The deadline is fast approaching for Sole Pursuits' andquot;Heart and Soleandquot; hike into the ancient forests of the Redwoods on Sept. 26-28.

Applications need to be in by August 31.

To get your application visit the Curry General Hospital's Web site at Click on Health Services, and then go to Sole Pursuits.

Sole Pursuits is a free hiking program sponsored by the Curry Health District and offered as a health and wellness program for people of Curry County and folks from outlying areas. Organizers say exercise is one of the most effective ways to minimize your risk of heart and lung disease, diabetes, cancer and general obesity.

Join Sole Pursuits as they explore the amazing forests of the big trees.

In Northern California the Coast Redwood trees grow as old as 2,000 years and reach more than 350 feet high.

When Jedediah Smith explored this area in 1828 he wrote in his journal that the redwoods are the noblest tree he had ever seen. Where there were once 2 million acres of redwood forests, now only 4 percent remain standing, protected largely because of the andquot;Save the Redwoods Leagueandquot; that was established in 1918.

Limited to 25 participants, the group will be staying at the Redwood National Park Hostel south of Crescent City, a restored 1908 pioneer home with ocean views from every room, and a beach right across the road. Sleeping will be in four dorm-style rooms with bunk beds. The rooms will be established as men's, women's and co-ed as needed. Bedding will be provided. There is a large living room area, dining area, and outside decks, with a day-use park and campfire possibilities across the street. All meals will be catered.

For Saturday's hike, there will be a choice as to route and difficulty, but participants should already be in fairly good shape, and plan to hike most of the day. The group will be hiking at least eight leisurely miles.

Time spent in a redwood forest is priceless, but this weekend adventure is only $140 per person and includes lodging, food (two breakfasts/ lunches/dinners), and a guided hike all day on Saturday. Other hikes may be offered Friday afternoon and Sunday. The cost includes a $30 tax-deductible donation to the Sole Pursuits hiking program.

For information call Cathy Boden, Sole Pursuits coordinator, at (541) 332-5039, or e-mail mail to:solepursuits@