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Focus Area Feature Hike: Balsam Mountains (also part of the Southern Sixer Challenge)

April 1, 2017 @ 10:00 am - 5:00 pm

Location: Black Balsam Knob and Tennent Mountain

Date: Saturday, April 1

Start Time: 10 AM; Carpool info TBA

Difficulty: Moderately Strenuous (6-7)

Leader: Haley Smith, SAHC AmeriCorps Outreach Member

Cost: Members FREE/Non-members $10

Registration: Pre-registration is REQUIRED.

This hike will feature our work in the Balsam Mountains, a biodiversity hotspot and critical wildlife corridor between the Nantahala National Forest and the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The Balsams also contain two designated Wilderness Areas and nearly 3,000 acres of old growth forest, making them some of the most pristine wilds in our region.

This 5-mile loop traverses rocky terrain through high elevation forests and across beautiful open balds with scenic views, including over the summit of Black Balsam Knob at 6,214 feet and onwards to Tennent Mountain at 6,040 feet. We will discuss our land protection efforts in this area, including ongoing work near the Cold Mountain Game Lands and along the Blue Ridge Parkway near Waterrock Knob and other locations.

This hike is offered as part of our both our Conservation Focus Area Feature series and  “For Love of Beer & Mountains” Southern Sixer Challenge series:

Have you ever wanted to learn more about SAHC’s land protection work, particularly our conservation focus area priorities? This year we are offering a series of six Focus Area Feature Hikes, each highlighting one of the six distinctive greographic regions where we work. Over the past 43 years, our members and donors have protected over 70,000 acres across ten counties in NC and TN. Join us in learning about these successful projects and find out what makes each of our six Focus Areas unique.

Our “For Love of Beer & Mountains” Partnership with Highland Brewing Company celebrates conservation of the stunning, unique landscape of the Southern Appalachians. Highland’s latest seasonal  “Southern Sixer IPA,” is named for the collection of 40+ peaks in NC and TN whose summits reach over 6,000 feet elevation. As part of our partnership we have launched a 2017 Southern Sixer Hiking Challenge – a challenge to summit at least six of these 6,000+ ft peaks in 2017. To help meet the challenge, we will lead guided hikes to several of these peaks throughout the year.

Registration for this hike is currently full. To be added to the wait list, or for questions, contact Haley Smith at haley@appalachian.org or 828.253.0095 ext 205.

Not a current SAHC member? Click Here to pay for your outing or join SAHC. Members hike for free all year! If you have questions about your membership status, please contact Membership Director Cheryl Fowler at cheryl@appalachian.org or 828.253.0095 ext 209.