Conserving Carolina’s Fall Hiking Series

A group of hikers having a picnic on top of a mountain at sunset.
Arthur Poulin

Conserving Carolina invites the community to enjoy the work that conservation organizations have done over the years to preserve our area’s natural resources and to take in the beauty of the fall season!

Starting on Friday, September 27, five free guided hikes will be offered every other Friday through November 22, with one additional free guided hike offered on Saturday, November 16th.

The first trek, on September 27, will head to Sam’s Knob and Flat Laurel Creek for a 5 mile, moderate, lollipop hike in Pisgah National Forest. This hike offers 360 degree panoramic views of the Shining Rock Wilderness, stream crossings, and perhaps some wildlife sightings.

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On October 11, the next hike will take place at World’s Edge at Chimney Rock State Park. This 4.4 mile, moderate, out and back will offer hikers spectacular views into Polk County from its northern boundary.

On October 25, the group will head to Bursted Rock in Headwaters State Park. The 5.2 mile, strenuous, out and back hike will lead the group to a geodetic benchmark inscribed “Bursting Rock” and set in a granitic dome. The destination offers dramatic views of the sheer cliffs of Table Rock and the piedmont to the south.

On November 8, Conserving Carolina will partner with Polk County Recreation for a 10-mile, strenuous, one-way hike with a shuttle on the award-winning Weed Patch Mountain Trail. Starting at Eagle Rock in Chimney Rock State Park, the trail will traverse along rock outcrops, pristine mountain streams, and an old growth forest in addition to offering spectacular long range views before ending at Buffalo Creek Park.

On Saturday, November 16, hikers will have the opportunity to visit Walnut Creek Preserve for an approximately 6-mile, moderate, loop hike. Walnut Creek Preserve is a 2,100-acre private equestrian conservation community located near Lake Lure. Participants will enjoy traversing the maturing forest with numerous streams, as well as open, grassy knolls that offer beautiful views of the surrounding mountains.

Finally, on November 22, hikers will venture to the new observation deck on Sassafras Mountain then follow a portion of the Foothills Trail before hiking a new section of the Palmetto Trail, the Roundtop Mountain Passages, to Rock Mountain overlook. The 6-mile, moderately strenuous, out and back hike will offer scenic views from South Carolina’s highest point!

If you are interested in attending Conserving Carolina’s fall hikes and would like more information, please contact Pam Torlina at 828-697-5777, ext. 300 or e-mail [email protected]. You can also find more details and information on Conserving Carolina’s website, www.conservingcarolina.org, and on Conserving Carolina’s Facebook page.

Conserving Carolina, your local land trust, is dedicated to protecting land and water, promoting good stewardship, and creating opportunities for people to enjoy nature. Learn more and become a member at conservingcarolina.org.