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T+L Hiking Guide

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Photo: Marc Meunch/Tandem Stills + Motions

North America

Iconic Hikes

Our top picks for tackling some of the most scenic U.S. landscapes.

Yosemite National Park, California: On the Yosemite Walking & Hiking tour from Backroads, stroll beneath an 1,800-year-old giant sequoia in the park’s Mariposa Grove and stay in the 123-room Ahwahnee hotel, a National Historic Landmark, before hiking to the roaring Lower Yosemite Falls alongside two naturalist guides. Six days from $2,998. ++

Glacier and Yellowstone National Parks, Idaho, Montana, and Wyoming: Off the Beaten Path creates bespoke trips that combine the ragged peaks and pristine lakes of Glacier National Park with the abundant wildlife of Yellowstone. This spring the outfitter is partnering with Airstream 2 Go to provide top-of-the-line trailers as part of custom itineraries in the Rocky Mountains. Nine days from $2,900. ++

Appalachian Trail, Massachusetts and New Hampshire: Loop from Boston to New Hampshire’s Mount Washington during prime leaf-peeping season with G Adventures’ new Autumn Along the Appalachian Trail. The 27-mile route starts in Franconia State Park and continues to the scenic Arethusa Falls Trail. Six days from $1,599. +++

Day Hikes

Get a quick dose of the outdoors.

New York: At Bear Mountain State Park, 50 miles north of Manhattan, you can either walk around a placid lake or ascend to the top (1,300 feet) for views of the Hudson River.

North Carolina: A 40-minute drive south of Asheville on the Blue Ridge Parkway, the Mount Pisgah Trail is a 1 1/2-mile hike to the 5,721-foot summit.

Colorado: The 3 1/2-mile Rustler Gulch Trail, near Crested Butte, culminates in an 11,400-foot-high alpine meadow; creeks and mining ruins round out the experience.

California: Thirty minutes by car from L.A., the three-mile Temescal Canyon Loop, in the Pacific Palisades, passes a scenic waterfall.

Hawaii (Big Island): The four-mile Kilauea Iki Trail starts at the rim of the crater and descends 400 feet into a rain forest and lava lake.

T+L Pick: Trekking Pole A good walking stick can provide better stability on rough terrain. Black Diamond Equipment’s carbon-fiber Ultra Distance model ($160) is light and compact.

Level of Difficulty

+ Easy
++ Intermediate
+++ Challenging
++++ Rigorous


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