploring! Greenville enewsletter. All enewsletters are delivered, upon request, to subscribers’ email boxes on Mondays. If you’d like to sign up for this free service, email

Saturday’s adventure: Paddling Goose Creek

Alligator River National Wildlife RefugeLike the idea of paddling a swamplike area but a little intimidated at the prospect of going it alone? Then Saturday’s paddle is for you.

At 10 a.m., we’ll put in at the Dinah’s Landing boat ramp at Goose Creek State Park. First, we’ll paddle the increasingly intimate waters of Upper Goose Creek, going as far as we can before the jumbled swampscape chokes to the point the creek becomes impenetrable. At that point we’ll return to the confluence of creeks near the Dinah’s Landing and paddle the more open waters of Flatty Creek.

Total distance: about 6 miles. The water is largely protected; a good paddle for beginners, a rewarding paddle for all. This trip is Saturday, June 13, at 10 a.m. If you don’t have a kayak, a limited number of demos may be available; inquire at 252.321.1308.

For more information and to sign up, visit our GetExploring! Greenville Meetup page.

Deal of the week: Fit for a water bottle

474_1187_xlWho doesn’t like to check out new gear? Now imagine getting a freebie for doing something you already like to do!

Here’s the deal: Come into any of our shops, try on the new Osprey Atmos backpack (for men, the Aura for women), get a free stainless steel water bottle. The Atmos features Osprey’s new “Anti-Gravity” suspension system, which creates a more natural fit on your back, making it easier to move around with 35 pounds on your back. Trying one on just to experience that feeling on a hike around the store would be worth it alone. And you get a free stainless steel water bottle!

Swing by Monday through Friday between 10 a.m. and 9 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., or Sunday 1 to 6 p.m.

Gear of the week: Chacos

Gear.Chacos“Is there any better footwear for summer in North Carolina than Chacos?” asks Sean Hildebrandt with our Greenville store?

It’s a rhetorical question, of course.

“They are perfect for standup paddleboarding on the coast, heading out for a hike in the mountains, cruising on your bike around the neighborhood, or really any kind of adventure in between. Best of all your toes are free from the confines of your everyday closed-toed shoes and free to soak up the summer rays.”
Happy feet, because if your feet ain’t happy, the rest of your body ain’t happy, either.

Tick of the Week: Pernicious pests

Tick season is upon us, hikers. In fact, whereas there used to be an actual tick season, the warming of the planet means we tend to see ticks for longer periods of the year, generally from early March into November. Still, we associate them with warm/hot weather; with our first 80-degree hike of 2014 under our paracord survival belts, a couple quick words about ticks.

  • Hitchin’ a ride: Ticks typically climb aboard low, then work their way up your body. They’re especially problematic on tight trails where you brush against flora, but they can catch a ride even on open trails.
  • Precaution: The best defense is to cover your body, especially your legs. Wear long pants, tuck ‘em into your boots. You can also spray your clothing with an aerosol spray containing Permethrin. Skin sprays that work for mosquitoes and other pests are not so effective against ticks.
  • Despite the best defense … These pernicious parasites have a way of attaching to your body and working themselves just about anywhere. Immediately after a hike, check yourself for ticks. They’re pretty easy to remove when they first attach; use a pair of tweezers and try to remove the entire tick, including all those legs. When you get home, have a loved one or someone you’re very open with examine you thoroughly; these little rascals can get into the darndest places.
  • Watch for a bulls-eye: If, within a few days, a bullseye develops where a tick had attached, see your doctor.

Ticks happen. Quick removal should prevent tick-related illnesses from happening. Be vigilant.

Resource of the Week: is best known for its comprehensive coverage of alpine climbing, but it also has good information on hiking. In fact, it’s got a comprehensive piece on ticks, their habits, their habitats, and how to deal with them. Find it here.

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