Outdoor Programs for Seniors

alt=""Senior Outdoor Adventure Recreation (SOAR) engages adults 55 and better in outdoor activities to promote the health benefits of being active in nature. Burlington Recreation and Parks provide experienced guides for safe, fun outings. For more outdoor programs available to the general public, visit www.BurlingtonNC.gov/Outdoors.

All participants must become SOAR Members to participate in SOAR hikes and activities. 

To become a SOAR Member you must complete:

  • Membership Form
  • Waiver & Release of Liability, Permissions & Authorization Form 
  • Medical Clearance Form (signed by a physician)

Download all the required forms, complete and return them OR use our online registration portal to activate your membership. Need help creating an account and logging into the online portal - get step-by-step instructions

For specific questions about SOAR Membership, forms, or the hikes contact Melissa Hoose, Outdoor Program Coordinator, at 336-222-5096 or send an email

SOAR Members are required to register for all hikes. Here is how to register:

  • Use the online registration portal: Click here to register online. When registering online, you will get an email receipt immediately after completing registration. If you don't get a receipt you are not registered! (Be sure to click the green "Complete Transaction" during checkout on the "Review & Confirm" screen!)
  • Call the Recreation & Parks Office at (336) 222-5030 press 0 for assistance. The Office is open Monday-Friday from 8 am - 5 pm. You can also register and pay in person at the Recreation & Parks Office - 1333 Overbrook Rd., Burlington.
  • Email the SOAR coordinator once registration has opened.  
  • Please note any transaction requiring payment must be done online or in-person. 

Pace Groups
Usually, a separate hike is offered for each pace group. Learn about the pace groups:

  • Stroll Pace is a more relaxed pace (>30min/mile) where we have time to observe and enjoy nature and the company of the group. New members are encouraged to start with a "stroll pace" before joining a hike pace.
  • Hike Pace is a quicker pace (<30min/mile) where the emphasis leans towards a fitness walk in nature with like-minded folks.  

Registration for November-December hikes OPENS TUESDAY, OCTOBER 31 at 1:30 pm. Registration is required for all hikes.

Cedarock Park 

HIKE PACE Tue 11/7 at 1:30 pm
STROLL PACE Thu 11/9 at 1:30 pm   

Cedarock Park - 4242 R. Dean Coleman Rd. Burlington. Hike 2-3 miles on various trails at CRP. Park in the paved lot at the Cedarock Park Office. Trails are rolling with some steep hills. Plan for rocky, rooty, leafy trails.   

High Point Greenway  

HIKE PACE Tue 11/14 at 1:30 pm
STROLL PACE Thu 11/16 at 1:30 pm
Fee: $5 
Piedmont Environmental Center - 1220 Penny Rd, High Point. Meet out front of the Piedmont Environmental Center to hike 2.5-3 miles total on this out-and-back section of the High Point Greenway. Near the turn-around, there is a long and unique boardwalk section which is the highlight of this walk!  
Optional transportation $5 - registration required, space limited. Van leaves Senior Center at 12:30 pm. Van will return around 4:30 pm. 

Burlington Arboretum  

HIKE PACE Tue 11/21 at 1:30 pm
STROLL PACE Tue 11/21 at 2:45 pm 
Burlington Arboretum – 315 W. Willowbrook Dr. Burlington.  Walk about 2(ish) miles on paved trails and sidewalks on this urban adventure through Burlington Arboretum, parts of the Downtown to Elon Greenway and other neighborhood sidewalks. 

HRT at Longmeadow Trailhead 

HIKE PACE Tue 11/28 at 1:30 pm
STROLL PACE Wed 11/29 at 1:30 pm 
Longmeadow Trailhead - 1120 Valley Dr. Graham. Hike 2-3 miles on the Haw River Trail.  Go out-and-back on this mostly flat trail along the river.  

Holiday Luncheon  

Mon 12/4 at 11:30 am  
Fee: $5  
Kernodle Senior Center – 1535 S. Mebane St. Burlington, 27215. Let’s celebrate the holidays together! Bring a side, salad or dessert to share. Meat and drinks provided. Register by 11/27. No refunds after 12/27. 

Bill Cooke Park

ALL PACES Thu 12/7 at 1:30 pm 
Bill Cooke Park - 1010 Townbranch Rd, Graham. Park and meet in the first parking lot on the left when you enter the park (near the restrooms). Walk 2 miles (with optional 3rd mile) on the paved path around the park. 

Beth Schmidt Park 

ALL PACES Thu 12/15 at 1:30 pm 
Beth Schmidt Park - 2150 Elon Park Dr. Elon. Meet in front of the Community Center. Hike this almost 1-mile loop 1, 2 or 3 times! The path is easy and wide.  

Caraway Creek Preserve

HIKE PACE Tue 12/19 at 1:30 pm
STROLL PACE Thu 12/21 at 1:30 pm  
Fee: $5 
Caraway Creek Preserve - 829 Jerico Rd, Asheboro, NC 27205. Situated on the northern edge of the Uwharrie Mountains, this 3.3 mile hike meanders across beautiful land with grand views of surrounding hills. This trail is considered moderate difficulty. 
Optional transportation $5 - registration required, space limited. Van leaves Senior Center at 12:15 pm. Van will return between 4:30-5:00 pm.  

HRT at Glencoe Paddle Access 

HIKE PACE Tue 01/02 at 1:30 pm
STROLL PACE Thu 01/04 at 1:30 pm 
Glencoe Paddle Access – 2348 Glencoe St. Burlington.  2-3 mile hike on the Haw River Trail. This out-and-back section takes you alongside remnants of an old mill race and with excellent views of the river.  Expect natural surface trails (roots, rocks, etc.) over rolling terrain.  

What to Wear & What to Bring on a Hike

  • Layers/clothing appropriate for the weather.
  • Sturdy walking/athletic shoes or hiking boots. Absolutely no sandals or open-toed shoes for hikes.
  • Water bottle.
  • Trekking poles or walking stick highly recommended. 
  • Insect repellent, sunscreen/protection - optional
  • Small backpack to carry personal belongings - optional.