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December 17, 2014
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Take a Hike – or Six!

Cobey Pond Trail makes a three-mile loop around the large, vibrant Cobey Pond.
Contributed photo

By Laura King

All exercise has health advantages, but hiking may be one of the best activities on the long list of options that move us because of its benefits to body, mind and soul. Is there really anything better to do on a perfect fall afternoon than to enjoy a simple sojourn with friends or family into our local wetlands, uplands and forests?

With only a water bottle, good walking shoes and a little “oomph” we can be off – and few backyards in the nation are so resplendent. We are rich beyond words with a treasury of plants, birds and wildlife that never fails to be both awe-inspiring and entertaining.

Inspired by ‘Let’s Move!’
To encourage us to engage with nature up close and personal, our local offices of the National Park Service (NPS) recently released a popular brochure for the Upper Delaware titled, “Take A Hike!” The guide, which can be picked up at NPS information centers and kiosks, or downloaded on a home computer (easiest on the www.delawareriverhighlands.com site), was created to tantalize local hikers of all ages to “get outdoors” and enjoy a few of the exceptional scenic, educational and recreational opportunities that can be found just a comfortable walking distance away from the couch.

The “Take a Hike!” project supports the well-known “Let’s Move!” campaign that was launched by Michelle Obama as a national initiative to get children, adults and families outdoors and exercising. “Let’s Move” promotes daily physical activity as a means to counter a national trend toward obesity and as a life-long habit for maintaining good health.

“Hiking in the Upper Delaware is a great way to get exercise and enjoy this unique natural resource at the same time,” said NPS biologist Jamie Myers. “The Department of the Interior, which oversees NPS, is a supporter and sponsor of this campaign, so it was a natural fit.” (Visit www.letsmove.gov for more information about the initiative.)