Hike the classics
The 2021 Classic Hikes of the Smokies Series is underway.
These hikes, offered the second Tuesday of each month, feature interpretation of the history, flora and fauna of some of the best trails in America’s most-visited national park. Hikes vary in distance, difficulty and location within the park. Registration is $35 for each hike or $180 for all 10, which works out to one free hike. Proceeds benefit Friends of the Smokies’ Smokies Trails Forever program, which funds rehabilitation efforts for high-use trails in the park.
This year’s hiking schedule is:
- April 13: Porters Creek. Hikers will discover wildflowers and cascades on this moderate 7.4-mile excursion.
- May 11: Baxter Creek to Mt. Sterling. A difficult 12.2-mile hike will yield views, wildflowers and an impressive fire tower.
- June 8: Smokemont Loop. Enjoy a walk through the forest on this moderate 6-mile loop.
- July 13: Flat Creek. This easy 5.2-miler takes hikers along a high-elevation creek.
- Aug. 10: Lost Cove Loop. Walk a difficult 11.8-mile route to experience the Appalachian Trail and Fontana Lake.
- Sept. 14: Mt. Cammerer. Incredible fire tower views and an Appalachian Trail route characterize this difficult 12-mile trek.
- Oct. 12: Noland Creek. Walk a moderate 8.4 miles along Fontana Lake and through autumn forest on this excursion.
- Nov. 9: Boogerman Trail. Experience Cataloochee Valley history, old growth poplars and elk on this difficult 7.4-mile hike.
- Dec. 14: Old Sugarlands Trail. Take a moderate 7-mile forest walk on this hike that will double as a holiday celebration.
Register at www.friendsofthesmokies.org.