Hadrian's Villa open for tours
Rome - Hadrian's Villa, among the most ambitious of palaces built by Roman emperors, has opened for evening guided tours led by archaeologists.
The tours will be held Wednesday through Sunday, Aug. 10 to Sept. 11. They include music, readings and video screenings at the villa near Tivoli, 15 miles east of Rome.
Hadrian became emperor in 117 and began building the villa the next year, completing it a decade later. Many parts of the villa were based on famous buildings in Egypt and Greece and were designed by Hadrian himself.
Four 'Fourteeners' off limits to public
Alma, Colo. - The U.S. Forest Service has stopped issuing permits to groups seeking access to four of Colorado's most popular fourteeners - mountains higher than 14,000 feet - because the trails to the summits cross private land.
The agency has begun distributing fliers warning hikers to keep off trails to Mount Democrat, Mount Lincoln, Mount Bross and Mount Cameron in Park County unless they have permission from landowners who acquired the land through old mining claims.
Their proximity to Denver and their relatively low skill level have made the peaks among the most popular of the state's 54 mountains taller than 14,000 feet. Interest in the fourteeners has soared in recent years, with roughly half a million people climbing at least one each year.
Appalachian Trail celebrates 80 years
The organization that oversees the Appalachian Trail is celebrating its 80th anniversary with a new name and an invitation to the public to enjoy and help preserve the famous footpath.
Formerly the Appalachian Trail Conference, the group is now calling itself the Appalachian Trail Conservancy to better reflect its mission of preserving the trail.
The trail runs 2,175 miles from Springer Mountain, Ga., to Mount Katahdin, Maine, offering escapes for hikers of every ability, from children and novices to long-distance hikers who may spend six months walking the entire route.
The conservancy can help you plan a day hike or longer trip. The organization is also looking for hikers interested in short-term volunteering to clean campsites, relocate footpaths and monitor water quality. Visit www.appalachiantrail.org or call (304) 535-6331.
In addition, the ATC is collecting stories and photos that capture visitors' favorite moments on the trail. E-mail contribution to firstname.lastname@example.org.