LAKE LURE — A new 2.1-mile hiking trail to the summit of Youngs Mountain rewards hikers willing to tackle the elevation gain and precipitous drop-offs with spectacular views thanks to the work of Conserving Carolina.
ASHEVILLE — It’s impossible to overstate the wow-factor invoked by an astounding walk-through maze of willow-branch sculptures at the Biltmore Estate.
CHEROKEE — A new purpose-built mountain bike trail system called Fire Mountain has earned so many props lately it’s catapulted to the top of the list of “where to go mountain biking in WNC.”
WAYNESVILLE — Kids can hone their bike skills and learn about bike safety during the Haywood County Bicycle Rodeo from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday, Aug. 21, at the Folkmoot Center on Virginia Avenue in Waynesville.
HAYWOOD — Explore the high-elevation trails of the Blue Ridge Parkway — ideal for the hottest month of summer — with a special guided hike series offered by Haywood County Recreation and Parks.
ASHEVILLE — Dive into the fascinating world of peregrine falcons with a Blue Ridge Parkway ranger at 7:30 p.m. Friday, July 30, at the Folk Art Center along the Parkway in Asheville.
Celebrate and explore the waterways of Haywood County with a week-long lineup of outings, workshops and volunteerism in the name of Creek Week happening July 24-30.
PISGAH FOREST — Engage your little ones with nature and the outdoors during the weekly Woodsy Owl’s Curiosity Club at the Cradle of Forestry.
HAYWOOD COUNTY — Haywood County Recreation is offering several guided hikes during July to connect the public with the rich natural resources and outdoor recreation in Haywood’s backyard.
ASHEVILLE — A Blue Ridge Parkway ranger talk on "Cherokee Legends and Myths" will be held at 7:30 p.m. Friday, July 9, at the Folk Art Center along the Parkway in Asheville.
ASHEVILLE — Brews and Bears has come out of hibernation just in time for summer, with an after-hours event at the WNC Nature from 5:30-8 p.m. on Friday, July 9.
SMOKIES — The overwhelming popularity of vehicle-free Wednesdays in Cades Cove — giving cyclists and walkers a chance to experience the idyllic valley in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park without cars in the picture – has now gotten even better.
ARDEN — The night sky will ignite with a barrage of color, light, and sound over Lake Julian Park on July Fourth, capping off a day of outdoor recreation on the grounds.
BLACK MOUNTAIN — Fireworks are on tap in Black Mountain a night early on July 3 this year, with a cool opportunity to view the show from the peak of Sunset Mountain on a guided night hike.
WAYNESVILLE — Blue Ridge Books will host a book signing and reception for the children's nonfiction book, Secrets of the Loon, at 1 p.m. on Saturday, June 26.
ASHEVILLE — The WNC Nature Center has reopened its Appalachian Station, the indoor exhibit building that houses 34 reptiles and amphibians, after being closed for 15 months due to COVID.
ASHEVILLE — Dive into the fascinating world of nocturnal creatures with a Blue Ridge Parkway ranger at 7:30 p.m. Friday, June 25, at the Folk Art Center along the Parkway in Asheville.
SYLVA — A 5K and one-mile fun run or walk will be held on Saturday, June 19, at Mark Watson Park in Sylva to commemorate Juneteenth, the anniversary marking the end of slavery.
WAYNESVILLE — Go behind-the-scenes in the fight to save hemlocks at greenhouse facility in Haywood County where adelgid-resistant hemlocks are being bred experimentally.
VIRTUAL — Learn about the Appalachian tradition of hunting ginseng and threats it faces from poaching with the virtual program called “Roots in Appalachia: Ginseng in Western North Carolina” held at 6:30 p.m. June 14.
HAYWOOD — A series of guided bird watching trips is being offered by Haywood County Rec, including a birding expedition in Cataloochee Valley Saturday, June 12.
AROUND WNC — If you love scavenger hunts or want to spice up your hiking routine, check out the Southern Sixer Hiking Challenge for a little extra trail motivation.
ASHEVILLE — A new outdoor evening program hosted by Blue Ridge Parkway rangers will be held Friday evenings this summer at the Folk Art Center in Asheville, starting June 4.
WAYNESVILLE — Join a 8.5-mile guided hike along a section of the Mountains to Sea trail paralleling the Blue Ridge Parkway between Waynesville and Maggie Valley on Saturday, June 5.
CHIMNEY ROCK — A two-hour program on the ecology of bees will be held at Chimney Rock State Park from 10 a.m.-noon Saturday, May 22 — which just happens to be World Bee Day.
FAIRVIEW — An exclusive hike in the Hickory Nut Gap area on a trail not-yet-open to the public will be held on Saturday, May 22, by the WNC Historical Association.
ASHEVILLE — Learn about the impacts of impending climate change on the Southern Appalachian and what can be done about it during a webinar hosted by WNC conservation group MountainTrue.
CLYDE — Fly fishermen can learn the art and science of tying their own flies or even building their own fly rod with two upcoming workshops at Haywood Community College.
WAYNESVILLE — A tree identification hike in the Sunburst area of Shining Rock Wilderness will be held on Sunday, May 23, by Haywood Waterways Association.
HAYWOOD COUNTY — WNC is home to the largest peony farm in the state, and it opens its grounds to the public every May for the Festival of Peonies.
WAYNESVILLE — Beginner and intermediate fly fishing courses, plus fly fishing excursions, are back by popular demand from Haywood County Recreation.
BLACK MOUNTAIN — A virtual workshop on hunting, identifying, and preparing edible and medicinal mushrooms of the Southern Appalachians will be held via Zoom from 6:30 to 7:45 p.m. on Monday, May 10.
GSMNP — A limited number of spots to view the Great Smoky Mountains National Park synchronous firefly display will be dolled out via an online lottery system — and you've only got through Monday, May 3, to put your name in.
EVERYWHERE — Join citizen scientists around the world by documenting plants and animals in your backyard or neighborhood during the four-day City Nature Challenge April 30 – May 3.
BREVARD — Test your cycling mettle with The Looking Glass Tour on Saturday, May 1, billed as the ultimate cycling sampler of WNC’s diverse terrain.