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A lot of winter hiking to get back in shape

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Posted at 6:00 AM, Dec 31, 2015
and last updated 2015-12-31 06:00:44-05

Get Rich Outdoors

Here you will find a weekly update on select events and activities happening in northern Ohio national, state and county parks, which are in the NewsChannel 5 viewing area. Programs sometimes change for weather and other unforeseen circumstances! Check the park web-site before traveling.

Pick of the Park's for Friday, January 1 to Thursday, January 7, 2016

Featured Event

New Year Hike
Sunday, January 3, 1 to 3 p.m., Ohio & Erie Canal Reservation, CanalWay Center, 4524 East 49th Street, Cuyahoga Heights,
The New Year has just started. Start the new year and your New Year’s resolution off right with a brisk walk through the park. Dress for the weather. Terrain Difficulty: possibly snow covered or icy, 1 hill, 1 – 2 miles. Free.

Cuyahoga Valley National Park

Snowshoe Hike
Saturday, January 2, 1 to 3 p.m., Kendall Lake Shelter
Learn a new skill or just got out and enjoy the winter chill on snowshoes. If there is no snow, program will be a winter hike. Free. Trails vary. Rentals are available. For more information call 330-657-2752.

Winter Warm-up Hike
Sunday, January 3, 9 a.m. to noon, Wetmore Trailhead
7 miles of the hilly, unpaved Wetmore trail system. For more information call 330-657-2752.

For the complete Cuyahoga Valley National Park events calendar click:
http://www.nps.gov/cuva/planyourvisit/events.htm

Ohio State Parks

Hiking Happy Through Winter at Ohio State Parks
Whether you are looking for a strenuous hike to help shake your cabin fever or you just need to get the kids out of the house during the day, your Ohio State Parks offer plenty of winter hiking adventures. No matter what type of hike you are looking for, it’s always important to be prepared. Here are a few tips from our naturalists, who hike in our state parks throughout the year:
-  Check the weather. Know what the conditions will be like and dress accordingly. Dress in layers: Keep your head, neck and hands covered. Your backpack (see below!) can always be used to carry the layers you peel off as you warm up on the hike.
-  Find a map of the area as well as a trail map. Knowing about your surroundings really pays off to keep you safe and maximize your enjoyment. Knowing the options on where you can go after your hike -- to get a warm drink or a meal -- can be an incentive for getting outdoors, too.
-   Wear comfortable hiking shoes with good tread and ankle and arch support. Waterproof boots are a good choice in the winter. Thick hiking socks help keep the moisture away from your feet. Trails can be wet, muddy, icy, snowy, and all of the above.
-   Bring a backpack. You don’t need anything fancy, a simple over-the-shoulder school pack will do. What to pack:  a small first-aid kit (band-aids), lip balm (can be used to prevent chapping on your cheeks as well as your lips), water, snacks, the trail map, gloves, hat, scarf you didn't think you'd need, plastic bag to carry out your trash
Some things to remember:
-   Stay on the trail. Leaving the trail is best way to get lost. Also, staying on the trail allows you to respect the natural environment by avoiding trampling any plants or animals in the area.
-    Pay attention to signage. Most paths are color-coded to help you find your way in and out, especially at intersecting points. If you’re taking the blue trail, follow the blue markers!
-    Avoid slippery rocks and steep embankments. Slippery rocks can swoop out your legs and take you, painfully, to the ground. Slippery rocks near cliffs, drop-offs, or embankments can lead to falls resulting in serious injury or worse. Be careful.
-    Be alert for symptoms of hypothermia: uncontrollable shivering, drowsiness, slow or slurred speech, memory lapses, or clumsiness.

For a complete list of Northern Ohio State Park events click:
http://www.dnr.state.oh.us/parks/resources/events/tabid/487/Default.aspx

Cleveland Metroparks

Day after New Year's Hike
Saturday, January 2, 2 to 3 p.m., Brecksville Reservation, Nature Center, 9000 Chippewa Creek Dr, Brecksville, OH 44141
Start the new year off right by getting outside and hiking through the beautiful winter forests. Terrain Difficulty: moderate hills, 2.5 miles. Free.

For the complete Cleveland Metroparks events calendar click:
http://www.clemetparks.com/events/index.asp

Ashland County Parks

Archery Deer Hunting
Saturday, January 2, 7 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.,
Hunting parks will be closed from for all non-hunting uses, except as noted. One exception is that hunting parks will remain open for hunting, but will also open Sunday afternoons from 12:00 noon until closing for non-hunting activities such as hiking, except during gun deer hunting season. These Sundays will be posted at all hunting park entrances.
Parks Include:
Audubon Wetlands, Black Fork Bottoms, Carpenter Waterfowl Park, Cooke Family Park, Cool Springs, Esbenshade Wetlands, Gilliom-Cherp, Pine Hill Sauers Farm and Sprinkle Park.

For the complete Ashland County Parks events calendar click:
https://sites.google.com/site/ashlandcoparks/

Crawford County Parks

Audubon Christmas Bird Count
Sunday, January 3, 7 a.m., Meet at Bob Evans in Bucyrus
The classic example of citizen science, the Audubon Christmas bird count collects data on bird populations throughout North America. Those who wish to participate as field counters should meet Warren Uxley at Bob Evans in Bucyrus, which is located at south of the intersection of US Route 30 and State Route 4.  If you are interested in counting birds in your backyard, please contact the Crawford Park District at 419-683-9000 for more information.  Look for information on other programs offered by the Crawford Park District by visiting their web site at www.crawfordparkdistrict.org or by visiting our facebook page.

Wintry Wednesdays!
Wednesday, January 6, 10 a.m. & 1:30 p.m.,  Lowe-Volk Park, 2401 State Route 598
Don’t let cabin fever set in!  The Crawford Park District invites you to come to the Lowe-Volk Park Nature Center and enjoy an hour of nature exploration!  Program topics will vary and may include a story, short hike, craft, or a visit from an animal.  For school-aged children and their parents.  Come dressed for the weather.  Morning and afternoon programs will be similar, just pick the time that best fits your schedule.   Lowe-Volk Park is located 3 miles north of US Route 30. For  more information contact the Crawford Park District office at 419-683-9000. Look for information on other programs offered by the Crawford Park District by visiting their web site at www.crawfordparkdistrict.org or by visiting our facebook page.

For the complete Crawford County Parks events calendar click:
http://www.crawfordparkdistrict.org/

Erie County Parks

Erie MetroParks offers, for your enjoyment, a variety of reservable facilities! Many are available year-round. Picnic shelters, meeting rooms, overnight lodging, playing fields, terrace, a pergola, and public garden spaces are available for exclusive use through advanced reservation. Call 419-625-7783 ext. 221 for more information.

For the complete Erie County Parks events calendar click:
http://eriemetroparks.org/index.php/programs/programs/

Geauga County Parks

Winter Fun: Free Snowshoe Borrowing
We know it can be hard to get out during a Northeast Ohio winter, but we've got you covered when it comes to motivation! There's no shortage of great activities to enjoy in your Geauga Park District Back this year: our popular free snowshoe borrowing program at The West Woods! And did we mention it's FREE?
At least a few inches of snow on the ground is needed, and the deeper the snow, the better.
Registration is preferred at 440-286-9516. Any snowshoes not reserved are available on first-come, first-served basis. Borrowers must be 18+ to check out a pair; anyone younger must be accompanied by an adult, and no one under 40 pounds may use the snowshoes due to their weight. Snowshoes may not leave The West Woods except for registered programs. Registrants must sign a waiver form and leave a driver's license as a security deposit. Borrowing can take place any time 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and last up to two hours. Want a little extra guidance? Register for this program on Saturday, December 19! And for more guided snowshoe experiences this winter, visit http://bit.ly/gpdsscall2016 to get your name on our call list for special snowshoe programs that will be "called into action" anytime now through March 1 whenever the snow conditions are right for snowshoeing.

For the complete Geauga County Parks events calendar click:
http://reservations.geaugaparkdistrict.org/programs/index.shtml

Lake Metroparks

Santa's Toy Workshop
January 2 & 3, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., Lake Metroparks Farmpark
Santa's Toy Workshop at Farmpark is the place where memories are built! Children (ages 2 through 11) move from station to station to build and decorate their toy with Santa’s elves. The workshop is complete with drills, power screwdrivers, hammers, nails, paint, glitter and dancing elves. Regular Farmpark admission plus $2 per toy applies; first-come, first-served and no pre-registration is required. 

For the complete Lake Metroparks events calendar click:
http://www.lakemetroparks.com/programs/events.shtml

Lorain County Parks

Weekly Walkers
Monday, January 4, 8:30 to 9:30 a.m., Columbia Reservation
Enjoy a hike through the park once a week! Free.

For the complete Lorain County Metroparks events calendar click:
http://reservations.metroparks.cc/programs/

Medina County Parks

Hiking for the Health of it
Saturday, January 2, 9 a.m. to 11 a.m., CVNP's Hunt Farm Trailhead, 2054 Bolanz Rd. Peninsula
Ages 10 to adult. No registration required. Free.

For the complete Medina County Parks events calendar click:
http://reservations.medinacountyparks.com/programs/

Portage County Parks

Enjoy Portage Parks all year round, on your own or with others at our educational programs and special events. Each park and trail has its own character and potential for use or protection. Portage Parks strives to balance conservation of our natural resources with public use and enjoyment. We provide opportunities for enjoying and learning about our natural areas through activities such as walking, biking, hiking, boating, fishing, geocaching, picnicking, camping, nature programs, races and special events. 

For the complete Portage County Parks events calendar click:
http://portageparkdistrict.org/programs/upcoming-events/

Stark Parks

Hike-A-Hundred Kick-Off!
Sunday, January 3, 2 to 4 p.m., Exploration Gateway, Rooms A & B
Kick off another hiking year with the award winning, Friends of Stark Parks, Hike-A-Hundred Club! Join the club or join us to find out more about the group, then take a moderately paced 2.6 mile hike along the Sippo Lake trails. Enjoy refreshments and meet new club members after the hike. Please dress for the weather and trail conditions. Free.

For the complete Stark Parks events calendar click:
http://reservations.starkparks.com/programs/

Summit County Parks

Hike for Cocoa
Sunday, January 3, 1 to 2:30 p.m., Liberty Park Nature Center, 9999 Liberty Rd., Twinsburg
Join us for a winter's walk, then warm up by the fireplace with a cup of hot cocoa. We will search for signs of wildlife on our way. For information, call 330-865-8065.

Hibernation Hike & Campfire
Monday, January 4, 10 a.m. to 12 p.m., Liberty Park Nature Center, 9999 Liberty Rd., Twinsburg
Could a bear be hibernating in the Twinsburg Ledges? Join a naturalist in the shelter to learn how hibernation works and which animals use it. Marshmallows will be provided, while supplies last. For information, call 330-865-8065.

Cardio Hike Monday, January 4, 1 to 2 p.m., Hampton Hills Metro Park, Main Entrance, 2925 Akron-Peninsula Rd., Akron
Join a naturalist for healthy outdoor exercise by hiking at a vigorous pace with few, if any, rest stops. Beginners are welcome, but talk to your doctor before beginning a new exercise routine. Drinking water is recommended. For information, call 330-865-8065.

For the complete Summit County Parks events calendar click:
http://www.summitmetroparks.org

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