These are our trails. This is our year.



DISCOVER THE GREAT TRAILS STATE

IN NORTH CAROLINA, THERE IS A TRAIL FOR EVERYONE, PLACES OF REFUGE AND RECREATION, CONNECTING US TO THE VERY ESSENCE OF THIS STATE.

Walk

NORTH CAROLINA IS FULL OF AMAZING PLACES TO SOAK UP THE GREAT OUTDOORS.

PEDAL

FROM MOUNTAINS TO SEA, YOU’LL FIND
ROADS AND TRAILS READY TO BE EXPLORED.

PADDLE

DISCOVER NORTH CAROLINA’S
BLUEWAYS AND SCENIC WATERWAYS.

RIDE

SADDLE UP FOR A RIDE
THROUGH NORTH CAROLINA.

October 21 is Great Trails State Day!

Join thousands of others across The Great Trails State on Saturday, October 21st as we celebrate the first-annual Great Trails State Day! From the mountains to the coast, we’ll enjoy the trails and trail networks that make North Carolina The Great Trails State.

Invite your friends and neighbors to lace up their shoes, get on a bike, kayak, or ride and celebrate the outdoors together. It’s a day to share smiles, connect with others, and make memories on the trails.

No matter what your style, North Carolina offers trails for all. From accessible greenways to thrilling peaks and anything in between, every trail and every trail experience brings movement, health, and happiness. Embrace the outdoors as we make the third Saturday in October a day to remember in The Great Trails State!

We need trails. To move, to play, to discover.

Great Trails State Day is October 21, 2023 Learn More Here!
  • Taking Learning Outdoors: Merrick-Moore Elementary

    Taking Learning Outdoors: Merrick-Moore Elementary

    In an era where technology often dominates educational discourse, Merrick-Moore Elementary in Durham Public Schools (DPS) is offering a distinctive approach centered around outdoor education. At the forefront of this initiative is Stephen Mullaney, a teacher with a deep appreciation for the outdoors, who champions the idea that nature can be an enriching educational tool.

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  • Putting Love for the Outdoors to Test: Every Day on a Trail

    Putting Love for the Outdoors to Test: Every Day on a Trail

    When The Great Trails State Coalition announced 2023 would be the Year of the Trail, I decided it was the perfect opportunity to put my love of the outdoors to the test. Now at the age of forty-two, I also needed a new challenge. My goal became to simply be on some kind of trail…

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  • Tails and Trails: Montgomery County’s Hiking Hope for Shelter Dogs

    Tails and Trails: Montgomery County’s Hiking Hope for Shelter Dogs

    Montgomery County, home to the majority of this beautiful forest, thrives as a scenic jewel in central NC. While it offers a diverse range of forest activities, the county faces challenges due to its sparse population and limited resources. This is particularly evident in the realm of animal care, where the local shelter continuously seeks…

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  • What Trails Mean to Me: Ultra Runner Ciara Wilder Massingale’s Inspiring Journey

    What Trails Mean to Me: Ultra Runner Ciara Wilder Massingale’s Inspiring Journey

    A mere two years ago, Ciara embarked on a path that would challenge her in ways she couldn’t have fathomed. “While I have always had a love of being in nature since I was a child, it wasn’t until two years ago that my life began to completely transform because of trails! On August 2,…

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  • Resources for Getting Youth Engaged on the Trail During Summer Break

    Resources for Getting Youth Engaged on the Trail During Summer Break

    Summer break is here! Here are a few resources for engaging your young explorers with trails this summer during NC’s Year of the Trail!

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  • Children of The Great Trails State

    Children of The Great Trails State

    Celebrate the rewards! The destination doesn’t have to be a 40-foot waterfall or a big mountain overlook. (Side note: Most kids really don’t care about the view from the overlook.)

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  • 14 North Carolina Hikes, Walks & Paddles to Help Beat the Summer Heat

    14 North Carolina Hikes, Walks & Paddles to Help Beat the Summer Heat

    As the summer sun starts to scorch and the humidity climbs seemingly higher each day, it’s time to plan your escape into the shaded forests, cool waters, and higher altitudes of North Carolina’s less trafficked trails.

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  • Celebrating Freedom in North Carolina’s Great Outdoors

    Celebrating Freedom in North Carolina’s Great Outdoors

    North Carolina, with its diverse landscapes and rich history, has always been a beacon for outdoor enthusiasts and historians. As we celebrate Year of the Trail, there are many intersections of trails and history, one significant parallel is between the state’s trail system and one of the most significant historical periods in American history—Juneteenth. Juneteenth is…

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  • Charting New Trails: Reimagining Accessibility in Outdoor Adventures

    Charting New Trails: Reimagining Accessibility in Outdoor Adventures

    Wes Hall is a pioneer in adaptive sports in the Great Trails State and beyond. Born right here in North Carolina, he was diagnosed with Osteosarcoma at age 15, leading to the amputation of his right leg. Wes has been pushing the envelope of what is possible by turning limitations into opportunities.

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  • Our Summer Bucket List

    Our Summer Bucket List

    Summer is a calling, and it’s a great time to embark on an unforgettable trail adventure in North Carolina! Here are 11 activities we’ll be surely checking off of our list! As summer approaches, it’s time to dust off those hiking boots, grab your paddle, and get ready for an incredible outdoor experience in the…

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