Geocachers brave the cold
By Annette Tait
It was a near-perfect winter day to get out and get active – the air was crisp and cold – but not unbearably so, and the sun shone down from a clear blue sky onto untouched expanses of snowy landscape.
At least until the Cross Ranch State Park First Day Hike participants streamed from the visitor’s center in search of three geocaches hidden nearby.
"I think this is excellent," CRSP Park Manager Eric Lang said of the turnout. "We kind of expected people from our cabins and yurts who are staying here to participate, but we’re seeing a good amount of people from outside of the park who showed up for this event. I’m really happy with the turnout today, and I think it will only get better."
This is the first year Cross Ranch has participated in the First Day Hike, and only the second year for North Dakota State Parks. The program, sponsored by America’s State Parks, offers people of all ages and outdoor skills levels free opportunities to start the new year by getting outside and getting active.
"We’re all doing something different, just like every park is different," Lang said, noting that other North Dakota state parks were hosting events as diverse as snowshoeing and cross-country skiing, a program hike on the journeys of Lewis and Clark, and a birding adventure.
"The goal is to just get people outside being active. Start off the year right --be active, do something outdoors," Lang continued. "That’s what we’re about, and that’s why our department has gotten involved in this [event] and providing the public with those opportunities."