Even with the winter months upon us, and especially with the less-than-wintry weather we have been experiencing, there are always plenty of options for outdoor fun here in our mountain region. Need a few suggestions? We've got you covered!
Appalachian Whitetail Associations
The Appalachian Whitetail Association Kingsport Chapter meets at 7 p.m., the third Tuesday of each month at Shoney’s in Kingsport. Call (423) 239-9806. The Holston River Chapter meets at 7 p.m, the first Tuesday of each month at the Holston Electric Building, Church Hill. Call (423) 357-1610. The Copper Ridge Chapter meets the first Tuesday of each month at 7 p.m. at the Scott County Park and Golf Course. Call (276) 940-1295. Visit www.appalachianwhitetail.com for all chapters.
Bays Mountain Park
The Kingsport park, featuring 36 miles of hiking trails, wild animal habitats and a state-of-the-art planetarium, is open from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday; 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturdays; and noon to 5 p.m., Sundays, through February. The Nature Center is open from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., weekdays; and from noon to 5 p.m., Saturdays and Sundays. Parking fee: $3, cars; $12, buses. Planetarium programs are held at 4 p.m., Tuesday through Friday. Barge rides launch at 3 p.m., Monday through Friday, weather permitting. Nature programs start at 3 p.m., Sunday through Saturday. Wolf programs are held at 2 p.m., Wednesdays and 3 p.m., Saturdays. StarWatch programs begin at 6 p.m., Saturdays, in November. Planetarium programs are $4 per person and barge rides are $3 per person; and nature programs are $2 per person. Dogs allowed on leash on the park hiking trails, but not around the animal habitats. Call (423) 229-9447 or visit www.baysmountain.com.
Bays Mountain Longbeards
The Bays Mountain Longbeards meet at 7 p.m., the second Thursday of each month at the Toy F. Reid (Eastman) Employee Center, Room 223. Call (423) 349-4484.
Cherokee Rod and Gun Club
4280 Reservoir Road, conducts a Youth Safety Program for all local youth, ages 8-18, interested in learning firearms safety, responsibility and marksmanship from 2 to 4 p.m., the second and fourth Sundays of each month. Visit www.cherokeerodandgunclub.com.
Cumberland Gap National Park
Cumberland Gap National Historical Park will hold its Wilderness Road Tours to Hensley Settlement at 9 a.m and 1:30 p.m., and its Gap Cave Tours at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., daily through September. For reservations, call (606) 248-2817 or visit www.nps.gov/cuga.
Eastman Hiking & Canoeing Club
Tennessee Eastman Hiking & Canoeing Club holds Friday hikes, leaving from parking lot between McDonald’s and State of Franklin Bank, Colonial Heights, 8 a.m.; email Collins Chew at email@example.com to be on distribution list. Watauga River Saturdays, 3 p.m., email firstname.lastname@example.org. Paddle to the Grill, Thursdays, 6 p.m., email email@example.com.
Johnson City Hikers
Sponsors hikes or programs most weekends. For information about joining the Johnson City Hikers call (423) 282-5266.
Kingsport Bicycle Association
Rides most weekends. Visit http://kba.tripod.com.
Mid-Appalachian Highlands Club
Sponsors hikes most weekends. Visit http://jat.esmartweb.com/hikers/mid-app-hiland-club.htm for schedule and more information.
East Tennessee Mogul Mashers Ski Club meets at 7 p.m., the first Tuesday of each even month at Rush Street Restaurant, Kingsport, and each odd month at Beef O’Brady’s Restaurant, Johnson City. Visit www.etmm.net.
Natural Tunnel State Park
Natural Tunnel State Park in Scott County, Va., is open from 8 a.m. to dusk. The Blockhouse is open from 2 to 4 p.m., Saturdays and Sundays, May-October. Blockhouse Visitor Center is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Friday through Sunday. Campground is open. All hiking trails are open. Chairlift and visitors center open 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Monday through Friday, and 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Saturday and Sunday. Mountain Empire Community College will offer “Rediscovering the Wilderness Trail” from 5:30 to 8 p.m., every Tuesday, Feb. 7-April 24. Cost is $366. For registration information, call Megan France at (276) 940-1643.
NET Mountain Bike Association
The Northeast Tennessee Mountain Bike Association, a family oriented group for riders of all skill levels, meets at 7:30 p.m., the first Monday of each month at El Matador in Boones Creek. The group also sponsors weekly rides. Visit www.ntmba.org for a schedule or more information.
Reel Christian Bass Anglers
The Reel Christian Bass Anglers Club meets for devotions, club business and how-to sessions on bass fishing at 6 p.m., the fourth Monday of each month (except December) at Mama’s House Restaurant in Kingsport. Visit www.RCBAT.net or call (423) 502-1296 or (423) 782-0429.
Steele Creek Park
Steele Creek Park in Bristol, Tenn., is open from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday; from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Saturday; and from 1 to 6 p.m., Sunday during the winter months. Park features several hiking trails, a 52-acre lake and nature center. Call (423) 989-5616.
The Tri-Cities Varmint Hunters Association meets at 7 p.m., the second Tuesday of each month at the Cherokee Rod and Gun Club, 4280 Reservoir Road, Kingsport. Call (423) 246-2487.
Walters State Outdoor Club
The Walters State Outdoor Club hosts weekly hikes, open to everyone. Call (423) 585-6949 or visit www.wscc.cc.tn.us/studentorgs/outdoor/.
Warriors’ Path State Park
The park is open from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m., daily with camping, picnic shelters, disc golf and walking, hiking and biking trails. The park offers a multitude of daily programs for children and adults during Summer in the Park. Visit the park’s Web site at www.state.tn.us/environment/parks/WarriorsPath/index.shtml for a schedule or call (423) 239-8531 or (423) 239-6786.
|Space Capone at Capone's|
|Space Capone made a landing and performed at Capone's in Johnson City, TN.|