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Hiking

What Good Is a Meteor Shower if You Have Clouds? And Other Lessons Learned in Shining Rock Wilderness

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What Good Is a Meteor Shower if You Have Clouds? And Other Lessons Learned in Shining Rock Wilderness

Bald camping, meteors, a dog who decides to be a pest, and blueberries

Awkward and anticlimatic. That's pretty much how that weekend went. Work hard, go someplace new on your own, try not to freak out about the new place or people or being on your own, and still things just play out really awkwardly anyways. Sounds about right for me. And so I ran away to the mountains where Ryder was a jerk and the sky was cloudy and obscured the meteor shower and my tripod lost its handle and I totally missed Shining Rock.

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Two Minutes and Thirty-Seven Seconds

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Two Minutes and Thirty-Seven Seconds

Even in a remote wilderness, the solar eclipse draws a crowd

Some photography requires just the right setup, just the right lighting, just the right variables, just the right whatever, but that's not how I operate in the backcountry. I just want to watch, to identify some small moment and capture it forever.

Two minutes and thirty-seven seconds is hardly enough time for that.

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Bald and Beautiful on the Appalachian Trail

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Bald and Beautiful on the Appalachian Trail

Carver's Gap to US19 section along Appalachian Trail offers incredible views

Some weekend trips just work out perfectly. Sometimes you expect tough climbs or bad weather, or that you'll have to sleep in a cold car the night before you get on the trail. And sometimes you get a bed & breakfast and a beautiful sunset on a stunning bald. My friend Sherry and I explored the Appalachian Trail from Carver's Gap to 19E over Easter weekend, and it was one beautiful adventure!

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Appalachian Trail: Max Patch, Max Views, Max Adventure

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Appalachian Trail: Max Patch, Max Views, Max Adventure

How I introduced my friend to backpacking with incredible views and juuuuuuust a wee bit of snow

We had a few days off work on March 16 and 17 (rumor has it we got those days off because of the start of the NCAA tournament), so with the extra free time my friend Emily and I headed off to the mountains to hike a section of the Appalachian Trail.This was Emily's first backpacking trip and the pressure was on me to make sure she 1) didn't die, and 2) had a good time. (Spoiler: I delivered on #1, and hopefully on #2!)

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Goose Creek

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Goose Creek

Coastal state park offers miles of hiking through pine savannah, hardwoods, wetlands, and swamp

It's a bit of a drive out to the land of pine and sandhills and brackish water where the Pamlico River meets the ocean, but it was a beautiful day for a hike under the loblollies while buzzards flew above the treetops, the sun rimming their broad wings with tips of gold. We'd driven to Washington, NC - just a couple miles outside historic Bath, NC - to explore Goose Creek State Park, a swampy park with boardwalks, Spanish moss, and scrub pines.

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Little River - North River Trail

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Little River - North River Trail

A short drive north of Durham there's a park that promises few crowds and fun trails for hikers and mountain bikers

The last time we went to Rougemont we were going to see a house, and on the way we ended up stuck behind, well, a house. A massive truck was moving this massive house down this tiny country road - a country farmhouse with whitewash peeling off the side boards, scraping past oaks whose branches creeped over the road's narrow shoulder. We managed to avoid any Rougemont houses this past weekend, making our way to Little River Regional Park & Natural Area, a cooperative conservation park funded by Durham and Orange counties.

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