Thursday, November 20, 2008

Upcoming Outdoor Events in Smokies Region

Below are a few outdoor events occurring over the next two weeks in the Smoky Mountains region that I thought you might be interested in:

Try A Tri, Nov. 20. The program provides training to those wanting to complete their first triathlon. The basic spring package moves athletes toward completing either the Valdese Triathlon or Haymed.Org Triathlon, which both take place in April. The programs begin Jan. 1. Information session at 7 p.m. Nov. 20 at the Asheville Racquet Club on Hendersonville Road. Call Greg Duff at 400-5868 or visit

Wilderness First Responder Recertification, Nov. 21-23, Dec. 3-5. This three day scenario-based course is designed as review and practice of evacuation and decision making guidelines and may be used to recertify Wilderness First Responder and Wilderness EMT (wilderness portion only) certifications. Landmark Learning, an outdoor training base-camp, in Cullowhee. 828.293.5384 or

Devil’s Britches Loop, Nov. 22. Guided hike sponsored by the Southern Appalachian Highlands Conservancy on the Devil's Britches Trail at Cataloochee Ranch, easy to moderate difficulty, 10 a.m. Nov. 22, Haw Creek. Hike leader is Judy Coker, board member and member of SAHC, and a co-owner of Cataloochee Ranch. Call 828-253-0095, ext. 205.

Mountains-to-Sea Trail workday, Nov. 22. Carolina Mountain Club will hold a Mountains-to-Sea Trail workday on Nov. 22. Meet at 9 a.m. at the Moose Cafe, Parkway Maintenance Office, Balsam Gap intersection with Rt. 74/23 south of Waynesville at 9:30 or Scott Creek O/L BRP mile marker 449 for car pooling.

Smoky Mountains Hiking Club, various hikes. Members of the Smoky Mountains Hiking Club will lead hikes to Hatcher Mountain and Little Bottoms on Nov. 23; Cove Mountain and Laurel Falls Trails on Nov. 28; and Big Stone Door on Nov. 30.

French Broad River clean-up, Nov. 23. Diamond Brand Outdoors is partnering with Riverlink to help clean a section of the French Broad River on Sunday. 23. Volunteers will be needed for the clean-up event. Those interested in lending a hand may meet in the parking lot of the Ledges Whitewater Park at the intersection of Riverside Drive and Goldview Road at noon. Trash bags, pickers and gloves will be provided for all. It is suggested that those interested in volunteering wear long sleeves and long pants, bring water and be aware that there is no restroom available at Ledges Park and they should plan accordingly. For more information, contact James at Diamond Brand’s Asheville Store by calling 251-4668.

Hiking North Carolina's Lookout Towers, Nov. 24. Join CMC member Peter Barr at the Henderson County Public Library at 4:00pm on Monday, Nov. 24 for a 45 minute presentation on North Carolina lookout towers. Peter will discuss his new book Hiking North Carolina's Lookout Towers and talk about the hiking, history, and preservation of western NC fire towers, including Shuckstack Tower in the Smokies. He'll also introduce the club's newest challenge program, the Lookout Tower Challenge. Henderson County Public Library, 301 N. Washington St., Hendersonville, NC 28739, (828) 697-4725.

THE GOBBLER: Season-end mountain bike race celebration, Nov. 29 and 30. Headwaters Outfitters Adventure Village, 15 Adventure Ridge Road, Brevard. Dual slalom race, night XC race and downhill race. Register at or visit for more details. $35 one event, $65 two events or $85 three events.

All-Taxa Biodiversity Inventory Conference, Dec. 3-5. Anyone interested in the discovery of new plant and animal life in the on-going species survey in the Smokies is welcome to attend. So far 890 species new to science have been discovered, along with 6,129 species not previously known to dwell in the park. For a more detailed schedule or to register, go to or call 865.430.4756 or email at

Why burn gas and fight crowds and traffic at the malls? Enjoy the convenience of shopping from home or work. Just click on the Smoky Mountain Day Hikers Store to find quality hiking gear and apparel from some of the best outdoor brands. We also have a wide variety of books related to hiking and the Smoky Mountains.

Jeff Detailed information on trails in the Smoky Mountains; includes trail descriptions, key features, pictures, video, maps, elevation profiles, news, and more.

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