A Chat with Cynthia & Kerstin
Fall in Atlanta is a great time for hiking at one of the 15 Chattahoochee River National Recreation units. And Community Hikes are a fun way to experience these units. These monthly hikes are organized and led by Cynthia Patterson and Kerstin Bagus. We had a chance to talk with them as they were preparing for the September 3 Community Hike at Bowmans Island.
What is your favorite CRNRA park unit?
Cynthia: I really enjoy the southern, outer loop at Gold Branch, especially where the trail descends and you get your first view of the Chattahoochee River.
Kerstin: My favorite is Island Ford, and my most-liked trail there is the Beech Creek Loop. From the first parking area, this trail runs along a small creek as it winds down to the river.
Do you have a National Park on your bucket list to visit?
Kerstin: We’ve been to Yellowstone in the summer, but I would love to go back in the wintertime.
Cynthia: Mine would be Olympic National Park in Washington. There is so much to experience, from mountains to rain forests to Pacific coast beaches.
How did you get started leading the Community Hikes?
Cynthia: The initial idea for the hikes was to support the HikeCRNRA challenge. Community Hikes are a way to introduce people to CRNRA park units they haven’t had a chance to visit.
Kerstin: Also, we wanted these hikes to be social. Yes, we cover some miles, but hikers get a chance to get to know each other and learn more about the area.
Do you have a favorite book or video you would like to share?
Kerstin: I have really enjoyed Bill Bryson’s books “In a Sunburned Country” and “A Walk in the Woods.”
Cynthia: My choice is “The Hidden Life of Trees: What They Feel, How They Communicate” by Peter Wohlleben.
To register for an upcoming Community Hike, visit Chattahoochee National Park Conservancy events.