If you’re looking for the best hikes in the U.S., you’ve cometo the right place! We are huge hiking fans. Hiking isfun, you get a chance to explore, get out in nature, burn some calories, and make lasting memories. What isnot to love?
In this articlewe’ll cover some of our research on the best places to hike in theU.S., including day hikes, backpacking trails, beautiful hiking trails and some of the hardest hikes you can do if you’re up for the challenge. So, if hiking is your thing, be sure to save this article for future reference.Let’s get started!
Why the U.S. is one of the best places to hike
The U.S. isconsidered by many one of the best places in the world to hike. Home to a variety of diverse environments spread from coast to coast, each with a unique climate and terrain. The U.S. is home to423 nationalpark sites and63 national parks, spanning more than 84 million acres. Within the U.S. alone there arefive major climate types from tropical to highlands, each creating a unique hiking territory.
For U.S. residents, traveling between hiking hotspots is easy -- with the option of domesticflying or driving, and no language barrier, currency changes or passport required. This makes hiking in the U.S. an appealing option for anyone looking to plan a trip.
The first step in planning a hiking trip is to research the best hiking trails in theU.S..AllTrails, the most widely used site to find hiking trails has compiled information on more than 72,000 trails in the U.S. and is a great place to start any research. But to make things easier for you, we’ve rounded up the topseven U.S. hiking trails you can try.
Zion National Park is one of the most popular places to hike, and for good reason. The 270-million-year-old canyon offers a view like nothing else, and an enjoyable climate to make the hike one to remember.
The trail starts at Grotto Trailhead and is five miles in total, taking an average hiker aroundfive hours to complete due to the steep incline. During the first part of the hike, you’ll be follow the river, making for a scenic journey; finishing your hike at Scout Lookout where you can enjoy the unforgettable views.
This four-mile intermediate hike is home to thelargest natural sandstone arch, a must-see natural landmark. This hike is perfect for beginner or casual hikers who want to enjoy a shorter, easier hike without sacrificing beautiful views or elevation. The 4,600-footelevation of Devil’s Bridge will get progressively harder, butif you’re in good shape,only takes around two hours to complete, so is easier to push through.
This aptly named hike begins fromBear Lake and has a steady climb to Nymph Lake. The lake is ringed by pond lilies and makes for a perfectscenic pic or selfie. Continuing along the hike, you’ll reach Dream Lake and LakeHaiyaha, before finally reaching Emerald lake after 3.3 miles. This hike is just over an hour and encompasses a number ofspectacular lakes, making it a hike to remember.
You may not have guessed that Tennessee would be a place for hiking, but home to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, this state has plenty to offer. This hike is recommended for the more advanced hikers, ranging 10.6 miles and taking up to 9 hours. But according tothis blog, it’s“strenuous, but not technically challenging.”.There are also a number of stops to see along the way: Myrtle Point, Inspiration Point, The Eye of the Needle, and many small water crossings.If you’re abeginners looking for some popular, yet easy hikes, the Cathedral Rock Trail may appeal to you as it’s just over a mile, and takes less than 30 minutes. However, it’s important to bear in mind that this hike, according to theUSDA, is“more of a rock climb than a hike.”. It is a moderate slope, which ascends steeply, making it difficult to navigate. Make sure you’re wearing the right hiking boots for this one to avoid slipping!
This strenuous and steep trail has been labelled“hard” byAllTrails. This8.6mile hike will take advanced hikers a little longer thansix hours to complete. But it’s worth it. Featuring a rocky terrain, several waterfalls, panoramic views and a bountiful river, this hike is one of the best on the east coast.
This 6.9 mile heavily trafficked hiking trail has an elevation gainof2,706 ft, making it a tough but rewarding hike. It’s recommended to visit this hike from June until October due to the heavy snowfall, avalanche risk and fog that affects visibility. During the summer, this hike has views of the lake and colorful aspen trees.
The U.S. is home to a diverse variety of hiking trails, spanning coast to coast, offering different views, natural landmarks and climates–- making each trail unique from the other. Here atFitMyFoot, we are advocates of the great outdoors, and hiking combines the joys of nature with the benefits of movement.
Before you make a decision on your next hike,besure to check out ourblog for more hiking tips, including the essential hiking gear you need like proper hiking footwear. Enjoy!