When Theodore Roosevelt was living his “strenuous life” at Sagamore Hill, he enjoyed leading his children, grandchildren and guests on what he called “point-to-point hikes” during which they would walk in a straight line and go over, under or through ponds, buildings, fences and other obstacles.
The weekends of April 16-17 and April 23-24,Sagamore Hill National Historic Site, at 20 Sagamore Hill Rd. in Cove Neck, wants to give visitors a taste of those hikes for National Park Week.
“It was something unique to Theodore Roosevelt and his family that really ties in with his legacy of the outdoors and conservation,” said Thomas Ross, Sagamore Hill superintendent. “It also plays very well today into the National Park Service’s efforts as well as the efforts of first lady Michelle Obama in promoting efforts to get children outside to fight childhood obesity.”
Roosevelt and his young relatives relished getting bruised and dirty on their excursions, but the Park Service version will be a bit tamer in recognition of today’s attitudes about safety and liability.
“It’s rigorous to a degree,” Ross said of the 45-minute ranger-guided hikes. “But we’re not going to be going through water, briar patches or poison ivy. But we will get folks working up a sweat.”
The free hikes will take place at noon and 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday and start at the visitor center. Participants are encouraged to wear sneakers or hiking boots and high socks.
Ross said the hikes will be scheduled for future special event days as well. Find more information on Sagamore Hill here.