Get outdoors this year with the 100-Mile Challenge and HikeNC!

100milechallenge_logo_color_2In the 100th year of North Carolina State Parks, we’re issuing a 100-Mile Challenge: Can you walk, hike, run, paddle, ride a horse or roll a wheelchair 100 miles in a year?

This health and wellness challenge should motivate North Carolinians to get outdoors, explore state parks and other natural areas and personally get involved in our Centennial – and earn commemorative pins, digital badges and bragging rights. But you won’t be tackling this challenge alone. Your support team will be North Carolina State Parks, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina, Friends of State Parks and fellow travelers.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAFirst, North Carolina State Parks has launched its 100-Mile Challenge website. There, you can create an online account to keep track of your progress by logging your mileage, even from a mobile device. It also lists locations and mileage of the more than 600 miles of state park trails. And, it explains how participants can create groups to meet the challenge as a team, or log “buddy miles” for family members (and even pets).

Need more motivation? Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina steps in with its new HikeNC! initiative. The HikeNC! website describes 60 hikes scheduled during the fall to take advantage of cool weather and North Carolina’s impressive network of trails. The hikes range from kid-friendly strolls to more adventurous outings. Each organized hike will be led by a state park ranger or hiking expert. This initiative is supported, in turn, by Friends of State Parks, GetGoingNC, the North Carolina Recreation and Park Association and Great Outdoor Provision Co.

One more thing: remember your North Carolina State Parks Passport. Grab a free passport at a state park and get it stamped at every park visited. Collect the commemorative stamps for every state park to earn a prize pack.

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