Hiking through the woods gives you the chance to get some exercise, take in beautiful scenery, and perhaps run into a few forms of wildlife that are hopefully friendly. Those living on the East Coast of the United States looking for a unique trail for an adventure should try out the Appalachian Trail, which stretches from Georgia to Maine.
Whether you’re just hiking through a part of the trail that’s closer to where you live or have enough time to go half-way up it, or perhaps the whole way, there are certain spots that you need to stop by and enjoy. Here are parts of the Appalachian Trail that you should visit.
1. Springer Mountain, Georgia
If you’re looking for a part of the trail that is less crowded than others, then we recommend Springer Mountain, which is at the southern end of the trail. Explorers get to enjoy valleys, mountains and other natural landmarks with peaks of different heights.
This mountain comes with forests stretching from northern Georgia to southern Northern Carolina, giving you plenty of space to check out in the span of a few days. This is also a good option if you tend to enjoy warmer climates.
2. Smoky Mountains, Tennessee/North Carolina
Residents of Tennessee and North Carolina who want to see what the Appalachian Trail has to offer will have a entry point right at their doorstep in the form of the Smoky Mountains. This range is home to Clingman’s Dome, the highest point of the trail.
Those who are looking to come close to a greater variety of animals will be happy to know that the Smoky Mountains is also home to the densest population of black bears on the East Coast. Travelers can also enjoy the largest old growth forest in this spot.
3. Grayson Highlands, Virginia
Speaking of getting to watch unique forms of wildlife hang out in their natural habitat, Grayson Highlands in Virginia is where you’ll be able to spot herds of wild ponies. This spot is full of grasslands where you can find these animals, which were introduced to the area centuries ago.
The grasslands also provide explorers a wider view than if they were checking out parts of the trail that are more crowded with trees. They are located on large hills, however, which can still give you a workout before you check out mountains and other landscapes in the area.
4. Lehigh Gap/Superfund Trailhead, Pennsylvania
If you’re a seasoned hiker coming to the trail for a challenge, then your best bet is to try out Lehigh Gap/Superfund Trailhead. This spot, located in Pennsylvania, is full of rocks situated at steep levels so that you have to figure out how you are able to get to your destination safely.
There will be a mix of green and grey because of the rocks and trees that make up the trail, so be prepared for a lack of flat, smooth paths that will take you to amazing heights. You will be able to enjoy a great view of the Lehigh River and other smaller mountains.
5. McAfee Knob, Virginia
Views are among the best treats that outdoorsmen to enjoy once they’ve finished their hiking or biking journeys. If you’re looking for the best that the Appalachian Trail has to offer, then it’s best to find a path that will take you to McAfee Knob in Virginia.
The cliff at the top of the mountain will give you an amazing view of mountains and rivers that span 30 miles. The more daring will have less of a problem standing at the edge. Stopping by in the spring guarantees great weather, but doing so in the fall will provide a color scene below because of the changing leaves.
6. Presidential Range, New Hampshire
Those living up north on the East Coast, in this case, New Hampshire, who want to see what this trail has to offer should venture to the Presidential Range. This spot is full of the highest mountains in the Northeast, providing you plenty of challenging trails if you have the time.
When it comes to a variety of landscapes to check out, the Presidential Range has you covered. There are plenty of spots covered in trees, but the higher points are full of rocks and grassy areas. You will also be able to spot rivers and valleys once you reach the top of the mountains.
7. Taconic Highlands, Massachusetts/New York/Connecticut/Vermont
Some parts of the trail can be accessible from a variety of states, giving more people a chance to enjoy its wilderness. That’s the case with the Taconic Mountains, which you can access in New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts and Vermont for a camping trip.
The paths that make up this mountain range provide old-growth forest and waterfalls so that you have different sources for additions to your photo collection. Trails also range in size, which fits groups that are staying for either a couple of days or the whole week and want to explore other states for a little while.
8. Hundred-Mile Wilderness, Maine
Spending time in the outdoors allows you to enjoy the peace and quiet that isn’t available in the surburbs or cities. Explorers looking for more remote parts of the Appalachian Trail should check out the Hundred-Mile Wilderness in Maine, which has been called the wildest part of the trail because of its location.
The denseness of the woods makes hiking and traveling a bigger challenge than in other areas, so it helps to have a guide take you along for the adventure. You’ll come across a variety of waterfalls, mossy stumps and river crossings covered with rocks. There’s also the chance of spotting moose, bears, deer and other larger animals of the East Coast.
Reserve some time to explore these areas so that you can see the best that the Appalachian Trail has to offer.