Conserving Carolina awarded $6.4 million for proposed Ecusta Trail

The N.C. Department of Transportation has awarded a $6.4 million dollar grant to Conserving Carolina to purchase the rail corridor known as the TR Line, the potential future site of the Ecusta Trail. Conserving Carolina, Friends of the Ecusta Trail and other partners must now raise $1.6 million in matching funds. 

The proposed Ecusta Trail will be built in the shuttered rail corridor, which begins at Kanuga Road in Hendersonville and runs to the old Ecusta Plant property in Brevard. “This is a very big next step for the Ecusta Trail,” said NC House Rep. Chuck McGrady. “There is still a lot of work to be done and a lot of processes to work through that will take time, but this is a large step forward.”

Knoxville man dies while hiking in Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Harold Thompson, 58, of Knoxville, was hiking the Injun Creek manway with his brother on Friday when he began experiencing cardiac distress. Thompson’s brother, an EMT, and park authorities began delivering CPR but attempts to revive Thompson were unsuccessful.

Thompson had worked for Knox County as a paramedic since 1996. A Facebook post by the International Association of EMT’s and Paramedics Local R5-421, which shared the news of Thompson’s passing, said that, “while not working on the ambulance, Hal enjoyed hiking in the mountains around East Tennessee. He was an amazing friend, brother, father, co-worker and provider. He was a respected mentor and loved by all the great men and women who know him throughout his 40 years of EMS service.” 

Mike Posner bitten by rattlesnake during walk across America

American singer and songwriter Mike Posner, 31, has been documenting his walk across American on Instagram. Posner’s walk began in April in New Jersey. The singer’s mission during his cross-country walk was to release a new song each time he crossed a state line. 

The Grammy-nominated singer had clocked 1,800 miles of his 2,833-mile journey when a baby rattlesnake bit him in Colorado. Posner was airlifted to a hospital where he received anti-venom. The singer reports he will not be able to walk for a few weeks. “I knew walking across America was going to be dangerous,” Posner said in a social media post. “I knew I could die doing it. I still might. So don’t feel sorry for me. I’m proud I’m in this hospital after chasing my dream and not sitting on the couch watching Netflix. I’m proud of this pain.”