How to Enjoy Free, Guided Hikes at State Parks on New Year’s Day

Man hiking outdoors
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There’s a theory that the way you ring in the New Year will directly influence the next 365 days. For example: If you lounge on the couch all day, you might have a year that’s a little lackadaisical and uninspired. If you spend it leisurely strolling along the beach, you might maintain a relaxed, zen vibe. And if you get after some long-overdue chores, your year might feel productive (or exhausting… the jury’s still out on that verdict). The point is, it’s important to start your year off in a way that makes you happy. If you’re an outdoor junky, like us, spending time in the great outdoors—or, more specifically, hitting some trails for guided hikes—might be just the ticket. It’s exactly the kind of fresh start you want (and need).

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And America’s State Parks has an attractive offer: free guided hikes in all 50 states on New Year’s Day via their First Day Hikes Programs.

The hikes are led by knowledgeable state park staff and volunteers. They vary in length and difficulty, so be sure to check America’s State Parks’ website for more information about the programs near you.

From forested scrambles to lakeside ambles, you’ve got a bevy of options. Last year, roughly 55,000 people participated on New Year’s Day, collectively hiking over 133,000 miles throughout the country.

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From avid outdoorsmen to first-time enthusiasts, these guided hikes are accessible to everyone. Does a year spent connecting with nature sound like a good plan for 2020? We’d say so.

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