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March Hiking Roundup
March 23, 2023

March 2023: A Note From Diane

March, what a passive aggressive month.

Sunshine for a few minutes, enough to tempt us out of our jackets, and then wham! Icy blasts with plenty of precipitation.

The only consolation to be found in March?

Knowing that it will soon be time to swap spring gear for winter woolies so we can put our 2023 hiking plans into action.

Let's take a look at what's new around here this month!


This may not be the most glamorous topic: hiking during the menopausal years. Seems nobody likes to talk about "The Change".

Except me. Read my tips and trail mantra for making the most of this very natural, very normal, very interesting transition.

Hot Flashes And Hiking

And while we're at it, let's get ready for spring trails. I've pulled together my best tips and recommendations for gear, clothing, comfort and fun in March and April.

Spring Hiking Tips

Pssst… if you’re an REI Co-op member, you can save big on some of my recommendations. Use your annual rebate with coupon code MEMBER23 and enjoy the deep discounts (through 3/27)


I've heard a lot of pros and cons about using trekking or hiking poles. I use them every hike, year round, and you can find out why here: Hiking Poles

But if you're looking for a more rigorous assessment of how hiking poles affect hikers, take a look at this study by Stephane Perrey and Nicolas Fabre:

Exertion During Uphill, Level and Downhill Walking With and Without Hiking Poles

Spoiler alert: The researchers concluded that the use of hiking poles had a significant influence on the respiratory and energetic responses only during downhill walking.


Spoon marries fork and they honeymoon on a spring hike.

True love!

You have until March 31, 2023 to register for a chance to own your very own upscale titanium spork.

It will make you love your hiking food even more.

Hiking For Her Giveaway Details


The Four Corners Loop Trail Association aims to be in charge of the next National Scenic Trail.

Just as the name implies, it passes through New Mexico, Arizona, Utah and Colorado using trails and paths that already exist.

Meet the hiker who pioneered it, and wants us all to enjoy it.



You may have heard of these writers, or maybe not:

Ynés Mexía

Margaret March-Mount

Mary Oliver

Rue Mapp

Robin Wall Kimmerer

Read a bit about each of them and their work, and then pick a favorite to bring along on your next hike.

Women Who Write Forest Stories


What gets you motivated to hike?

Sometimes, it's the words of the women noted above.

Sometimes, it's reading about women who do big things.

This month, there are two inspiring "big things" women.

The first, Lucy Barnard from Australia, is the first woman attempting to hike the length of both South America and North America.

Not all in one go, of course, but chipping away at it, year after year.

On 3/3/2023, she set the female record for walking the length of South America. Along with her dog Wombat, Lucy has wracked up 11,100km (6,897 miles) across 5 countries, mostly unsupported and with an amazing spirit.

Lucy Barnard March 2023 Update

Pamela Clark is going after a record based on her age: oldest female to thruhike the AT. She hopes to set the record on her 77th birthday on March 30th.

ThruHiker Age And Gender Record


National Trails Day is coming right up, June 3, 2023.

If you’re interested in, or planning on, hosting an event in your area, go here and get registered: Host Info For National Trails Day

American Hiking Society wants to help you get the word out!

In 2022, they reached more than 22.8 million people on social media.

Over 50,000 individuals participated in events across the country.

Hike on, especially on June 3rd!

I need a boost

If the spork can enjoy true love in this newsletter, I can make a major confession.

I’m in a writing slump.

After 750+ pages, I might have run out of hiking topics.

But I suspect not. More along the lines of late winter doldrums.

So please help me out: hit reply and share anything you’d like to read about in the hiking, backpacking and camping universe.

I don’t know it all, but I do know where to ferret out the good stuff to answer your questions.

Thanks in advance! Maybe with your help, I can stop avoiding my laptop ;)

Happy Spring Trails,

Diane a.k.a. Happy Hiker

Looking for the best deals on hiking and camping gear, apparel, destinations and fun stuff? Here's my constantly updated page to save you time and money: Best Current Deals For Hikers

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