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First Day Hikes at local state parks

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Start the New Year with a family hike at a local First Day Hike event. America's State Parks are hosting First Day Hikes on New Year's Day, 2014. Hikes will take place all across the country in an effort to promote State Parks and to help people start off the year right with a healthy, outdoor active lifestyle.

According to America’s State Parks, “First Day Hikes originated in Massachusetts 20 years ago.” 2012 was the first time all 50 state park systems joined together to sponsor First Day Hikes.

On Wednesday January 1, 2014, California State Parks will offer 38 different hikes at 31 parks, all designed to offer visitors the opportunity to connect to parks and nature for recreation and to promote a healthy lifestyle. First Day Hikes are guided by State Parks staff and volunteers.

Locally, First Day Hikes will take place at Big Basin, Henry Cowell, Natural Bridges, and Wilder Ranch

Big Basin State Park: Half-mile stroll through a magnificent old-growth redwood forest, leaves from the park Headquarters at 1 pm. For information, call (831) 338-8860.

Henry Cowell State Park: Choose from a hike along the San Lorenzo River canyon, a hike to Observation Deck that goes through four different habitats, or a critter “safari” to look for tracks and other “signs” that animals leave. For information, call (831) 335-7077.

Natural Bridges: View the overwintering population of monarch butterflies that clusters in the trees at Natural Bridges State Beach. For information, call (831) 423-4609.

Wilder Ranch State Park: Explore the plants, animals, and geology of the coastal bluffs. For information, call (831) 423-9703.

Learn more about First Day Hikes at California State Parks.

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