First Lady Jane Beshear's Communications Office
First Lady Announces Outdoor Activities for the Fall Months

Press Release Date:  Monday, October 12, 2009  
Contact Information:  Jill Midkiff
Sarah Baird

FRANKFORT, Ky. – Adventure tourism is alive and well during the fall months in Kentucky. There are plenty of outdoor opportunities ranging from hunting and fishing to hikes, wildlife viewing and canoeing and kayaking.

Kentucky State Parks are sponsoring many outdoor events at this time of year. With a total of 52 parks that include 17 resorts, there is a park nearby with trails and other adventure tourism programming.

“Fall in Kentucky is a great time to get outside for hiking, wildlife viewing, trail riding, hunting and other activities,” said First Lady Jane Beshear. “The crisp weather and the colorful foliage make for great travel opportunities across the state.”

Earlier this month, the Knott County Fall Trail Ride attracted over 10,000 people and 7,000 horses, according to event organizers.  The event has now grown into one of the largest equestrian events in the state and attracted visitors from 17 states, including as far away as Utah and Colorado.

Many riders arrived early and had an opportunity to see wild elk, which now number approximately 11,000, the largest herd east of the Rockies. The trail ride is held in the fall and spring each year. For more information, visit

Here is a listing of some adventure tourism events in Kentucky this fall. To learn about other events, visit

Whitewater Kayaking
The Russell Fork River (Pike County)
Oct. 17 and Oct. 24

Water release weekends in October make for great kayaking opportunities on the Russell Fork in Pike County. The Russell Fork Free for All is Oct. 17 and the Russell Fork Rendezvous is Oct. 24. Visit for more information.

Paddlepalooza 2009, Frankfort
Oct. 18

Come spend one more day on the water on the Kentucky River. Summer may be over, but fall is the best time to enjoy the beauty of paddling. Perfect for all ages, families and friends alike. Meet at Riverview Park from 2-6 p.m. Call 888-226-6359.

Kentucky’s 2009 white-tailed deer season opened about a month ago for archery hunters, but it gets underway in earnest in October and November when firearms hunters take to the woods. Kentucky’s deer herd is ranked among the nation’s top five. Early muzzleloader hunters get their chance the weekend of Oct. 17-18.  The traditional modern firearms statewide deer hunting season opener is Nov.14 and continues through Nov. 29 through most of the state. For more information, visit the Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources web site at

Deer Hunting Program
Oct. 17

Learn the basics of deer hunting and deer processing during a series of free programs for hunters and outdoors enthusiasts at the Salato Wildlife Education Center in Frankfort from 10:30 a.m. – 3 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 17. Whether you are a beginner or an experienced hunter, this program will help you achieve a successful deer season. The center is operated by the Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources.

The Side X Side Mountain Color Ride is Oct. 16-17 at Evarts. Starts at North Evarts RV site. The Kentucky Mountain Crawlers Off-Road Club will have its annual KYMC Fall Crawl at the Verda Field in Evarts Oct. 23-25.

Visit for a complete listing of events and information about making reservations at lodges and cottages.

Barren River Lake State Resort Park, Lucas
Barren River Lake's 5th Annual Geocaching 
Oct. 24-25

Join us for this fun weekend of “caching” on the park. Special caches will be hidden for you to find that are suitable for all types of “cachers.” There will be a chili dinner and a spooky night cache hunt as well. So set that GPS system to Barren River Lake State Park and join us for this fun family event. Call 1-800-325-0057.

Cumberland Falls State Resort Park, Corbin
Moonbow Trail Trek
Nov. 7

Hikers can choose a challenging 4.5 or 10.8 mile trek through the beautiful Cumberland River Gorge. T-shirts and refreshments will be available and there will be shuttle service to the trail head.  Call 1-800-325-0063.

Natural Bridge State Resort Park, Slade
Beginner's Backpacking Workshop 
Nov. 7-8

Enjoy the beauty of Natural Bridge and the Red River Gorge area while learning the basics of Leave No Trace backpacking! The overnight trip is 8-10 miles round-trip with an elevation gain of 400 feet. Participants must be able to hike this distance carrying 30 pounds. Space is limited and participants must be 18 or older. The registration fee of $85 per person includes instruction, equipment and meals for the duration of the trip. Pre-registration is required and space is limited. To register or for more information contact Tyler Morgan at or call (606) 663-2214.

Dale Hollow Lake State Resort Park
Beginners Caving Weekend
Nov. 13-15

Dale Hollow Lake State Park will be hosting a Beginners Caving Expedition. Whether you are a beginning spelunker or an experienced caver, you will enjoy this weekend packed full of exploration and education. Learn the basics of caving and many other mysteries about these underground worlds through presentations and hands-on experience. Presentations will be given on cave grottos, environmental education and other aspects about caves. Guided cave tours through Cindy Cave will be given. Surface hikes and children’s activities also will be offered. The fee for the weekend is $15 per adult and $10 per child ages 6-12. This fee includes all programs, tours and a t-shirt. This is a weekend fun for every member of the family who enjoys adventure! Caving related vendors will be allowed to set up a booth. Call 1-800-325-2282.

Natural Bridge State Resort Park, Slade
Canoeing For Beginners
Nov. 14

Learn the basics of canoeing on Mill Creek Lake at Natural Bridge State Resort Park and then experience river canoeing on the beautiful Red River in the Red River Gorge Geological Area. The river trip is 8 miles on an enjoyable Class I section of the Red River. Space is limited and pre-registration is required. Registration fee of $25 per person includes guide, canoe, paddle and life jacket. To register or to request more information contact Tyler Morgan at or call (606) 663-2214.

Cumberland Falls Stare Resort Park, Corbin
Backpacking 101
Nov. 21-22
This event is an introduction to backpacking for ages 16 and up. A parent must accompany minors. Hike includes instruction, guide, lunch, dinner, breakfast, lunch and equipment. A list of personal items to bring will be sent upon registration. Limited to eight participants. Cost is $75 per person. A two-week advance registration required. Call 1-800-325-0063.

Pennyrile Forest State Resort Park, Dawson Springs
Hike Within the Park
Nov. 21

During this day-long hike guests will hike all the major trails within the park. Starts with hiking the Pennyroyal Trail, Lake Trail and Cane Trail. Then stop for lunch in the dining room. After lunch, hike the Clifty Creek Trail, Indian Bluff Trail and the portion of the Pennyrile Nature Trail that is within the park. Lunch in the park’s restaurant is included in the fee. The hike will be led by the park’s naturalist, Rebecca Clark. Registration fee is $24 per person. Call 1-800-325-1711.

Buckhorn Lake State Resort Park, Buckhorn
Jenny Wiley State Resort Park, Prestonsburg
Pine Mountain State Resort Park, Pineville
Elk Viewing Tours
Various dates through March 2010

The Kentucky State Parks are offering elk viewing tours at three Eastern Kentucky resort parks this fall and winter. Guests can pick out a weekend, stay at a state park lodge or cottage and rise early to enjoy one of these unique tours. Participants should bring their cameras – there should be great photography opportunities. The largest elk herds are located on privately owned lands that are normally closed to the public. This is one of the few opportunities available for the public to see the greatest number of elk. Here are remaining dates:

Buckhorn Lake State Resort Park: Oct. 17 and 18; Nov. 14, 15, 21, 22; Dec. 12, 13
In 2010: Jan. 16, 17, 18, 30, 31; Feb. 20, 21, 27, 28; and March 13, 14, 20, 21. Call 1-800-325-0058 for information.

Jenny Wiley State Resort Park: Oct. 17, 18, 24, 25; Nov. 7, 11, 21, 28; and Dec. 5
In 2010: Jan. 16, 23, 24, 30; Feb. 6, 13, 20, 27; March 6, 13. Call 1-800-325-0142 for information.

Pine Mountain State Resort Park: Nov. 7 and Dec. 5. In 2010; Jan. 9, 16, 23; and Feb. 6, 20, 27. Call 800-325-1712.