Make a New Year’s resolution to your health and happiness by kicking off 2022 with an invigorating First Day Hike at an Arkansas state park near you. On January 1, all 50 states will participate in the national event that encourages everyone to celebrate the New Year with outdoor exploration.
“It's fun to do a First Day Hike at a state park because while you walk, you make connections with others who are excited to be part of this nationwide event,” said Arkansas State Parks Chief of Interpretation Kelly Farrell. “There is a growing, dedicated following of families who treasure First Day Hikes as a tradition. We always swap stories about where we went in past years, and reminisce about the lifetime memories we made."
“We are very excited to host First Day Hikes all over Arkansas as a part of this national effort to get people outdoors and into our parks,” said Arkansas State Parks Director Grady Spann. “First Day Hikes are a great way for families to start off the new year with a walk or hike in one of our beautiful state parks.”
Join the fun! During the event, several Arkansas State Parks will offer guided hikes and you can receive a free sticker for participating. This year, we are also offering an opportunity for you to go on a self-guided hike or walk throughout the First Day Hikes weekend (Dec. 31-Jan. 2) and log your hike for a free sticker too. Check out our First Day Hikes page for details. You are also encouraged to share your adventures on social media with #FirstDayHikes and #ARStateParks.
“America’s State Parks provide havens for young and old alike to discover the tranquility and beauty of nature through outdoor recreation,” National Association of State Park Directors Executive Director, Lewis Ledford said. “Hiking offers inspiring ways to improve your physical and mental health while exploring beautiful public lands in every state.”
Hiking during the winter can be fun, as long as you follow cold-weather tips provided by the American Hiking Society. Just a few simple essentials include dressing in layers, wearing raingear, a hat, and appropriate footwear, and carrying food and water. Sunscreen and sunglasses may be necessary to prevent sunburn from the glare off of snow (*if we’re so lucky).