Hiking is a good way to connect with nature and enjoy its beauty. The 17th of November is National Take a Hike Day. Here is a list of nine among the best hiking trails that you can conquer this day and even on any day of the year.
1. Mount Katahdin – Maine
This one-day hike spans 2.4 – 9 miles depending on your starting and ending points. This is quite short in comparison to typical hikes, however, reaching the peak would take 8-12 hours. This is a testament to how challenging this trail could be. The path leading to the peak is steep and daunting. All the effort will be rewarded by the gorgeous view at the top.
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2. Devil’s Bridge Trail – Arizona
The Devil’s Bridge can be found in the vicinity of Sedonia. It is a natural sandstone arch which is simply a sight to behold. The trail loop here spans a total of 1.8 miles. The challenge here is the rocky terrain which can quickly tire you out. The view of the desert on top is very unique. It is a must-see.
3. The Wave – Arizona
This trail located in the Vermillion Cliffs National Monument has become quite famous because of the otherworldly rust-coloured swirling sandstones — perfect for Instagram and photoshoots. The trail is 5.2 miles and will take you 2-4 hours. However, the foot traffic in the area is only set to 20 people per day. This means that you have to go really early and you need a bit of luck to get in.
4. Roan Mountain – Tennessee
This 14-mile trail can be accessed through the Appalachian Trail. It is among those bald hikes: grass-filled trails where there is not much of obstruction along the way. However, because of the length of the trail, this is perfect as an overnight hike. Start this trip early in the morning so that you can see the sun rise and set.
5. Congress Trail – California
This trail is a great place to meditate. Walking along the Congress trail will dwarf you, being surrounded by giant Sequoias. You will also get to see General Sherman, the largest among the Sequoias in the trail and also the largest tree in the world. General Sherman starts the trail loop.
6. Long’s Peak – Colorado
This 15-mile long, 14,0000-foot high trail is one of the more daunting trails in this list. Long’s Peak is among the tallest in Colorado. Using the Keyhole route will require you to climb 5,000 feet. The journey will take 12-14 hours total.
A lot of hikers don’t make it to the end because of the difficulty of the trail. Another reason is because a lot of hikers start late already. It is best to start with the trail before the sun rises so that you have ample time to reach the peak.
7. The Narrows – Utah
This trail in the Zion National Park can span from 5-16 miles, depending on the route you are going to take. The entire trail can be completed from 5-10 hours. What’s fun about this trail is that you can choose between a top-down hike (16 miles) and a bottom-up hike (3.6 miles), both of which are unique experiences you should try out. For a day-hike though, the shorter bottom-up hike is better. It also doesn’t require a permit, unlike the top-down route.
8. Half Dome – Yosemite National Park
This 10-12 hour hike leads to a summit where you can see Vernal Falls, Nevada Falls, Yosemite Valley, and High Sierra. The last 400 feet can be reached by using metal cables which you can use without rock climbing equipment. A permit is needed to take this trail, however, so make sure you secure one. The Half Dome Cable Route hike is not for the faint of heart and is the most strenuous hike in Yosemite National Park, but the view from the top is so worth the climb.
9. Mt. Washington – New Hampshire
The 8.4-mile trail may seem easy. However, reaching the summit requires skill and discipline, otherwise, you will have to turn around. Overall, the trail will take 8-10 hours to be accomplished. For National Take a Hike Day, it is best to take the shorter Tuckerman’s Ravine which should be enough to fill up your day.