National News

Local hikes among ways to 'Opt Outside' on Black Friday

Posted November 24, 2017 2:59 p.m. EST

— While most retailers will have "all hands on deck" this Black Friday, sporting goods store REI will close its doors for its annual tradition.

They're giving their employees the holiday off to explore the outdoors and inviting people to "Opt Outside" with them, in case standing in long lines at the mall is not for you.

Opt Outside is more of a counter-movement. It began as a way to fight back against the Black Friday "retail madness."

Each year stores were opening their doors earlier and earlier, so REI partnered with other companies across the country, as well as nonprofit organizations and national parks to get folks reconnected with the outdoors and their families.

There is certainly no shortage of trails or outdoor enthusiasts in the Pacific Northwest, so it's no surprise that Opt Outside has been pretty popular in Oregon.

There are a ton of options nearby – from Portland to Salem and even out toward the coast.

FOX 12 spoke with Steve Caplan who manages the Tanasbourne REI and he said the initiative started in 2015. That year, he and his employees hiked the Eagle Creek Trail to High Bridge on Black Friday.

In 2016, they hiked from Jones Creek Trailhead to Wilson River Falls.

This year, Caplan's team will head to the coast to hike along Indian Head Beach. There are two options for that particular event: a three-mile hike for beginners and one that is double the distance for experienced hikers.

If you want more options, there are many groups all across Oregon who will be participating this year.