View from the top of Looking Glass Rock

This event has been rescheduled for Sunday, January 30.

HRI is hosting both a hike and a volunteer treatment day on Sunday, January 23, 2022 on the Looking Glass Rock Trail in Pisgah National Forest outside of Brevard. Sunday, January 30, 2022 will serve as a backup date in case of poor weather. The hike is approximately 6.2 miles long (out and back) and features over 1,500 feet of elevation gain, making it a very strenuous hike. Along the way, HRI staff will educate participants about all things hemlock, including hemlock treatment, the threats they face from hemlock woolly adelgid, biological control, and many other aspects of hemlock conservation. 

Members of the HRI staff will be treating hemlocks along the trail with CoreTect tablets that day, so hike participants are welcome to help out and see the treatment process firsthand, actively engaging in hemlock conservation. You can also sign up just to volunteer without participating in the educational hike. Both hikers and volunteers will meet at 9 a.m. Sunday morning, but the two groups may not be traveling at the same pace and end times will likely vary. However, those who want to receive the full educational portion and help treat can choose to join the volunteers after they reach the top and return with the treatment teams. Hikers can expect to be done between 3 and 4 p.m., and volunteers are likely to stay until 5 to 5:30 p.m or can leave early as needed.

The turnaround spot in the hike is a spectacular outcrop of rock that provides views of tall mountain peaks across the valley. Ravens and peregrine falcons are a common sight soaring at eye level above the rock. Carolina hemlocks dot the forest and rockface around the peak, completing the must capture scene. 

If you’d like to join the hike/treatment day, please RSVP to Aaron Whittemore at education@savehemlocksnc.org or call (828)-252-4783 by Thursday, January 20. Please include a contact phone number and email address when you sign up. Also, please be sure to specify whether you are only interested in the hike or if you are also interested in assisting in treating the trees. 

The Hemlock Restoration Initiative is grateful to be able to offer educational programs in this difficult time. Despite the lifting of restrictions, we acknowledge the risk that COVID-19 continues to pose to members of our community. To maintain the safety of our event participants and staff, we are requiring that all participants follow HRI’s COVID-19 safety guidelines. Anyone not following the guidelines on the day of the event will be asked to leave. Despite taking precautions, we cannot eliminate all risk of exposure and participants will be accepting some level of risk by choosing to attend. Please review the COVID-19 safety guidelines on our website to ensure that you are comfortable following these guidelines. Note: these guidelines may adjust depending on changing guidance from health authorities.