Are you ready for the Year of the Trail, a celebration of North Carolina’s vast and diverse collection trails encouraging all of us to recognize our role as champions of these special resources? With events throughout 2023 in all 100 counties, the initiative is strengthened by communities like Asheville joining the effort to bring awareness to and build more opportunities for hiking, biking, walking, running, riding, rolling, and paddling across our beautiful state.
Asheville Parks & Recreation (APR) has organized opportunities for community members to join the fun throughout the year. The department’s outdoor programs’ team members have selected a scenic urban hike for Take a Walk Outdoors Day on January 20.
French Broad River Greenway
French Broad River Greenway’s newest section was completed earlier this year, connecting popular parks, businesses, and river views along a four-mile stretch of continuous smooth, hard surface. At one end is Buncombe County Parks & Recreation’s Hominy Creek River Park; the other is a public parking lot at the intersection of Craven St. and Emma Rd. near New Belgium Brewing Company. A sidewalk across Craven Street Bridge connects to Wilma Dykeman Greenway on the other side of the river.
From south to north, public parking is located along French Broad Greenway:
- Hominy Creek River Park, 220 Hominy Creek Rd.
- Carrier Park, 220 Amboy Rd.
- Amboy Riverfront Park, 180 Amboy Rd.
- French Broad River Park, 508 Riverview Dr.
- Craven Street Bridge, 7 Emma Rd.
Great State Trails Coalition Statement
Indigenous people have inhabited the land now known as North Carolina since the Paleoindian Period (12,000-10,000 BCE). Trails were created and used for travel, hunting and gathering of food, recreation, commerce, and many other aspects of everyday life. All of our current-day connectivity stems from these trails – as people moved along rivers and ridgelines, through forests and the Lowcountry, and along the changing coastlines, trails were established. These trails turned into stagecoach routes, then railroads, and finally into the complex system of roads and interstate highways we know today.
The Great Trails State Coalition, a group of over 50 member organizations working together to advocate for trails at the state level, respectfully acknowledges that the land on which we live, work, and recreate is the traditional land of the indigenous people of North Carolina. We recognize that these native people have stewarded this land for generations and we pay our respects and express our gratitude to their elders, both past and present.
During Year of the Trail, we encourage communities to consider the origins of local trails and advocate for their preservation, sustainable growth, and responsible use.