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

Our upcoming adventures: Hike, camp, backpack

Hiking the Eno
Hiking the Eno

GetHiking! on Thanksgiving Day?: Various North Carolina State Parks (see below)
When: Thursday, Nov. 26.

We have no hikes planned for Thanksgiving Day, which isn’t to say we don’t plan to hit the trail. We just plan to hit it with someone else taking the lead.
Fortunately, North Carolina’s State Parks is stepping in with six hikes planned for Thanksgiving Day. The basics follow; click on the link for specifics.
Raven Rock State Park
Hike for Your Health, 9 a.m. 3-6 miles
More info: 910.893.4888, or go here.
Weymouth Woods Sandhills Nature Preserve
Southern Pines
Thanksgiving Day Discovery Hike, 10 a.m. 2 miles
More info here.
Jordan Lake State Recreation Area
Nature Hike on Old Oak Trail, 10 a.m. 1 mile
More info: 919.362.0586 or go here.
Grandfather Mountain State Park
Banner Elk
Thanksgiving Hike (Profile Trail), 11 a.m., 3-4 miles
More info here.
Eno River State Park
Forest Bathing/Nature Hike, 1 p.m., call for distance
More info: 919.383.1686 or go here.
Carvers Creek State Park
Spring Lake
Gobbles and Wobbles, 2 p.m., call for distance
More info: 910.436.4681 or go here.

GetHiking! on Chill Friday?


View of Jordan Lake from New Hope Overlook
View of Jordan Lake from New Hope Overlook

Jordan Lake State Recreation Area, Apex
When: Friday, Nov. 27, 10 a.m.

Our friends at Great Outdoor Provision Co. have declared the Friday after Thanksgiving as Chill Friday. Yes, they’ll be open; swing by, if you like. But by all means, make sure you take a hike first. Like our 5.4-mile meander at the New Hope Overlook area of Jordan Lake State Recreation Area. It’s moderate terrain approached with a I-Can’t-Believe-I-Ate-The-Whole-Thing, post Thanksgiving Day-stuffing mentality.

Hike leader: Lori C.
More info and sign up here.

GetBackpacking! on MLK Weekend?

Backpackers’ choice (see below)
When: Jan. 15-18.
Get 2016 off to an adventurous start with a backpack trip over the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday weekend. Where we go is up to you. Here are your options:

Appalachian Trail, from Max Patch to Rich Mountain via Hot Springs
Shining Rock Wilderness via the Daniel Boone Boy Scout Camp
Uwharrie National Recreation Trail

Find descriptions of each trip in the just-released November issue of our GetBackpacking! enewsletter; subscribe (it’s free and we don’t distribute our circulation list) by emailing Read the descriptions, then vote at our GetHiking! Triangle Meetup site by Nov. 30. We’ll post details of the chosen trip shortly thereafter.

Gear of the week: Perception Swifty Deluxe

Yes, our main business is hiking and backpacking. But frequently on the trail you ask about paddling, about the “best” way to get into the sport — “best,” being shorthand for “economical.” Which is certainly understandable; why invest a boatload in a boat only to discover you’re not crazy about paddling?
Thus, my advice is to wait until the end of the season, when outfitters are retiring their rental fleet and retailers are making room for the new models. Well, it’s the end of the paddling season and our friends at Great Outdoor Provision Co. have one of the top entry-level kayaks — the Perception Swifty Deluxe — on sale for $299.99 (down from $449.99). The Swifty is short (9.5 feet long) and wide, making it a stable boat good on both lakes and moving water with with up to Class I rapids. Its size makes it easy to get on and off your roof rack (or even inside some cars), its stability makes it especially popular with the unstable newbie. A good boat to fish from as well.
That $299.99 sale price is good through this Friday, Nov. 27, at your local GOPC store.

Tip of the week: Peel a layer before hiking

Pardon us if we’ve suggested this before — and even if we have, it bears repeating (besides, if you’re like us, you may well have forgotten, too). As the days get colder, you tend to show up for hikes bundled up. You kibitz with others in the group for a few minutes, clap your gloved hands, stamp your feet. Finally, it’s time to get hiking. But before you do, strip off that top layer.

You may be cold for the first minute or two, but once you’re hiking (especially if you start with an uphill), you’ll generate body heat. And what you don’t want to do is start a sweat; get a little moisture built up and when you stop, even for a moment or two, you quickly develop a chill that will be hard to shake.

Resource of the Week: Reading the sky

We’re always amused when the conversation turns to what to do should you encounter a bear. We’re amused in part because 99.9 percent of the time the bear will solve this dilemma for you by skedaddling post-haste in the opposite direction. Amused also by the fact the advice varies based on the type of bear you encounter.
Hiker 1: I think you’re supposed to curl up in the fetal position.
Hiker 2: That’s for a grizzly. For a black bear you make yourself look big and avoid eye contact.
Hiker 1: How will curling up in a ball protect you from a grizzly?
The discussion is similar when it comes to clouds. Do high cirrus clouds mean wet weather is on the way? Are they the precursors to a cold front? Are “The Simpsons” about to appear?
In winter especially, these aren’t just questions of curiosity; knowing what weather is lurking out there can be the difference between finding shelter in time or being caught exposed. A quick, easy to understand reference in such instances is a good thing, which is why we like Types of Clouds, a $.99 app that’s straightforward and easy to use. Spy a cloud formation, find it’s corresponding image in the app, hit “Info” and learn whether you can continue hiking in peace or need to quickly assemble a lean-to.

GOPC6Types of Clouds, by Daniel Martinho, $0.99.
And those high cirrus clouds? If there are just a few high, wispy ones, pay no mind. If there’s amassing, best get off the trail pronto.