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To get away from it all, Obamas take a hike

Updated 5:00 p.m.
By Michael D. Shear
ASHEVILLE, N.C. -- Wearing sunglasses, slacks and a polo shirt, President Obama set out Friday afternoon for an hour-long hike through the Blue Ridge Mountains, moments after arriving at a local hotel for his weekend vacation.

Michelle Obama joined her husband for the hike, wearing a black hat and sunglasses and having changed into casual clothes. 

The couple rode in a motorcade for about a half-hour on the Blue Ridge Parkway to get from their hotel to their trail. As they set out, they took a moment to chat with a park ranger, who handed the president a blue hat before posing for a picture.

Obama and his wife took a short hop over a ditch to get onto the trail, heading out of sight of the press.

Reporters were not allowed to join the Obamas on the hike, but were told by the president's staff that he encountered about five hikers on the trail.

"Are you who I think you are?" said one woman, according to deputy press secretary Bill Burton. "You just made my day. You just made my year!"

The Obamas did not appear winded as they returned to the motorcade. Michelle Obama, who was wearing a tank top and her shirt around her waist, did a little jog back to the SUV.

By Michael D. Shear  |  April 23, 2010; 4:22 PM ET
Categories:  44 The Obama Presidency  
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...They hiked the Appalachian together?

Posted by: dkp01 | April 23, 2010 7:56 PM | Report abuse

How terrific for Obama and Michelle to spend a weekend here in beautiful western North Carolina (though we're about 100 miles north in Boone, a smaller Asheville)! And to hike on my very favorite road, the Blue Ridge Parkway, which I frequently say is one of the best things ever built by the federal government. We're actually only 12 miles from the closest entrance to the BRP, and we're proud members of the Friends of the Blue Ridge Parkway. Don't you wish you were here also?

Posted by: paceaj | April 23, 2010 7:50 PM | Report abuse

I would be dumbfounded if I ever met the Prez on one of my weekend hikes. Of course I would invite him for a swim in the ocean near San Francisco. It's sharky over here but he's already used to swimming with the sharks (metaphorically speaking).

Posted by: GPorter2 | April 23, 2010 5:57 PM | Report abuse

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