Picking the Best Hiking Trail for Your Abilities (Easy, Moderate and Strenuous)

People enjoy hiking for a variety of reasons, but many of those who hit their local trails do so for the exercise the activity provides.

However, there’s a big difference between breaking a sweat and working out your muscles during a hike and biting off more than you can chew. You don’t want to wear yourself out and require assistance getting back to the trailhead. Conversely, you don’t want to head out for an afternoon in hopes of working out your calves and burning a bunch of calories only to find that the trail you chose is no more challenging than a sidewalk.

To avoid either eventuality, you’ll need to pick a trail that suits your skill and fitness level. This will help you have a great time and achieve the goals you’ve established.

There is no widely recognized, universal trail-rating system. Different parks, trail guides, hike leaders, websites and books subscribe to different rating systems, making apples-to-apples comparisons hard. Some rating systems use numbers to rate trails, while others employ the easy-moderate-strenuous convention. Still others use variations of these approaches.

The Sierra Club rating system is primarily based on the length of the trail and the elevation change hikers will encounter while completing it. This system breaks trails down into one of three categories: Easy, Moderate or Strenuous.

Learn more here…


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