A guided hike of the Mingus Creek Trail in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park will be held Saturday, Dec. 15, followed by a trip to the Oconaluftee Visitor Center for history lessons and holiday shopping at the gift shop.
Friends of the Smokies member and author of two regional hiking guides, Danny Bernstein, will lead this six-mile hike. There will be a 700-foot elevation change. Hikers will see the historic Mingus Mill, the Mingus family cemetery and a slave cemetery. The hike is moderate in difficulty and may be muddy.
At the visitor center afterward will be the Holiday Homecoming event, featuring traditional mountain holiday music and Christmas celebrations.
Participants will gather to depart from Asheville at 8:30 a.m., in Maggie Valley at 9 a.m. or in the Park at 9:30 a.m. A donation of $35 to go to the Friends Smokies Trails Forever program is requested, and includes a complimentary membership to Friends of the Smokies. Current Friends of the Smokies members hike for $10. Hikers who bring a friend hike for free.