HHPC hosting April 7 Helena historical hike

By GRAHAM BROOKS / Staff Writer

HELENA–Those wanting to see a piece of unique Helena history will have a chance to do so the morning of Saturday, April 7.

The Helena Historic Preservation Committee and Boy Scout Troop 532 will lead a special hike to the Gould Coke Ovens and other historic Helena sites as anyone is welcome to join the free hike.

Interested hikers should meet at the Helena Sports Complex at 9:30 a.m. on April 7, as the hike will begin at 10 a.m. and conclude at 2 p.m.

This will be a unique chance to see some interesting Helena history as the site is not open to the public except for tours.

The hike will be 3/4 to one mile one way through scenic woods. The road may have wet or muddy spots if there has been rain so hikers are advised to use caution. The hike will include viewing sites at the Cahaba River, the Gould Coke Ovens and an optional off-trail hike just a short distance from the Ovens to view the old mine and foundations from the mining days.

Carpooling is encouraged and ATVs are optional. Ruffin Road is bumpy and uneven in places, so please advise when choosing a vehicle.

After arriving, hikers will park off Ruffin Road and hike in from the gate. Strollers and wheelchairs are not advised on this hike due to the uneven terrain. This is not a paved road or paved hiking trail.

Hikers are also encouraged to bring water and snacks as there will be no facilities available on the hike. Bug spray and hiking boots are highly recommended.

In case of inclement weather on April 7, the hike will be rescheduled for Sunday, April 8 at 2 p.m.

The Helena Sports Complex is located at 110 Sports Complex Drive.