6 months ago
Most people have heard of the iconic Appalachian and Pacific Crest Trails, but those aren’t the only great through-hikes out there. Outside Online put together a list of five other trails that are just as beautiful for through-hikers, but a lot less crowded. Hikers of all levels should check out some of these trails.
1. Ouachita National Recreation Trail: 223 miles long, takes 10 to 14 days to complete. The trail runs east-west through Oklahoma and central Arkansas to the Ouachita National Forest, the South’s largest and oldest forest. The highest peaks are about 2,600 feet. You never cross any towns, so you can hike for days and not see another soul. Shelters are rare though, so be prepared to pitch a tent most nights.
2. Pacific Northwest National Scenic Trail: 1,200 miles, takes 2 to 3 months to complete. Starting (or ending) at the Pacific coast of Washington, you cross through gorgeous wilderness across three national parks—Olympic, North Cascades, and Glacier—and seven national forests. The trail, which runs close to the Canadian border in places, is pretty young, so it isn’t fully marked or as well maintained. Resupply points are hundreds of miles apart, so be prepared. Only about 100 people attempted the full through-hike last year.
3. Pinhoti National Recreation Trail: 337 miles, takes 22 to 30 days to complete. The trail is better known as a connector to the southern terminus of the Appalachian Trail, but it makes a great through-hike on its own, running from northern Georgia southwest into Alabama. There are ample re-supply points, trail shelters, and not many people.
4. Finger Lakes Trail: 580 miles, takes 1 to 2 months to complete. You cross through wine country and the Catskills of western and upstate New York, what could be better? If you combine spur and branch trails, there are 1,000 miles of hiking available.
5. Idaho Centennial Trail: 900 miles, takes 2 to 3 months to complete. You hike through varied terrain, including sagebrush desert and alpine forests, and you might not see anyone for weeks. Most through-hikers have friends or family resupply them along the way.Read the full story at Outside Online