Hike your way into February

Carol EvansFun Outdoors

Mildly cool temperatures in the forecast mean good opportunities to take advantage of scheduled hikes in the area.

Start February off with a sunrise hike at Seven Islands State Birding Park at 7 a.m. tomorrow or a day hike starting at 8 at Spruce Flats Falls-Lumber Ridge in the Smokies. Or learn to ID trees as you hike and help with cleanup starting at 9 at the new East Fork Poplar Greenway in Oak Ridge.

There’s a day hike Saturday starting at 10 on the West Prong of the Little River. At 10:15, Ijams Nature Center is offering a guided trail hike with a naturalist.

On Sunday, there’s a 4 p.m. hike for adults only that includes a dinner stop on the Gatlinburg Trail. Homeschoolers are welcome at Seven Islands for a nature hike at 1 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 5.

At 8:30 a.m. Feb. 7, the RCS Friday Hike will leave out of the Abrams Creek campground area for a moderate, 7.2-mile hike that will follow the Little Bottoms Trail. At 6 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 8, Seven Islands will offer a moonlight hike.

Monday, Feb. 3’s RCS Hiker monthly meeting will feature Charlotte Miller talking about “The History of Cades Cove, According to the Daffodils.” Miller will show how you can recognize many now-disappeared structures in Cades Cove by the daffodils that continue to come back.

Barry Spruce will share his pictures of birds of the cold north at the monthly meeting of the Knoxville Chapter of the Tennessee Ornithological Society on Wednesday, Feb. 5. If you love snowy owls, this is for you.

On Thursday, Feb. 6, REI Knoxville and Albright Grove Brewing Co. are hosting a free screening at Albright’s Upstairs Nook of “Highline,” a film about five friends trekking across Utah’s Uinta Highline Trail.

If that isn’t extreme enough for you, go hear hiker Joan Tomlinson speak about “Time on the Mountains: One Woman’s Story From the PCT” – her experience hiking the Pacific Crest Trail – at the UT Arboretum Auditorium.

Unfortunately, the film and Tomlinson’s talk overlap, so you’ll have to make a choice.

There are a lot more choices about outdoor activities in our Outdoor Knoxville calendar. Check it out!

Carol Evans is executive director of Legacy Parks Foundation, a nonprofit devoted to ensuring that our community enjoys exceptional recreational opportunities, natural beauty and open spaces, and that those assets exist for generations to come.



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