Appalachian Trail by County: A river, a foot bridge and Happy Feet

Bill and Laurie took the plural form of their last name “Foot” as their trail name when they through hiked the Appalachian Trail in 1987. Known as Happy Feet, the couple says the hike was life-changing and inspired them to give back to the AT. “We became trail maintainers, we served on the board of directors for our local club and we lead hikes and...

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Old Rail Lines in Connecticut Make Great Trails

With the Industrial Revolution in full swing in the early 1800s, it was only a matter of time before businesses and travelers in Connecticut seized upon a then-novel technology, the railroads. By 1899, there were 1,013 miles of track, with another 416 miles of trolley lines. Today, only 629 miles of passenger and freight rail are still in use in Connecticut; the...

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‘Packing It Out’ Crew Update: 100 Miles, 150lbs of Trash

With their first post from the trail, the ‘Packing It Out’ crew gives an update on their mission to thru-hike the 2,600-mile PCT while collecting trash along the way. Packing It Out was formed late in 2014 when 24-year-old Seth Orme had a post-hike epiphany atop a North Carolina outcrop called, fatefully, Pickens Nose: Why not hike the Appalachian Trail and pick up every...

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New Mount Diablo hiking guide unlocks secrets of hikes

Many visitors are lured to Northern California’s Mount Diablo by its imposing presence – an ancient rock fortress between the Bay Area and San Joaquin Valley. Visitors come for panoramic views and challenging hikes or rides. But some have gotten sick and even died after underestimating the difficulty of some treks and overestimating their own abilities to...

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Hike on Turkey’s best trails for natural discoveries

The best way to discover hidden beauties, greenery and a refreshing atmosphere is an intimate walk in nature. Recognized as a great way to get off the beaten track and feel the diversity of the country, walking in Turkey will lead you to the core of history in rural villages and cozy backstreets. This wonderful country invites you to go hiking with its fascinating...

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A personal account of hiking the Israel National Trail

The centerpiece of the Nifgashim Beshvil Israel project is a hike that spans the entire length of the country from Eilat on the Red Sea in the south to She’ar Yashuv, 1000 kilometers to the north, and the site of a 1997 military helicopter crash. If you do the entire hike it takes two months. It attempts to follow the path of the Israel National Trail, which has been...

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A Guide to Safety on the Appalachian Trail

The wilderness of the 2,190-mile Appalachian Trail can pose many risks to its visitors. Getting hopelessly lost or falling ill, wild animals and dangerous weather are all possibilities. But no risk is so ominous as the humble tick. That is, at least, according to Matt Graves of the National Park Service. “You would think it would be things like wildlife, raging rivers...

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You can now hike 67 miles through the Santa Monica Mountains uninterrupted

For more than 50 years, Southern Californians have dreamed of following an uninterrupted trail among the sycamore canyons and sandstone peaks of the Santa Monica Mountains. Over the decades, the Backbone Trail, stretching 67 miles between Point Mugu State Park and Will Rogers State Historic Park, has slowly taken shape, stitched together by public funding and private...

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Most Haunted Hiking Trails in the United States

Hikers are a tight knit community, even online. One of them sent me this infographic by Healthlisted which identifies some of the most haunted hiking trails in the US. #4 is Norton Creek Trail, right here in the Great Smoky Mountains. Although I’ve never seen any floating lights on that trail – it’s nice to know that they may be there to help anyone that loses their way...

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Wire Cables Tied Across Massachusetts Nature Trails

The Department of Conservation and Recreation and Massachusetts Environmental Police are warning riders and hikers that someone is stringing wire cables across state trails with the intent of causing serious harm. “After receiving reports made by members of the public, the Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) and the Massachusetts Environmental Police issued a...

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LeConte Lodge Donates Hiking Books to Every Sevier 4th Grader

In honor of the National Park Service Centennial, Great Smoky Mountains National Park, LeConte Lodge, and Great Smoky Mountains Association partnered together to provide the popular “Day Hikes of the Smokies” guide book to all 4th grade students in Sevier County. This generous donation, made possible by Leconte Lodge, is in recognition of the National Park Service’s...

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Abandoned Hyogo train tracks to open for hiking in fall

Straddling the cities of Nishinomiya and Takarazuka, the long-deserted Japanese National Railways rail line of the abandoned Fukuchiyama Line will reopen in October 2016 as a public hiking trail. Stretching 4.7 kilometers along the Mukogawa river, the railway tracks were abandoned in 1986 after the opening of a nearby tunnel. The rails were removed, but the wooden ties,...

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16 ways to take on Idaho’s Sawtooths and surrounding mountains

The Sawtooth National Forest in Idaho envelopes the Sawtooth Mountains, for which it was named, as well as other nearby mountain ranges. The Pioneer, White Cloud, Boulder and Smoky mountains are all nearby and can be easily accessed from Stanley or Ketchum, the town that hosts Sun Valley Lodge. The area of the Sawtooths is an outdoor destination that attracts outdoor...

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Zion National Park to hold public meetings on crowding

Officials at Zion National Park have scheduled a series of public meetings to discuss challenges facing the park as it continues to draw record numbers of visitors. National Park Service figures show that nearly 1 million people had visited the park in southern Utah through the end of April. That’s about an 8 percent increase over the same time period last year and...

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New Sections of California Coastal Trail

Just in time for the American Hiking Society’s National Trails Day, June 4, 2016, Mendocino County in Northern California will open two new hiking trails. The 2.3-mile Peter Douglas Coastal Trail routes hikers through redwood groves known as Shady Dell featuring trees with branches that have split off into candelabra shapes. The land, just south of Sinkyone Wilderness...

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North Country Trail changes in Ohio

Hikers, mountain bikers, equestrians and the U.S. Forest Service are working together to make the North Country Trail in Wayne National Forest a bit safer this year as a proposed reroute project will help avoid public roads and skirt areas of erosion. In a proposal released earlier this month, the U.S. Forest Service outlines three sections of the North Country Trail in...

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Cradle of Forestry Offers Walks to Beaver Wetland

The Cradle of Forestry invites the public to a program, “Bogs, Bugs and Beavers,” on Saturday, May 28, 2016. The program begins inside the Cradle’s interpretive center at 10:30 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. with an introduction about beavers’ adaptations to living in a watery world. Then naturalists will lead walks to boardwalks along the Pink Beds Trail,...

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Point Lookout Trail Closing for Repairs

North Carolina’s Pisgah National Forest will temporarily close the Point Lookout Trail on the Grandfather Ranger District for repairs starting May 31, 2016. Repairs to the paved walking and biking trail are expected to take 90 days, and the trail is anticipated to reopen by September 1. The Point Lookout Trail connects Mill Creek Road in Ridgecrest to Old U.S. 70...

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International Appalachian Trail seeks to reroute 52 miles of path in Maine

The International Appalachian Trail continues to draw hikers to northern Maine, offering a tour through varied landscapes and a connection to Canada and beyond. Trail enthusiasts celebrated some of the best of Aroostook County’s outdoors the weekend of May 7-8, 2016 at the International Appalachian Trail Maine Chapter’s annual conference in Presque Isle, sharing stories...

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New Sonoma County hiking trail opens up along San Pablo Bay

Sonoma County, California’s newest hiking trail officially opened May 15, 2016 just a few hundred yards from the often backed up and typically frustrating Highway 37. The Eliot Trail, located at the edge of tidal wetlands near where Lakeville Highway meets Highway 37, gives travelers an experience opposite to the nearby roadway. The two-and-a-half mile trail offers...

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Kids in Parks launches Citizen Science TRACK Trail

They aren’t wearing white lab coats, but there are already young scientists collecting data at Front Lake at Carl Sandburg Home National Historic Site in Flat Rock, North Carolina. The Kids in Parks program recently opened its first Citizen Science TRACK Trail designed to engage kids in learning and caring for the park’s ecosystem while helping staff researchers and...

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64-year-old Hiker Found Alive And Tied To A Tree

National Park Service Rangers are asking for any information about a possible assault after firefighters discovered a woman tied to a tree near Craggy Gardens along the Blue Ridge Parkway Thursday, May 12, 2016. In the early afternoon, the Reems Creek Fire Department had responded to a call for a lost person who was possibly having a medical issue, according to a captain...

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The outdoors gender gap needs to be closed

Women often wonder whether it is safe for them to hike solo. For long distance athlete Liz Thomas, the answer clearly is yes: She has hiked 8,000 miles by herself, pioneered routes in Utah and the Columbia River Gorge, and set an Appalachian Trail speed record. But others argue that in the eyes of a good chunk of women – heck, in the eyes of many people in this country –...

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The Valley of Flowers, The Gateway to Extraordinary Hiking

Bozeman, Montana is a great place to relocate if you enjoy fly fishing, hiking and being centered among some of the most spectacular scenery and national parks in the country? Some of the most enjoyable hiking is to to the peaks surrounding the Gallatin Valley, also known as the Valley of Flowers. Bozeman is named for the early pioneer and trail builder, John Bozeman,...

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How Crowded is the Appalachian Trail Really?

The predictable pattern of a 25% increase each year has remained steady despite Hollywood’s recent attempts to bring more people out into the wild. Only about half of these hopeful thru-hikers will make it to Harpers Ferry, West Virginia, and one quarter will make it to Katahdin. The impact of the crowds decreases as the masses thin, but the southern 500 miles of the...

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New section Mountains to Sea Trail opens along the Haw River

Thanks and congratulations to Alamance County and Mountains to Sea Trail Friends volunteers for completing another four miles of trail, known as the Sellers Falls Section, along the Haw River near Burlington, NC. This new stretch of trail brings the total continuous miles of MST in this area to eight, and this is in addition to several shorter sections of trail along the...

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National Trails Day is Saturday, June 4th, 2016

Come celebrate the 23rd anniversary of National Trails Day in the Smokies on the Appalachian Trail. This fun workday only comes around once a year, and you don’t want to miss it. Please get your registration in as soon as possible. Friends of Great Smoky Mountains National Park, the Southern Regional Office of the Appalachian Trail Conservancy, Smoky Mountains Hiking...

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This Is Our Country. Let’s Walk It.

In much of Europe, walking wherever you want is perfectly legal. Not in America. A couple of years ago, Ken Ilgunas trespassed across America. He’d set out to hike the proposed route of the Keystone XL pipeline, which had been planned to stretch over a thousand miles over the Great Plains, from Alberta, Canada, to the Gulf Coast. To walk the pipe’s route, roads wouldn’t...

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Wild mustangs on the job in Wallowa-Whitman National Forest

Eleven wild mustangs have arrived in northeast Oregon from Nevada to assist summer trails crews working in Hells Canyon and the Eagle Cap Wilderness on the Wallowa-Whitman National Forest. The horses came from Carson City, Nevada, as part of the Bureau of Land Management’s Wild Horse and Burro Program. Both the BLM and Forest Service are required to follow the 1971 Wild...

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Interactive, on-trail exhibit opens at Bear Mountain park

Ever wonder how trails are built? Yes, built. Don’t feel bad if you’ve never stopped to consider that most trails aren’t simply created by people and animals walking across the same paths over and over. Modern recreational trails are actually designed, built and maintained as joint projects between park managers, trail professionals, and trail volunteers. Adding to their...

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Hiking Mount St. Helens Hummocks’ chaotic landscape

It will never qualify as one of the classic trails of Mount St. Helens, at least not visually. Yet Hummocks No. 229 — with its chaotic landscape of dirt mounds and ponds — should be on local hikers’ bucket list. Hummocks is not a river trail, not a meadow trail and not a deep forest trail. But the terrain it passes through in its 2.55 miles definitely is worth a look....

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Hong Kong’s MacLehose Trail one of the best hikes

Hong Kong’s first and longest hiking trail, the MacLehose Trail, has been named one of the best hikes in the world by the National Geographic Society. The society said it had asked 20 “outdoor luminaries” including trail runners, CEOs and popular authors for the trails they dreamed about. The 100km MacLehose Trail was picked by veteran hiker and writer M. John...

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