13 Best Hikes in North America

7. Pacific Crest Trail

The other definitive hiking (and riding!) trail in the United States is the Pacific Crest Trail, which stretches 2,650 miles from California to Washington. Along the way, you’ll pass through seven separate national parks.

Like the Appalachian Trail on the East Coast, the Pacific Crest Trail has inspired many thru-hikers, who regard it as the culmination of a lifetime’s work to hike the trail in one trip. One famous hiker who accomplished this was Cheryl Strayed, who wrote about hiking part of the trail in her book Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail

Mike Peters / Shutterstock

6. Long Range Traverse

Newfoundland and Labrador are full of wild nature and amazing hiking opportunities. One of the most challenging trails is Long Range Traverse, which reaches from the eastern part of Western Brook Pond to Gros Morne National Park.

The hike itself is only about 10 miles, but it’s very challenging. The trail is rocky and steep, and takes about eight hours to complete. If you want to camp along the trail, one of the coolest campsites is Ferry Gulch – you’ll sleep beside a beautiful pond overlooking the mountainous valley below.

5. Grand Canyon Rim-to-Rim

There are several ways to hike the Grand Canyon rim-to-rim. If you’re looking for a challenging day hike, you can hike the trail in a single day without getting a permit. If you want to camp down inside the Grand Canyon – and let’s face it, who wouldn’t want to do that – you’ll need to enter the lottery drawing to receive a camping permit.

The Grand Canyon trail is well-marked, and well provisioned with plenty of water stops along the way. The views from down inside the Grand Canyon are unparalleled, and for many people, it’s a completely unique experience. One hiker recently formed the Rim-to-Rim Club to connect past and future Grand Canyon hikers.

Anastasia Musikhina / Shutterstock

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