Connecting The Dots Of The Southern Appalachian Loop Trail

What unites many of us in the Southern Appalachians is a love for hiking along the hundreds of miles of trails in our region. Ten years ago, Matt Kirk discovered that many of these paths form a loop measuring over 350 miles in length.

Pieced together, this route, known as the Southern Appalachian Loop Trail or SALT, is currently 99.4 percent complete. With the exception of a sliver of undeveloped land on the state line between North Carolina and South Carolina in Transylvania County, it’s already open to the public for hiking.

As a loop, you can start and finish at just about any point along the way and hike back around to where you started. The route highlights the beauty of the Southern Appalachians, from its staggering biodiversity and abundance of waterfalls cascading down from the Blue Ridge Escarpment to the high-elevation spruce forests and panoramic mountain balds in the Smokies.

Several connecting trails afford each hiker an opportunity to choose his or her own adventure throughout the mountains of North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia and Tennessee.

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