Come join the Nantahala Hiking Club (NHC), the local Appalachian Trail maintaining club, on the NHC 60-Mile Challenge. The NHC plans to schedule hikes every two months, with the intent to walk the whole NHC’s AT maintained section in 2013. You do not need to be a member of the club to come on club sponsored hikes. All hikes are planned to be key swaps with two groups walking toward each other, eating lunch together and swapping keys.
Of the nine hikes, two are moderate and seven are strenuous. Moderate hikes are four to six miles long with up to 1,000 feet elevation gain. Strenuous hikes are six or more miles long with more than 1,000 feet in elevation gain. The intent is to do them in order of difficulty so hikers can build themselves up and do some individual hiking preparation for the longer, tougher hikes.
On all hiking trips, bring snacks, lunch and water. Hiking poles are optional. Wear sturdy walking shoes or boots and bring rain gear. Those car-pooling are asked to contribute 10 cents per mile to the driver.
The first hike in the Challenge is Saturday, Jan. 26, with a rain date of Feb. 2. The hike is from Rock Gap to Winding Stair Gap. Total hike length is 4.7 miles with elevation gain of 1,500 feet walking north and 2,100 feet walking south. If you are interested in signing up for the first Challenge hike or have questions, call Bill or Sharon Van Horn’s at (828)369-1983 by Jan. 25.