Join a Ranger for Hikes in the Smokies

GREAT SMOKY MOUNTAINS NATIONAL PARK (July 2012) – The National Park Service is offering ranger-led, family-friendly hikes every Wednesday through Aug. 11.

The hikes encourage families to hike the park’s trails (there are 800 miles of trails in all), learn new skills, assist in trail stewardship and record their results.

The Little River Family Adventure Hike starts in the Elkmont area of the park. It covers five miles and takes about three hours. It is ranked “moderate” in difficulty and is on an unpaved gravel and dirt trail.

Participants should wear sturdy hiking shoes or boots and bring plenty of water and a lunch. For more information, visit the “Hike the Smokies” website: http://www.nps.gov/grsm/planyourvisit/hike-the-smokies.htm

In addition to the weekly Wednesday hikes at Elkmont, there is a July 12 family hike at Schoolhouse Gap and a July 19 hike to Porters Flat.

The hikes are a part of a National Park Foundation grant funded through the Coca-Cola Foundation that expands the current “Hike the Smokies” and “Adopt a Trail” programs.