“We will join the millions of others across the country who will be celebrating the trail systems and natural resources of our country with a variety of programs,” a park representative said. “Bring the family — there will be something for everyone. Come on out and ‘take a hike.’”
It’s good for you. Hiking on trails gives you the opportunity to enjoy the natural resources while allowing your lungs to expand with fresh air and your muscles to work at various levels of difficulty, thereby improving your physical and mental well-being.
The planned events include:
9 a.m. at Loop Trail: Stroll and cleanup. Those interested in taking a stroll around the Loop Trail at Gee Creek Campground alongside the Hiwassee River can join Ranger Heather Pell.
“We will be learning about native flora and fauna while doing our part along the way to ensure that we ‘leave no trace’ as we enjoy our natural resources. This is an event that is enjoyable for all ages, and will last around 90 minutes.” Bring drinking water to this event
11 a.m.: Hiking Bingo will begin in front of the bathhouse. Pell will lead a stroll while playing a fun game of Bingo with a “natural” twist.
This will be fun for all ages, and a perfect activity for children under 10. The program will last around 25 minutes.
2 p.m.: A Waterfall Hike will begin at the bathhouse. There will be a less than 3-mile “car caravan” to the Gee Creek Falls — a 12-foot waterfall and swimming hole — and a two-mile round-trip hike. The program consists of a hike of moderate difficulty and is intended for ages 5 and up. The program will take about two hours. Wear sturdy shoes and bring drinking water.
7:30 p.m.: The Sunset Hike will begin. On this approximately two-hour trek, hikers will get a unique view of the area’s beauty as the sun settles for the evening. Pell will lead the difficult half-mile hike to the top of Starr Mountain where hikers will watch the sunset. You will need to wear sturdy shoes and bring a flashlight and water. This hike is for ages 8 and up. Meet at the bathhouse. From there it will be a drive of less than two miles to the Starr Mountain trailhead.
The Hiwassee/Ocoee State Park is located at 404 Spring Creek Road, Delano.