2016 Friends of the Smokies hikes

Cabin in Little Cataloochee
Cabin in Little Cataloochee

So it’s Groundhog Day (February 2).

But it’s also time to sign up for our Friends of the Smokies hikes for 2016 – the 100th Anniversary of the National Park Service.

This year, Friends of the Smokies Classic Hikes Series totals 100 miles in celebration of the National Park Service’s Centennial in 2016. The hikes feature trail interpretation, history and how Friends support park projects.

I’m always so excited to be leading the hikes but Anna Lee Zanetti and the Friends staff do all the organization. If you hike a 100 miles this centennial year, you’ll get a pin and an invitation to the Superintendent’s Hike 100 Celebration. Of course, you don’t have to do all the 100 miles with Friends of the Smokies to get your pin, but we make it so easy and fun.

View from Mt. Le Conte
View from Mt. Le Conte

The hikes are always the second Tuesday of the month, staring in March. We have an exciting lineup including  Little Cataloochee, Porters Creek, Hyatt Ridge, Charlies Bunion, Mt. Sterling, overnight at Mount Le Conte, Mt. Cammerer, Deep Creek, Double Springs Gap, Noland Creek and Grotto Falls.

And did you catch Mount Le Conte? We’re going to Mount Le Conte again… Yippee! Look at the whole series!.

The first Classic Hike of 2016 is Tuesday, March 8th to Little Cataloochee. This hike is 6.6 miles round trip and is moderate in difficulty with a total elevation gain of 1,450 feet. Participants will visit a historic chapel, cemetery and cabin on this hike. See the picture above.

So how do you sign up? Go to hike.friendsofthesmokies.org  or contact Anna Lee (of course).

To sign up for the whole series,  mail a check to Friends of the Smokies 160 S. Main Street Waynesville 28786 for $160.

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