National Trails Day in Panthertown on Saturday, June 4, 2011

On Saturday, June 4, 2011, our friends over at the American Hiking Society will host National Trails Day®, bringing together outdoor enthusiasts across the country for the 19th annual celebration of America’s magnificent trail system and its countless supporters and volunteers. Sign up to participate in one of the 2,000 events that will take place around the country including trail maintenance, hiking, paddling, biking, horseback riding, bird watching, running, trail celebrations and more!

AHS National Trails DayThis Saturday, in honor of the American Hiking Society’s National Trails Day, the Friends of Panthertown will be hosting a guided interpretive hike and trail dedication in Panthertown Valley, a 6,300-acre backcountry area of the Nantahala National Forest.

Interpretive hike will be led by Mike Kettles and Dr. Dan Pittillo. Pre-registration is recommended.

Bring your own lunch, plenty of water, good shoes, rain gear (just in case) and your family and friends. For more information or to pre-register, please call (828) 269-HIKE (4453) or send an e-mail to

National Trails Day is a time to get outside and celebrate our wonderful natural treasures, like rivers, mountains, lakes, deserts and plains. It’s also an opportunity to get outside and connect with local outdoor clubs, businesses, community groups, and parks and recreation departments as well as federal land managing agencies to experience, appreciate and celebrate the natural places where we can find a spread of scenery, a plateful of peace, and a heap of happiness and health.

“Dedicated volunteers, outdoor enthusiasts, trail lovers, and those new to the outdoors are truly the key ingredients to National Trails Day. Naturally, it’s a time to give back to trails and pay it forward by introducing someone new to the outdoors,” said Gregory Miller, American Hiking Society president.

Since 1993, National Trails Day has inspired thousands of individuals and community groups to take part in activities that promote healthy living and mental well being, protect green space, educate youth and adults on the importance of trails, and instill excitement for the outdoors.

Founded in 1976, American Hiking Society is the only national, recreation-based nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting and protecting America’s hiking trails, their surrounding natural areas and the hiking experience. To learn more about American Hiking Society and its mission and programs, visit or call (301) 565-6704.

Directions to Salt Rock (west entrance) to Panthertown Valley: Approximately 1.5 miles east of Cashiers on US 64, turn north (left coming from Cashiers, right coming from Sapphire/Lake Toxaway) on Cedar Creek Road (SR 1120). Continue on Cedar Creek Road for 2.2 miles and bear right or northeast on Breedlove Road (SR 1121). Drive 3.3 miles until the pavement turns to gravel. Parking is limited along the gravel road, so visitors are advised to park their cars here. Continue ¼ mile on the gravel road that leads to the Salt Rock trail-head parking area. PLEASE NOTE: As of May 2, 2011, the road sign for Cedar Creek Road is currently down. Look for the stop sign with the state road number 1120 affixed below it.

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