HRI is leading a hike in partnership with the North Carolina Arboretum around the Arboretum grounds on Saturday, November 13, 2021 at 10 a.m. This fairly easy hike will take roughly five hours, including a stop for lunch, and traverse mostly flat paths. HRI staff will showcase hemlocks that we have recently treated around Bent Creek Road, Carolina Mountain Trail, and the National Native Azalea Collection. Along with discussing the importance of our native hemlocks and the threat they face from hemlock woolly adelgid, we will also talk about the treatment of the hemlocks in this forested part of the Arboretum, including methods and precautions used near streams.

This hike is a great opportunity to learn about hemlock conservation in the region and see the natural and recreational value that hemlocks provide. Much of the other trees in the Arboretum will have dropped their leaves by the date of this hike, meaning the hemlocks will stand out with their evergreen needles showing well against the gray backdrop of a late autumn forest.

Please be sure to bring lunch, snacks, and plenty of water. The cost of attending the hike is free, but those without memberships to the Arboretum will have to pay the $16 parking fee.

Please RSVP by November 8th to Aaron Whittemore at or call (828)-252-4783. Please include a contact phone number and email address when you sign up.

For more information on visiting the NC Arboretum and all it has to offer, see their website. The Arboretum also offers many exciting Adult and Continuing Education Programs throughout the year, including the Blue Ridge Naturalist and the Blue Ridge Eco Gardener Certificate of Merit programs. For more information email

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 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.