The U.S. Forest Service reminds non-hunters to stay safe this hunting season

Before you head out on a hike in a national forest this fall, it’s important to know that nearly all of the national forest lands in North Carolina are open to hunting. The last thing you want while out hiking or biking the trails is to be mistaken for game, so to avoid any confusion the National Forest Service encourages everyone to take these precautions to stay safe during hunting season:

  • Wear bright-colored clothing, like hunter orange or neon colors, in order to be more visible. If you’re hiking with your dog, make sure it wears a hunter orange vest, bandana or leash.
  • Make noise to alert hunters of your presence. If you hear shooting, raise your voice to let hunters know that you are nearby.
  • If hunting makes you uneasy, learn about where and when hunting is taking place and consider hiking in other areas. Visit www.ncwildlife.org/Hunting/Hunting-in-North-Carolina to see hunting seasons and regulations.

Indy Pass expands to 44 independent ski resorts

Organizers of the Indy Pass, which provides two lift tickets at every participating ski resort, has announced their expansion to 44 independent resorts. For the cost of the pass ($199), skiers and snowboarders have access to 88 days of skiing or snowboarding at resorts across the country. There are 15 participating resorts in the Eastern region, including Cataloochee Ski Area in North Carolina, Blue Knob Resort and Shawnee Mountain in Pennsylvania, Ober Gatlinburg Ski Area in Tennessee, Bryce Resort and Massanutten Resort in Virginia and Canaan Valley Ski Resort in West Virginia. Additionally, there are 15 participating resorts in the Western region and 14 participating resorts in the Midwest region.

Thirty-seven of the 44 participating resorts offer unrestricted, season-long access with the Indy Pass. Five have holiday blackouts and two allow midweek-only access. See indyskipass.com for more information.