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First Day Hikes led by rangers, volunteers set for 20 state parks New Year’s Day

Be ready to bundle up with family and friends and join hikes to learn about park history, geology, wildlife and plants at parks around the state from the high desert to the coast. Hikes are free, and the $5 day-use parking fee is waived New Year’s Day for all state parks that require a parking permit and are open.

“A guided hike is great way to kick off 2023 in the outdoors and begin a new tradition or continue a longstanding family tradition,” said Lisa Sumption, director of the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department. “As our centennial year comes to a close, we’re excited to begin the next 100 years of Oregon State Parks and continue to offer year-round recreation.”

Visit the Oregon First Day Hikes web page to see the list of parks hosting hikes Jan. 1, as well as the start times and meetup locations. Additional hike information also is available including terrain and hike distance via the park links on the web page. A few hikes require registration.

Locally, Valley of the Rogue State Park officials plan a 10 a.m. hike, and TouVelle State Recreation Site will host an outing at 1:30 p.m. See the First Day Hikes web page for more details.

Remember to plan for winter weather, dress in layers, wear sturdy shoes, bring water and carry binoculars for viewing wildlife.

Share photos of First Day Hikes via Twitter and Instagram by using the hashtag #ORfirstdayhikes or tagging “Oregon State Parks” on Facebook.

First Day Hikes is a national initiative to welcome the coming year in the outdoors, promote exercise and encourage connecting with nature. Oregon Parks and Recreation Department has participated since 2012.