Kick Off the New Year with a First Day Hike at Douthat State Park on January 1 2023

According to information from the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation, First Day Hikes will be offered at Virginia State Parks on January 1.

You can start off the New Year with an outdoor adventure at any of the  41 Virginia State Parks. Taking a hike to inspire those New Year resolutions centered on getting, or keeping, fit is the perfect family-friendly activity. First Day Hikes is an initiative of America’s State Parks, and hikes are offered in state parks across the country.  There are many hikes and opportunities to choose from, or you can visit a park of your choosing and create your own special First Day Hike. First Day Hikes have become a tradition for many people and it is the perfect opportunity to get some exercise, explore outdoors and connect with nature, all while enjoying the park’s unique beauty this season. Whether you prefer to partake in a solo adventure or want to join in on the fun of ranger-led hikes and activities, the parks have numerous ways to help elevate your experience during your visit.

Parking is free at all Virginia State Park locations on Jan. 1, 2023 and visitors to each park will receive a celebratory First Day Hike sticker, while supplies last.

Check out the full list of First Day Hikes at

Locally, a First Day Hike will be offered at Douthat State Park in Millboro, Virginia in Bath County.  The hike is a Tree I.D. hike where you can join Master Naturalist Kim Manion for a .5 mile hike on easy terrain.  You can learn the basics of identifying trees in the winter months.  Meet at the Douthat State Park Camp Store parking area.  The hike is from 11am until 12 noon on January 1.   For information call 540-862-8100.


Story By

Bonnie Ralston

Bonnie Ralston is the Assistant Station Coordinator at WVLS and a Highland County news reporter. She began volunteering at Allegheny Mountain Radio in the fall of 2005. In 2006 she became an AMR employee and worked in Bath County for eight years as the WCHG Station Coordinator and then as the news reporter there. She began working in radio while in college and has stayed connected to radio, in one way or another, for more than thirty years. She grew up in Staunton, Virginia, while spending a lot of time on her family’s farm in Deerfield, Virginia. She enjoys spending time outside, watching old TV shows and movies and tending to her chickens.

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