The Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection is once again offering free, guided hikes on the first day of the new year.
On Thursday, DEEP staff and volunteers will lead hikes at six state parks. The hikes will average one-to-two miles. The annual First Day Hike Program is part of a national effort to encourage people to visit state parks on New Year's Day.
Hikes are planned at Hammonasset Beach Park in Madison at 1 p.m., James L. Goodwin Conservation Center in Hampton at noon, Southford Falls State Park in Southbury at 1 p.m., and Mansfield Hollow State Park at 11 a.m.
Free guided hikes are also planned Thursday at Scantic River State park in Windsor at 1 p.m. and Sleeping Giant State Park in Hamden at 1:30 p.m.