State parks are going to be a happen’ place on New Years Day. Maryland, Virginia and Delaware are participating in “First Day” taking place in all 50 states, encouraging everyone to take a hike on January 1.
More than 27,000 people hiked an estimated 66,000 miles across the country on the previous first day of the year. The sponsored hikes range from less than one mile journeys, to longer, more intense workouts, depending on the state and terrain. In addition, some states are also sponsoring trail adventures for cyclists and equestrians.
“America’s State Parks is dedicated to helping young and old alike explore some of the most breathtaking public lands in their home states,” said Lewis Ledford, executive director of National Association of State Park Directors (NASPD).
First Day Hikes originated more than 20 years ago at the Blue Hills Reservation – a state park in Milton, Massachusetts.
NASPD has listed a number of the hikes planned if you want to join a group effort. In Maryland, for example, there’s an easy two mile hike planned on Jane’s Island for 1pm and a moderate three mile hike at St. Mary’s River State Park at 10am. In Virginia, James River State Park is hosting a guided two-hour, moderate hike at 1pm while New River Trail State Park has a ten mile hike starting at 11am.